Dodital-Darwa Top Trek – Enchanting Escape

In the slopes of North India’s part of the Himalayan Region lies a magical trekking destination that has captivated adventurers – Dodital Trek and Darwa Pass.

Dodital Lake located at an altitude of 3310m (10859 ft) is one of the most sought out in the world. It has everything for anyone looking to explore this part of the Himalayas. Whether you’re looking for a challenge, a spiritual awakening, or you just want to soak in the breathtaking scenery of snow-capped mountains and crystal clear lake, this low altitude trek will leave you astounded.

Where is Dodital?

Dodital is located in the Uttarakhand, a state in the Northern part of India. It is named such because of “Dodi” – the brown trout that thrives in the beautiful lake that the area is known for.
The starting point for most Dodital treks is the town of Uttarkashi and Kalyani, both of which can be reached by roads. Taking the trek from Uttarkashi generally takes 6-7 days. All treks take the route through the village of Agoda and present exquisite views of woods, fields, meadows, mountain streams, and cliff faces.

The Dodital trek’s highlight is the Dodital Darwa trail where you get to behold one of the most beautiful lakes in the world – the Dodital Lake. Legend has it that the Hindi God Ganesh chose this place as his home, which is why there is a temple here. According to ancient Hindu texts, this lake is one of the 12 holiest lakes. It is also the source of about 80 tributaries that form the Assi Ganga which, with the Bhagirathi river, forms the Ganges. That is why this place has a special place in the history of India and the spirituality of its people. The trek is capped by majestic views of the Himalayas at Darwa Top.

Destination Highlights

  • While a favorite destination among the locals, the trek is relatively undisturbed, leaving you to discover its off-the-beaten-path charm.
  • The trip presents the incredible variation in scenery
  • Verdant Valleys including views of the Asi Ganga Valley and the Bhagirathi Valley
  • Snowcapped Himalayan peaks
  • Lush meadows, thick woods, and enchanting Alpine forests
  • Rare glimpses of local life and ancient culture.
  • Sacred temples with remarkable architecture and history
  • Pristine lake

Best time to trek Dodital -Darwa Top

The best time to go to visit is during the summers (April to June). During wintertime, the ideal time to travel is between October and December, although some tour operators do offer treks from January to March. However, keep in mind that what you need to bring for the trip may slightly vary depending on the time you chose to visit.


During summer, the Himalayas are visible so you can take in the views of snowcapped mountains and enjoy the cool breeze. Bring and wear light woolens.


During Monsoon season, the valley becomes even greener. The trek will become challenging due to slippery tracks. Some roads may be blocked due to landslides. If you’re healthy and can take the risk, by all means, try visiting during this season. Just make sure to bring a raincoat.


The area gets blanketed in snow during winter and you will have fewer accommodation options. But if you’re taking this trek for the challenge, it’s a great time to visit because Dodital Darwa looks best in wintertime. Just make sure to bring thermal wear and heavy woolens.

How to Get To Dodital

You can get to Dodital by land or by air.

By Air:

The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport, located 215 km away. From there, you can get to Dodital through a taxi.

By Land:

The nearest option is a railway station in Rishikesh which is 225km away from Uttarkashi. From there, you can take buses or taxis to Uttarkashi.

There is a network of roads connecting Uttarkashi to other cities so you can also get to the town through Tehri Garwhal, Barkot, Dehradun, Chamba Tehri and other destinations.

Dodital Darwa Top Trek Itinerary :


Day 01 - Haridwar to Uttarkashi

Distance to cover: 225 km
Duration: 6 hours

Like mentioned, you could also get to Uttarkashi from any of the other towns connected by motor roads. You can arrange for a tour guide to meet you upon arrival to get assistance in reaching Uttarkashi. Check in to your hotel and enjoy the evening. The town is located on the banks of the Bhagirathi valley, and being surrounded by the mountains, you will get an idea of what the rest of the trek can offer.

Uttarkashi is near Rishikesh, which is conventionally known as the gateway to the Garhwal Himalayas. Uttarkashi provides an altogether different experience though. It is known as a holy town and is home to some of the most famous temples in India. This includes the Vishwanath temple, deemed as one of the holiest Shiva temples.


Day 02 - Uttarkashi to Sangamchatti and then to Manjhi

Distance to cover: 16 km
Duration: 6-7 hours

To Dodital, we go! After breakfast, drive to Sangamchatti. The trip spans 10km and should take an hour.

Sangamchatti is the starting point of your Dodital trek. Don’t worry because the trail is well marked. The path traverses the Agoda Village, and the Bhebra settlement, a quaint village near a mountain stream. Expect to see green fields of Rajma beans and potatoes.

The final push towards the Manjhi village entails a steep climb. It’s a village on a thickly wooded mountainside. Upon getting there, set up your tent and get some rest to recharge for the next day’s adventures.


Day 03 - Manjhi to Dodital

Altitude: 3307m / 10847ft
Distance to cover: 17 km
Duration: 3-4 hours

At this point, the goal is to get to Dodital which is located at an altitude of 3000 meters. However, the climb is gradual and more pleasant than the previous day’s steep climb. Relish the scenery as it gets more and more majestic with every step.

You’ll be taking a zigzagging path and when you get high enough, you’ll witness a vertical cliff face and a river snaking through the valley below. The ultimate destination for the day is the Dodital Lake. Set camp and take in the serenity.

This lake is so beautiful that many trekkers spend days camping in the area. It is nestled in lush forests where Oak and Rhododendron thrive – a sight to behold on spring or autumn.


Day 04 - Dodital to Darwa Top

Distance to cover: 5 km
Duration: 3 hours

The best time to trek to Darwa Top is early in the morning, carrying packed breakfast. You’re going to need all your energy for today;’s trip because it’s an uphill climb. It will be worth it – you will be rewarded by stunning sights.

The entire trek should take about 2-3 hours, spanning 5 kilometers of fairytale landscape. You’ll be winding through a thick birch forest and high meadows.

At Darwa Top, you get to witness the majestic Himalayas. Soak in the views and then start the trip back to your campsite just in time for lunch. You can spend the rest of the day bird watching or just hanging out by the lake.


Day 05 - Dodital – Agoda

Altitude: 2250m (7380ft)
Distance to cover: 17 km
Duration: 4-5 hours
Have your breakfast before retracing your steps back to Agoda, which is a 17–kilometer trek. Stay there for the night.

Day 06 - Agoda - Haridwar

Distance to cover: 4 km of trekking, 200 km of driving

After breakfast, trek to Sangamchatti. It should take about an hour as it is only a 4km trek, and from Sangamchatti, drive to Rishikesh. On arrival, check-in at the hotel. Your evening is free for leisure activities.

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