Nestled in the northeastern part of the country in the Himalayan region, Everest Base Camp Trek is a trekking program that leads you to the lap of the tallest peak in the world. It has been growing in popularity among the trekkers and travellers all around the globe.
Everest Base Camp Trek Permit and Cost
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Everest Base Camp Trek is the most popular trekking destination in the world. It is an adventure of a lifetime, a journey to the world’s tallest peak- Mt. Everest. Being one of the most sought out trekking programs, thousands of trekkers from all over the world come to accomplish this trek every year. Filled with mesmerizing features of the soaring peaks, Everest base camp is an unforgettable trip loaded with breathtaking views.
It is an adventurous trekking course that takes you to the elevation of 5,545m where you can see the majestic Everest right in front of your eyes. This trek also allows you to traverse through the lush valleys of the Khumbu region also known as the Everest region. With every step you take in the region, you will be able to witness some of the tallest peaks such as Lhotse, Nuptse, Cho-Oyu, Ama Dablam, Changtse, Pumori and Lobuche, etc.
The major attractions of this trek are the stunning mountain views, lush valleys, rare flora, fauna, and the unique Sherpa culture. The trails take you through the famous Namche Bazaar which is known as the gateway to the Himalayas. You will also pass through the green Sagarmatha National Park adorned with the vibrant rhododendron flowers and dense subtropical forest. Rich in biodiversity, rare and endangered animals like red panda, snow leopard, musk deer, etc, can be found in this region.
As you start ascending higher, the greenery decreases and you are now surrounded by pristine glacial lakes and alluring mountain views. From the rewards provided by the Everest Base Camp Trek, this may sound hard and difficult for the beginners. However, in reality, it is moderately difficult and anyone can do this trek. For its mostly uphill and downhill walks with plenty of acclimatization, you will not require much experience or physical fitness. But, you are advised to do a tad bit of preparation like cardiovascular activities and flexibility training. With many more attractions and features, Everest Base Camp Trek is worth a shot.
Highlights of Everest Base Camp Trek
- World's smallest airport known as Tenzing Hillary Airport in Lukla.
- Exploring the unique culture and lifestyle of the Sherpa people in the Everest region.
- Visiting some of the oldest monasteries in Tengboche and Dingboche
- Rare and endangered animals such as Himalayan Thar, red panda and snow leopard.
- Highest Glacial Lake in Gokyo.
Everest Base camp Kalapatthar Trek Itinerary
- Day 01: Fly to Lukla (2840m.) and trek to Phakding (2610m.) 3 hours.
- Day 02: Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazaar (3440m.) 6 hours.
- Day 03: Rest and acclimatization day at Namche Bazaar (3440m.)
- Day 04: Trek from Namche Bazaar to Tengboche (3860m.) 5 hours.
- Day 05: Trek from Tengboche to Dingboche (4410m.) 5 hours.
- Day 06: Acclimatization day at Dingboche (4410m.)
- Day 07: Trek from Dingboche to Lobuche (4910m.) 4- 5 hours
- Day 08: Trek from Lobuche to Everest Base Camp (5364m.) via Gorekshep (5140m.) 7-8 hours.
- Day 09: To Kalapatthar (5545m.) descend to Gorekshep and trek to Pheriche (4210m.) 5 hours.
- Day 10: Trek from Pheriche to Namche Bazaar 6-7 hours.
- Day 11: Trek from Namche Bazaar to Lukla.6 hours.
- Day 12: Fly back to Kathmandu.
Journey to Everest Base Camp
The grand journey to the lap of the world’s highest peaks starts with a thrilling flight to Lukla airport. The terrain beneath you gradually changes while your flight nears the small airport surrounded by green hills. Soon after the thrilling landing, you will trek to Phakding for approximately three hours.
After resting the night at Phakding on day one, you head towards Namche Bazaar. It can take up to six hours or more depending on your speed to reach Namche Bazaar. Here, you are highly recommended to spend an additional day for acclimatization. In Namche Bazaar, you can spend the day exploring the lush valley or do some last-minute shopping.
The next day you will now head to Tengboche. This part is where the difficulty in trekking rises. As you ascend to Tengboche, the greenery starts to decrease and the clear panoramic views come to sight. It takes almost five hours of walking to reach Tengboche.
From Tengboche, you will now head to Dingboche which is at an elevation of 4,410m. Again, you are recommended to spend an additional day at Dingboche for acclimatization. You can visit the monasteries or hike to the Chhukung valley for the day.
The next destination is Lobuche and now that you are travelling at 5,000m, the trek gets harder and harder. After spending the night at Lobuche, you will now head to Gorekshep. You will have to make it to Everest Base Camp and return to Gorekshep the same day. The whole trip for the day will take almost seven to eight hours of walking. Upon arriving at the base camp, you feel victorious as the mighty massifs surround you.
After spending the night at Gorekshep, you will now return via Kalapatthar. Here, you will be able to see the picturesque view of Everest, Ama Dablam, and Cho-Oyu, etc. You will also be able to view the sun rising behind the Himalayas which will leave you in awe and amazement. After spending some time at Kalapatthar, from Gorekshep the destination for the day is Pheriche. You will spend the night at Pheriche and head out to Namche Bazaar and Lukla airport.
Finally, as your trek comes to an end, you return from Lukla airport to Kathmandu.
EBC Trek Permit and Cost
If you are planning for a trip to Everest base camp, there are different kinds of costs and permits that are involved. The majority of the cost involved will be for personal trekking equipment. Also, one kind of cost that will be involved is for the Trekking permits. You will need three permits for the Everest base camp trek. They are described below-
Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit
This new permit cannot be received in Kathmandu, local government in Khumbu directly collect NPR 2,000 per person from the foreigners. This permit can be obtained at the Lukla airport.
Jiri Everest Base Camp Trek
If you are following the classic Jiri Everest Base Camp Trek, then you will obtain the permit from Monjo. You will also need to obtain an additional permit for Gaurishankar Conservation Area if you come through Jiri. This can cost you NPR 3,000.
Sagarmatha National Park
The last permit you will have to obtain is for Sagarmatha National Park. The entry fee per person is NPR 3,000. You will be able to obtain this permit in Kathmandu from Nepal Tourism Board office or in Monjo at the entrance gate. It is more convenient to obtain this permit at Monjo.
Key Information about the EBC Trek
Everest region is known for its finest tea houses and guesthouses along the trekking trails. There are abundant teahouses aligned beside the smooth trails. You will not have to worry about food while trekking in the Everest region. The teahouses here serve local Sherpa cuisines and Nepali cuisines as well. However, if you do not prefer local delicacies, they also provide western cuisines. Though the food may not be perfect, it won’t disappoint you.
It will be harder to find a variety of cuisines when you trek higher and higher. Some of the most loved Sherpa dishes by the trekkers are Rildo, momos, rice, curry, and butter tea. You will be able to eat and also catch up with other travellers just like you. This can also be an opportunity for you to learn about the Sherpa culture and way of life.
Accommodation is the most important thing you have to consider while travelling. However, the Everest region offers a wide range of tourist-friendly accommodations throughout the trail. Compared to other trekking destinations with tea house treks, the Everest region is considered to have the best tea houses and guest houses. Here, you will be able to find luxurious accommodations for cheaper ones. According to your budget, you will be able to get hotels and tea houses with basic facilities for a bed and food. Almost every teahouses and guest house provides free Wi-Fi service to travellers. The accommodation in the Everest region is all very reasonable affordable. Detail information about accommodation is here...
You are recommended to bring your sleeping bag as an extra blanket might cost you extra money.
Everest Base Camp Trek is a very challenging and demanding trek. One of the major reasons that make this trek more challenging and unpredictable is altitude sickness. Since Everest Base Camp is located at a high elevation and the trek takes place above 5,000m, high altitude sickness can happen to anyone. High altitude sickness, also known as acute mountain sickness, can occur to anyone who is at an elevation of 3,000m. This sickness occurs when your body receives less amount of oxygen. As you ascend higher, the oxygen gets thinner and thinner. For this, you will have to drink a lot of water and always keep a Diamox tablet beside you. The common symptoms of high altitude sickness are headache, lightheadedness, nausea, and dizziness.
Thousands and thousands of travellers visit Nepal just to accomplish the Everest base camp trek and the weather plays a vital role in the succession of this trek.
The weather and temperature of the Everest region are always unpredictable. The Everest base camp is really cold during December-January. This season is also known as 'off-season' and the temperature always drops till -18 degrees Celsius. So, only a few people dare to trek in this region during the winter season.
The best weather and temperature in the Everest region is during the spring and autumn season. These seasons are also picked out as the best season to explore the treks of the Everest region. During the spring and autumn, the weather is very pleasant and cool. The spring season, which is from February to May, is neither too hot nor too cold. You will be able to enjoy the panoramic view of the massifs without any unpredictable weather changes. Similarly, the autumn season gives off the same energy and weather as spring. Without sudden rain, blizzards and storms autumn provide you clear and warm weather.
Lukla airport, also known as the Tenzing Hillary Airport, is the only airport in the Everest region. It is considered to be one of the smallest airports in the world. It is also surrounded by high peaks which makes it challenging for the aircraft to land easily. Owing to its demanding geographic structure and variable weather conditions, flight delays or cancellations are a common sight in Lukla. Adding to the difficult topography, adverse weather conditions like rainfall, storms, blizzards in the Everest region, etc. may lead to flight cancellations or delays. If you trek during the spring and autumn, the weather is dry and stable. So, there is less chance of your Lukla flight getting cancelled or delayed.
Trekking in the Everest region means spending time in one of the most remote regions in the world. While trekking in this region is not risky or dangerous, you should still be prepared to face unpredicted risks and challenges. Trekking is a physically demanding activity and poses some risk factors. So it would be better to be insured before venturing into the Everest base camp trek. Insurance is a must for trekkers travelling to the Everest base camp as even minor injuries like sprained ankles can cost a lost. Since this trek takes place in a rural region, hospitals are not available. You might need helicopter evacuation and it will cost a lot if you are not insured. If you are insured, you will not face any problems even if the helicopter evacuation is very costly and expensive.
Everest Base Camp Trek is truly an adventurous and marvellous trek offering you the best of Nepal. For its distance and high altitude, many people may find it challenging and hard. But there are various ways to do this trek and it all depends on how much time you can spare for this trip. The high elevation can be a problem and a major variable while trekking. So, you should do your research and come prepared before you start this journey. Following the proper guidelines needed for this trek will reward you with the best trekking experience in the Everest region. If you are truly a nature lover and trekking enthusiast, Everest Base Camp Trek should be on your list.