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17 Day Everest Base Camp Trek

Our 17 day Everest Base Camp trek follows the same trek itinerary as the 14 day trek with a fantastic mixture of high altitude trekking and cultural exploration of the renowned Sherpa people.  This trip also includes extra time in Kathmandu for sightseeing and a spare day at the end in case of bad weather or flight delays.  It will definately exceed your expectations in every way.  With carefully attention to detail, the planned itinerary follows centuries old trails leading through the villages of Namche, Khumjung and the spectacular monastery at Tengboche.  Ascending Kala Patthar, at 5643m, puts you at the centre of a spectacular 360-degree panorama of Everest and her siblings.  The return route follows quieter trails and passes through villages that are seldom visited allowing you a further insight into local culture and presenting the opportunity to catch glimpses of rare Himalayan wildlife.

What You Need To Know

Difficulty Rating

The Mountain.

  • Mount Everest, at 8848m is the highest mountain in the world, as such it holds a great deal of historical and spiritual significance for locals and foreigners alike.  Ever since the first successful ascent of Mount Everest, known locally as Chomolungma (Goddess Mother of the World), was made by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay the mountain has attracted immense interest from scientist, geographers, mountaineers and, more recently from trekkers.  To climb to the top of Everest takes commitment, fitness and courage combined with a good weather window however, you don’t need to climb it to see it and marvel in its magnificence.

The Route.

  • Trekking to Everest Base Camp takes you on a well-worn trail that slowly winds its way up through historic villages such as Namche Bazar and Khumjung and the spectacular monastery at Tengboche bringing you right into the heart of the Everest region and finally into Base Camp.  Standing in Base Camp, looking up at the Khumbu Ice Fall you suddenly realise how insignificant we are compared to the wonder of nature and our mighty mountains.  Leaving Base Camp behind and making an ascent of Kala Patthar (Black Rock) provides you with an unrivalled 360 degree view of the mountains.

Monkey Mountaineering's Approach.

  • Maximise Chances of Success.  At Monkey Mountaineering we recognise the difficulties involved in completing the Everest Base Camp trek, that's why we do everything we can to help you achieve your goal.  To improve your chances of success our groups on the Everest Base Camp trek are never more than 8 people.  We use local guides who are professional, fully qualified, experienced and have in-depth knowledge of the route and surrounding area.  They will immerse you in the local culture and, being extremely client focused, will manage the whole trip to maximise your chances of success.
  • Minimise Environmental Impact.  In keeping with our core values of sustainable adventure travel we take steps to ensure our impact on the environment is kept to a minimum.  We always respect the environment we operate in and we plan all trips with this in mind.  Our group sizes are never more than 8.  Our guides encourage responsible behaviour whilst on the trail and we encourage you to manage litter and ensure nothing is left behind except of course, footprints!

This is a 17 day itinerary but due to the fragile nature of domestic air services in Nepal which are impacted by the weather as well as other problems related to developing countries we strongly advise travellers to add an extra couple of days at the end to allow for delays.  Please get in touch if you would like to discuss this further by email: info@monkeymountaineering.com or phone: 01765 773015

Day 1:  Arrive in Kathmandu.  Once you have collected you luggage and made your way out of the airport terminal building you will be met by one of our local representatives and transferred to your hotel in the busy Kathmandu district of Thamel.

Day 2:  Kathmandu Sightseeing Tour.  After breakfast you will be collected for your sightseeing tour.  Highlights include:

  • Durbar Square – This ancient location has been the home to Kings throughout different dynasties and is also the home to some of the finest Hindu and Buddhist architecture in the region.
  • Swayambhunath – Set on a hilltop to the west of Kathmandu, Swayambhunath is one of the oldest religious sites in Nepal.  The site itself is a collection of small stupas and a pagoda temple built over different periods by a succession of kings and noblemen.  The main structure of is made of a solid hemisphere of brick and clay supporting a conical spire of copper gilt.  Painted on the four sides on the base of the spire are the “All Seeing Eyes” of Lord Buddha.  Swayambhunath is also known as the Monkey Temple.
  • Bouddhanth - This colossal and ancient Stupa is one of Nepal’s most unique monuments and is said to be the world biggest Stupa.  Baudhanath Stupa is said to hold the remains of Kasyapa - the Buddha of the previous time.  One hundred meters in diameter this Stupa is 36 meters high.  It’s pinnacle represents the stages of enlightenment, symbol of royalty, compassion, knowing and nirvana.
  • Pashupatinath – With its two tiered golden roof and silver doors this temple is famous for its superb Newari architecture.  Situated near the banks of sacred Bagmati River only Hindus are permitted to enter, however visitors can clearly see the temple from the eastern bank of the river.

After the sightseeing tour you can relax before we take you to a traditional restaurant for a welcome dinner and live Nepali cultural show.

Day 3:  Fly to Lukla (2840m) and trek to Phakding (2610m).  After breakfast in your hotel you will be transferred to Kathmandu’s Domestic Air Terminal for a morning flight to Lukla[1].  On arrival you will meet your Sirdar and the rest of the crew.  We will take lunch in Lukla whilst your baggage is being sorted into loads before trekking above the Dudh Kosi to our overnight accommodation in the village of Phakding (2610m).  Flight Time: approx. 35 mins.  Trekking Time: approx. 3 hrs

Day 4:  Phakding to Namche Bazaar (3440m).  Leaving Phakding we follow the banks of the Duhd Koshi through pine forests and across suspension bridges to the village of Monjo and the entrance to the Sagarmartha National Park.  After the formalities of park entry we continue our journey to the junction of the Duhd Koshi and Bhote Koshi before the final ascent, which provides you with your first brief glimpse of Mount Everest, up to Namche Bazaar (3440m), the gateway to Everest and a bustling ancient trading centre.  Overnight accommodation in Namche Bazaar.  Trekking Time: approx. 6 hrs.

Day 5:  Acclimatisation day around Namche Bazaar.  To help with your acclimatisation today will be spent on a gentle walk to the Everest View Hotel, Khumjung (3780m) and Khunde (3840m).  Lunch will be taken on the trail and we will return to Namche Bazaar for dinner and overnight stay.  There will also be an opportunity to visit the Sherpa museum.

Day 6:  Namche Bazaar to Tengboche (3860m).  As trekking days in Nepal go, this is up there with the best of them!  Spectacular views and beautiful rhododendron forests are the order of the day as the trail cuts its way around huge hills.  We’ll take a lunch break at Phunki after crossing the Imja Kohla before climbing steeply up to the meadows that are home to the impressive Buddhist Monastery at Tengboche.  There is an opportunity to visit the Monastery before we take the short journey down-hill to finish our day in Deboche.  Trekking Time: approx. 5 hrs

Day 7:  Tengboche to Dingboche (4410m).  A day of steady ascent with stunning views of Everest, Lhotse, Kantega, Thamserku, Ama Dablam and Nuptse.  That said, we start with a short descent to cross the Imja Khola which we then follow on a steadily rising trail first to Pangboche at 4000m, where we will break for lunch, and then on to Dingboche (4410m).  Dingboche sits to the edge of a large flat area containing a mosaic of small fields for growing barley, buckwheat and potatoes, all protected by stone walls.  Trekking Time: approx. 6 hrs.

Day 8:  Acclimatisation day around Dingboche.  This is our second acclimatisation day and it is important that we rest and allow our bodies to get used to the altitude.  That said, it is also of enormous benefit if we take a gentle walk and gain some additional altitude – climb high sleep low as the saying goes!  To achieve this we will take a steady walk up the ridge to the north of Dingboche towards the summit of Nangkar Tshang, stopping at a viewpoint at just over 5000m.  Descending back to Dingboche the remainder of the day is free for you to explore the village.

Day 9:  Dingboche to Lobuche (4910m).  Getting close now.  After breakfast we start with a short climb up the hill to the north of Dingboche before reaching a fairly level plateau that takes us all the way to Dughla with views of the Chola Lake and Pumori. After lunch we climb up to the Thokla Pass, an eerie place full of monuments to those who have perished whilst attempting Everest.  After some moments of contemplation we continue along the trail to Lobuche (4910m) and a well-earned rest.  Trekking Time: approx. 6 hrs

Day 10:  Lobuche to Gorak Shep (5144m).  The actual distance covered today isn’t that far.  The trail takes us from Lobuche on a gentle climb up to the Lobuche Pass (5110m) before dropping down to cross the terminal moraine at the end of the Changri Nup and Changri Shar glaciers and then gently climbing up to Gorak Shep.  Trekking Time: approx. 4 hrs.

Day 11:  Morning ascent of Kala Patthar (5644m) followed by a visit to Everest Base Camp before returning to Lobuche (4920m).  With a very early start we will head out to climb Kala Patthar.  This is a tough climb in the cold and dark but more than worth the effort to witness the splendour of sunrise over the highest mountains in the world.  Surrounded by giant mountains of Pumori (7,145m), Lingtren (6,697m) and Khumbutse (6,623m) separating us from Tibet and just over the Lho La pass, the huge rock of Changtse (7,750m) in Tibet itself.  But Sagarmatha, or Mt. Everest the queen of them all towers over everyone.  This is the roof of the world.  After a short time to take in the splendour of the views we retrace our footsteps down and head towards Everest Base Camp before picking up the trail back to Lobuche for our overnight stay.

Day 12:  Lobuche to Upper Pangboche (4000m).  Avoiding the crowds and making best use of little used trails, today we will make our way to Upper Pangboche.  As we descend you will start to feel the benefit of increased oxygen in the air.  The route, dominated initially by Taboche (a 6367m peak that is directly in front of you for the first part of the descent), takes us back down through Dughla and then on quieter trails passing through Pheriche, crossing the river and winding our way across the hillside on a little used trail to Upper Pangboche.  Trekking Time: approx. 6-7 hrs

Day 13:  Upper Pangboche to Namche Bazaar (3440m).  On-route today you will catch glimpses of the busy trail you followed on the way up including the village of Deboche as well as spectacular views of Ama Dablam, Kantega, Thamserku and the Monastery at Tengboche.  You might also be fortunate enough to see Himalayan Tahr or the mighty Lammegeier with its 3m wingspan and other wildlife before re-joining the busy trail and descending in to Namche Bazaar.  Trekking Time: approx. 6 hrs.

Day 14:  Namche Bazaar to Lukla (2840m).  Our final day of trekking.  We retrace our steps back down the trail to Lukla stopping at Phakding for lunch and taking in completely different views and getting a different perspective than that gained on our way up.  We overnight in Lukla.  Trekking Time: approx. 6 hrs

Day 15:  Return flight from Lukla to Kathmandu.  After breakfast we make our way around to the airfield terminal building and catch our flight back to Kathmandu.  On arrival you will be transferred to your hotel for your final night with us.

Day 16:  Contingency.  This is a spare day that we will use during the trek if required to cater for bad weather etc. or if not used during the trek it will be a free day in Kathmandu.

Day 17:  Departure.  A private transfer will take you to the international airport in time for your flight home.

 

[1] Flights to and from Lukla are very dependent on weather and often delayed or cancelled.  We ask for your patience through what may appear to be a chaotic system when compared to airports in developed nations.  There is a system and we have a contingency which involves flying from a different airfield if it looks like our flight will be cancelled.  Your Guide will endeavour to keep you informed.

Included in the price of this trip:

  • Private arrival and departure transfers to and from the airport in Kathmandu.
  • Pre Trek (2 nights) and Post Trek (2 nights) accommodation in the bustling district of Thamel, Kathmandu in the Thamel Eco Resort (http://www.thamelecoresort.com/) in shared rooms (twin) on Bed & Breakfast basis (single rooms available for a supplement).
  • Traditional Nepalese welcome dinner.
  • Kathmandu sightseeing tour (including Guide, private transport and all entrance fees).
  • Transfer to/from domestic air terminal.
  • Internal return flight to Lukla.
  • Sagamartha National Park and all other entry fees and all permits.
  • Tea House accommodation whilst on the trek in shared rooms.
  • All meals plus tea/coffee whilst trekking (see frequently asked questions for more details).
  • 3lts of boiled water for drinking per day.
  • Professional guiding and support team.
  • Portage of 15kg per client.
  • All wages, clothing and insurances for Guide/s and porters.
  • Access to satellite phone (all calls must be paid for).
  • High quality Monkey Mountaineering branded duffel bag for use on trek (you will receive this on arrival in Kathmandu).

The following are not Included:

  • International Flights from/to UK.
  • Personal clothing and equipment (see our clothing and equipment section for guidance about what to bring).
  • Additional accommodation in Kathmandu at the start or end of your trek.
  • Meals whilst staying in Kathmandu (hotel is Bed & Breakfast basis).
  • Drinks whilst in Kathmandu or trekking (water, soft drinks, tea/coffee, alcoholic beverages etc – see frequently asked questions).Expenses of a personal nature such as telephone calls, laundry etc.
  • Tips for Guides, Drivers and Porters.
  • Personal travel insurance (to cover you for cancellation, accident, health, emergency evacuation and loss, theft of or damage to baggage and personal effects etc.)  You must ensure you have adequate cover for emergency medical treatment and rescue costs (including helicopter rescue costs) whilst trekking up to 5600m.
  • Lunch, dinner and drinks etc. whilst in Kathmandu (hotel accommodation is B&B).
  • Additional expenses incurred should there be a need to amend your itinerary or curtail your trek early for whatever reason and transfer you back to Kathmandu or a medical facility or hotel (it is essential that you have personal travel insurance that includes cover for trekking to Everest Base Camp).

Trekking to Everest Base Camp is a great experience but you need to be prepared for the weather and environmental conditions that you may experience whilst out on the trail.  The weather in Spring and Autumn in the Khumbu can be warm and dry with clear skies but as with most parts of the world there can be periods of rain and even snow as you get higher along with strong winds.  It is often possible to walk the trail in shorts and tee-shirt but it is prudent to be prepared for all eventualities.

With this in mind it is important that we set out wearing the right clothing and carrying the right equipment.  Listed below are all the items of clothing and equipment that you will need to successfully and safely complete the Everest Base Camp trek.  We have annotated some items as essential so please make sure you read this section and if you are unsure about anything, please give us a call or email us at info@monkeymountaineering.com

Essential Clothing (to be worn/carried)

  • Walking boots. A good pair of light-weight GoreTex lined walking boots which provide ankle support and are well broken-in.
  • Sports Sandals/Flip Flops/Crocks.  Or something similar for wearing in the evening.
  • Hiking socks. We recommend a good pair of proper hiking/trekking socks.  A minimum of three pairs but ideally you should have a pair for each day.
  • Shorts.  These are optional but the weather is often good enough for shorts.
  • Lightweight walking trousers. To wear on a daily basis if not wearing shorts and for evening wear.  Jeans or tracksuit bottoms are not suitable.
  • Long-sleeved thermal top.  Take at least 1 of these.  Can be worn during the day if temperatures dictate but most useful for wearing whilst sleeping at higher altitudes.
  • Tee-shirt. For wearing on a daily basis whilst trekking.  Should be a technical fabric – avoid cotton as it is slow to dry.  You will need 2 or 3 of these.
  • Fleece or Soft Shell Layer.  This can be a fleece jumper or fleece jacket or a soft shell jacket.
  • Insulated Jacket.  Can be down or synthetic.  Mainly for wearing at higher altitudes, on the ascent of Kala Patthar and in the evenings.
  • Waterproof Jacket.  Ideally this will be made from a waterproof, breathable material such as GoreTex and it will have a hood.
  • Waterproof trousers.  Ideally waterproof and breathable.
  • Sun Hat.
  • Wooly hat.
  • Buff.
  • Gloves.
  • Underwear.  Ideally these will be quick drying and moisture wicking.  Take 3 pairs as a minimum.
  • Sports Bra.  Ladies only, take 2.

Essential Equipment

  • Rucksack.  30l+ needs to be just big enough to carry the things you will need for the day (waterproofs and warm jacket, hat & gloves, water bottle, camera, money etc).
  • Dry Bags.  A selection of rucksack liners and dry bags as required to keep your clothing, sleeping bag and equipment dry and organised.
  • Duffle Bag.  This should be big enough to carry all the clothing and equipment you have with you.  It will be carried by a porter so a soft duffle type bag is best – suitcases are not suitable.
  • Small Padlock.  To secure your bag and belongings whilst in transit.
  • Sleeping Bag.  This should be a minimum of three seasons and able to keep you warm down to at least zero degrees.
  • Head torch.  You may need this for reading in the evening (bring spare batteries).
  • Sunglasses.
  • Personal First Aid Kit.  This should include suncream, lip balm, blister plasters (compeed), plasters, painkillers and any prescription medicines, insect repellant etc.
  • Water Bottle and/or Bladder.  Water is plentiful on the trail.  A 1lt Nalgene type bottle should be sufficient or, if you prefer, a bladder type water carrier such as a camelbak which will allow you to drink whilst walking with no need to stop to get out a water bottle.
  • Water Purification System.  Running water found along the trail will need to be treated to ensure it is safe to drink so make sure you pack some sort of purification system such as ‘water purification tablets’, filtration system or UV light purification system (recommended).
  • Toiletries and Travel Towel.  Include wet wipes, hand sanitizer and toilet tissues.

Optional Equipment

  • Walking poles.  Not essential but extremely useful, especially during descent.
  • Camera.  Make sure you have spare batteries or the means to re-charge whilst on the trek.
  • Mobile Phone.  You may be able to get a signal whilst on the trail.  If you need to make and receive calls or send texts then it may be worth considering buying a Nepalese SIM card when in Kathmandu.  WiFi is widely available in the Everest region and can be accessed by buying a ‘scratch card’ from most Tea Houses.
  • Long Sleeved Shirt.  For covering up during the day or wearing in the evening.

Other Clothing & Equipment

  • Travel clothing.  Clothing that you will not wear whilst on the trek.  This can be packed in a small bag and left at the hotel in Kathmandu and will be delivered to you on your return.

Paperwork

  • Booking confirmation.
  • Passport and Visa. (see https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/nepal/entry-requirements for information relating to Visa requirements)
  • Immunization Papers (if required, see https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/country/159/nepal for more information).
  • Insurance Documents.  You must have insurance to cover you for emergency medical treatment and helicopter rescue whilst trekking up to 5500m.