Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek

Duration18 Days
Trip GradeChallenging
Maximum Altitude5360 M
Group Size1-12
Best TimeMarch to May & September to December

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek Highlights

  • Less crowded trekking trails
  • Magar ethnic villages and their hospitality
  • Panoramic views of the Himalayas of Annapurna (8,091m) and Dhaulagiri (8,167m) Himalayan Ranges as well as Mt. Manaslu (8,163m)
  • Many peaks over 7000m
  • French Pass (5,360 meters) and Dhampus Pass/Thapa Pass (5,244 meters)
  • Beautiful landscapes including the Hidden Valley
  • Experience of a teahouse, homestay, and camping trekking at the same time
  • Scenic flight from Jomsom to Pokhara

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek Overview

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek is a challenging trek towards the world’s 7th highest peak, Mt. Dhaulagiri (8,167 m). This trek is also known as Dhaulagiri Base Camp trek or Dhaulagiri Circuit trek as well. It takes you as high as the Dhaulagiri North Base Camp (4,750 m).

The trail to Dhaulagiri Base Camp trek was first discovered in 1950 by the team of Maurice Herzog. They had planned to ascend to the top of Mt. Dhaulagiri. However, they ended up climbing Mt. Annapurna (8,091 m), which became the first 8,000 m+ peak ascended successfully!

Nevertheless, the first ascent of Mt. Dhaulagiri took place on 13 May 1960, after a decade of its discovery. An Austrian mountaineer Kurt Diemberger became the first person to mount on the top of this Great Mountain. He was a member of the joint expedition team of Swiss, Austrian, and Nepali climbers, which was led by Max Eiselin.

The Dhaulagiri Massif has extended to 124 kilometers between the Kali Gandaki River and the Bheri River. It is located nearly 34 km west of Mt. Annapurna (8,091 m). The Kali Gandaki Gorge, the world’s deepest gorge lies between Mt. Annapurna and Mt. Dhaulagiri.

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek follows the trail that passes along the ethnic villages of the Dhaulagiri region. Although people from various ethnic groups reside here, the Magar people’s majority is found.

The Trekking trail up to Dhaulagiri North Base Camp (4,750 m) is challenging as it rises above the normal altitude. But the presence of two high passes above 5,000 m has made this trek more difficult. You have to cross French Pass (5,360 m) and Dhampus Pass/Thapa Pass (5,244 m) while descending to the Annapurna region.

Round Dhaulagiri Trek Difficulty

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek is a challenging trek in Nepal into the Nepalese Himalayas. It leads you to the surroundings of the 7th highest peak in the world. This trek ends up at Dhaulagiri North Base Camp (4,750 m).

How difficult is the Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek? To answer this question, we should talk about the important factors that determine the trek difficulty. First, every day Nepal trekking duration plays an important role. You have to walk for about 6/7 hours per day to cover a particular distance.

Until the first 4th day of the trekking in Nepal, the trails run below 2,500 m. It means there is less chance of altitude sickness. From the 5th day onwards, the trails begin to gain altitude, so move higher than the normal height.

As soon as you walk or spend a night above 2,500 m, you should be more careful to avoid Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). From Chariban Camp (3,110 m) until you fly to Pokhara from Jomsom, you spend the time in the high and very high-altitude.

It means you should be fully aware of walking slowly; keeping yourself hydrated; and taking enough food, water, and rest. As soon as you feel any difficulty in breathing or walking, you should talk with the Nepal trekking guide. He will help you minimize the risk of altitude sickness that may sometimes result in death.

Next, the condition of the trails also measures a trek difficulty level. The trails up to the north base camp of Mount Dhaulagiri are well-defined and a bit challenging. But, while descending towards the Annapurna region from the base camp, you have to cross two Himalayan passes above 5,000 m.

To beat Dhaulagiri Base Camp trek difficulty, you should develop a habit of regular exercise and walking. If you have previous Nepal trekking or climbing experience, it will be a bonus point.

Round Dhaulagiri Trek Itinerary

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek itinerary ranges from 17 days to 25 days. The 17-day itinerary takes you to trails of the Jomsom Muktinath Trek. From Marpha, the Apple Capital of Nepal, you trek to Jomsom. You fly to Pokhara from Jomsom in just 25 minutes by enjoying the aerial view of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri regions.

However, if you want to extend it to 25 days, you avoid trekking to Jomsom. Instead, of the Jomsom trek, you divert to Kalopani from Marpha Village. Then, you make the Annapurna Sunrise View Trek and Ghorepani Ghandruk Trek. And finally, you trek to Nayapul and drive to Pokhara.

How Costly is Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek?

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek is a newly opened off-beat trek in Nepal leading towards the world’s 7th highest mountain. The Dhaulagiri Circuit trek itinerary ranges from 17 days to 25 days.

You know, the cost of a Nepal tour or Nepal trek package depends upon many factors. Nepal Trekking itinerary, number of guides and porters, services of food and accommodation, and mode of transportation.

If you fly from Kathmandu to Pokhara, the cost is different while if you drive there, it costs something different. Similarly, if you hire a private jeep, it costs more than traveling on a local bus.

The cost of 17 days is different from that of 25 days. Likewise, If you trek to Jomsom from Marpha Village, the air ticket cost is higher. Similarly, if you connect it to the Annapurna Sunrise View trek and Ghorepani Ghandruk trek, you have to pay different costs.

We are always ready to provide you with the best Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek package at the most reasonable cost. Contact us via email, phone calls, WhatsApp, or online portal. Visit the Nepal Trekking Routes website for more info.

Round Dhaulagiri Trek Map

Talking about the Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek Map, you begin from Beni, the gateway to the Guerrilla Trek or Upper Mustang Trek. You can directly travel to Beni from Kathmandu in a private vehicle or a local bus. Or, you can even fly to Pokhara and then drive there.

From Beni, you cross Darbang, Dharapani, Muri, Bagar and Dobhan Kharka. Moving ahead across Chariban Camp, you pass by the Italian Base Camp, Japanese Base Camp, and then Dhaulagiri North Base Camp. From here, you ascend to the Hidden Valley via French Pass (5,360 m). Enjoying the jaw-dropping view of the soaring peak of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri Himalayan Ranges, you climb down to Yak Kharka via Dhampus Pass/Thapa Pass (5,244 m).

From these passes, you can enjoy the Himalayas as far as Mt Manaslu (8,163 m). Then, from Yak Kharka, you walk along the Kali Gandaki River Valley. By crossing Marpha, the Apple  Capital of Nepal, you reach Jomsom. After spending a night at Jomsom, you fly back to Pokhara and then return to Kathmandu. You can extend a day or two to do the Muktinath trek from Jomsom and to explore the most touristic places of Lake City Pokhara.

Food and Accommodation During the Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek

Dhaulagiri Circuit Trek is a combination of teahouse, homestay, and camping trek in Nepal. It is best for going camping trekking as there are not many teahouses on the route. For camping trekking in Nepal, you should hire a crew having a team leader, a cook, a waiter, a guide, and a porter. On this trip, you will spend the night at a tented camp while food is prepared by the cook of the crew. You won’t have choices for food items from a large variety of menus.

Similarly, the teahouses and homestays also provide basic facilities for food and accommodation.  Due to the lack of transportation facilities, people of this region cannot bring many foodstuffs from outside. Next, the land topography is not very supportive of crops and vegetable production. However, you will get to choose the food items of your appetite until Beni and from Yak Kharka. In the rest of the treks, people provide you with basic facilities due to the lack of commercialization as well. The simple-minded people provide the best hospitality to the people.

Trip PlanExpand All

Our member staffs welcomes you to Nepal at the Tribhuvan International Airport. Then, he takes you to the hotel. You can take a round of Thamel, the busiest touristic place of Kathmandu.

The tour guide takes you for Kathmandu tour. You will visit the most important landmarks recorded in the World Heritage Lists. Patan Durbar Square, Pashupatinath Temple, the Monkey Temple and Bouddhanath Stupa will be visited.

When you return to the hotel, the team leader shares the important information about Round Dhaulagiri Trek itinerary.

It is possible to drive to Beni from Pokhara after a Kathmandu-Pokhara flight. It takes nearly 25 minutes to reach Pokhara and then 2 hours drive to Beni.

However, you begin to travel early in the morning in a private jeep or a local bus. By crossing Muglin and Pokhara including many other business hubs, you reach Beni in about 9 hours.

Beni is the gateway to Upper Dolpo trek and a transit to Jomsom trek. From here, you will have the jaw-dropping vistas of Annapurna (8,091m) and green hills all around.

You will drive along the off-road to reach Darbang from Beni. You will go across some villages like Baguwa, Tatopani and Babiyachaur. You formally begin the trek from Darbang, a village populated by the Magar ethnic community.

By walking past the terraced farmlands, Shahashradhara Villge and the Duk Khola, you reach Ratorunga Village. From here, you follow the rocky track along a narrow valley, you reach Dharapani.

The trail today leads you higher to a ridge and then Sibang and Mattim villages. Moving ahead through the Gatti Khola, you reach Phalai Gaun (1,850m). Then, crossing the Dhara Khla and the Myagdi Khola, you reach Muri. Muri is a typically Magar village where you can observe their lifestyle, culture and tradition.

You move along the terraced fields by enjoying the amazing view of Mt. Ghustung South (6,465m). Then, following the west bank of the Myagdi Khola, you cross Naura Village and ascend to a cliff. Further descending through the forests and terraced fields, you reach Bagar.

In the beginning, you go along the terraced fields and forests to Jyardan, which is the remotest settlement area of this region. Then, you move through the windy trails across Lipshe Village. Hereafter, the trail runs through Lepche Kharka and ends at Dobhan Kharka.

After breakfast, you move further along Dhaulagiri Sanctuary by listening to the birds’ chirping. Enjoying the scenery of Mt. Dhaulagiri, you continue along the banks of the Myagdi Khola. Then after, you go across a wooden bridge and then Chartare Village. Finally, crossing a dense forests, you reach Chariban Camp.

Today, you start going along the moraine of the Chhonbarban Glacier enjoying the alluring view of Tukeche Peak (6,837m) and Mt. Dhaulagiri (8,167m). Moving a little further across pine, birch, oak and rhododendron forests, you reach Italian Base Camp. From here, you will witness the enchanting view of Dhaulagiri II (7751m), Dhaulagiri III (7715 m) and Dhaulagiri V (7618 m).

As you are going to climb higher than 4,000m, it is necessary to get a spare day for adjustment with the high altitude. This day is to prepare yourself to climb to the base camp of Mt. Dhaulagiri via Japanese Base Camp. For this purpose, you can hike around the Italian Base Camp to keep you physically fit and psychologically high spirited.

This is yet another adventurous day as you may need the help of the ropes to cross the gorges. The scenery of the green hills and snowcapped peaks makes this challenging trip far easier. Finally, you reach Japanese Base Camp to end up the walk for the day.

You begin today’s journey quite early as you are going to reach the final destination of Dhaulagiri Sanctuary trek. As the trail is slippery, you should walk very carefully. By enjoying the smiling peaks of Dhaulagiri Massif, you move further ahead.

You should cover the distance by taking enough rest to avoid AMS. By witnessing the mesmerizing sight of Tukuche Peak, Dhaulagiri II (7751m), Dhaulagiri III (7715 m) and Dhaulagiri V (7618 m), you reach the base camp after 7 hours.

From here, you will have the wonderful view of the Himalayas, lush valleys and high altitude village of Dhaulagiri region. Spend the day by observing the icefalls, glaciers and snowcapped peaks.

Today is another special day as you are going to cross the highest point of the entire Round Dhaulagiri trek. As the trail is challenging and slippery, you have to use ropes in some sections to reach French Pass (5,360m).

Once you are on the top, you will have the astounding view of Tukuche Peak, Tashi Kang (6,386m), Mukut Himal (5,970m), Sita Chuchura (6,611m), Mt. Annapurna and Mt. Manaslu (8,163m) and Dhaulagiri massif. After taking a pause to enjoy the view from the 5,000m plus pass, you descend towards Hidden Valley. The trail now is comparatively easy to reach this valley.

As Hidden Valley lies in the shadow of Mt. Dhaulagiri, you can see sparse vegetation and tundra vegetation. The valley surrounded by the soaring peaks from all directions, lies on the way to Dhampus Peak climbing. You might see some herds of blue sheep as it is the home for them.

After breakfast, you begin to descend towards Yak Kharka from Hidden Valley. Following the steep downhill trail, you go across Dhampus Pass, also known as Thapa Pass (5,244m). You might need to use crampons to cross this high pass.

On the way, you will enjoy the breathtaking view of Tukuche Peak, Dhampus Peak (6,012m), Mt. Nilgiri, Mt. Annapurna, Mt. Manaslu (8,163m) and Dhaulagiri Massif.

Today’s travel starts after having breakfast. The trail guides you further along the Kali Gandaki River Valley along Marpha Village. Marpha is also called the Capital of Apple in Nepal. You can see a large plot of apple orchards. There is also a distillery to produce the liquor brand of apples “Marpha.”

Moving ahead, you reach Jomsom by having the glimpses of Mt. Dhaulagiri and Mt. Nilgiri. Here, you can celebrate the successful accomplishment of Round Dhaulagiri trek with your team members.

After having breakfast, you will fly to Pokhara from Jomsom. During the 25-minutes-flight, you can have the aerial panorama of Mt. Annapurna, Mt. Dhaulagiri and distant view of Manaslu (8,163m) region as well.

You will either fly or drive back to Kathmandu from Pokhara. After you arrive in Kathmandu, you can visit the remaining places. In the evening, you will be called for farewell dinner. You will really enjoy the Nepali cuisine and cultural performances at the restaurant.

The crewmember of NTR escorts you up to the Kathmandu Airport for your final departure.

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Cost Details
  • Airport pick up and drop off service
  • Trekking Guide and Trekking Porter (Porter can carry maximum 25 kg) Two Traveler have one porter.
  • Brearkfast, Lunch, Dinner & (Camping+Tea House) Accommodation During the Trek
  • Three star Hotel accommodation (Two Night in Kathmandu and 2 Night Pokhara)
  • Trekking Permit (National Park Entry Permit)
  • TIMS(Trekking Informational Managment System) Card
  • Kathmandu Heritage Tour Guide and Transport
  • Kathmandu To Pokhara and Pokhara to Kathmandu Tourist bus service
  • Insurance and equipment for the trekking staffs
  • First aid kit
  • Arrangement of Emergency Helicopter service which will be paid by your Travel Insurance Company.
  • Personal expenses and Travel insurance
  • Heritage entry fee during the sightseeing Kathmandu & Pokhara
  • Drinks, beverages, hot shower, extra accommodation in Kathmandu
  • Round trip flight fare for Kathmandu-Pokhara-Kathmandu
  • Tips for guide
  • Extra Meals & hotel accommodation in Kathmandu other than mentioned in Itinerary

Mt. Dhaulagiri (8,167m) lies about 34 km west of Mt. Annapurna (8,091m). You begin this trek from Beni, the gateway to Guerrilla trek and Upper Dolpo trek. Dhaulagiri North Base Camp is 4,750m high.

You need TIMS Card and ACAP permits to do Round Dhaulagiri Trek. Both the permits are issued by Nepal Tourism Board Offices in Kathmandu and Pokhara. TIMS Card cost is USD 10 and ACAP Entry Permit cost is USD 30 plus 13% VAT.

The altitude you gain, condition of the trekking trails, lack of teahouses on the route and presence of two passes above 5,000m make Round Dhaulagiri trek difficult

Yes, you can do Round Dhaulagiri trek solo as there is not any restricted area in it. But, it is a moderate to difficult trekking in Nepal. Therefore, we recommend you to book this trip via a local tour operator, which provides you a professional guide.

Round Dhaulagiri trek takes you to the north base camp (4,750m) of Mount Dhaulagiri (8,167m). On the other hand,  Dhaulagiri Sanctuary trek takes you to the south base camp (4,055m) of Mt. Dhaulagiri.

Yes, you can do Dhaulagiri Base Camp Helicopter tour without landing. There is not any airstrip at the base camp, so, you cannot land there.

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