Everest Base Camp (overnight at EBC)
- Trekking & Hiking
our UK team
All trekkers need to organise their own flights to Kathmandu International Airport (KTM). From Kathmandu Airport we will arrange a private transfer to your hotel. That night or early the next morning you will meet your local Kandoo representative and have a full pre-trek briefing.
The flight from Kathmandu to Lukla takes 45 minutes and is an adventure in itself with great views of the Everest region (from the left of the plane) and ending with a hair-raising landing on a steep mountain runway. After meeting our crew, we will start our trek by heading up the Dudh Koshi Valley on a well- marked trail to Phakding
From Phakding, we cross and re-cross the river on high suspension bridges. Beyond Monjo is the entrance to the Sagarmatha National Park, which was set-up to conserve this fragile mountain environment. We then ascend steeply to Namche and along the way, if the weather permits, catch the first glimpse of Mt Everest. Namche Bazaar is the main trading village in Khumbu and has a busy Saturday market. It is a meeting place for the Hindu traders from the lowlands and Tibetan yak caravans that have crossed the glaciated Nangpa La. You can enjoy an Illy coffee and amazing brownies here!
Namche is tucked away between two ridges and has lots of lodges, tea shops and souvenir shops. Today we will trek up to the Everest View Hotel at 3880m for our first view of Ama Dablam and Mount Everest. Following the ‘walk high, sleep low’ principle, this hike will really help with your acclimatisation
From Namche, the trail contours on to the side of the valley, high above the Dudh Koshi. We will get great views of Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse and Ama Dablam. Passing by several villages and numerous tea shops, we descend steeply to a bridge over the river at Phunki Tenga. The village is an ideal stopover for lunch. Here we can rest before making the steep climb to Tengboche, famous for its legendary monastery, the largest in the Khumbu.
We descend through a forest, cross the Imja Khola and climb steadily to the village of Pangboche. This village is directly opposite Ama Dablam (6856m), and has exceptional views of the mountain, the gompa, Mani walls and scattered pine trees. A further two hours walk brings us to Pheriche.
A day for rest and acclimatisation. We also have an opportunity to wander up the valley to look at the Tshola Tsho lake and the perpendicular walls of Cholatse and Tawache. Our guide will take us up onto the ridge overlooking Dingboche for the view of the Imja Valley and the incredible south face of Lhotse.
We continue up the wide valley beneath the impressive peaks of Cholatse and Tawache on the left. We then turn right and take a steep climb towards the foot of the Khumbu Glacier. The tea house at Duglha is a good spot to have lunch. The trail zigzags up through the boulders of the glacier's terminal moraine. At the top of this climb there are many stone cairns, built as memorials to the many Sherpas who have died while climbing Mt Everest. The path then climbs gently along the glacier, to eventually reach Lobuche
To reach our next stop, Everest Base Camp, we follow the Khumbu Glacier. The trail offers superb views of the surrounding mountains, especially where the path is forced to rise to cross a tributary glacier. We stop for lunch at Gorak Shep before finally making our way to Base Camp itself (5364m). This takes several hours as the trail weaves its way through ice pinnacles and past the crevasses of the Khumbu Glacier. We spend the night at Base Camp and have the opportunity to meet some of the people attempting the summit this season.
A very early start is required to reach the top of Kala Pattar (5554m) for one of the best viewpoints in the Himalaya. From here we can see the face of Everest and deep into the Khumbu icefield. After lunch we then descend to Dingboche for the night.
From Dingboche we drop down again to follow the river. After crossing it we climb back up through birch and rhododendron forest back to Tengboche. From here we descend over the Dudh Koshi before making our way back to Namche.
Our final day's trekking follows the Dudh Koshi back down to Lukla. This last evening in the mountains is the ideal opportunity for a farewell party with the Sherpa guides and porters, where you can sample some chang, try Sherpa dancing and look back on a memorable trekking experience.
After an early breakfast, we will head to the airstrip for our return journey to Kathmandu.
A free day in Kathmandu to explore the city at your leisure. The Buddhist stupa of Boudhanath, the Monkey Temple at Swayambhunath and the Hindu temple of Pashupatinath are just some of the religious highlights of this fascinating city.
We will collect you from your hotel and transfer you to Kathmandu Airport for your departing flight.
There are really just two things that make the trek tough. First, even with acclimatisation days you are pretty much trekking 5-6 hours a day for at least 12 days. You need to have hardened your body off to walking to cope with this.
Second, is the effect of altitude. By the time you reach base camp you will have lost almost 50% of the oxygen in the air and this makes any exertion tough. It is important, if you are going to cope with this loss of oxygen, that you train hard before you arrive for your trek, then do everything slowly. This is a 'tortoise challenge'!
You choose what you want to eat at the lodges, and settle your own bill in the morning. While you can eat heartily for very little money at any lodge, we do recommend that you budget £20 to £25 ($30 to $35) per day for meals and drinks. This will ensure that you not only have plenty of food, but that you enjoy it a lot more. Where once there was a choice of perhaps 5 different rice or lentil based meals at any one lodge, most now offer a wide menu of 40 or more choices from the basic (such as dhal bhat) to the sophisticated (yak steak with blue cheese sauce).Please note that we prefer some of the more expensive lodges, so the prices are higher than they might be at more spartan facilities.
One word of advice, place your meal order as soon as you can upon arriving at the lodge as it is strictly ‘first ordered, first served’, and the best lodges are quite busy at meal times.
Trekking in Nepal is more popular than ever. As a result, the standard of accommodation available on most of the trek routes has improved dramatically. Where there were once simple peasant huts, large hostels have been built featuring running water, indoor toilets (some en-suite) and electricity. However, while internet access, charging facilities and hot water are available, you will need to pay to use them - if you plan on using the internet and showering every day, then you should budget around $10 per day.
However, development is still ongoing, and as you get higher into the mountains the lodges become more basic. Furnishing is generally fairly spartan, and most rooms feature little more than a bench bed and a thin mattress, so your sleeping kit will probably see some early use. Showers are not always available and it tends to be just the communal areas that are heated.
The exception to that rule is Namche. Namche features some really great lodges, including the Hil-Ten (this is not a region that makes much of copyright infringement) and if you are in need of refreshment there both Illy and Lavazza coffee are available
Kandoo has a list of lodges that we prefer to work with, all of which are regularly inspected to ensure the best quality rooms available. Even at the worst, they are clean and well-kept. When the route is busy, we send a porter ahead to hire rooms for the night, as they cannot be reserved in advance.
The general standard of driving
throughout Nepal is poor and badly regulated. Roads in Kathmandu are very
congested, many drivers are not properly licensed and vehicles are poorly
maintained. During the monsoon season (June to September) many roads outside
the Kathmandu valley are prone to landslides and may become impassable.
We insist on using a high standard of
vehicle and driver for all of our transfers. In Nepal it is not a legal
requirement to have seatbelts fitted in the back of vehicles, and while we try
to use vehicles that do have rear seatbelts fitted, this cannot always be
guaranteed. If you are unhappy about any aspect of the vehicle or the standard
of driving, please speak to the driver or our local office.
The internal flights operate an
absolutely strict maximum limit of 10kg for your main equipment bag and a
maximum of 5kg for your day sack.
bag will be weighed before you leave the hotel to start the trek and if it is
overweight you will have to take items out and leave them at the hotel. Your baggage will also be weighed by the
airport staff so it is important that
do not exceed these limits. Please note you will be given 2 litres of water on
arrival in Lukla
to fill your platypus or water bottles for your first day’s trekking, so you do
not need to carry water from Kathmandu. The porters can carry up to 15kg in the
main equipment bag, so you can add
items from your day sack once you reach Lukla.
All items must be packed in your main
equipment bag. They should not be attached to the outside, as we are not
responsible if items fall off when the bags are being carried on the trek.
The Nepali Rupee is a closed currency so
you will not be able to buy this before you arrive. It is advisable to travel
with US Dollars, as these are widely accepted. It is very important that US
bills be new (post 2006), crisp and untorn. If you want some local currency
then we can take you to an ATM or bank. Alternatively all the hotels in
Kathmandu will change money for you. We recommend that you take local currency
on the actual trek with you, as the teahouses prefer local currency to dollars.
You will also get a more favourable exchange rate in Kathmandu.
If you are relying on a credit or debit
card for emergency funds, make sure you tell your card issuer that you will be
using it abroad, or you may find that it won't work when you really need it.
realize that tipping may not be a common practice in all countries but for
Nepal it is a standard practice that all operators support. The decision on how
much to tip should be determined by how well the team served you while you were
on the trek. Tips are always discretionary and if you are not happy with the
service you have received you do not have to pay tips. Tips can be made in US
dollars or Nepali Rupees. It is very important that US bills be new (post
2006), crisp and untorn.
are members of the Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal and the Nepal
Mountaineering Association, and follow their guidelines when recommending tip
levels for guides and porters. We would suggest you budget $100-$150 per
trekker for your tip contribution.
say goodbye to our porters in Lukla before we return to Kathmandu. Any tips
that you wish to give to the porters will need to be carried on the trek with
do not have our own gear available for rental but there are many places
offering gear for rental in Kathmandu and we can recommend a number of places
for you. The quality of rental gear is very variable and it is your
responsibility to check carefully the condition of any item you rent. We
accept no responsibility for the quality of equipment hired. An indication of
the likely rental costs is below.
of the rental shops close around 8pm, so if you are arriving on a late flight
the day before the trek starts there will not be an opportunity for you to
visit a rental store. If you are planning on renting equipment, you need to
make sure you have allowed sufficient time at the beginning of your trip.
rental equipment is included in your overall trekking bag weight, so make
sure you have allowed for this when packing your bag at home. A sleeping bag
will weigh around 2kg.
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