Mount Everest Base Camp Trek
Trekking in Nepal is a unique experience that nearly anyone can accomplish. This is not a technical climb, but a comfortably paced walking trip through the majestic Himalayas. While you carry only a light daypack, yaks or porters carry your belongings from lodge-to-lodge. Paced comfortably, you will follow paths traveled by locals for centuries, view skyscraping Himalayan peaks in every direction, and meet the amazing Sherpa people residing in remote villages along the way. Ample time is given to acclimate adventurers to altitude, experience the culture and traditions of the Sherpa people, and visit monasteries and other important landmarks as we make our way to our ultimate goal…Mount Everest Base Camp.
Day 01: Arrival day in Kathmandu (4,429’)
On your arrival in Kathmandu; we will greet you at the airport and transfer you to the famous Hotel Yak & Yeti. After everyone on the team has arrived, we will meet out in the garden area of the hotel for the team meeting and trek briefing. Later that evening we will host a welcome dinner at one of the finest local restaurants just a short walk from the hotel.
Day 02: Kathmandu sightseeing tour
After enjoying the breakfast buffet in the morning, we provide a half day site seeing trip in the Kathmandu valley. With a knowledgeable, English speaking guide, we will visit the Swyambhunath Stupa, also known as the Monkey Temple. Said to be one of the oldest Buddhist Stupas in the world, which is majestically set high on a hill top overlooking the Kathmandu Valley. From there we will visit the largest Stupa in the world, Bouddhanath. With endless shopping, coffee houses, and restaurants, Bouddhanath is a wonderful place to walk among the locals, and break for lunch. Afterwards we will return to the hotel where you will have time to do your own exploring, or return to your room for rest.
Day 03: Fly to Lukla and Trek to Phakding (8,700’)
First thing in the morning we will make our way to the domestic terminal at the airport for our flight to Lukla. This 35 minute flight is always an exhilarating and trip highlight for everyone traveling to the Everest region. On arrival to Lukla, we will meet the rest of our Sherpa and support staff for our trek. The trek to Phakding is one of the shorter days on the trek, and we actually go down in Elevation! It’s a great walk for your first day on the trail.
Day 04: Trek to Namche (11,286’)
After a hot breakfast, we head off on the trail along the beautiful Dudh Kosi river, crossing suspension bridges, and making our way to the wonderful little village of Monjo, the gate way to the Sagarmartha National Park (UNESCO World Heritage site). After short National Park formalities, we drop down to the river and continue our walk to the high Hillary Bridge at the bottom of the Namche hill. After the bridge the trail is steep and narrow, and can be very busy with porters making their way to and from Namche Bazzar. It’s always a wonderful site as we arrive in Namche. A beautiful village built into a natural amphitheater facing Mt. Kongde across the valley. It is here that we will spend an extra day for acclimatization.
Day 05: Namche Bazaar-Acclimatization Day
With Namche’s cobbled ‘streets’, stores, bars, bakeries, movie spots, coffee shops, and museums, Namche is the perfect setting for a rest day. Whether you want to update your Facebook status, or relax with a good book, Namche is the place! For those feeling well and acclimated, we’ll take a morning hike up to the Everest View Hotel (12,000’) to stretch our legs, and get a sneak peak of the route ahead of us. With views of Everest, Lhotse, and Ama Dablam, the Everest View Hotel provides a perfect spot for some tea, snacks, and unrivaled views!
Day 06: Trek to Khumjung (12,434’)
Today we climb up and out of Namche into the beautiful little village of Khunde (12,598 ft). We will see the Khunde hospital, one of the only hospitals in the whole Khumbu region. We also have the opportunity to visit the Khumjung school, which was funded and built by Sir Edmond Hillary (the first person, along with his partner Sherpa Tenzing Norgay, to summit Mt. Everest). A highlight of the day is our visit a Sherpa home where you’ll experience their culture and traditions firsthand.
Day 07: Trek to Phortse (12,959’)
As we make our way out of Khumjung, we enter an area that is known for Himalayan Thar sightings. A beautiful animal in the mountain goat family, watch for the males as they have an amazing mane of dark and light brown hair. We’ll take a break in the wonderful tiny village of Mong La. Situated at the pass above Phunki Tenga we’ll take a break here before descending all the way down to the river where we begin our way up to Phortse.
Day 08: Trek to Pheriche (14,000’)
One of our longest days on the trail, the trek to Pheriche affords us amazing views of Thamserku, Kantega, and Ama Dablam the entire day! With each turn in the trail, these beautiful peaks change and take on a whole new level of beauty. We’ll make our way through the villages of Pangboche, Shomare, and Orsho, before reaching our destination for the next two days.
Day 09: Acclimatization Day
We’ll call Pheriche home for another day to allow our bodies to acclimate to the elevation at 14,000’. This is a great day to rest, read, shower, write, and/or follow the climber’s mantra of ‘climb high, sleep low’. For those feeling well and acclimated, we’ll take a hike up to 15,000’ on the ridge line above Pheriche where we can see the neighboring village of Dingboche, along with the beautiful peaks of Lhotse, Island Peak, and Makalu. In the afternoon there is a very informative lecture on altitude illnesses provided by the doctors in Pheriche at the Himalayan Rescue Association. A small medical outpost that provides emergency care for those that have succumbed to altitude sickness.
Day 10: Trek to Lobuche (16,108’)
After our stay in Pheriche, we begin the trek to our next destination, the village of Lobuche. On our way, we will encounter the small village of Dughla and more importantly the stone memorials that were built for climbers killed on expeditions of nearby summits. The majority of them are from Everest expeditions. This is a peaceful, impactful place that sits atop a beautiful ridge crest. For many it offers an opportunity to reflect and take in the silence and magnificence of the Everest region. From here the trail leads us to the lodges of Lobuche, situated along the lateral moraine of the Khumbu Glacier, where we’ll rest for the evening.
Day 11: Trek to Gorak Shep (17,125’)
We will continue through the glacial moraine and high tundra into the “Valley of the Gods,” where we will come to the sporadically occupied hamlet of Gorak Shep (16,924). Outside of Gorak Shep lies Kala Pattar, the black hill (18,500 ft). From its summit you can see the giants of the earth looming: Everest, Pumori, Lhotse and the Tibetan peak Changste. We often choose to climb Kala Patthar on this afternoon to see the sunset on Everest, which often offers up a spectacular alpenglow.
Day 12: Everest Base Camp (17,500’)
With an early breakfast and start to our day, this is the day we have worked so hard for! With a wonderful walk along the lateral moraine of the Khumbu glacier, our trek to Base Camp takes approximately 2 ½ hours. We eventually drop down off the moraine into the glacier and make our way to the Prayer flags and banners that is Everest Base Camp. We can spend as much time as the group would like here, as we typically have the place to ourselves, or maybe share it with just a few other trekkers that share the same goal. Base Camp is a ghost town this time of year as it is not the Everest climbing season. After photos, exploration, and rest, we will make our way back to Gorak Shep for lunch, and then sling our packs back on and make our way all the way back down to the thicker air of Pheriche for the night.
Day 13: Trek to Tengboche (12,687’)
There is a lot of down hill walking today as we head yet further down to thicker air. While walking through the Sherpa villages of Shomare and Pangboche, we make our way all the way down to the Imja Khola river, where we will cross and visit the village of Deboche. From here it’s a fairly steep climb up to Tengboche, our stop for the night. After our arrival, you will have time to get settled into your room, visit the amazing Bakery, and visit the beautiful Buddhist monastery, one of the most important monasteries in all the Khumbu.
Day 14: Trek to Namche (11,286’)
We start our trek back down to Namche with a descent of the Tengboche hill. A steep, narrow, dusty trail most trekkers and porters are climbing, be sure to give the yaks and Zyopkios plenty of room as they climb past you. We’ll make our way all the way down to the Duhd Kosi River, cross the bridge and take a break in the warm sun in the small village of Phunki Tenga. From here it’s back to steep climbing until we reach the hillside traverse that will take us back to the bustling village of Namche.
**Reserve Day for Contingency
We feel the need to have a day built into the itinerary to account for any unforeseen circumstances that might arise during our trek. That may include bad weather, illnesses, strikes, etc. It is rare that this day is needed, but it does come in handy when needed. If the Reserve day is not needed, then it will be up to your guide when and where to put the day in the itinerary. In the past, Namche has proven to be a very good place to spend an extra day.
Day 16: Trek to Phakding (8700’)
As you remember going up the Namche Hill during the beginning of our trek, we have the luxury of going down it this morning. On our way back down to the riverside, if the clouds are on our side, we’ll take a short break for our last glimpses of Mt. Everest. We continue down to the National Park entrance, pass through the villages of Jorsale and Monjo, and our rest place for the evening in Phakding.
Day 17: Trek to Lukla (9,186’)
Last day on the trail, and it’s uphill? Yep! We lace up our trail shoes for the last time as we make our way back to Lukla, on this relatively short day. You’ll know you’re getting close as you start to hear the planes on their approach to the famous runway. Once we arrive in Lukla, it’ll be a day of celebration! With plenty of time left in the day for shopping, visiting the local ‘Starbucks’, or the many bakeries, you’ll have a huge sense of accomplishment. Later in the evening we share a celebration dinner with the entire team to include our Sherpa and porter staff.
Day 18: Fly to Kathmandu
Hurry up and wait…this is our mantra for the flight out of Lukla. As we await our flight number, we will be able to relax at the lodge, and watch the arriving planes from the comfort of the front deck. When we get the word that it’s our turn to make our way to the airport, we have only a 100’ to the airport entrance, where we will check in and make our way through security. Like the landing in Lukla, the take off is just as exciting! Only 35 minutes later we find ourselves back in the warm temperatures of Kathmandu and the beautiful Yak & Yeti hotel.
Day 19: Kathmandu (Free Day)
This day is a day of adventure, shopping, and preparation for your return home. We are happy to suggest things for you to do, or places to see and explore, but this is an unguided day. If you need suggestions on gifts to buy, where to buy them, and even how to get the best prices, please let us know so that we can help. This evening we will have our celebration dinner with the team, and some of the trek staff.
Day 21: Departure day
Regardless of your flight time, we will make sure you arrive safely to the international airport for your flight back home. Depending on the time of your flight, you may have a short day in Kathmandu, or you could have another whole day for more shopping, site seeing, massages, and relaxation, before the long flight home.