To the Base Camp of the world’s highest mountain following the footprints of the first ever Everest conquerors!
One of the most rewarding treks in Everest region of Nepal, well blended with both cultural and natural attractions of Khumbu! Beside the highlights of the popular recent days Classic Everest Base Camp Trek with Gokyo Lakes, it also caters the time-forgotten landmarks that once were important stopovers during the days of George Mallory, Tenzing Norgay Sherpa and Sir Edmund Hillary – the legends of Everest.
Treading along the trails that the legendary climbers once trekked along, the trek leads you to the maximum elevation of 5545m at Kala Patthar with frequent ups and downs in the typical Himalayan terrain. Not just mountains, you get to see the diverse floral and faunal diversity of Sagarmatha National Park, dramatic landscapes and authentic Himalayan Sherpa Culture. The beautiful town of Jiri at the beginning of the trek and the thrilling flight after the end of the trek will just be enough to leave you with inexpressible emotions. Moreover, the Gokyo part of the trek, prior to Kala Patthar and EBC offers you wonderful opportunities to savor the magnificence of glacial lakes. The panoramic view of the mountains like Ama Dablam, Cho Oyo, Luptse, Nuptse and the breathtaking view of the mighty Everest from ridge tops like Kala Patthar & Gokyo Ri will make Classic Everest Base Camp Trek with Gokyo Lakes the journey of your lifetime.
We drive through rolling hills, typical of Nepali mid hill region. When the weather is good, there are beautiful views of the snow-capped mountains throughout the way. After about 7/8 hours, we reach Jiri, the centre of Dolakha district and inhabited mainly by Jirels and Sherpas..
We can see beautiful forests, paddy fields and a number of hamlets on the trail. A 4 hrs’ trek through the well marked trails along the foothills brings us to Shivalaya, a small village inhabited by Tamangs and Newars, on the bank of Shivalaya river. We also come across Gaurishankar Conservation Area checkpoint at Shivalaya where our entry permit gets checked..
A few hours’ climb leads us to Deurali, a small hamlet from where one can see the beautiful views of Dudh Kunda Himal, Khatanga, Karylung and Peekye. Then the trail goes steep down to Bhandar, a Sherpa village with two stupas and a small monastery..
Walking from Bandar the trail is downhill to the village of Doharpa and Baranda until crossing the steel bridge at Tharo Khola (1480m). Then we continue through the east bank of the river and climb uphill towards Kinja from where we continue our trek to Sete..
Today is a challenging day with a 3000+ m pass to cross. We trek downhill through the scenic rhododendron, magnolia, maple and birch forests. En route we have to cross Lamjura La (3530m), the highest point till you pass Namche. After passing through the small village of Tragdobuk (2830m), we reach Junbesi..
Passing through the beautiful meadows, we start uphill across Junbesi Khola. After about 1.5 hours we reach Everest Viewpoint from where we can see the spectacular vista of Everest, Thamserku, Kantega and Mera Peak on a clear day. From there we continue to Ringmo village after passing Ringmo Khola. Then we climb uphill cross Trakshindu La Pass (3071m) and continue downhill until we reach Nuntala..
Today we still continue downhill towards Dudh Kosi river and cross it through a suspension bridge. We follow the same river in Khumbu as well. Passing though beautiful terraced villages Jubing (1680m) and Khari Khola (2010m), we reach Bupsa..
Enjoying the views of the valley and distant mountains, we start with a gentle climb. We pass Kharte village and continue until we reach Khari La Pass at an altitude of 2840m.After this, we descend towards the gorge of Paiya Khola and cross the bridge to reach Puiyan(2730m), a small village. Then we continue towards Khumbu valley passing through Surke and Chhuplung to reach Phakding. Now you have joined the classic Everest Base Camp trail..
From Phakding, we cross and re-cross the river on high suspension bridges. Beyond Monjo is the entrance to Sagarmatha National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We then take a steep hike to Namche. If the weather is clear, we get the first close glimpse of Mt Everest from Topdada. Namche is the main trading village in the Khumbu and has a busy Saturday market - a meeting place for the locals and traders from lowland and highland..
Namche, tucked away between two ridges amidst the giant peaks of Khumbu, is one of the rarest mountain outposts with magnificent ambience catering to every need of travelers. With abundance of lodges, tea shops and souvenir shops; and yet owning the composure of a typical Himalayan beauty, this town is an amazing place to spend a rest day, acclimatizing to the new altitude before heading off towards 4000m+. To acclimatize, we visit Khunde Hospital set-up by Sir Edmund Hillary, or take a one hour walk up to the Everest View Hotel above Namche for the sunset view of Ama Dablam, Nuptse, Lhotse and Everest. There are also good views from the National Park Centre and Museum just above the town..
Today is a spectacular day in terms of scenery as we follow the main trail north of Namche. A short climb to a crest reveals a wonderful view towards Everest and Lhotse. We follow this main trail for a while, passing many traders selling Tibetan handicrafts, to a crossroad high above the Dudh Kosi. The trail to Everest drops down the hill but we turn off here and climb to cross the Mon La before reaching Phortse Tenga. From Phortse Tenga, the trail climbs steeply to Dole, through rhododendron and birch forest festooned with hanging mosses and lichens..
From Dole we climb steadily along the side of the valley, where the rhododendron forests give way to scrub juniper as the altitude increases. The trail passes many summer settlements (yersa), which are used when yaks are taken to these pastures to graze during summer. Ahead of us are excellent views of Cho Oyu, while at the rear are the peaks of Kantega and Thamserku. Today’s trek is a short one and we arrive at Machermo in time for lunch. There are plenty of possibilities for exploration around Machhermo and just above the village there is an excellent view encompassing Cho Oyu (8210m) and the mountains which flank the Ngozumpa Glacier..
We head for the lakes at Gokyo. We follow a very scenic path to Pangka and then descend slightly, following one of the rivers which flow down the west side of the Ngozumpa Glacier. We climb a steep rocky incline into the valley by the side of the glacier, passing the first of the holy lakes. We soon arrive at the second of the lakes, crossing the path which heads across the glacier to Cho La - our route to Lobuche and Everest, later in the trek. The third lake is known as Dudh Pokhari and on its eastern shore is the settlement of Gokyo. Walking by the side of the lake, the scenery is breathtaking with the summits of Cho Oyu and Gyachung Kang reflected in its emerald green waters..
Gokyo Ri looms above the village on the northern edge of the lake and we leave just after first light, following a steep path up the hillside. As we climb, the summits of Everest, Lhotse and Makalu slowly come into sight and the view from the summit of Gokyo Ri itself, is one of the finest to have in the Everest region - some say it is even better than that from Kala Patthar. For those who still have some energy, there are more good views to have by dropping back down to the main path and following it north to the fourth and fifth of the Gokyo lakes, the latter being about three hours from Gokyo..
Fit and acclimatized, we leave Gokyo to cross the Ngozumpa Glacier. We descend to the second lake and drop down onto the glacier. The route across the glacier is marked by cairns and is generally quite well defined. We climb off the glacier by a small dwelling known as Thangnak and follow a shallow valley to our hotel in the village..
Following the highland beauty, we head towards Dzongla for today. After continue walking for about 7/8 hours through the glacial landscape, we reach our destination..
An early start is necessary today as we have to cross Cho La and make the long descent to Lobuche. Continuing up the valley, we cross a ridge and an old lateral moraine, before beginning the rocky scramble to the pass. From the pass there are excellent views, across the Rolwaling Valley to the west and Ama Dablam to the south east. The descent from the pass involves the crossing of a small glacier (often snow covered) which is fairly straightforward. There are more excellent views of Ama Dablam and the forbidding north face of Cholatse as we descend to the pastures below. The way to Lobuche contours the grassy slopes above a lake, Tshola Tsho, to join up with the main Everest trail from Pheriche and Tengboche. The trail flattens out and follows the valley on the west side of the Khumbu Glacier to Lobuche..
A very early start is required to reach Gorak Shep. 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. Later in the afternoon, we make our way to the Everest Base Camp. It takes several hours as the trail weaves its way through ice pinnacles and past the crevasses of the Khumbu Glacier. On the return leg, we can take a higher route to get a spectacular view of the Khumbu icefall and the route to the South Col. We return to Gorak Shep..
Early morning, we make our way to the top of one of the finest viewpoints in the Everest region, Kala Pattar (5545m). Way to Kalapatthar is steep trail so we will take comfortable pace to reach on the top. The view from the top of Kalapatthar is one of the finest views of mighty Everest. You can also see Lingtren, Khumbutse and Changtse mountains. We spend some time on the summit and stroll back to Gorak Shep and continue down to Pheriche. Overnight at lodge..
Today’s trek is mostly downhill. We continue to follow the river and, after crossing it, climb back up through birch and rhododendron forest to Tengboche. Kwangde, Tawache, Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, Kantega and Thamserku are just a few of the Himalayan giants to be seen. From Tengboche we descend to the bridge over the Dudh Kosi. At Phunki Tenga, we get to see the water driven prayer wheels, before making our way back to Namche. Overnight at lodge..
Our final day's trekking follows the Dudh Kosi back down to Lukla. This last evening in the mountains is an ideal opportunity for a farewell party with the Sherpa guides and porters, where we can sample some chang, try Sherpa dancing and look back on a memorable trekking experience..
We pack up early and head for the airstrip to hop a flight back to Kathmandu. On touchdown, the rest of your day is free to do your own things. You could do some last minute shopping and packing, or send some great pictures back home or even go down for a stroll at Thamel, an internationally known hub for tourists in Asia..
Our Nepali support team takes you to the airport for your flight home. (Or stay longer for short tours such as game drive at National parks, do some wild-water rafting, a Tibet tour or even mountain biking, etc- please ask us)..
The Everest or Solu-Khumbu region lies in the eastern part of Nepal. Inhabited by the mountain
people who have lived in harmony with their surroundings for hundreds of years, the Solu-
Khumbu region has still retained its age old practices. The region has some of the world’s tallest
peaks including Everest (8848m). This region, along with Annapurna region, is ranked as one of
the most popular trekking destinations in Nepal. The villages and places lying in this region are
situated above 2000m. Solu at the south includes villages like Junbesi, Phaplu and Chiwong.
Pharak is situated between Solu and Khumbu. Khumbu includes villages named Namche,
Thame, Khumjung, Lobuche, Pangboche, Tengboche etc. The major mountains are Everest,
Lhotse, Cho Oyu, Nuptse, Pumori, Ama Dablam, Thamserku, Kantega, Mera Peak, Island Peak
Everest Base Camp is the most popular destination for trekkers in Nepal. Its popularity has
grown since the first expedition to the Nepali side of Everest in the 1950s.One can do this trek
the old way, by beginning the trek from Jiri. From Jiri it takes around nine days to reach
Namche. On the way you will come across Rai settlements. The other (quicker) alternative is to
take a flight to Lukla and to begin the trek from there. The trek follows the Dudh Kosi valley
route with an ascent up to the Sherpa capital of Namche Bazaar. From Namche, you traverse
along a high path from where you have the first good view of Everest. You head towards
Tengboche Monastery located on top of a mountain ridge and then descend Imja Khola and
continue to the villages of Pangboche and Pheriche. After that you arrive at the Khumbu Glacier.
The trek through the glacier takes you first to Lobuche and then to Gorak Shep. From Gorak
Shep, you continue to reach your destination, the Everest Base Camp at the foot of the Khumbu
icefall. You can also climb up to Kala Patthar for even more spectacular views of the
surrounding mountains, including Everest's southwest face.
The climate in the Everest region can be divided into four climate zones owing to the gradual
rise in altitude. The climatic zones include a forested lower zone, a zone of alpine scrub, the
upper alpine zone which includes upper limit of vegetation growth, and the Arctic zone where no
plants can grow. The types of plants and animals that are found depend on the altitude. In the
lower forested zone, birch, juniper, blue pines, firs, bamboo and rhododendron are found. All
vegetation that is found above this zone is shrubs. As the altitude increases, plant life is restricted
to lichens and mosses. At an elevation of 5,750m begins the permanent snow line in the
Himalayas. From this point there is no sign of greenery or vegetation. A common animal sighted
in the higher reaches is the hairy animal yak. Dzokyo a sterile male crossbreed between a yak
and a cow is used to move goods along the trail. Red panda, snow leopard, musk deer, wild yak,
and Himalayan black bear are some of the exotic animals that are found in this region. A variety
of birds can be sighted in the lower regions.
Mt. Everest- Rising to the height of 8848m, the world’s highest mountain was named in 1865
after Sir George Everest. The mountain got its Nepali name Sagarmatha during the 1960s, when
the Government of Nepal gave the mountain the official Nepali name. In Sanskrit Sagarmatha
means "Head of the Sky”. The Tibetan name for Mount Everest is Chomolungma or
Qomolangma, which means “Goddess Mother of the Snows". Climbers wishing to scale the peak
have to obtain an expensive permit from the Nepal Government. More information on royalty
can be found at https://www.tourismdepartment.gov.np/mountaineering-royalty. Base Camp, which
serves as a resting area and base of operations for climbers organizing their attempts for the
summit, is located on the Khumbu glacier at an elevation of 5364 m (17,600 ft); it receives an
average of 450 mm (18 in) of precipitation a year. The climate of Mount Everest is extreme. In
July, the warmest month, the average summit temperature is -19° C (-2° F).
George Mallory, a famous British adventurer, was one of the first climbers to attempt Everest.
When he was asked why he wanted to climb Everest, he replied ‘Because it is there’- the line
which has become immortal in the history of Everest expedition. After two unsuccessful
attempts, in 1924 he again tried to climb the peak with Andrew Irvine. They started on June 8,
1924 to scale the summit via the North Col route and never returned. The Mallory and Irvine
Research Expedition later discovered their bodies near the old Chinese Camp in 1999. Edmund
Hillary, a New Zealander and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay from Nepal were the first two climbers to
set foot on the summit of Mt. Everest. They reached the summit at 11:30 a.m. on May 29, 1953
by climbing through the South Col Route. More than 300 climbers have scaled the highest
mountain since then. Also there have been more than 100 deaths on the mountain where
conditions are so difficult that most corpses have been left where they fell. Some of them are
visible from the standard climbing routes.
Mt. Lhotse (8516m) is the fourth highest mountain in the world. It lies south of Mt. Everest.
Two Swiss climbers F. Luchsinger and E. Reiss first climbed it in 1956 from the West face.
Czech expedition led by Ivan Galfy scaled it via the South face in 1984. An impressive ring of
three peaks makes up the Lhotse massif: Lhotse East or Middle, Lhotse and Lhotse Shar. The
South Face of Lhotse is one of the largest mountain faces in the world.
Cho Oyu (8201m) the sixth highest mountain in the world, has gained popularity among
climbers just recently. The mountain sits on both sides of the border of Nepal and Tibet, about 30
km. west of Mount Everest. Cho Oyu in Tibetan means "the turquoise goddess." The south face
of Cho Oyu, facing Nepal, is quite steep and difficult, and is rarely climbed. The north side,
accessed from Tibet, is more moderate, and there is a relatively safer route to the summit. In the
autumn of 1954, an Austrian team made the first ascent via this route.
Ama Dablam (6856m) which means ‘mother’s jewelry box’, in Sherpa language is considered
to be one of the most beautiful mountains in the world. It looks like a woman with outstretched
arms or a woman wearing a long necklace. The mountain dominates the whole EBC trek. Ama
Dablam lies alongside Everest in the heart of the Khumbu Valley. Mt Lhotse, Mt. Makalu, Mt.
Cho Oyu and Mt. Everest can be seen at close quarters from Ama Dablam.
Nuptse (7855m) lies southwest of Mt Everest. It is situated in the Khumbu Himal. From the
Tengboche Monastery, Nuptse appears as a massive wall guarding the approach to Everest. The
name Nup-tse in Tibetan means west peak. The main ridge, which is separated from Lhotse by a
7556m high saddle, is crowned by seven peaks and goes west-northwest until its steep west-face
drops down more than 2300m to the Khumbu-glacier. Nuptse I was first summited by a British
expedition on May 16, 1961.
Pumori Peak (7145m) is just 8 km away from the world’s highest peak Mt.Everest. The ascent
to this peak is described as a classic climb in the 7000m peak category. In Tibetan, ‘Pumo’
means girl and ‘Ri’, mountain. George Mallory, the famous English climber who lost his life
trying to ascend Everest in 1924, named the peak. The German climber Gerhard Lenser was the
first to reach the summit of Pumori in 1962. Pumori is a popular climbing peak. The best season
to climb this peak is during autumn and spring.
Mera Peak (6475m) is the highest of Nepal's trekking peaks. By its standard route, it is also the
highest peak in Nepal that can be climbed without prior mountaineering experience. J.O.M.
Roberts and Sen Tenzing first climbed it on 20 May 1953, from the standard route at Mera La.
The mountain lies to the south of Everest, dominating the watershed between the wild and
beautiful valleys of the Hinku and Hongu.
Island Peak (6160m) also known as Imja Tse was named by Erick Shipton's group in 1953. It
was so named as the peak resembles an island in a sea of ice when observed from Dingboche. A British group as preparation for climbing Mt. Everest first climbed the peak in 1953. Among
them one of the climbers was Mr. Tenzing Norgay. The peak is part of the south ridge of Lhotse
Shar and the main land forms a semicircle of cliffs that rise to the north of the summits of
Nuptse, Lhotse, Middle Peak and Lhotse Shar. Cho Oyu and Makalu lie to the east of the Island
Peak. Baruntse, Amphu and Ama Dablam lie to the south.
Lobuche (6119m) is known as Lhauche among the locals. It rises above the town of Lhauche
which is just a few kilometer from Mt. Everest. Laurice Nielson and Ang Gyalzen Sherpa did the
first ascent on this peak on 25 April 1984.
Kala Patthar is a small mountain 5545 m (18,500 ft) high on the southern flank of Pumori
(7145 m). It is a trekking peak and every year tourists climb this peak to enjoy the fantastic
panoramic views it offers of the Khumbu glacier, Everest and nearby peaks like Lhotse and
Nuptse. To the east, Makalu, Ama Dablam, Pumori, and Cho Oyu are visible.
Sagarmatha National Park is the highest national park in the world. It was formally opened to
public in July 19, 1976. The park covers an area of 1,148 sq km. It rises from its lowest point of
2845 m (9335 ft) at Jorsale to 8848m (29,029 ft) up to the summit of Everest. The park’s area is
very rugged and steep, with its terrain cut by deep rivers and glaciers. It includes three peaks
higher than 8000 m - Mt Everest, Lhotse and Cho Oyu. In 1979 the park was inscribed as a
Natural World Heritage Site. The park's visitor centre is located at a hill in Namche Bazaar,
where a company of the Nepal Army is stationed for protecting the park. The park's southern
entrance is a few hundred metres north of Monjo at 2835m. Sagarmatha Pollution Control,
funded by the World Wildlife Fund and the Himalayan Trust, was established in 1991 to help
preserve Everest's environment. About a hundred species of birds and more than twenty species
of butterflies have made this park their home. Musk deer, wild yak, red panda, snow leopard,
Himalayan black bear, Himalayan thars, deer, langur monkeys, hares, mountain foxes, martens,
and Himalayan wolves are found in the park.
Jiri: Early expeditions to climb Everest from the Nepali side started from Jiri. Before the airstrip
at Lukla came into existence, all the trekking and climbing expeditions to the Everest region
started from Jiri. Starting from Jiri, the route passes through the Sherpa villages of the Solu
Khumbu, many of them having beautiful Buddhist monasteries.
Lukla: Lukla, a village in Khumbu, boasts of the region’s sole commercial airport. Lying at a
height of 2800m, most travelers to this region usually begin and end their adventure in Lukla.
The airport was built in 1964 by Sir Edmund Hillary as part of his project in Khumbu region
during the early 60s to transport the supplies for the Himalayan Trust projects in the Khumbu
region. Today, somewhere between 90-95% of the foreign nationals who reach Lukla, arrive by a
half hour flight from Kathmandu.
Namche Bazaar: Namche Bazaar is known as the Sherpa capital. Namche is actually a village
lying at the junction of the Dudh Koshi and a valley that leads to the frontier pass of Nangpa La.
It is tucked away in a niche at a height of 3450m. W. H. Tilman and C. Houston were the first westerners to enter it in 1950 and many more have come since then. Facilities like a bank, a post
office, hotels and shops where one can purchase climbing equipment as well as canned food have
sprung up over the years. Namche Bazaar is the major regional trading center. Its Saturday
market or haat is the place where most of the trading takes place. The headquarters of the
Sagarmatha National Park is located in Namche.
Tengboche: Tengboche (3860m) is famous for Tengboche gompa. It is one of the most
important centers of Buddhism in the region. The gompa is the largest in the Khumbu region. It
was first built in 1923. Destroyed by a fire in 1989, it was rebuilt later on partly with foreign aid.
From Tengboche, one gets a panoramic view of Kwangde, Tawache, Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse,
Amadablam, Kangtenga, and Thamserku.
Pangboche: Buddhism is believed to have been introduced in the Khumbu region towards the
end of the 17th century by Lama Sange Dorjee. According to the legend, he flew over the
Himalayas and landed on a rock at Pangboche and Tengboche, leaving his footprints embedded
on the stone. He is believed to have been responsible for the founding of the first gompas in the
Khumbu region, at Pangboche and Thame. Pangboche (3985m) is the highest year-round
settlement in the valley. The Imja Khola, coming from the right, joins the Dudh Koshi River a
little above the village. The gompa (monastery) in Pangboche is thought to be one of the oldest
in the Khumbu region.
Khumjung: Khumjung (3790 m), a village lying west of Tengboche, is famous for the gompa
where the skull of a supposed Yeti, the Abominable Snowman, is preserved under the
supervision of the head Lama. The skull seems more like the outer skin of Himalayan Brown
Bear, and this is proved by the report of a scientific exploratory expedition conducted by Sir
Edmund Hillary, a copy of which is kept in the gompa.
Pheriche: Pheriche is located at an altitude of 4252m. It lies on a level patch. Apart from the
basic facilities available here, there is a medical-aid post maintained by the Himalayan Rescue
Association of the Tokyo Medical College with Japanese doctors in attendance. Among other
facilities, there is an air compression chamber installed for assisting victims of high altitude
Sherpas live in the upper regions of Solu Khumbu. They emigrated from Tibet about 600 years
ago. In the past they were traders and porters, carrying butter, meat, rice, sugar, and dye from
India; and wool, jewelry, salt, Chinese silk and porcelain from Tibet and beyond. The closure of
the border between India and China undermined their economy. Fortunately, with the
mountaineering expeditions and trekkers, the Sherpa's found their load carrying skills, both on
normal treks and high altitudes in great demand. The Khumbu region has provided a strong
group of able bodied, hardy and fearless Sherpa porters and guides. The Sherpas are Buddhists.
At the lower elevations lives the Kiranti Rai. The villages of Jubing, Kharikhola, Okhaldhunga,
are inhabited by the Rais. Of mongoloid stock, they speak their own dialect. Reference of their
fighting spirit is made in the Hindu epic Mahabharata. The people from this group have supplied
recruits to Gurkha regiments both in the British as well as Indian armies. The Rais follow a religion that is partly animistic with some Hindu influence. They revere their ancestors by
observing Kul or Pitri puja every year. The Jirels live in the area around Jiri. They are
mongoloid and follow Buddhism.
Lhosar is celebrated in the month of February by the Sherpas. ‘Lhosar’ means New Year in
Sherpa language. Apart from the Sherpas and Tibetans, the Gurungs and Tamangs also celebrate
Lhosar. Buddhist monks offer prayers for good health and prosperity at monasteries. People
exchange various goods and gifts among them. Families organize feasts and perform dances.
Dumje is celebrated to mark the birthday of Guru Rimpoche (Padmasambhava).The celebration
takes place in June and lasts for six days. It is celebrated in a grand way in the villages of
Namche, Thame and Khumjung.
Mani Rimdu is a festival that celebrates the victory of Buddhism over the ancient animistic
religion of Bon. This festival is celebrated in the monasteries of Tengboche, Chiwang and
Thame. At Tengboche the celebration takes place during the November- December full moon. At
Thame, Mani Rimdu is celebrated during full moon in May. Chiwang Gompa generally
celebrates this festival during autumn. The Lamas wear elaborate brocade gowns and masks
while performing. Through the dances, symbolic demons are conquered, dispelled, or converted
to Dharma Protectors as positive forces clash with those of chaos. The dances convey Buddhist
teaching on many levels from the simplest to the most profound, for those who do not have the
opportunity to study and meditate extensively. It gives an opportunity to the Sherpas to gather
and celebrate together with the monks.
Sakela (Chandi Dance) is a harvest festival celebrated by the Rai community. The harvest
ceremony involves the worship of mother earth, called ‘Bhumi-Puja’. The festival is celebrated
twice a year, once in spring before planting begins and once during autumn before harvesting.
Ubhauli is celebrated during the spring season on Baishakh Purnima. In the autumn season
on Mangsir Purnima, Udhauli is celebrated. The spring worship is done to propitiate mother
earth for a good harvest and the rain god to bless the earth with enough rain. The festival is
celebrated with more fervor in the remote hills. The Rai villagers celebrate it with priests (dhami)
who perform rituals to worship their ancestors. The elders of the community begin the dance
with a puja. Later on everybody participate in the dance forming a circle by holding each other’s
hands. With drumbeats, they begin dancing at a slow pace but moves faster later with the
drumbeats. The dance steps and hand gestures imitate the sowing and harvesting of crops. The
festival also provides an opportunity for the Rai people to socialize.
TRIP GRADE: Moderate to fairly challenging Longer treks going right into high mountain country, to some of the famous mountaineering Base Camps over high passes. Physically quite tiring, involves approx 6-8 hours trekking along rocky ridges of high Himalayan peaks. No previous experience is required, you should be moderately fit, used to some regular exercises and enjoy walking in the high altitude conditions. TREKKING TYPES We offer several options regarding the organization of your trek: 1) Guide, Accommodation and Porter trek (GAP trek) Includes: Accommodation, guide and porters Excludes: Food This option of the trek is for those who want basic support from us. This is the most economic way to do trekking in Nepal. We provide an English speaking local Sherpa guide, book and pay for the accommodation in local lodges during trek and arrange required porters. Trekkers pay for meals directly to the local lodge owner. Expect to spend around $25 a day for food. Guide, accommodation and porters are covered in the price. 2) Camping trek On camping trek you will be sleeping and eating on tents. A trekking crew contains one Sirdar, one cook and the numbers of kitchen crew, Sherpa assistants and porters depending on the size of the group. Under the leadership of the Sirdar (the local trek leader) the crew will ensure you take the right path. The kitchen crew will keep you well fed with delicious and nutritious meals. The porters shall transport the gear from camp to camp. Our main aim is to make the trek as hassle-free and enjoyable as possible. Sirdar and his assistants speak basic English, good enough to explain to you about the places, local culture or any sight that catches your eyes. Includes: Guide, Porters, Cook, All meals and tents 3) Lodge or tea house trek Although simple, the teahouses or lodges do provide shelter and warmth and are normally run by friendly local families. The lodge or tea house treks are less expensive than camping trek and are largely suitable for small groups. Includes: Accommodation in lodge, guide, porters and all meals YOUR TREK CAN BE ORGANIZED IN ALL THE 3 WAYS AS MENTIONED ABOVE. ACCOMMODATION Trekking in the Khumbu region (Everest area) doesn’t need tremendous logistics in terms of accommodation as you will find plenty of clean and friendly lodges along the trail. You stay in single rooms where possible, but you will often have to share. Rooms are basic, normally just a bed with a pillow and blankets. A few have electric blanket, hot bags (luxury lodges) and all have a spacious dining room-lounge. We will accommodate you and your group in a comfortable local lodge each day. We send a porter ahead of us to book the required rooms for the group (rooms cannot always be booked in advance). Please remember that some of them are very basic and a sense of adventure is necessary. It is cheaper to stay in lodge rather than organizing a camping trek. On camping trek, you sleep in tents either ‘Two men dome’ or ‘A’ shaped. Foam mattress with insulation underneath is provided for sleeping. Clients need to have their own sleeping bag. Bags or cloth packs are used as pillows. If you wish, you can bring your own ‘Air pillow’. FOOD Lodge Trek: Meals are included in our price and are taken in lodges available along the trail. You can find a considerable variety of Nepali and Western food as well as drinks (coffee, tea, milk, soft drinks, and beer). Camping Trek: Meals are prepared by our cook. We provide three tasty and nutritious meals daily along with drinks. GAP Trek: You will have to make your own eating arrangements in the lodges available along the trail. Expect to spend around $25 a day for food. Guide, accommodation and porters are covered in the price. WATER On camping trek, our staff will boil or filter water and cook meals treated by potassium permanganate or iodine. On GAP trek and Lodge trek, you will be able to buy bottled water in tea houses. We recommend you to bring water purification pills. On the trail, water from stream is safe if away from settlements. LUGGAGE WHILE TREKKING During the trek, your main luggage will be carried by porter or yaks. Please keep your luggage as light as possible around 12 to 15 kgs. You simply carry a day pack with water bottle, camera, sun-screen, spare jacket etc. You can leave your valuable items at your hotel while trekking. Many hotels have a locker system and provide a deposit slip for the valuables kept under the hotel's safekeeping. GROUP LEADER AND CREW We provide different options concerning leadership in order to match your requirements: 1) Western leader 2) Trained Nepali Trek leader (experienced and knowledgeable) 3) Sherpa Guide (handles the logistics and guides you and your team on the trek) The Sherpa guide (commonly called Sirdar) will be accompanied by a crew of porters. On camping trek, there will be 2/3 porters for each members while on GAP and Lodge trek 1 porter for 2 members. JOIN A GROUP OR PRIVATE TRIP Our trips are available on both fixed departure and private basis. If you are looking for a group to join this trip please check our ‘2020 departures’ link for availability, dates and price. If you would like to travel independently, or with your friends, families & colleagues, you are invited to choose any of the trips at your convenient timeframe for any number of people (minimum 1 & maximum 100 at a time). If you want to do something that is not included in our trip list, we are ready to tailor your trip to suit your exact requirements. In short, we will make every effort to meet your needs. GROUP SIZE ON FIXED DEPARTURE TRIP If you opt to join our ‘fixed departure trip’, you are likely to be joining people from different countries of any age group except minors. The size of group varies, minimum no of persons required to operate a trip is 2 the maximum is 12 people. PERSONAL EXPENSES Everest region is more expensive than the other regions in Nepal, as most of the goods have to be shipped by airplane and then carried to their final destination by porters. Lodge trek and Camping trek: You only need money for table drinks (alcoholic/non-alcoholic beverages), tips, souvenirs, hot shower (available in some places) and snacks while walking. GAP trek: You need to pay for your meals and should expect to spend around $25 a day for your food. Tips are appreciated by your support team after the trip. The amount depends on your budget and appreciation of their work. As a suggestion, we advise that you can allocate 5- 10 % of the total tour cost as tips. FLIGHT / LAND TRANSFERS The starting point of the trek is Jiri, which is about 7/8 hours overland drive from Kathmandu. Lukla, your trek ending point, is connected by a 45mins flight from Kathmandu. We will arrange both airport pick up and drop transfers as per the itinerary. COMMUNICATION For using internet, Wifi service is available in lower altitudes. You have to pay extra charge for this service about $5 (per stay) up to Namche though you can’t be really sure about signal strength. Beyond Namche, teahouses normally don’t have WiFi facility. A better option is to use Everest Link network which works throughout the region. It has better connectivity and faster speed. You can buy the data package at approximately $2 (10GB) and $3 (30 GB) valid for 30 days. You can also use Ncell and NTC network (both for internet and mobile network) but they don’t work properly in some places as you go higher. If it is crucial for you to keep in contact with your family or others, we can provide you a mobile satellite phone (rental charge on request). TREKKING GEARS & EQUIPMENT Trekking: You will need walking boots, sleeping bag (4 seasons/ -20C rated), waterproof jacket and trousers, fleece jacket, warm hat and gloves, sunglasses, water bottle, sun-screen and day pack. Comprehensive list of equipments will be provided once you book your trip. It's not necessary to spend a lot of money buying extra equipment and clothing before your trip. Majority of these gears can be bought or hired at reasonable rates in Kathmandu. TYPICAL DAY ON TREK Lodge/ Tea House Trek, GAP Trek & Camping Trek Each morning after packing our bags and having a good breakfast, we set off on the day's walk. After walking for 3-4 hours we stop for lunch at around midday. The afternoon's walk is generally shorter and we usually arrive at our destination in time for afternoon tea. The remainder of the afternoon can be spent exploring the village, doing a bit of washing or simply relaxing with a good book. On some days we will arrive at our destination by lunchtime and the entire afternoon will be free. After dinner, the evening will often be spent playing cards and reliving the day's adventures, before heading off to bed for a well-earned sleep. However, on a camping trek, you begin your day with a hot cup of tea which will be served to you in the tent at 6 am, followed by a bowl of hot water for washing. Other day activities are the same as mentioned above. MEETING AND GREETING IN KATHMANDU You need to pass on your International flight details to us for a “meeting and greeting” service at airport. You just pass the Customs desk and come out of the Terminal building where you will see someone standing with a placard with either ‘Explore Himalaya’ or your name written on it. Our airport representative or tour officer will greet you and welcome you with a garland. ITINERARY CHANGES The itineraries for each trip should be taken as a guideline only. Depending on the prevailing situation, you can modify it to some extent after consulting with your guide. However, the date of trek completion should always coincide with the original itinerary. You should keep in mind that this is an adventure trip into the remotest region, where many unforeseen events may contribute to the need for a change in itinerary. In such cases, we or your guide will suggest the best alternative similar to your original. TREK DURATION We ensure liability as indicated in itinerary and list of services. If the holiday is cut short or completed earlier than the projected period upon client’s wish, we shall not be responsible or make refund against unutilized days or services. Clients need to pay for Hotels/services incurred in Kathmandu or elsewhere in such cases. TRIP EXTENSIONS In addition to your trek, we can organize extensions both within Nepal and other neighboring countries. You may want to try water rafting or a jungle safari in Nepal or Nepal Cultural Tour. You may as well take a trip to Tibet, India or Bhutan, whichever seems more appealing to you.. VISA All visitors except the Indian nationals must hold passport and valid visa. Visa can be obtained at the Nepalese diplomatic missions and consulates abroad. You can also get “On Arrival Visa” at entry points. Some countries’ nationals need to get visa prior their arrival. Please check http://www.nepalimmigration.gov.np/page/tourist-visa for detailed information. Visa can be extended at the Department of Immigration in Kathmandu and Pokhara. Children under 10 years need not pay any visa fee. VISA APPLICATION FORM Gratis visa for 30 days available only for tourists of SAARC countries Multiple entry 15 days - US$ 30 or equivalent convertible currency Multiple entry 30 days - US$ 50 or equivalent convertible currency Multiple entry 90 days - US$ 125 or equivalent convertible currency Tourist Visa Extension * Visa extension fee for 15 days or less is US $ 45 or equivalent convertible currency and visa extension fee for more than 15 days is US$ 3 per day * In case of delay, (less than 150 days), additional US $ 5 per day as late fine. HEALTH ISSUES AND VACCINATIONS As vaccination requirements change frequently, we suggest you to consult your doctor at least 2 months prior to the beginning of your trip. We recommend protection against malaria, tetanus, typhoid, hepatitis and polio. The main health consideration in high altitude is Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). You may experience some mild symptoms initially, such as headache, lethargy, nausea and difficulty sleeping, but these should lessen within a few days. To avoid Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS), people take pills called ‘Diamox’. You can also use these pills after consulting with your doctor and purchase them in Kathmandu. Our itinerary will allow your body to acclimatize properly and handle the low oxygen rate. If you have ever suffered from altitude sickness, or have a heart or breathing complaint, we highly recommend you consult your doctor about your suitability for trekking in high altitude areas before booking. We suggest that you take some pain-killing pills with you and enough medicine for cold, diarrhea, nausea and fever. Some nasal ointment and throat-moistening pills will greatly help for those who are sensitive to chilly or freezing weather conditions FIRST AID KIT We supply a medical bag with standard medicines prescribed by trekking doctors and a user’s manual. Since our staffs/guides are not qualified for suggesting medications to western clients, we would request you to use the medicines upon your own risk. It is safer and more reliable if you have your own medicine kit and not depend on what we have. RESCUE / EVACUATIONS In case of a serious sickness or a casualty, which we believe will not happen; we will do everything to transfer you to the nearest hospital. Since you are entirely liable for all the expenses incurred in evacuation, please make sure that it is covered by your insurance before assigning for it or be prepared to pay on your own after getting back to Kathmandu INSURANCE Before joining a tour, we recommend you to take a travel insurance which should cover cancellation, medical expenses, helicopter evacuation and emergency repatriation. CLIMATE AND BEST TIME TO GO The best seasons to trek to the Everest Base Camp region is Autumn (from mid-September till November end), and Spring (from the beginning of March until mid-May). Temperatures will drop considerably as you trek higher every day. The nights are cold (between -10 C to 5C) but the days are sunny and hot (between 10C to 20C). The mornings are usually clear, with clouds building up during the afternoon, disappearing at night. Trekking during the monsoon and winter is not recommended, as the visibility during monsoon is limited, upper parts and high passes could be covered with snow in winter. March, April, October and November are the most favored months. Please choose the date that is convenient for you. RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL Environmental Responsibility Wonderful environment of the Himalayas is also an extremely fragile one. Increasing population density and numbers of trekkers threaten the very beauty of Nepal. At Explore Himalaya, we are extremely conscious about the environment and aim to minimize our impact as much as possible. As deforestation is one of the greatest environmental threats, we do not have camp fires and use kerosene for cooking as an alternative fuel to wood. We also discourage trekkers from using wood-fuelled hot showers in lodges along the way. Many lodges, however, now provide solar hot showers, a far more eco-friendly alternative. Garbage disposal is another major problem and some of the busier trails can, at times, appear strewn with litter. Our staff members are well motivated towards eco-friendly practices. We carry out all our garbage, apart from that which can be safely and easily burnt at the campsite. Our aim is to help protect and preserve this beautiful environment for future generations of trekkers to enjoy. Social Responsibility Explore Himalaya works with the motto ‘Development through Tourism’. Keeping in line with this motto, Explore Himalaya Community Service Project (EHCSP) has been conceived to empower underprivileged, marginalized, poor and minority segments of Nepal. Since its inception, EHCSP has been incessantly facilitating and advocating for school education, health, community development, forest conservation, agriculture and culture preservation. Explore Himalaya encourages its clients to contribute for the development of Nepal. Care for Porters and Staff We ensure that all the porters and other staffs going into high altitude conditions are provided with adequate clothing and equipment. We are the first ever company to supply high-altitude porters with crampons. We run the trek according to the guidelines of the International Porter Protection group (IPPG - www.ippg.net). For more details on our responsible initiatives, please visit https://www.explorehimalaya.com/csr/ BOOKING CONDITIONS 1) Your booking will be confirmed by email once we receive your deposit of USD 300 and the signed copy of booking form and contract. The balance is due no later than two months prior to departure. If you book a tour less than 2 months prior to departure, you must send the full payment within 7 days of confirmation by us. 2) If you cancel, the following scale of charges will apply: 2 months before departure – Loss of deposit (US$ 300) 29 days to 2 months before departure – 30% of total trip cost 10 to 28 days before departure – 60% of total trip cost Less than 10 days before departure – 100% of total trip cost DISCLAIMER It is fundamental to acknowledge that this is an adventure tour. This requires some flexibility. The day to day itinerary is taken only as a guideline. We cannot be held responsible for any delays caused by International or domestic flights, strikes, Government regulations, weather or natural casualties etc. In such cases, Explore Himalaya shall provide suitable alternatives which could be decided upon mutual agreement. If an agreement cannot be made, Explore Himalaya shall only be responsible for refunds after deducting the expenses already incurred. If you have any questions regarding this trip, please feel free to contact us at email@example.com or directly by phone: 977-1-4418100. We answer all enquiries within 24 hours.
We work with the motto "Tourism for Development". Explore Himalaya Community Service Project was conceived to empower underprivileged segments of Nepal.