Some people say it’s an otherworldly experience. Calvinistic as they put it. And it is. The trek to Everest Base Camp and beyond itself is all about endurance and lots and lots of commitment. Just the trek to Everest Base Camp (EBC) is filled trek for many hours. It’s not the weak hearted, but those who do this will be following the footpaths of legends like Messner, Bonington and Hillary, atleast up to Everest Base Camp. Though this the home of the renowned Sherpas, the mountain hardy people and the realm of Everest, this region needs no introduction. The trek passes through the picturesque Sherpa village of Namche Bazaar culminating in the ascent of Kala Patthar – from where the classic views of Everest and its surrounding peaks are available.
Are you ready?
Altitude: 1,400 m / 4,600 ft. As you arrive at Kathmandu, relax for the rest of the day.
Start with Kathmandu, the political as well as the cultural capital of the country. More than the busy city, its people are the ones who make the place special - they are friendly as ever. Visit the vegetable & spice market in Ason, take the local rickshaw (tricycle) ride to Thamel. And after lunch head to Swayambhunath Stupa, a hillock-ed UNESCO World Heritage Site. Legend Alert: Legend has it that when Kathmandu Valley was a lake 2000 years ago, a single lotus flower grew at the center of the lake. When Saint Manjushree, the Bodhisatva drained the lake with a single slash of his sword, the lotus settled on top of a hill and magically turned into a stupa. Thus, Swayambhunath is also known as a Self-Created Stupa. Whether magically or now, this stupa is the most ancient and the most enigmatic of all holy shrines in Kathmandu. Later head towards Patan city, also known as Lalitpur, the city of artisans, a paradise of fine arts. The artisans have preserved ancient techniques like repoussé and lost wax process used to produce exquisite sculptures. This is a charming old city with its narrow streets, brick houses and multitude of well-preserved Hindu temples, Buddhist monasteries (vihars) and monuments. Patan Durbar Square, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, has the Patan Museum, formerly a Malla palace, which houses bronze statues and religious objects, some dating back to the 11th century. After the truly busy day it's time to retire for the day. You have a long day coming up!
Altitude: 2,835 m / 9,300 ft. Trek Time: 4 hours approx. Start the day by flying to Lukla, a lifetime experience in itself. The airfield is on a slope and the difference between the two ends of the runway is about 197ft (60m). Gasp! Yes, it's awesome! After a meet and greet with the crew and guide, we start with identifing luggage which is made into loads. These will then be loaded on animals or ready for a team of porters. Thus we start the trek to Phakding.
Altitude: 3,446 m / 11,300 ft. Trek Time: 4 hours approx. Continue on the trail up north to the Dudh Kosi valley to Jorsale, where the trail officially enters the Sagarmatha National Park. Then continue along the trail, crossing the BhoteKosi River to begin the steep climb up to Namche Bazaar, the hub of Sherpa society. Remember to look out for glimpses of Mt.Everest from the trail.
We stop here to ensure acclimatization, and while you are at it, take a short walk uphill to the Sagarmatha National Park headquarters, a magnificent spot perched on top of Namche Bazaar with spectacular views of the surrounding snow-capped giants and the valleys way down below. Its a vista to behold. This trails takes you off the beaten path into the more remote valleys adjacent to the main Everest Base Camp trail. You can cross three passes all above 5000m - Kongma La, Cho La and Renjo La. There is also an interesting museum with all kinds of information regarding the history of the Himalayas, its geography, culture, mountaineering history and information on flora and fauna of this region. Enjoy the rest of the day as trek commences again tomorrow!
Altitude: 3,867 m/ 12,687 ft. Trek Time: 6 hours approx. We start the trek again at the trail leading along a winding path with great views of Mt. Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam and a close-up view of Thamserku. And if you are lucky in Sagnasa, you might glimpse the beautifully colored Danphe pheasant (Impeyan Pheasant) the national bird of Nepal, and the elusive musk deer, and sometimes even a herd of Himalayan Thar (mountain goat). As you reach Tengboche, you can breathe easy at the sight of a religious Buddhist gate that the walk for the day is almost over. Tengboche is one of the most beautiful places in the Himalayas, and the first thing that you will see is a big Ghompa (monastery), before a large field with campsites and teahouses, lodges beneath the peak of Ama Dablam with Everest looming above it all.
Altitude: 4,530 m / 14,800 ft. Trek Time: 6 hours approx. We start the trek again with a trail that descends through a forest of birch, fir, juniper and rhododendron and comes out at a lovely spot at Deboche. From Deboche. We will walk past the long prayer mani wall, a small bridge over the narrow gorge of the Imja-Tse River. Here the route diverts two ways; the upper one going to the upper Pangboche village, where the old Monastery is located, the lower route is the straight forward main trail to Dingboche, Pheriche and beyond. Dingboche is a beautiful patchwork of fields enclosed by stone walls protecting the crops of barley, buckwheat and potatoes from the cold winds and grazing animals. It's a wonder how normal life just goes on even in such incredible conditions.
Once again, as the altitude is very high, we have an important acclimatization day. Use this day to explore the Imja Khola, with breathtaking views of the north face of Ama Dablam. As we continue our exploration, we reach the Lhotse-Nuptse ridge, a beautiful valley that leads up to Island Peak. It's a beautiful place to just relax and laze around.
Altitude: 4,930 m / 16,175 ft. Trek Time: 5 hours approx. On this day, we head further up north, for about 40-50mins until you come to a mani-prayer stupa. The trail is gentle looking down to Pheriche village below. Enjoy views of the Mt. Tawache, AmaDablam and to the north-Pokalde (5,741m), Kongma-tse (5,820m) and the great wall of Nuptse. After a walk of 1 ½ to 2 hours the trail from Pheriche joins near Dugla (4595m) before a small wooden bridge over the river of Khumbu glacier. There is another 1 ½ to 2 hours of trekking up to Lobuche, hidden and sheltered from the wind.
Altitude: 5,184 m / 17,000 ft. Trek Time: 6 hours approx. This is the day when you reach Everest Base Camp. Trek up the valley following the rocky moraine path. You can see the icy-glacial pond and icebergs down below of Khumbu glacier. After the last rocky moraine dunes, a short downhill walk brings you to Gorakshep on the flat field below Kalapatthar (5545m) and Mt.Pumori (7,145m). Gorakshep is the location of the original Everest Base Camp. And you are here. Finally.
Altitude: 4,252 m / 13,950 ft. Trek Time: 7 hours approx. We start early next morning from Gorakshep for about 1.5 to 2 hours walk to Kalapatthar, 5,288m. From the top of Kalapatthar, the views are something else altogether. Even your wildest imaginations and photos don't do justice. We see the summit of Mt. Nuptse and Lho-La and Lhotse on the back. Head back and then all the way back to Pheriche for the night.
Altitude: 3,450 m / 11,318 ft. Trek Time: 7 hours approx. Retrace your trail up to Tashinga.
Altitude: 2,835 m / 9,300 ft. Trek Time: 6 hours approx. It's an easy high trail before descending to Namche from where we retrace our steps back to Monjo in about 6 hours.
Altitude: 2,850 m / 9,350 ft. Trek Time: 4-5 hours approx. Trek along the DudhKosi River through Jorsale, Chourikharka and finally Lukla.
We finally reach back at Kathmandu. Take rest, you have earned it.
It's the day to say goodbye to Nepal!
Price Inclusions: Arrival and departure transfers. All necessary surface transfers in a private vehicle accompanied by an English speaking local guide. 3 nights’ accommodation in a sharing twin room on bed and breakfast plan. 2 nights’ accommodation in a sharing twin room on full board basis. 1 night accommodation in a sharing twin room on full board basis. 1 night accommodation in a sharing twin room on full board basis. 2 nights’ accommodation in a sharing twin room on full board basis. 6 nights’ accommodation at simple local lodge at Tengboche, Lobuche, Dingboche, Pheriche, Gorakshep sharing twin room on full board basis. 12 nights’ / 13 days Everest Trek with necessary supporting staff like Porters, Sherpas/Sirdar and English speaking trekking guide. Supplement food during trek – freshly grounded Darjeeling tea/coffee. Everest Conservation fees. TIMS card. Price Exclusions: Nepal visa fee International airfare. Airfare for the sector Kathmandu-Lukla- Kathmandu (Quoted separately, subject to change, if revised). Refreshments, tips, bottled drinks and bar bills. Insurance and rescue of any form. Any meals which are not mentioned in the itinerary. Cost arising out of flight cancellation or reasons beyond our control. Expenses of personal nature and any other expenses not mentioned in the above cost. Gratuities, tipping to guides and drivers. Excess baggage, Extra mileage. Personal insurance policy - suggested a comprehensive travel insurance covering tour and flight cancellations, loss of valuables, thefts, illness, accidents and hospitalization. Any other item that is not mentioned in the cost inclusion.