Day 01: Arrival at Kathmandu [1,350m/4,428ft]
Upon our arrival in the Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, we will be greeted by a representative from Himalayan Glacier who will drop us off at our hotel. After checking in, we take a rest or visit Himalayan Glacier’s office. We may also stroll in the streets of Thamel, a tourist hub in Kathmandu for some souvenir shopping. In the evening, there will be a welcome dinner hosted by Himalayan Glacier at The Ship Restaurant Bar & Lounge. For dinner, you will be served excellent authentic Nepalese cuisine which will introduce you to the Nepalese food culture.
Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 02: Kathmandu City Tour and Trip Preparation Day
Today upon our breakfast, we will start a guided tour to several of the most historical and spiritual attractions in Kathmandu. Some of these landmarks are considered the World Heritage Sites; including the historic Durbar Square, the sacred Hindu temple of Pashupati Nath, the famous 'Monkey Temple' (Swayambunath) and Buddhists shrine (Buddha Nath) which is one of the largest 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.
Day 03: Fly to Pokhara [823m/2,700ft] and Trek to Ulleri [2050 m/6725 ft]: 30 min flight and 6 hrs trek
At early morning, we fly for Pokhara. It will be bettet to catch right side of the airplane for the best views of Himalayas. Upon arrival in Pokhara, the lake city offers magnificent views of Dhaulagiri, Manaslu, Machhapuchhare, five peaks of Annapurna and others. Numerous lakes of Pokhara, known as 'Tal' in Nepali, offer fishing, boating and swimming facilities. Upon few moments rest in Pokhara, we drive to Naya Pul and start the trek. We pass through sub tropical valley forests, sometimes on the carved trail on the side of the cliff. After lunch, we cross the Modi Khola (river) via a suspension bridge to the village of Tikhedhunga. The Ulleri Hill with thousands of steps and boulders that continually go upward would really prove a test of our stamina. We reach Ulleri by late afternoon.
Day 04: Ulleri to Ghorepani [2750 m/ 9020 ft]: 4-5 hrs trek
We make our ascent to the Ghorepani village. The name Ghorepani in Nepali means horse-water owing to its role as an important campsite for traders before it became a trekker's stop. Ghorepani is an interesting place with small shops and stalls for selling local products and craft. The town has two parts: one in a saddle and the other a few hundred feet lower. We stop at the higher part of the Ghorepani village that offers panoramic views of the surrounding mountains including Annapurna South and Nilgiri mountains. Since Ghorepani lies quite higher than our previous stop, we begin to feel the chilly weather especially in the evenings. Overnight at Ghorepani.
Day 05: Ghorepani - Poon Hill - Tadapani [2700m/8,860 ft]: 6-7 hrs
Today will be a special day because we conquer Poon Hill- an icon of Annapurna region. To catch the magnificent splendor of sunrise over the Himalayas, we make an early morning climb along the steep trail to the viewpoint of Poon Hill (3200mtrs). Poon Hill (3,210m/10,529ft) is a great viewpoint from where we will be able to enjoy wonderful panoramic views of the Mustang part and Pokhara valleys including the closest views of more than 20 highest mountains including the close-up views of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri ranges. The snowy peaks of the high mountains loom above and around us glowing in the morning light. After taking photos and having some coffee or tea or hot chocolate, we return back to Gorepani. Upon breakfast, we head east and climb a nearby ridge. We descend through rhododendron forest, pass by spectacular waterfalls along the way and reach Tadapani for overnight.
Day 06: Tadapani to Ghandruk [1940m/6360 ft]: 3 - 4 hrs
From Tadapani, we make a steep descent through the dense and dark forest. This part of the trek will be through a thick forest of old rhododendron trees. When the rhododendron trees are in bloom, these forests actually turn into gardens of dazzlingly beautiful flowers, mostly red, when seen from the air or from far. By afternoon, depending upon the season of travel, we will be pleasantly surprised by the sight of some cherry blossoms in bloom on the slopes on the other side of the ravine. After trekking some more minutes, we enter the village of Ghandruk, a slope settlement with stone houses mostly inhabited by the Gurung people. Along with enjoying the stunningly close-up towering views of Fishtail, Annaurna South, and Hiuchuli mountains, we also acquaint ourselves with the simple but rich cultural traditions of the Gurung people at the Gurung Museum in Ghandruk.
Day 07: Ghandruk to Pokhara: 4 hrs trek and 1 hr drive
Today, we trek from Ghandruk to Naya Pul then drive back to Pokhara. The trek will be downhill all the way to Birethanti. We step onto a staircase paved with stone slabs, curving in and out of the village and then terraced farms. It keeps on going down almost without breaks from Ghandruk until Modi Khola river valley. By the time, we arrive at Birethanti, some of us would feel like having made a downhill marathon. But our marathon is not over yet. From Birethanti, a half-an-hour's walk takes us into Naya Pul. The journey on foot comes to an end at Nayapul. Then, we drive from Nayapul to Pokhara.
Day 08: Fly from Pokhara to Kathmandu: 30 min flight
We choose an afternoon flight to Kathmandu. Till some hours before flight, we may take an optional sightseeing tour within Pokhara or enjoy adventure activities such as boat riding, paragliding, etc. While returning to Kathmandu from Pokhara, we have to be sure to catch the left side of airplane for the best views of Himalayas. Upon our arrival in Kathmandu, we will be escorted into our hotel. The day in kathmandu either will be for leisure to rest or for perhaps some shopping before further trek to Everest Region or explore any sights we missed during our first day in Kathmandu. Overnight stay in Kathmandu.
Day 09: Kathmandu - Lukla - Phakding [2,652m/8,700ft]: 3 - 4 hrs trek (walking time only)
Today, we head for the Everest Region. Upon our breakfast, we will be escorted to the domestic terminal of Kathmandu airport for an early morning flight to Lukla (2,800m/9,186ft). After an adventurous 40 minute flight above breathtaking green and white mountains, we will be at the 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. At this juncture, we will be warmly greeted by 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. Overnight at Phakding.
Day 10: Phakding - Namche Bazaar [3440 m/11,280 ft]: 5 - 6 hrs trek
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). Trekking through the settlement of Benkar, Chumoa and Monjo, we will be at the check post of Sagarmatha National Park entrance. We further 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 fist of Mt. Everest, peering over the Lhotse-Nuptse ridge. We stop at Chauatra to admire the magnificent view. We still need to walk about 1.5 hours to reach Namche Bazaar, a gateway to Mt. Everest and main trading centre of this region. We stay overnight at Namche Bazaar.
Day 11: Namche Bazzar: Acclimatization Day
This is the scheduled "acclimatization" days. Health experts always recommend us to stay active and moving during the rest days instead of being idle. We either spend the day taking a day 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 will 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. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Day 12: Namche Bazaar - Khumjung [3810 m/12500 ft]: 4 hrs trek
Today's journey starts with a 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. Upon trekking up around 2 hours we will be at Khumjung village. The Khumjung valley surrounded by the snowy peaks of Kondge and Thamserku and the sacred peak Khumbila hosts a well known monastery that houses a yeti scalp. We also pay our visit at Hillary School at the same site. Another set of busy and colorful monasteries lined with prayer flags and wheels brace along the slopes high above this traditional village.
Day 13: Khumjung-Tengboche [3,870m/12694ft]: 4 - 5 hrs trek
We take a walk descent down to Dudhkoshi River passing through a little villages on the way. The down sloping forest trail takes us downwards across riverside upon where we break for lunch. After lunch, we take a final ascent step up for 2 hours through pine and fir forest to reach a small hill Tyangboche. It has the famous Tengboche Gumba to explore for the day. Tyangboche offers the best views of Ama Dablem. Overnight at lodge.
Day 14: Tengboche- Monjo [2,950m/9,676ft] : 6 - 7 hrs trek
Today, we return back through hillside blanketed by rhododendron and juniper trees. The Spring season covers the surroundings with pink and red rhododendron flowers dazzlingly. We might have our lunch near Phunki Tenga. 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. While passing through the forest by the trail we keep a lookout for wild life such as mountain goats, snow leopards, and colorful milieu. After passing a Chorten, we reach at army camp at Namche Bazaar. The arresting views at this juncture attract our complete attraction where we would like to have some snap shots of the tip of Everest and Tengboche. After Namche, we walk down to the hill, cross some suspension bridges and reach Monjo for overnight stay.
Day 15: Trek to Lukla: 4 - 5 hrs trek
Although we are traveling the same route down, we will have completely different views. We snap a mixture of open plains, rhododendron and pine forests, and at the distance the snow covered peaks. We take time and walk leisurely today as this is the last day of our trek. We experience the Sherpa villages' impressive faith in Buddhism and culture of prayer stones and prayers flag while we walk through the villages. On arrival at Lukla, we have plenty of time to relax, stretch those sore legs, and recall the experiences of the last couple of weeks. We experience the culmination of a fantastic trek on a happy note and sound return with smile on faces! Upon arrival at Lukla, we stroll around at the one hand and on the other side our trek leader re-confirms our flight ticket. In the evening, we enjoy last dinner with our crew members. Overnight at Lodge.
Day 16: Fly Lukla-Kathmandu
We fly back to Kathmandu upon the completion of our long mountain journey. The early morning flight escorts us in Kathmandu. We can rest and relax throughout the day at hotel. If interested to take some gifts from Nepal for friends and relatives, we can visit to some nearby shops or venture out at Thamel for typical Nepalese goods. The shopping can be assisted by Himalayan Glacier's guides or we can do it ourself too. To celebrate the successful completion of our journey, we will have a farewell dinner at The Ship Restaurant Bar & Lounge where we can pick our meal from their carefully crafted menu that offer a wide range of choices.
Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 17: Farewell Friend
Our journey in Nepal comes to an end today! Himalayan Glacier escorts us to the airport for our flight time. Approximately 3 hours before our scheduled flight, a representative from Himalayan Glacier will escort us to the airport and bid farewell greetings. On our way to home, we will have plenty of time to plan our next adventure in the wonderful country like Nepal.
Please notethat 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, we must be prepared for long waits both at Kathmandu or Lukla airports, as this can happen either at the start or end of the trek or even both! Himalayan Glacier does its utmost to avoid such delays, and schedule us on next flight. Still, Himalayan Glacier suggests us to be prepared for possible delays or cancellation, and if possible to come with some extra buffer days (1-2 days) at the end of the trip to accommodate such delays. Himalayan Glacier also organizes the heli rescue in such situations, if it's available and upon request of its visitors. The helicopter charges around USD 3500 and it can lift 4-5 persons per flight. If everything runs smoothly and if interested, we can also enjoy other activities like sightseeing, rafting, wildlife activities, shopping, etc during our buffer days.
In case of flights delay or cancellations at the start of trip and it goes so long that it disturbs our onward travel schedule, we are free to choose an alternative trip: such a trek in the Annapurna, Langtang, or any other regions. If we are not interested in the alternative trip and would rather wait for the trip, we are welcomed 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 we lose our time waiting at the airport and do not take an alternative tour or we only do short trek later due to time limitation. If the cancellation happens before the trip, Himalayan Glacier will provide our accommodation and lunch in a guesthouse in Kathmandu. In case of the flight delay or cancelation after finishing of the trek, visitors will be responsible for all their expenses. Please also note that we will not be entitled to any refund for the services (such as hotel, transport, flight, etc) included in the package that we would not use later.