|Group size:||1-12 people||Max-Altitude:||5,545m/18,192ft|
|Arrival on:||Kathmandu, Nepal||Departure from:||Kathmandu, Nepal|
|Meals:||Breakfast in Kathmandu and all meals during the trek|
|Accomodation:||Hotel in Kathmandu and tea houses during the trek|
No place is more spectacular than the Everest region. It is where four of the world's six tallest peaks including Lhotse, Makalu, Cho Oyu and, of course, the Everest rise above everything else. On our 16-day Everest Base Camp Trek we experience astounding mountain views, get glimpses of the life of the world famous climbers (the Sherpas), enter Sagarmatha National Park, a world heritage site, and tour high altitude Buddhist monasteries before accomplishing our ultimate goal-reaching the base camp of the world’s tallest mountain, Everest. Trekking to the base camp of Everest also provides us an opportunity to embark on an epic journey that Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay set off to in 1953. But nothing beats the thrill and sense of accomplishment that grips travelers on seeing the power and grace of the mighty Everest up close.
The 16-day Everest Base Camp Trek itinerary is designed for novice trekkers who are in good health with average physical fitness. But, if you wish to take up a bigger challenge and "stay off the beaten path”, then Everest Base Camp Trek via Gokyo Lakes - 18 Days would be ideal. Another option for experienced trekkers with limited time, Mount Everest Base Camp Trek - 14 Days, would be a perfect choice.
Upon our arrival at the Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, we will be greeted by a representative from Himalayan Glacier who will take us to our hotel. After checking in, we may take a rest or visit Himalayan Glacier’s office. In the evening there will be a welcome dinner in a traditional Nepali Restaurant where we will be able to enjoy authentic Nepali cuisine with a brief cultural program. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Today after breakfast we start a guided tour to several of the most historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu which are also listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites. We visit the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, the famous 'Monkey Temple' (Swayambhunath) and Buddhist shrine (Bouddhanath), which is also one of the largest stupas in the world. At noon, we get our equipment checked by our climbing leader, get introduced to fellow participants, and discuss our trip at Himalayan Glacier’s office. Overnight in Kathmandu.
During the 40-minute flight from Kathmandu to Lukla (9,186ft), we enjoy one of the most beautiful air routes in the world culminating on a hillside surrounded by high mountainous peaks. At Lukla, a gateway destination from where our trek begins, we meet our other crew members and begin packing and arranging with them. From Lukla, we start trekking. At one hour’s gradual descent, we will be at a Cheplung village from where we have a glimpse of Mt. Khumbila (18900 ft), a sacred mountain which has never been climbed. From Cheplung, we then gradually descend until we reach Phakding and spend the night.
Walking through a beautiful pine forest, we follow the trail north up the valley of Benkar. We then cross Dudh Koshi River and go on passing Chumoa to Monjo, the entrance to Everest National Park. Then after crossing a suspension bridge, we pass Jorsale village and walk alongside of the Dudh Koshi and Bhote Koshi rivers. A steep ascent brings us to the prime heartland of Sherpa village - Namche Bazaar. At one hour’s distance to reaching Namche Bazaar, if the weather permits, we can view the sights of Mt. Everest and Mt. Lhotse. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
There are plenty of things to do around Namche Bazaar, and we can spend a day here acclimatizing. Namche Bazaar is the main centre of the Khumbu region and has government offices, ATMs, Internet cafes, shops, restaurants, and a colorful market. Our guides can take us to explore the real charm of Namche Bazaar. Hiking to Sagarmatha National Park rewards trekkers with a sunrise view and the views of Mount Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, Ama Dablam, Thamserku, Kongde and so on. If we are interested in a day hike, we trek to Khumjung village (12401 ft)-a beautiful village with a Sherpa settlement. In exploring Namche Bazar, we observe traditional Sherpa life, Khumjung Hillary School, and enjoy flora and fauna found at such altitude. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
After breakfast, we trek towards Tengboche. It is an easy walk from Namche to Phunki. Upon reaching Phunki, we ascend towards Tengboche, a village that houses the very famous Tengboche monastery which is the largest monastery of the Everest region. Located amidst the Sagarmatha National Park (a UNESCO World Heritage Site of "outstanding universal value”), it is draped with the panoramic 360-degree view of the Himalayas, including Mt. Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam and Thamserku. The monastery opens at 3:00pm, so we reach there at that time. And, if we are lucky, we might just be able to witness a religious ceremony. Overnight in Tengboche.
We descend and trek through forests filled with a variety of lush trees – birch, conifers and rhododendrons. This journey again rewards us with tremendous views of Mt. Everest, Lhotse, and Ama Dablam. The picturesque trail dips down to Devuche, crosses the Imja River and takes us to Pangboche. The upper Pangboche trails reward us with a more pristine view of the Himalayas and the Pangboche Monastery. The trek moves ahead towards the Imja Valley, Lobuche River and ultimately begins climbing up to Dingboche. Here we see a beautiful array of fields enclosed by stone walls to protect barley, buckwheat and potatoes from the cold winds and grazing animals. Overnight at Dingboche.
We spend a day in Dingboche for acclimatization. We enjoy a refreshing breakfast while admiring views of the looming Ama Dablam (6,856 m). To better appreciate Mt. Ama Dablam, Mt Lhotse and other peaks visible from Dingboche, we climb a ridge on the north behind the village. From the ridge, we can see three of the world's six highest peaks, Mt. Lhotse, Mt Makalu and Mt Cho Oyu. Additionally, we will also be surrounded by Cholatse and Taboche mountains. To our northwest is an array of peaks rising at the head of the Khumbu Khola valley. The Lobuche West and Lobuche East peaks are most dominant along with Lhotse which stands over 8500 m. From a vantage point high on the ridge, we can scan the sweeping Imja Khola valley as well as the picturesque fields and pastures of Dingboche. Overnight at Dingboche.
We start the day with a climb to Duglha through the Khumbu Khola valley. The walk along the arid terrace is rewarding with views of mountains on all sides. The valley begins to narrow as we come closer to Dusa. We continue through Phulung Karpo, the camp site of the first successful Everest Expedition in 1953. Above Phulung Karpo is Chola Lake. As we continue our trek, the majestic view of Mt. Pumori (7138 m) comes into view. As the trail descends and curves, Mt. Pumori disappears from view and we come across a roaring stream. After crossing the river on a bridge, we ascend to Duglha. We can see the tip of Mt. Nuptse as well as Mt. Cholatse, Mt. Thamserku and others from here. After reaching Duglha, we can walk for 45 minutes to an hour and visit the Memorial Shrine. Overnight in Duglha.
From Dugla, the trail goes up the steep terminal moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. We pass through boulder-strewn slopes as we ascend Chupki Lhara, an eerie ridge topped with dramatic mountain views. At the top of the ridge, we will find an array of stones with prayer flags used as memorial shrines of the climbers who lost their lives on Mt. Everest. As the trail drops to the Khumbu Glacier moraine, we find ourselves facing several great peaks - Khumbutse, Lingtren, Pumori and Mahalangur Himal. We are now in the vicinity of Everest but the great mountain still remains elusive. Mt. Nuptse towers to the right as the trail crosses the Khumbu Glacier. Overnight in Lobuche.
We take the trail to Everest Base Camp through the once vast Gorak Shep Lake. Continuing straight ahead, we come across the Indian army mountaineers' memorials. The path from here can be misleading; hence, it is important that we follow our lead Sherpa diligently. The walk is strenuous due to thin air in the high altitude. We pass through rocky dunes, moraine and streams before reaching the Everest Base Camp. Upon reaching the Everest Base Camp, we see tents of mountaineers that stand out in bright colors against the monotony of gray surroundings (especially in the spring). Nuptse, Khumbuste and Pumori are the mountains we can view from the base camp. We get back to Gorak Shep for a good night's rest. Overnight in Gorak Shep.
We prepare for an early morning departure, amid pre-dawn darkness and cold temperatures (-10 to -14 C). Plus, there is always the potential for chilly winds which are quite common. Familiar peaks such as Lingtren, Khumbutse, and Changtse tower to the east even as Everest begins to reveal itself. But, it is upon reaching Kala Patthar that we get to see 360-degree, up-close and formidable views of Mt. Everest. We take pictures, enjoy the magnificent mountain panorama, and then return back to Lobuche for a good night's rest. Overnight in Lobuche.
Those participants who will visit Everest Base Camp today will have an early breakfast to start early as Everest base camp hike takes longer than the hike at Kala Patthar. After returning to Gorak Shep, both the groups will have lunch together; afternoon time is taken to descend down to Pheriche for a good night's rest.
We trek down through the hillside blanketed by rhododendron and juniper trees. After crossing the prayer-flag festooned bridge over the Dudh Koshi River, our trail follows the Dudh Koshi gorge descending rapidly through pine forests. In the forest, we may come across colorful pheasants and mountain goats. The path eventually reaches Sansa from where we can enjoy views of Ama Dablam, Thamserku and Nuptse mountains. We also pass winding trails then through a forest before reaching Namche Bazaar. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
The trail descends steeply downward so we need to walk cautiously as our shaky legs continuously battle the rocky terrain. After crossing the suspension bridges over the fast flowing Dudh Koshi and its tributaries, the trail becomes more level and natural. After our arrival in Lukla, we stretch those sore legs and recall the experiences of the last couple of weeks. Overnight in Lukla.
We catch an early morning flight to Kathmandu after our long mountain journey. After reaching Kathmandu, we can take a rest or do some souvenir shopping. If we want to explore any other areas of Kathmandu, we may do that today. Our guides can help you with both souvenir shopping or sightseeing. There will be a farewell dinner in the evening to celebrate the successful completion of our journey. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Your adventure in Nepal comes to an end today! There is nothing to do but trade emails with your travel companions and organize your photos. A representative from Himalayan Glacier will take you to the airport, approximately 3 hours before your scheduled flight. On your way home you'll have plenty of time to plan your next adventure in the wonderful country of Nepal.
Please note that often the Kathmandu-Lukla-Kathmandu flight gets delayed by a few hours or may even be canceled for one, two, or more days due to unfavorable weather conditions. Such conditions may arise even in the best seasons. Hence, in such cases, you must be prepared for long waits either at Kathmandu or Lukla airports, as this can happen either at the start or end of the trek or even both! We will do our best to avoid such delays, and arrange the next flight for you. We also organize Helicopter rescue in such conditions, if it is available and upon request by our clients. The helicopter charges around USD 3500 and it can lift 4-5 persons per flight. Still, we suggest you to be prepared for possible delays/cancellations, and if possible to come with some extra buffer days (1-2 days) at the end of the trip to accommodate such delays. If everything runs smoothly and you still have a few days of your buffer days left then you may even engage yourself in optional activities which can be arranged by Himalayan Glacier upon request. The optional activities may include visiting places/landmarks of your choice, adventure sports, shopping, etc.In case the flight delay/cancellation happens at the start of trip and it goes so long that it disturbs your onward travel schedule, you are free to choose an alternative trip such as a trek in the Annapurna, Langtang, or any other region. If you are not interested in the alternative trip and would rather wait for your original preferred trip, you are welcome to wait in Kathmandu for as many days as it takes to get a flight to Lukla. However, please note that there will be no refund, if you lose time waiting at the airport and do not take an alternative tour or you only do a short trek later due to time limitation. If the cancellation happens before the trip, we will provide you accommodation and lunch in a guesthouse in Kathmandu. In case of the flight delay/cancellation after finishing of the trek, you will be responsible for all your expenses. Please also note that you will not be entitled to any refund for the services (such as hotel, transport, flight, etc.) included in the package that you would not use later.
We will be accommodated in a 3-star hotel, Hotel Moonlight in Kathmandu and teahouses during the trek. All accommodations are on twin-shared basis. Single supplement will be served on request and will cost an additional USD 320. Himalayan Glacier will arrange rooms with attached washrooms; however, teahouses in some places only have shared washing and toilet facilities. Also note that single rooms are readily available in Kathmandu and the trekking regions at lower elevation but it might be difficult to find them at higher elevations.