Everest base camp falls under one of the most popular treks in Nepal. Gateway to the highest mountain in the world, Everest base camp trek is the most sought after trekking destination in the world. The base camp flaunts magnificent up-close views of Mount Everest. In addition, it also opens up to the splendid views of other peaks such as Mt.Lhotse, Choyu, Makalu and many more.
The trek itself is very diverse with varying landscapes of lush green meadows, dense forests to close up views of pristine mastiffs. Passing through Sherpa villages, the difficulty of the trek depends upon the number of days and the route. It usually takes 2 weeks to complete the journey thus; anyone physically fit can complete the trek to Everest base camp.
Altitude is often the problem while on this trek. The trail route elevates up to 5,364m, risks of altitude sickness are very high in case the length of the trek is inadequate without ample time for acclimatization.
The Everest base camp trek is the complete blend of the thrilling trail with beautiful landscapes leading to spectacular scenery. Here is the complete guide to the Everest Base camp trek.
Everest Base Camp Trek Map
Everest Base Camp falls in the mountainous part of Nepal. The altitude is quite high while trekking to Everest Base Camp. The altitude elevates up to 4000meters resulting in variation of weather in various places along the trek. The higher the elevation the unpredictable the weather gets. Thus, it’s wise to start preparing as per elevation.
Best Time to Travel to EBC
Everest has four seasons- summer; spring, autumn, and winter.
Summer in EBC falls in the month of June, July, and August. During the summer season, the minimum temperature at the highest point of the trek is almost around 0 degrees. This is a pleasant temperature considering the fact that you will be at the Base Camp of the tallest peak in the world.
But, due to the fact, the monsoon season in Nepal coincides with summer, EBC trek in the summer season is not as popular as trekking in autumn or spring. But, if you wish to plan your trip taking monsoon into account make sure to have the appropriate gear and summer trek in EBC could be a pleasant experience.
December, January, and February are the months when there is winter in EBC. During this season, it is common to experience a minimum amount of rainfall in the Everest region. The most stunning pictures of the mountains are captured in this season. But due to heavy snowfall, some trekking routes are closed during this season.
Moreover, some places on the trek have a minimum temperature of -20 degrees in the winter. Therefore, winter treks in the Everest region are less popular. But for people who wish to trek during the offseason in solitude, this is a great option.
The months of September, October and November are the autumn season in the Everest region. With favorable temperature and relatively minimal chances of rainfall, autumn trek to EBC is widely popular. During this time of the year, the temperature is mild, making it a pleasant trekking experience. Also, during the night time, the temperatures are not extremely low.
Right after the end of the winter in EBC, the spring season begins. This season falls in the month of March, April, and May. The Sagarmatha National Park is full of rhododendron blooms, lush green forests and picturesque landscapes. Similarly, the mountains, glaciers and the villages in this region flaunt their best color during this season making it the perfect season for photography in EBC.
The classic Everest Base Camp trek starts from Lukla. Lukla has an altitude of 2800 meters. From Lukla, there will be various stops to stay overnight and eventually complete the classic EBC trek in around 2 weeks’ time.
Mostly, the altitude of the places in the EBC trek is more than 3000 meters. More interestingly, there are various trekking options in the Everest region. So, trekking there might take more or less than 2 weeks depending upon the trekking packages.
So, with different trekking packages come variations in places along the trek and altitudes as well.
are some mountain passes you cross while trekking in the Everest region.
|Namche Bazaar||3438 m|
|Gorak Shep||5164 m|
|Everest Base Camp||5364 m|
|Kala Pathar||5545 m|
|Island Peak||6189 m|
While trekking to Everest Base Camp in Nepal you’ll need the following permits:
Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit: NRs 3000 or $33 per person
Solukhumbu Regional Permit Additional: NRs 2000or $20 per person
Trekker Information Management System (TIMS Card) – Not currently required (2019)
The Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit can be purchased in Kathmandu at the Tourist Information Center or at Monjo while on the trek.
Both the Kathmandu permit and TIM’s offices open between 10 am – 5 pm. The Solukhumbu Regional Permit is available from a counter at Lukla.
Don’t forget to get a receipt.
Level of Difficulty
The major concern every trekker has about Everest Base Camp is whether the trek is doable. The difficulty of the EBC trek is determined by several factors such as altitude, trekking hours as well as the season.
Longer Everest trekking routes in Nepal can take up to a month to complete while shorter trekking routes can be completed in a week. Trekking in the mountains for a month is quite strenuous. But, to lessen your worries, Everest Base Camp trek is only two weeks long. This makes it moderately difficult in terms of the number of trekking days.
While on the EBC trek, regular trekking is of around 5-6 hours a day. Breakfast will be served in a teahouse/ lodge in the morning and you set out for trekking and trek for around 3 hours before lunch. After lunch and taking some rest, the trek continues for around 3 hours before reaching the overnight stop.
Altitude is another factor contributing to the difficulty of the trek. There are various ways in which you can prepare for altitude sickness. Remember to go slowly in your treks and spend adequate time to acclimatize to the altitude.
Therefore, taking considering all the influencing factors, the EBC trek has a moderate difficulty level.
Train Your Body for the Everest Trek
You do not have to be a hardcore athlete to be able to trek to EBC. But you have to be fit enough to enjoy the long walks and wake up without a sore body. Some of the ways you can train your body are:
Food and Accommodation
Accommodation on the Everest Base Camp trek is quite varied with a mix of traditional tea houses, more modern guesthouses, and commercial hotels. The general scenario is the higher up you go the lower the standard of accommodation. There is still one golden rule though. All the accommodations require that if you stay there you must eat all your meals there too.
Teahouses are generally owned by local families however things have been getting more commercial recently. They own anything between 3 and 15 rooms. The rooms are basic with thin plywood walls. Some have private bathrooms while nearly all have shared bathrooms. Some will have squat toilets while others are western. They have a large communal dining area. Costs for a teahouse room are around $2-5.
Charging: If you have a private room with a bathroom then you’ll probably be able to charge your electronics for no extra charge. However, for shared bathrooms, your room will only have a light switch and nothing more. You have to charge your electronics in a common room. The cost of charging a battery ranges from $3-6.
You will need several types of equipment for the trek. The below is a generous list and you may include or avoid according to your needs.
The trekking gears you must have:
You will also need the following during the trek.
Everest Base Camp Cost
There are various kinds of expenses while trekking in Everest Base Camp. The cost of EBC trek includes the cost of flights, accommodation, food, gear, travel permits, insurance, a guide, and other miscellaneous costs.
The flight to Lukla from Kathmandu costs about 177$. If you wish to reach EBC through Jiri then you won’t have to take a flight which will reduce the cost of the flight. The price of a flight from Lukla to Kathmandu is also similar.
The price of accommodation in the EBC trek depends on the comfort and facilities provides. There are tea houses along the trekking trails which are quite cheap. On the contrary, right next to tea houses, there are luxurious hotels. So, if you book the Everest Base Camp luxury trekking package, then your cost is going to be higher.
In addition, you should expect to pay higher charges for accommodation as you go to higher altitudes.
Guides and porter are a must while on a trek. Their prices vary from 20 – 40 US$. There may be additional miscellaneous expenses while charging your electronic gadgets and tipping porters/ guides/ waiters.
Routes and Itinerary
Everest Base Camp trek can be completed in different ways. It all depends upon the places you want to see along the way. This is the classic itinerary to the Everest Base Camp:
|Days||Itinerary||Max. Altitude||Distance Covered||Trekking Hours|
|1||Arrival in Kathmandu||1400 m|
|2||Kathmandu sightseeing||1400 m|
|3||Kathmandu-Lukla- Phakding||2800 m||8 km||3-4 hrs|
|4||Phakding – Namche Bazaar||3438 m||11 km||5-6 hrs|
|5||Namche Bazaar acclimatization||3438 m|
|6||Namche Bazaar – Tengboche||3870 m||10 km||5-6 hrs|
|7||Tengboche – Dingboche||4360 m||9 km||5-6 hrs|
|8||Dingboche – acclimatization||4360 m|
|9||Dingboche – Dughla||4600 m||4 km||3-4 hrs|
|10||Dughla – Lobuche||4940 m||4 km||2-4 hrs|
|11||Lobuche – Gorak Shep- EBC – Gorak Shep||5364 m||13 km||6-7 hrs|
|12||Gorak Shep – Kala Pathar – Pheriche||5545 m||16 km||7-8 hrs|
|13||Pheriche – Namche Bazaar||3440 m||20 km||6-7 hrs|
|14||Namche Bazaar – Lukla||2860 m||19 km||6-7 hrs|
|15||Lukla – Kathmandu||2860 m|
|16||Departure from Kathmandu||1400 m|
The number of days you spend in the places mentioned above can be extended if you want to. You can contact the travel agency whose services you are going to receive to know how they can customize a trip for you.