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Khaptad-Badimalika-Rara Trek

Khaptad to Rara via Badimalika region is the off-beaten path trek of Western Nepal. This camping trek offers the adventurous experience of trekking in nature. This trail allows us to explore the gems of Western Nepal. This is the combined trek to the land of grasslands, lakes, and forests with diverse geographical features from high mountains to deep gorges and plateaus. 

 

Khaptad National Park

The place Khaptad National Park inherits its name from Khaptad Swami, a Hindu sage who lived in the area for many years. The government has a gazette 225 sq. km of the area as Khaptad National Park to conserve wildlife and biodiversity in the area. A 5 km area inside the park has been separated for meditation and tranquility where consumption of meat, alcohol, and tobacco is prohibited. The national park is described as a living garden of herbs and a museum of natural history for its 224 species of medicinal herbs. Khaptad Lake is a place of religious significance and draws hundreds of people on the full moon day of July- August every year. The park is home to different wildlife species, including bears, leopards, common langur, musk deer, and different species of birds. The area is fertile land for different medicinal herbs and other rare vegetation.

 

Badimalika Temple

Badimalika Temple, at the elevation of 4,210m, is a temple dedicated to Goddess Bhagwati located on the top of 22 grass plateaus. Malika Chaturdashi is the major annual festival that is held in this temple. The temple is served by two priests, one of them representing the Kalikot district while the other priest from the Bajura district. Every year there is a fair at this temple during July/August. Pilgrims come from all over Nepal and India in the belief that their wishes will be fulfilled if they pray at the temple. There are two official fairs during Ganga Dashara and Janai Purnima.

 

Rara Lake 

At an altitude of 2990m, Rara Lake lies between the coniferous forests, mirroring the snowcapped Himalayas. It is extended up to 10.8 sq. km with an oval shape. The lake is recorded to be 167m in depth, enrich with different rare aquatic species. The lake lies within the Rara National Park, which is by far the smallest national park of Nepal. Rara Lake has been a favorite travel destination for domestic internal as well as external tourists. During the trek to Rara Lake, we can find different glimpses of cultures and scenery. Situated at a high altitude, we can find the lake surrounded by Rara National Park with pine, spruce, and juniper forest. The view of snow-capped Himalayan peaks enhances the attraction of trekkers. Nowadays, there are plenty of facilities for food and accommodation.

 

We can take a flight from Nepalgunj to Talcha Airport of Mugu or to Jumla Airport and trek for 2 days to reach Rara Lake. Moreover, one can explore Khaptad National park and Rara at the same trek and extends to Shey Phoksundo Lake of Dolpa. Travelers can reach by roadways on a private FWD vehicle via Karnali Highway or organize a Moto biking tour to Rara Lake.

 

Highlights of Trek

Duration 20 Days
Grade 4+
Maximum Elevation 4,210m/13,810ft Badimalika Temple
Mountains Mt Saipal (7,031m), Mt. Api (7,132m)
Rivers Seti River, Budi Ganga, Dogade River, Triveni, Khalyad River, Karnali
Forests Rhododendron, Juniper & Pine Forests
Flights Kathmandu (KTM) – Dhangadhi (DHI), Talcha - Nepalgunj – Kathmandu (KTM)
Landscapes Hills and Mountains, Grasslands Plateau, Basins, Valleys
Warning Altitude Sickness (3000)
Accommodation Star Category hotels in Kathmandu, Tourist standard lodges and Camping at trekking

Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu

Upon arrival at Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport, transfer to the hotel. After some refreshment, there will be a short briefing about the trek regarding the schedule, required trekking gears, services, and facilities we provided during the drive and trekking areas. 

The rest of the time is free for trekking preparation.

Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu. 

 

Day 02: Half-Day Sightseeing Tour and Trek Preparation. 

After breakfast, proceed for a half-day sightseeing tour of Kathmandu City including the World Heritage Sites. It includes a tour of two sites among below: 

  • Pashupatinath Temple - the Temple of Lord Shiva situated on the bank of the holy Bagmati River. The temple is listed on a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Hanuman Dhoka (Kathmandu Durbar Square) - an ancient durbar (palace) with its numerous old palaces, temples, and pagodas, the Temple of Living Goddess “Kumari”, and the Kasthamandap Temple, which is believed to be constructed from the wood of a single tree from which Kathmandu derives its name.
  • Bouddhanath Stupa- an ancient colossal stupa and the center of Tibetan Buddhism in the world
  • Swayambhunath Stupa - the oldest Buddhist stupa of Nepal and has numerous shrines and monasteries on its premises. It is also known as the “Monkey Temple”!!
  • Patan City - a city of 55 major temples, 136 Buddhist monasteries, and famous for the production of Thangka and Paubha Paintings.
  • Narayan Hiti Palace Museum
  • National Museum

The rest of the day is free for trekking preparation, such as trekking gear shopping, packing on a duffle bag, etc.  

Eve: Trip briefing followed by welcome dinner at Authentic Nepali restaurant with cultural program.

Overnight at Hotel in Kathmandu. (B, D)

 

Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Dhangadhi (109m/357ft) - 1 hour 15 minutes and drive to Dipayal Silgadhi (1,340m/4,396ft) – 190Km / 6 hours

After breakfast, check out from the hotel and transfer to Kathmandu Domestic Airport to board an onward flight to Dhangadi for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. At Dhangadhi, we will meet the awaiting vehicle to drive from Dhangadi to Dipayal Silgadhi. This day we will drive to a hilly area leaving the Terai plains of the far western region of Nepal. Upon arrival in Silgadhi, check into the hotel and explore Silgadhi Bazar. 

Overnight at a hotel in Dipayal Silgadhi. (B, L, D)

 

Day 04: Drive to Jhigrana (2250m/7381ft) – 1.5 hours and trek to Bichpani Camp (3,020m/9,906ft) – 3 hours

After breakfast, checkout from the hotel and start drive to Jhigrana, the entrance point of Khaptad National Park. En route, we will explore Shree Saileshwori Temple of Doti. 

Goddess Shaileshwari is another form among many others and people have great faith in her, like any other form of Bhagwati/Durga, it is supposed that the goddess would fulfill their destiny. The inhabitants of Silgadhi always pray to goddess Shaileshwari before beginning any task. The deities in the temple complex include a Shiva lingam, Chaturbhuj Narayan, Ganesh, Bhairab, and Masta.

Then we will continue the drive to Jhigrana. Upon arrival at Jhigrana, start trek to Bichpani Camp for about 3 hours. Crossing Jhigrana, the trail will gently ascend towards the forest trail. Walking for four hours, we will reach Bichpani.

Overnight at teahouse lodges or tented camp at Bichpani Camp. (B, L, D)

 

Day 05: Trek to Khaptad (3,010m/9,873ft) - 5 hours

After breakfast, we will start trek towards Khaptad. Today trek leads through subtropical pine timberland, and the subalpine fir, hemlock, oak, and rhododendron backwoods in the higher region. April is the best time to see red rhododendron (Laliguras) or pink rhododendron (Setoguras) in bloom. The trail is paved with stone for easy walking. We can see a direction board on the way to show different places to visit. Walking for about 3 hours, we will reach Tribeni Dham where a temple is situated at the confluence of three rivers, Ganga, Jamuna, and Saraswati. Following the right-side trail from Tribeni Sangam, we will reach to National Park headquarter where we will find teahouse lodges. 

Overnight at teahouse lodges or tented camp at Khaptad. (B, L, D)

 

Day 06: Explore Khaptad Region

The National park “Khaptad National Park” established in 1984 has an extraordinary ecosystem with a huge variety of vegetation ranging from the sub-tropical forest in the lower altitudes to temperate forests on the Khaptad plateau. The park offers a challenging yet rewarding experience. We will explore Khaptad Baba Hermitage, Sahashra Linga, Ganesh temple, Nagdhunga (Serpent Stone), and Kedardhunga, the museum at headquarter, and a view tower. To the north we can see the Saipal Himalayan Ranges- In the other direction, the vast green mid-hills of Nepal can be seen clearly. Intertwined into the landscape of the Khaptad plateau are the Patans (pastureland) with beautiful flowers (about 135 species) that bloom in the summer and late spring. The local people graze their livestock in the Patans during the summer season. In the northeastern part of the park, there is a lake called Khaptad Daha. The National park is rich in flora and fauna such as oak and rhododendron in the higher area. There are more than 224 species of medical herbs, about 11 percent of flowering plants of Nepal, 270 species of birds, 20 species of animals. 

Overnight at teahouse lodges or tented camp at Khaptad. (B, L, D)

 

Day 07: Trek to Kanda (1,940m/6,364ft) - 5 hours

Early in the morning, hike to the view tower near to park headquarter for a sunrise view. After breakfast, start trek to Kanda Village. Leaving headquarter, we will trek uphill to Khappar (Khaptad) Lake (3,500m). After some rest and exploration, we will trek downhill to Kanda. The trail passes through dense forests of pine. Walking for about 5 hours, we will reach Kanda and check into the teahouse lodge. (Subject to availability). Later we will explore Kada Palace in this village. Kanda Palace or Durbar is a historical site of Bajura. 

Overnight at teahouse lodges or tented camp at Kanda. (B, L, D)

 

Day 08: Trek down to Mouriya (1,008m/3,306ft) 8-9 hour

This day we will trek from Kanda to Mouriya to about 8 hours downhill and reach Maure which will bisect Sanfebagar-Martadi Highway. The trail will pass through traditional villages of Bajura, like Birarigaun, Juwapani, Simalkot, etc. On the way, we will explore the lifestyle, culture, and livelihood activities. Upon we get on to the highway, we will pass it and walk further to cross Budiganga River and finally reach Mouriya for a stay. 

Overnight at homestay or tented camp at Mouriya. (B, L, D)

 

Day 09: Trek to Lamgada (2,100m/6,888ft) - 6 hours

From Maure, we will start trek to Lamgada village via Nateshwari Temple. We will gradually ascend to the steep uphill trail to reach Nateshwori Temple. After exploring the temple, we will walk for few hours to reach Lamgada, where we can find some homestay as well. The homestay is organized by the local people which offer us to witness the local cultures, traditions, livelihood activities and allows us to involve in their household works as well. 

Overnight at homestay or tented camp at Lamgada. (B, L, D)

 

Day 10: Trek to Chankili (3,500m/11,480ft) - 8 hour

The trail from Lamgada to Badimalika temple is narrow and the trekkers must be careful and must walk with the support of staff or any other trekkers. This day, we will trek from Lamgada to Chankili. The trail is mostly uphill and narrow and requires a gentle walk that may take time about 8 hours. Despite this, the trail offers the view of pristine nature and its beauty. We will find many floras and herbs along the trail.  

Overnight at tented camp at Chankili. (B, L, D)

 

Day 11: Trek to Badimalika (4,210m/13,810ft) - 5 hour

From Chankili, we will trek to Badimalika Temple for about 5 hours. The trail goes through the sloppy hill up to the temple. We will find rocky cliffs on the way. The trail gradually ascends to the plateau of 4,210m where Badimalika Temple is situated. From the top, we can see Mt. Api (7,132m), Mt. Saipal (7,031m), and many more peaks of the Gurans Himal Ranges. During the festival season, there will be a queue to worship Badimalika Temple. As this area lacks drinking water, we need to carry water from Bishnu Muhan which is on the Cliffside below to the Badimalika Temple.

Overnight at tented camp at Badimalika Temple. (B, L, D)

 

Day 12: Trek to Triveni (3,870m/12,694ft) - 5 hour

Early morning, wake up to see the golden sunrise view of Mt. Api and Mt. Saipal and other peaks. After some exploration, worship Badimalika Temple. It is believed that Goddess Badimalika fulfills all your wishes. After breakfast, trek down towards Triveni which is the confluence of 3 rivers. This is one of the holy sites too. 

During the festival in July/August, we can see thousands of pilgrimages do camping at 1500+ tents here and performing rituals like as the competition between Kalikot and Bajura to keep Gajur (pinnacle) for 1 year. The same tradition possesses at Triveni at the same time after 1 year.

En-route to Triveni, we will explore Khetibati which seems like a naturally grown paddy field. It is believed that the birds sow seeds of those plants.

Overnight at tented camp at Triveni. (B, L, D)

 

Day 13: Trek to Kolti (1,390m/4,560ft) – 8 hours 

This day, we will walk early in the morning from Triveni. After having breakfast, we will trek down to Kolti Bazar. The trail will pass through Budimai Than and reaches the hillocks of 7 grasslands (locally called Saat Pakhya:). Further, walking downhill, we will reach Kolti Bazar via Diuda Patan. 

Overnight at teahouse lodges or tented camp at Kolti Bazar. (B, L, D)

 

Day 14: Trek to Jhugala (1,120m/3,674ft) – 6 hours

Leaving Kolti Bazar, the trail will follow the bank of Kundana River till Pilu and follow the left bank of Karnali River which will pass through Badhu and Purano Jhugala. Walking an hour from Purano Jhugala and cross Karnali River to reach Jhugala. There are teahouse lodges for food and accommodation. In our free time, we can enjoy swimming in the river. 

Overnight at teahouse lodge or tented camp at Jhugala. (B, L, D)

 

Day 15: Trek to Shreekot (2,040m/6,691ft) – 7 hours

After breakfast at Jhugala, we will walk following the Karnali River until we reach the confluence of Khalyad River and Karnali River. Khalyad River is originated from Rara Lake. So, we will follow this river to reach Rara Lake. Follow the trail along the Khaytad River, cross few suspension bridges, walk through farmland and forests, enjoy the cascading waterfalls, we will reach Shreekot via Ratopani, Birabagar, Tali bagar (Majhchaur). Talibagar is facilitated with Bank, police stations, and other services. Walking for an hour, we will reach Shreekot

Overnight at teahouse lodge or tented camp at Shreekot. (B, L, D)

 

Day 16: Trek to Murma Village (3,160m/10,364ft) - 7 hours

Today’s route as well follows the Khalyad River and passes through villages like Sheri, Baupani, Jeuda, where we can find small shops and teahouse as well. From Baupani, there will be no shops until we reach Murma village. The trail passes through gorges, forests, and streams where we will get to see many wild animals and birds. From Jeuda we will gently ascend towards Murma Village. Upon we reach Murma Village, we will check into the lodge and hike to Murma Top. (If time and weather permits. If the weather supports, we will stay overnight at Murma Top.) 

Overnight at teahouse lodge or tented camp at Murma. (B, L, D)

 

Day 17: Hike to Murma Top (3,690m/12,103ft)  - 1.5hrs and trek to Rara Lake (2,990m/9,807ft) - 2 hours

Early Morning, hike to Murma Top to see sunrise view and see Rara Lake. From Murma top you will be able to enjoy great views over Rara Lake (in the east) as well as stunning views towards the south, west, and north.

Catching up the view and some photographs, we will hike down to the lodge and further trek down to Rara Lake. This day, we will explore by walking on the shore of the Lake. We can do camping on the bank of the Lake. More activities like horse riding, cycling, walking can be done.

After exploring Rara Lake, we will walk near Talcha Airport for about 2 hours for Overnight Stay.

Overnight at teahouse lodges or tented camp near Talcha Airport. 

 

Day 18: Fly back to Nepalgunj – 30 minutes and fly to Kathmandu – 55 minutes

After breakfast, timely transfer to Talcha Airport to board an onward flight to Nepalgunj that takes about 30 minutes. Upon arrival at Nepalgunj, we will take the flight to Kathmandu for about 55 minutes with the view of Mountain ranges from the left side of the aircraft. Upon arrival in Kathmandu, transfer and check into the hotel.

(The flight of Gamgadi-Nepalgunj and vice versa will require good weather for timely operation. In case of any unavoidable circumstances like bad weather, flight cancellation, we need to wait for the next day.)

Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu.

Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu. (B, L)

 

Day 19: Contingency day on trek or Kathmandu in case of any unavoidable circumstances.  

If the plan goes smooth with the flight on require day/time, this day will be a free day in Kathmandu for leisure activities or sightseeing tour (on own), last-minute shopping, bag packing, etc. On request, we will arrange a sightseeing tour of Kathmandu.

Eve: Group Farewell dinner at authentic Nepali Restaurant in Kathmandu. 

Overnight at a hotel in Kathmandu. (B, D)

                       

Day 20: Departure to home country

After breakfast, timely transfer to Tribhuvan International Airport to board an onward flight to home country 3 hours earlier to the scheduled flight departing time. We wish you a happy journey during your flight from Nepal to your home country with the hope to see you on your next visit to Nepal.

(Meals Included: Breakfast)

Team Member

  • All arrival and departures transfer will be assisted by the Tour Escorts. 
  • All the sightseeing tours in Kathmandu will be accompanied by an experienced English Speaking Tour Guide or any other language specialist on demand.
  • During the trekking, a government-certified Trekking Guide will be with the group for the trek arrangements. 
  • One local guide to interpret languages with the local community. 
  • Camping Experts and Cook and other staff will be from Kathmandu. 
  • On the trek, porters will carry a duffel bag of 2 porters and ranges up to a maximum of 30 Kg/ 60 lbs. Guests are expected to carry only a small rucksack while walking to carry all the essentials such as water bottles, extra jackets, cameras, pack lunch, etc.

 

Transportation

  • All arrival and departure transfer, ground transport will be provided an A/c private vehicle.
  • Round Trip of Kathmandu/Dhangadhi/Gamgadhi/Nepalgunj/Kathmandu on a domestic flight.
  • (If you wish to use the local transport, there will be changes on the time and the stopover location than mentioned above. This will be the customized trek, so the final itinerary will be prepared according to the demand of trekkers.)

 

Accommodation & Food

  • For four nights in Kathmandu, there will be star-categorized hotels depends upon the choice of guests.
  • Welcome and farewell dinner in Kathmandu
  • At Silgadhi, there will be tourist standard lodges which are based on availability)
  • During trekking, we will set up camping tents for a night's stay. If possible, we will serve food from the local lodges or houses at different villages or stopover places if available. During the season, the local community operates small huts for catering services up to Base Camp too. This depends upon the season. Timing for breakfast, lunches, dinner can be more or fewer changes due to the availability of lodges or the guest preferences.
  • Guests having any specific meal dietary requirements should inform us in advance.
  • Meals are listed as above in Itinerary. (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)

 

Itinerary

We request you to view the Itinerary and information herein as a guideline. The information provided in the itinerary is to the best of our knowledge, marginal variances in the actual distances and altitudes are possible. Weather conditions, roadblocks, local political conditions, flight cancellations, mechanical breakdowns, or other such unforeseeable circumstances can lead to a change in itinerary or means of transport.

 

Insurance

It is important to purchase a comprehensive travel insurance policy against illness, hospitalization, flight delays, and loss of luggage, cancellations, and amendments due to weather conditions, political disturbances, or natural calamities as well as emergency helicopter evacuation. Before purchasing Travel Insurance, please ensure that the policy covers adventure activities and or trekking activity above 3000 meters.

 

Fitness

The trek is slightly difficult due to the increases in altitude. This trek involves walking 6-7 hours daily while ascending whereas, on returning, the trek will skip one camp). Previous walking experience at high altitudes is beneficial. The highest altitude that we attain on this trek is (4,210m/13,810) at Badimalika Temple. Physical fitness is essential & previous walking experience outdoor is essential.

 

Basic infrastructure

The trekking area will lack an electricity facility and telephone network. We recommend you carry additional batteries for Cameras, or a Solar power bank to charge smartphones. The trek leader will carry a Satellite phone to communicate at offices in Kathmandu in case of any emergencies. 

Suraj Bhattarai

I discovered my passion on travel and Tourism Sector and had started to write travel blogs since 2018 with the aim to promote the Tourism of Nepal in national and international level of tourism market. I am also a government certified Trekking Guide of Nepal.

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