Dagala Thousand Lakes Trek, 8 days

Lake, Dagala trek
Easy access and pristine
Trekking Tours
  • Reasonable short trek
  • Easy access from Thimphu and Paro
  • Panoramic views of mountains
  • Magical landscape with hundreds of lakes
  • Mingle with local herders when coming in summer
  • Reaching to holy Jomo (Dagala) peak in 4716m
  • Only small number of other trekkers do this trail
  • All cultural sights of Paro and Thimphu covered
US$ 1300 / person ?
# Itinerary Program

Arrival to Paro

Afternoon arrival to Paro. Visit to National Museum and Paro dzong (Rinpung dzong), the castle-monastery where Bernardo Bertolucci’s Little Buddha film was shot. Walk through the busy little town.
2 Paro Early morning drive Drukyel dzong, the castle ruins from where you can see the summit of holy Jomolhari mountain in clear weather. Climb to Taktsang gomba (Tiger’s Nest), is the highlight of the tour. While the hike seems to be hard, it’s very rewarding. If you don’t feel so strong, you can climb just halfway to cafeteria with nice view of the place. Then stop at Kyichu lhakhang, one of the two oldest temples built in Bhutan. If time permits, you can also visit National Museum.

Drive: Paro  Geynekha
Trek: Geynekha – Gur

Trek 6 km, 3-4 hours ↗610m. Today we will start trekking after 2 hours drive to Geynekha village (2900 m). On the way we will stop to see Tachog lhakhang to see the bridge reconstructed with old chains smithed by ancient saint and bridge builder Thangton Gampo. After less than 1 hour drive, we will reach to Chuzom, the confluence of Paro chu and Wang chu rivers. From here car will start ascending to the hill by feeder road, until we reach Geynekha village in 2300 meters. This area was formerly busy trail connecting Thimphu and Paro with important Daga district to the south. Area was rich from trade but also from mining iron ore and other minerals. There is ruined castle Genye dzong. While the main utse (tower) hosting temple is still there, the fortification collapsed. From Genyekha the trek will start ascending gently up until we reach Geynizampa which is sometimes used as campsite. From here you will continue climb through beautiful oak forest. After some 1-1.5 hour climbing you will reach viewpoint at 3200m. Finally you will reach to the top of the ridge in 3350m. Spend a night in the nearby campsite.
4 Trek: Gur – Dolungo Trek 13km, 5 hours, ↗820m, ↘200m. Continue climbing through forest until you reach mountain pastures in elevation 3440m. After some climbing you will reach to herder huts settlement in 3710m called Gibze Kebze, sometimes also used for camping. After crossing few creeks and further ascending you’ll reach small saddle and soon after cross the Pagalabtsa La pass (4170m). Now you will finally see shattered mountain landscape in front of you with the panorama of Dagala range. From here, the trail is bit tricky. You should continue to the east in direction of two herders stone houses of Watching hamlet. Continue traversing the ridge, cross smaller saddle and descend to valley with few herders’ huts. This is Labatama (4050m), a possible camp. In summer months this place is full of local herders camping and grazing their animals. It's also junction of trails heading north-east to Timphu and south to Dagana. Anyway it’s better to continue further to the valley head to Dolungo (4280m) near lake Utsho Tsho. The sun is setting late here so you can still spend some time exploring the surrounding areas.
5 Trek: Dolungo – Kiwi Chowa Trek 11km, 6-7 hours, ↗436m, ↘686m (high route).  This day, you have option to go easier lower route along with your horses and staff or take more demanding and also rewarding high route. We strongly recommend high trail. Start climbing to the high trail leading the passing around Serbho Tsho lake and some other lakes. It's said that there is 108 lakes (sacred number) in this area. Finally you reach a pass in 4520m and if you like, you can continue climb to Jomo (Dagala) Peak viewpoint (4716m). This is the abode of Aum Jomo goddess of Dagala who said to be great fond of young men but despise monks and women. In clear weather, you might be rewarded by views Jomolhari and Kanchenjunga peaks. Now descend down from the pass to the herder's campsite in around 4350m and reach lower route near Dochcha Chhu stream. After descending from the pass and again joining lower route, you will continue walking through pastures with nice views. Finally you reach small saddle at 4140m, reaching camp Kiwi Chowa next to a small stream in 4030m.
6 Trek: Kiwi Chowa – Thimphu Trek 9km, 5 hours, ↗155m, ↘1885m. This will be tiring day for your knees. Actually there are more trails from here, leading different directions, even to Wangdue. First you will start climbing steeply to herders’ shelters beside the ruins of former monastery or fortress. Continue to climb Tale La pass (4200 m). From here you can spot Thimphu valley and panoramic view of mountains including Kanchejunga, Jomolhari, Jiychu Drakye, Tserim Kang and others. You can even make detour to climb Talakha Peak (4300m) for even better view. Now the steep descend starts. Beware of loose stones! Then you reach the meadow where you might like to take a lunch and continue descending through mixed forest. Finally descend to Talakha Gompa (3110m). There is nice view of Thipmhu valley from here. Vehicle will be waiting for you, so this will be the time to say goodbye to your staff and horses. Still there will be about 2 hours drive down. You will see first dzong in Bhutan built by country’s unifier Shabdrung Nawang Namgyel. Arrival to Thimphu and rest. You might like to try massage in some of the plentiful parlours.
7 Thimphu – Paro Early morning drive to Buddha Dordenma, the gigantic statue of Buddha overlooking the valley and walk to striking city viewpoint. See Memorial Chorten, always busy with devotees.  Walk in Norzin lam street and see the traffic police signalling in junctions. Thimphu is only capital in the world without the traffic lights. Finish walk in main postal office with shop where beautiful and valuable Bhutanese stamps can be bought. Visit school of traditional arts, where the young men and women learns the arts and craft of their forefathers. Excursion to Takin enclosure, where the national animal, the mysterious takin, is kept. After that Changankha lhakhang, the oldest place of worship in the valley. Take a free time to explore town on your own. Late afternoon visit to Tashichho dzong, seat of the king and government. Evening drive to Paro.
8 Departure Departure from Bhutan.
Tour variants, extensions and combinations: 
  • Extra day to explore Dagala (+1 day): Spend one more day in Dolungo camp and explore the area with hundreds of lakes and picturesque rocks.
  • Extension to Dagana (+4 days): Undertake the less traveled trek finishing in remote district of Dagana, following ancient footpath and visit some other district of western Bhutan. See Dagala to Dagana itinerary for details,