Trek To Mount Everest & the Himalaya in 2021

Photo of Trek To Mount Everest & the Himalaya in 2021 by Wandering-Dipak
Photo of Trek To Mount Everest & the Himalaya in 2021 1/1 by Wandering-Dipak

The Everest Base Camp Trek leads to the foothills of the mightiest mountains in the world. You will travel from temperate regions up to snow line through rhododendron and pine forests, traversing rivers and touring Buddhist monasteries en route to a new teahouse every day. Regarded as the best view of the Himalaya, this trek traces the main route through Khumbu Valley from the Sherpa town of Namche Bazaar. Trekkers get an up-close, unobstructed view of world's greatest mountains: Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, Thamserku, Tawache and more.

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Everest Base Camp Trek Itinerary in a Nutshell

Day 1: Welcome and check-in Kathmandu

Upon arrival at Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport, you will be greeted by local staff from boundless adventure who will transfer you to your hotel. There will be welcome refreshments followed by room check-in assistance. Shortly afterwards, a briefing about the trip is given in the hotel lobby. Spare time before this evening's welcoming dinner may be used to sort your gear and explore your surroundings. You will dine together at an authentic Nepali restaurant and enjoy a presentation on local cultural before returning to the hotel. 

DAY 2: Explore Kathmandu

Your guide will meet you at your hotel in the morning to begin your tour of Kathmandu. Visit Boudhanath, the largest Buddhist stupa in Nepal. Tour the inside of one of the several monasteries neighbouring the stupa. Next visit Pashupatinath, a Hindu pilgrimage site, and possibly view cremation ceremonies along the banks of the Bagmati River. Continue to Patan Durbar Square to take in ancient Nepalese architecture and enjoy lunch at the museum garden, housed in a royal palace of the former Malla kings. You will stay the night again at our hotel in Kathmandu. This evening you should make time to sort your belongings, separating the items you and your porter will be carrying.

Trek from Lukla to Phakding to Namche Bazaar, acclimatization day

DAY 3: Fly to Lukla (early morning flight*), trek to Phakding

Lukla Elevation: 9,449 feet

Phakding Elevation: 8,701 feet

Hiking Time: 4 Hours

Distance: 5 Miles

Boundless Adventure will provide an early morning transfer to Kathmandu’s domestic airport to board a scenic 45-minute flight to Lukla. This flight provides a magnificent entry to the trek. One of the most spectacular flights in the world, it highlights the snowline of the Himalayan Range in the north. Upon arrival in Lukla, you will meet the Sherpa team while they distribute the equipment to the porters and jhopke (a hybrid of a cow and a yak used to carry loads). There will be a short lunch break during which guests are welcome to explore this bustling town on top of a hill with rows of houses, hotels and shops lining cobbled streets. After lunch you will begin the trek by following the trail northwest through narrow streets, immediately descending from the end of the village through the open hillside. The trail is well defined and many shops and lodges are catering to trekkers. This day’s trek is a very easy one and ultimately descends to the river at Phakding (8,701 feet), where will have a hot meal and comfortable beds for the night.

DAY 4: Trek to Namche

Namche Bazaar Elevation : 11,306 feet

Hiking Time: 6 Hours

Distance: 5.5 Miles

After breakfast, you will leave the main village and follow the trail on the left bank of the Dudh Kosi River. It is a pleasant walk as you pass through the agricultural countryside, small wayside villages and a monastery. After lunch, you will trek up to the park permit checkpoint and enter into the Sagarmatha National Park. From there you will descend for ten minutes, then cross a suspension bridge to arrive at Jorsale (9,186 feet). This is a busy trail with plenty of sights. Our first good views are of the west ridge of Kusum Kanguru (20,797 feet). You will follow the Dudh Kosi River, crossing a rustic suspension bridge, then slowly climb up a very steep trail to Namche Bazaar. Near the halfway point, you will enjoy your first views of Mt. Everest (29,029 feet), Nuptse (25,850 feet), and Lhotse (27,503 feet), the big three. The climb is nearly three hours as you gain altitude. After arriving at a gate with a sign saying, "Welcome to Namche Bazaar" you will hike another 20 minutes to our lodgings in the heart of Namche Bazaar (11,309 feet). Namche is a prosperous town and the largest in Khumbu. Thamserku (21,811 feet) and Kwangde Ri (21,732 feet) loom along the east and west of the village. The sacred mountain Khumbila (18,724 feet) dominates the skyline along the west.

DAY 5 : Rest day in Namche

Today will give you time to adjust to the altitude and enjoy some well-deserved rest. You may take a hike to the village of Khumjung, where a monastery has a purported Yeti scalp. This village has modern communications such as the internet and mobile and landline phones. You'll also be able to see the Everest View Hotel, one of the highest hotels on earth.

Trek to Dole, Macchermo, and Gyoko

Day 6: Trek To Dole

Elevation 13,254 feet

Hiking Time: 7 hours

Distance: 6 Miles

You will leave Namche and head north through the villages of Syangboche and Khumjung. These villages are famous for producing world-class climbers and the trekking culture here runs deep. These hills are also the best place to encounter wild mountain goats, called Himalayan tahr, as they bound across the trail or work their way up nearly vertical cliffs. Keep your camera handy! The trail ascends gradually past impressive stone chortens (Buddhist shrines), navigates past a deep river gorge, and passes through the villages of Mong and Phortse Thanga. The area is often lush with rhododendron forests and small terraced farms. The views of Ama Dablam (22,493) to the southeast are spectacular. We spend the night in the small village of Dole. Dole is nestled into tight valley ringed by snow-capped peaks. An icy glacial stream runs through the valley floor and yaks wander about looking for the best grazing. There are good trails up to the rims of the valley for those wanting an extra challenge or better a view.

Day 7: Trek To Macchermo

Elevation: 14,468 feet

Hiking Time: 3 hours

Distance: 3 Miles

After a leisurely breakfast in Dole, you will make the short trek up the Gokyo valley to Machermo. Much of the hike is along a verdant ridgeline with massive 20,000-foot mountains lining the horizon. The area looks like the Swiss Alps, only much bigger. You pass through two smaller villages on the way to Machermo: Kele and Luza. Both are quite a hillside towns, perfect places to stop for tea or to buy some of the local (and delicious) yak cheese. Once reaching Machermo you will rest for the remainder of the day. you are now well over 14,000 feet and some may be feeling the effects of altitude. Explore the town and valley, cool your feet in a glacial stream, and scan the hills for Himalayan tahr as you prepare for the next section of the trek. Keep an eye out for Yeti as well – locals report many sightings in the area.

Day 8: Trek To Gokyo, Climb Gokyo Ri, Explore Gokyo Lakes, Cho Oyo Base Camp

Elevation: 17,782 feet

Hiking Time: 4 hours each day

Distance: Approx 5-6 miles each day

Today you reach the top of the valley and the remote Gokyo Lakes. The trail out of Machermo passes into a stark and impressive ablation valley – a valley that forms when a glacier lifts moraine at its edges and then retreats slightly. The rhododendron and green terraced farms give way to bare rock and scree. A churning river shoots through the valley floor. After about three miles you begin to see a series of rock cairns marking a steep ascent up to the first Gokyo lake. It is a small lake, but the mesmerizing blue of the water and the way it cascades down the valley are exhilarating. In half a mile you pass the second lake, much bigger and considered sacred by the locals (no swimming!). Another mile of trekking through massive boulders fields and past jagged cliffs and you arrive at the third lake and the town of Gokyo. Gokyo is a friendly trekking town full of teahouses. Because it is at the end of a long valley and off the main Everest trek, Gokyo tends to attract more independent and adventurous trekkers. Many teahouses here like to welcome their guests for the night with warm mango juice – a welcome treat if there is a chill in the air. 

It is a superb base for exploration, and you spend the rest of that and the following day investigating the town, visiting the remote fourth, fifth and sixth lakes, making small excursions up the peaks on the west side of the valley, or venturing out onto the 30 miles long Ngozumba glacier bordering Gokyo to the east, and climbing Gokyo Ri. At 17,519 it is roughly the same elevation as Everest Base Camp. The climb begins just a few minutes east of town and ascends steeply across rocky terrain for two miles. You will take our time getting to the top as it is a tough climb at high elevation. The schedule in Gokyo will depend on how the group is feeling and weather conditions so you can enjoy the best views from both locations.

Trek to Tagnag, Cross the Cho La Pass to Lobuche

Day 9: Trek To Tagnag

Elevation: 17,519 feet

Hiking Time: 3 Hours

Distance: 4.5 Miles

This morning you'll spend some time sleeping in and enjoying a well-deserved breakfast. When you’ve had your fill you will begin heading directly for Everest, moving east across the Ngozumba glacier and toward the tiny trekking village of Tagnag (4700). Tagnag sits on the eastern end of the glacier and is the gateway to the Cho La pass. Dinner and good sleep await us there as you rest up for the high altitude traverse into the Everest valley.

Day 10: Cross The Cho La Pass To Lobuche

Elevation: 17,782 feet

Hiking Time: 8 Hours

Distance: 9 Miles

After leaving Tagnag you ascend gradually towards the pass for three miles. Just before the pass, the trail becomes very steep. Get ready for one of the toughest sections of the trip. The pass can be difficult to cross in wet or icy conditions. Our expert guides will take all necessary precautions to ensure a safe crossing. From the top of the pass, you can take in views of the twin Kangchung peaks (19,977), Nirekha (20,206), and Lobuche (20,160). You then descend past climbing camps and the yak-herding village of Dzongla. A hearty lunch and a good rest will prepare you to finish the Cho La descent and then turn north to head straight for Everest Base Camp. You end the day by entering the fabled Khumbu valley and skirting the western edge of the Khumbu glacier to the town of Lobuche. Dinner and rest await you after two of the longest and most challenging days of the trek.

Gorak Shep, Everest Base Camp, Kala Patthar, and Pheriche

Day 11: Trek To Gorak Shep And Visit Everest Base Camp

Gorak Shep Elevation 16,929 feet

Everest Base Camp Elevation 17,585 feet

Hiking Time: 7 Hours

Distance: 9 Miles total

You will make an early morning trek to Gorak Shep from Lobuche, following the contour of the open landscape along the Khumbu Glacier through jumbled moraines and scattered rocks. On a clear day Mount Everest can be seen looming behind Nuptse. Continuing on, you'll travel along jumbled moraines and erratic boulders, passing by the memorials of Rob Hall, Yasuko Namba, and others who perished during the Everest disaster of 1996. The trail continues on a ridge, where a glimpse of Everest can be seen. At the end of the ridge, a scrambling descent gives way to the entry of the Khumbu Glacier. Everest Base Camp is also the site for the base camps of Lhotse and Nuptse. Various expeditions have selected different locations in this vicinity for semi-permanent tent cities during their assaults on the mountain. Some of the sites that expeditions have used as base camps are identifiable from debris on the glacier. The highlight of the day is the sight of the treacherous Khumbu Icefall, the trek along which can be both exhilarating and intimidating for its volatility. After our visit, you'll return to Gorak Shep, descending to the alpine settlement where you will stay overnight at one of the two teahouses.

Day 12: Climb Kala Patthar And Trek To Pheriche

Kala Patthar Elevation 18,192 feet

Hiking Time: 8 Hours

Distance: 8 Miles

Today, you'll continue toward Kala Patthar (18,192 feet). The hour-long trek to the summit is challenging but well worth it for the breathtaking sunrise views that frame Everest. The giants of the earth loom all around: Pumori (23,442 feet), Everest (29,029 feet), China’s peak, Changtse (24,780 feet), Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, and many others. You'll then continue to Pheriche where you'll spend the evening.

Trek to Namche, Trek to Lukla

Day 13: Trek To Namche

Hiking Time: 7 Hours

Distance: 10.5 Miles

Today you'll return to Namche, a welcome sight to be sure. Your trek today will last about seven hours, though you'll be feeling better with each step as you descend back to the valley. You'll have ample time to rest once you arrive.

Day 14: Trek To Namche

Hiking Time: 6 Hours

Distance: 7 Miles

This is your last day on the trail, and it is a short distance to go after breakfast. There will be a spare-time when you arrive in Lukla, and you may wish to find a place to reflect on the sights you have beheld and the friends you have made. There will be dinner and overnight lodging at a teahouse in Lukla. Before bed, take a moment to re-sort your gear so you are ready to hit the ground running in Kathmandu tomorrow.

Fly back to Kathmandu and depart for home

Day 15: Fly Back To Kathmandu & Explore

You and your team will take an early morning flight from Lukla to Kathmandu in a Twin Otter plane. Upon arrival in Kathmandu, representative from thirdrockadventures will transfer you to your hotel where you may deposit your belongings and freshen up. The remainder of the day is free for well-earned rest or an optional sightseeing tour before your farewell dinner with the whole expedition team.

Day 16: Final Departure

Depending on your flight schedule, ideal activities include last-minute packing and shopping until your transfer to the Tribhuvan International Airport.

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