Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu - 1,300m/4,264 ft
Upon our arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, we will be warmly greeted by a representative from Himalayan Glacier. After completion of our custom formalities (Visa, etc), we pick up our luggage and look for our representative with Himalayan Glacier Trekking display board at the arrival gate. We will be then escorted to Hotel Shanker
or a similar category hotel. After check in, either we visit at Himalayan Glacier's office site where we meet with our trekking guide or hang arouond the city. At the evening upon our reception, Himalayan Glacier will organize a Welcome Dinner at an excellent traditional Nepalese restaurant where we enjoy a Nepalese cultural program as well as a fine meal.
Day 02: Kathmandu Sightseeing and Preparation for the Trek
Today after breakfast we start a guided tour to several of the most historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu. Some of these landmarks are considered World Heritage Sites; including the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupati Nath, the famous 'Monkey Temple' (Swayambhunath) and Buddhists shrine (BouddhaNath) which is one of the large Stupas in the world. At the noon, there will be a pre-trip discussion where we can meet our trek leader and other team members. Himalayan Glacier briefs us regarding our trek as well as provides us opportunity to ask any questions we may have regarding our upcoming adventure. Overnight at Kathmandu.
Day 03: Flight to Lukla and Trek to Phakding (2,652m/8,700ft): 3 - 4 hrs
After breakfast, we will be escorted to the domestic terminal of Kathmandu airport for an early morning flight to Lukla (2,800m/9,186ft), a gateway destination from where our trek begins. After an adventurous 40 minute flight above the breathtaking green and white mountains, we reach the Tenzing-Hillary Airport at Lukla. This is one of the most beautiful air routes in the world culminating in a dramatic landing on a hillside surrounded by high mountains peaks. Upon arrival at Lukla, we meet our other crew members and after some packing and arrangements, we start our trek through the prosperous village of Lukla until we reach Phakding. To assist in acclimatization, we only have a short hike today. However, if interested in additional activities we can take a side trip to a nearby monastery.
Day 04: Trek to Namche Bazaar (3440 m/11,280 ft): 5 - 6 hrs
Walking through a beautiful pine forest, the track leads us along the Dudh Koshi River through many suspension bridges, one of which is the famous Hillary Suspension Bridge. First, we catch wonderful prospect of the glistening Mt. Thamserku (6618 m). Through the settlement of Benkar, Chumoa, Monjo, we come to the check post and entrance to Sagarmatha National Park. We pass through the last village of Jorsale before reaching Namche Bazaar. The trail climbs through the forests and bridges until we reach the confluence of the Dudh Koshi and Bhote Koshi rivers. After a final steep ascent of about two hours we get first sight of Mt. Everest peering over the Lhotse-Nuptse ridge. Upon this juncture, we stop at Chautara to admire the view. We still need to hike about 1.5 hours to reach Namche Bazaar, a gateway to Mt. Everest and main trading centre of this region.
Day 05: Rest day in Namche Bazaar
This is the scheduled 'acclimatization' day for this trek. Health experts recommend us to stay active and moving during the rest day too instead of being idle. We either spend the day taking a day's hike to Thame or visiting Khunde or relaxing and exploring Namche Bazaar itself. Namche Bazzar is the main centre of the Everest (Khumbu) region and has government offices, ATMs, Internet cafes, shops, restaurants, a bakery and a colorful market each Friday evening and Saturday. If we trek a few hundred vertical feet during the day, it will help us to properly acclimatize. Our guides take us to the Tourist Visitor Center near the headquarter of the Sagarmatha National Park where we can observe an assortment of things related to the first Everest ascenders, Sherpa culture and learn about the various plant and animal life of the Everest region.
Day 06: Trek to Thame (3736m/12255 ft): 5 - 6 hrs
Upon our breakfast we come out of Namche Bazar east past the monastery and begin with a short uphill trek. On the left we have the Kongde Ri (6187 m) and the river that flows down into a ravine. On the right is the rocky Khumbi Yul La (5765 m) and behind us is clearly visible on Kusum Kanguru (6,373 m). After an hour mostly downhill into the forest, the trip continues: the steep rise of about 50m in altitude to reach a ridge around it. The river bed becomes closer and wider. We reach the village of Phorte and then the small town of Samde. Along stretch halfway up a slight slope leading to the bridge over the Bhote Koshi (3650 m). Upon crossing Bhote koshi river and about a half hour climb's bring us to Thame.
Day 07: Trek to Khumjung (3786m/12,419 ft): 5 hrs
Today, we trek to Khumjung from Thame. We climb up to the famous airstrip at Syangboche. Just above the airstrip is the Everest View Hotel, a Japanese scheme to build a deluxe hotel with great views of the highest mountains on Earth. The Khumjung valley is surrounded by the snowy peaks of Kongde and Thamserku and the scared peak Khumbila, hosts a well known monastery that houses a yeti scalp. We also visit Hillary School which is at the same site. After having lunch and spending some time in Khumjung, We make today's overnight stay at Khunde.
Day 08: Trek to Phortse (3542m/11,617 ft): 5 hrs
From Khumjung we hike to Phortse. Upon crossing the lower slopes of Khumbila, we enjoy the mesmerizing views of Phortse, Cholatse and Taboche along with the views of Ama Dablam, Thamserku and Kangtanga among others. Phortse village lies in the Khumbu area south of Mt. Everest, off the main trekking routes.
Day 09: Trek to Pangboche (3985m/ 13,070 ft): 4 - 5 hrs
This day's trek starts with a hard but short climb and then moved steadily along a ridge to Pangboche. We pay our yisit to the Pangboche Gomba and see the footprint of the Lama Sangwa Dorje. The houses of Pangboche nestle above the terraced fields, such as a large crescent moon in a semicircle on the slope. This is a typical Sherpa villages where Namche Bazar exactly resides. The both sides of the village attract around a sacred grove
Day 10: Trek to Tengboche (3864m/12,673 ft): 2 hrs
From Pangboche, we head eastward and join the Everest Base Camp main trail. Then we descend to Tengboche. On the way, we keep enjoying close up views of Ama-Dablam, Nuptse, and Everest. The Tengoche Monastery is the biggest Buddhist monastery all over in Khumbu region. We pay our visit to the monastery to witness the ceremony in the principal and popular monastery of Everest region.
Day 11: Trek to Namche (3440m/11,280 ft): 5 - 6 hrs
From Tengboche, we further trek down through the hillside blanketed by rhododendron and juniper trees. After crossing the prayer flag festooned bridge over the Dudh Koshi River trail then follows the Dudh Koshi gorge descending rapidly through the pine forests. The path eventually reaches Sansa which is the major trail junction in the region. The trail to Namche Bazaar clings to the steep wooded slope beyond Kyangjuma, winding through several bends. After passing a Chorten, we reach the army camp at of Namche Bazaar. On reaching our lodge, we take a nice hot shower and have very relaxed sleep in our room in Namche Bazaar.
Day 12: Namche Bazaar to Lukla (2,800m/9,186ft): 6 - 7 hrs
From Namche, the trail descends steeply downward so we need to walk slowly and under control. After crossing the suspension bridges over the fast flowing Dudh Koshi and its tributaries the trail becomes more level and natural. Although we are travelling the same route down, we feel completely different views. We snap a mixture of open plains, rhododendron and pine forests, and in the distance snow covered peaks. We walk through the Sherpa villages' noticing impressive faith in Buddhism and culture of prayer stones and prayers flag while we walk through the villages. On arrival at Lukla, we stretch those sore legs and recall the experiences of the great Himalayan walk.
Day 13: Flight to Kathmandu
We can rest and relax throughout the day at hotel. If we get interested to take some gifts home from Nepal for friends and relatives, we can visit to some nearby shops or venture out in Thamel for typical Nepalese goods. This short excursion either can be assisted by Himalayan Glacier's guides or we can do it ourselves too. If we want to explore any other areas in Kathmandu, we have manage time for this today as well! At the evening we will be at a fantastic celebration dinner together for successfully completing our trek hosted by Himalayan Glacier!
Day 14: Farewell Friend!!!
The journey within the mountains of Nepal comes to an end today! There is nothing to do but we just trade emails to travel companions and organize our photos. If we have more time we can do some shopping or sightseeing. At last approximately 3 hours before our scheduled flight, a representative from Himalayan Glacier escorts us to the airport. On our way to home we will have plenty of time to plan our next adventure trip in the wonderful country of Nepal.