The Khumbu region of Nepal is truly the 'top of the world', crowned as it is by Mount Everest, the world's highest mountain, lt is home to the Sherpa people, famous as much for their friendliness and hospitality as for their mountaineering skills. Practicing their Tibetan Buddhist faith, they have lived in these high valleys for at least 3 centuries. The region is now governed by the Sagarmatha National Park and is an area of outstanding natural beauty - home of musk deer, Himalayan Thar and Nepal's national bird, the brilliantly colored Danphe pheasant Khumbu is, of course, famous for its mountains. The views of the 8000m giants of Everest, Lhotse, and Cho Oyu, and the smaller peaks of Nuptse, Thamserku, Kangtega, and Kwongde are sensational. One of the most impressive mountains there is Mount Ama Dablam - a lot of people call it the world's most beautiful mountain.The trek takes us in the footsteps of Hillary and Tensing and the 1953 British Expedition to the foot of the gigantic Mount Everest From the viewpoint of Kala Pattar we'll have close up views of the 'Mother Goddess of the world'. The trip is carefully planned to ensure correct acclimatization and it includes exploration of the Upper Imja Khola, a high altitude world of giant glaciers and snow peaks.
Getting to Kathmandu is an exciting and memorable experience, the panoramic view of the snowcapped Himalayan Mountains can be immediately seen upon your arrival. The Nepalese capital is situated in a large valley at 1340 m of altitude. At the airport, there will be our staff waiting for you. You will transfer to the hotel for check-in. After taking a rest, you will visit the cultural heritage sites in the city: You will be visiting Durbar Square in Kathmandu and walk back to Thamel, through the most authentic Indra Chowk and Ason Chowk of Kathmandu, accompanied by HTF crew.
After breakfast, you will be escorted to the domestic terminal of Kathmandu Airport for an early morning flight to Lukla (2,800m/9,186ft), a gateway destination from where your trek begins. After an adventurous 40 minute flight above the breathtaking green and white mountains, you will reach the Tenzing-Hillary Airport at Lukla. This is one of the most beautiful air routes in the world culminating in a dramatic landing on a hillside surrounded by high mountains peaks. Upon arrival at Lukla and after taking some rest, you will start your trek through the prosperous village of Lukla until you reach Phakding. To assist in acclimatization, we only have a short hike today. However, if you are interested in additional activities you can also take a side trip to a nearby monastery.
Overnight in Phakding. Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (B, L, D) Overnight: Tea House
Walking through a beautiful pine forest, the track will lead you to Dudh Koshi River through many suspension bridges, one of which is the famous Hillary Suspension Bridge. First, you will catch wonderful prospect of the glistening Mt. Thamserku (6618 m). Through the settlement of Benkar, Chumoa, Monjo, you will come to the check post and entrance to Sagarmatha National Park. You will pass through the last village of Jorsale before reaching Namche Bazaar. The trail climbs through the forests and bridges until you reach the confluence of the Dudh Koshi and Bhote Koshi rivers. After a final steep ascent of about two hours, you will get to see the first sight of Mt. Everest peering over the Lhotse-Nuptse ridge. At this juncture, you will stop at Chautara to admire the view. You will still need to hike about 1.5 hours to reach Namche Bazaar, a gateway to Mt. Everest and main trading center of this region. You will be staying overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Overnight: Tea House (B, L, D)
This is the scheduled 'acclimatization' day for this trek. As health experts always recommend us to stay active and move during the rest day too instead of being idle, thus you will be either spending the day by hiking to Thame or visiting Khunde or relaxing and exploring Namche Bazaar itself. Namche Bazar is the main center of the Everest (Khumbu) region and has government offices, ATMs, Internet cafes, shops, restaurants, a bakery and a colorful market each Friday evening and Saturday. If you trek a few hundred vertical feet during the day, it will help you to properly acclimatize. Himalayan Glacier's guides will take you to the Tourist Visitor Center near the headquarter of the Sagarmatha National Park where you can observe an assortment of things related to the first Everest ascenders, Sherpa culture and learn about the various plant and animal life of the Everest region. You can also take an interesting side trip up to Khumjung. You will further climb up to the famous airstrip at Syangboche. Just above the airstrip will be the Everest View Hotel, a Japanese scheme to build a deluxe hotel with great views of the highest mountains on Earth. The Khumjung valley is surrounded by the snowy peaks of Kongde and Thamserku and the sacred peak Khumbila, hosts a well-known monastery that houses a yeti scalp. You will also be visiting Hillary School which is located at the same site. After having lunch and spending some time in Khumjung, you will walk back down to Namche Bazar.
Overnight: Namche Bazar. (B, L, D)
After having breakfast in Namche Bazar, you will start your trek towards Tengboche and enjoy a superb view of Mt. Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, AmaDablam and close up view of Thamserku. The trek follows on the gradual trail with few ups and downs overlooking magnificent view of the great Himalaya. Along the way, you can spot wild lives like pheasant, musk deer, or a herd of Himalayan Thar. The trail goes gradually down up to Kayangjuma. The path eventually reaches Sansa which is the major trail junction to Gokyo valley and Everest Base Camp. The track then follows through the pine forests and after you cross the prayer flags festooned bridge over Dudh Koshi River, you will reach PhunkiThenga, a small settlement with a couple of teahouses and a small army post amidst the alpine woods. After having a relaxed lunch at PhunkiThenga you will then have a little tough climb steep up through the pine forests while before you reach Tengboche. Tengboche is a great place for close up views of Ama-Dablam, Nuptse, and Everest and it has a biggest Buddhist Monastery all over in Khumbu region. You will be paying a visit to the monastery the same day at around 3 pm.
Overnight: Lodge at Tengboche. (B, L, D)
With mountains at its backdrop, the monastery at Tengboche looks more spectacular in the morning. At this juncture, you can take pictures of the monastery and the scenery around and as usual start the journey. You will be going through the upper trail for better views on the way to Pangboche village. You will be passing through several Chortens and Mani walls and small villages. The place where you will be stopping for lunch not only serves delicious food but also allows a fantastic close-up view of Mt AmaDablam. In the afternoon, you will walk north to Pheriche or take the eastward trail beneath the towering north face of Mt AmaDablam. From here onwards, the walk is fairly moderate as you enter the Imja Valley. The valley gradually unfolds as you approach the confluence of the Lobuche River. You will descend into the river and begin the last and steepest climb of the day up to Dingboche. On arrival at Dingboche, you will see a beautiful array of fields enclosed by stone walls to protect barley, buckwheat, and potatoes from the cold winds and grazing animals.
Overnight: Dingboche. (B, L, D)
You will be starting the day by climbing towards Duglha through the Khumbu Khola valley. The walk along the arid terrace is rewarding with awesome views of mountains on all sides. As you reach to a yak herder's place called Dusa, the valley begins to be narrow and you will continue through PhulungKarpo, the campsite of the first successful Everest Expedition in 1953. Above PhulungKarpo is Chola Lake. As you move on, the majestic view of Mt. Pumori (7138 m/ 23418 ft.) comes into view. As the trail descends and curves, Mt. Pumori disappears from view and you will come across a roaring stream. After crossing a small wooden bridge, you will ascend to Duglha. From here, you can see the tip of Mt Nuptse as well as Mt Cholatse, Mt Thamserku, and several other magnificent peaks. Spending a night in Duglha is ideal for acclimatization purposes.
Overnight: Duglha. (B, L, D)
Beyond Duglha, you will be climbing up the steep terminal moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. You will be passing through boulder-strewn slopes as you ascend ChupkiLhara, an eerie ridge top with dramatic mountain views. At the top of the ridge, you will find an array of stones with prayer flags used as memorials to Scott Fischer (American mountaineer) and 10 times Everest submitter BabuChiri Sherpa (a Nepali mountain guide) who perished on a mission to climb Everest. As the trail drops to the Khumbu Glacier moraine, you will find yourselves facing several great peaks - Khumbutse, Lingtren, Pumori, and MahalangurHimal. You are now in the vicinity of Everest but the great mountain still remains elusive. Mt Nuptse towers to the right as the trail crosses the Khumbu Glacier. As you pass along a murmuring stream leaving the Khumbu Glacier behind, you will now begin to feel a little out of breath due to high altitude.
Overnight: Lobuche. (B, L, D)
The trail to Gorakshep goes ahead through the lateral moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. You will pass through the pyramid signpost. Ahead on the trail, you will see the crest of the north ridge of Everest along with Mt. Pumori, Mt. Mahalangur, Mt. Lingtern, Mt. Khumbutse, Mt. Nuptse, etc. A small ascent will take you to ThangmaRiju from where you perceive 360-degree vista of snowy mountains. Climbing steeply up to the top through the torrent of Changri Glacier, you will catch your first glimpse of Kala Patthar, a grey-green knoll beneath the Mt. Pumori. As you reach Gorakshep, you will find snow-capped mountains looming all around you including the top of the world - Mt. Everest. After a brief lunch and rest, you will take the trail to Everest Base Camp through the once vast Gorakshep Lake. Continuing straight ahead, you will come through the Indian army mountaineers' memorials. Only upon reaching the Everest Base Camp, we really appreciate the Everest climbers who brave the hazardous route through the Khumbu icefall. Mountaineer's tents stand out in bright colors against the monotony of gray surroundings (especially in the spring). Nuptse, Khumbuste, and Pumori are the mountains you can view from the base camp. Everest actually is not visible from here. By now you have met the ultimate objective of our trip. However, the sunset view from Kala Patthar is more admirable than the sunrise view, so it is suggested to visit Kala Patthar today during sunset. As the setting sun's rays strike the snowcapped mountains the resulting scenery is indescribable. For those trekkers who wish to continue to Kala Patthar, our guides and Sherpas will coordinate in hiking to Kala Patthar for amazing sunset view today rather than waiting until the next day.
Overnight: Gorakshep at a local lodge. (B, L, D
Today is the climax of your trip. You will start early in the morning to catch the dramatic views from Kala Patthar witnessing the first light of day shining on Mount Everest. However, you need to get prepared for an early morning, dark and cold temperature (-10 to -14 C) departure beforehand. Further, there is always the potential for the chilly wind which is quite common. Familiar peaks such as Lingtren, Khumbutse, and Changtse tower to the east even as Everest begins to reveal itself emerging between the west shoulder crest and Nuptse. During the ascent to Kala Patthar, you can pause to catch our breath at several outstanding viewpoints to snap pictures. After several hours of an ascent, you will reach Kala Patthar. From this juncture, you scramble to climb the rocky outcrop near to the summit marked by cairns and prayer flags. You can take some pictures while mesmerizing the beauty of nature. On being back to Gorakshep, you will have your breakfast and wait for other participants to return back. Those participants who will visit Everest Base Camp today will have early breakfast to start early as Everest base camp hike takes longer time (4-5 hrs.) than the Kala Patthar hike. Upon return back to Gorakshep, the group will have lunch together; and afternoon time is taken to descend down to Pheriche for a good night's rest. (B, L, D)
Today, you will trek down through the hillside blanketed by rhododendron and juniper trees. If it is spring, you will be seeing pink and red rhododendron flowers around your surroundings. Depending on your hunger and condition, you will either have your lunch in Pangboche or wait until you reach PhunkiTenga for lunch. After crossing the prayer flag festooned bridge over the Dudh Koshi River trail then follows the Dudh Koshi gorge descending rapidly through the pine forests. The path eventually reaches Sansa which is the major trail junction in the region. You will stop at Kyangjuma (3570 m/11,710 ft.) for a relaxed lunch. Following lunch, the trail to Namche Bazaar clings to the steep wooded slope beyond Kyangjuma, winding through several bends. You will keep a lookout for wildlife such as mountain goats, snow leopards, colorful pheasants, etc. while passing through the forest by the trail. After passing a Chorten, you will reach the army camp at Namche Bazaar. At this point, you would like to take a long last look (and picture!) back to Lhotse, the tip of Everest and Tengboche. On reaching your lodge, you can take a nice hot shower and have a very relaxed sleep in your room in Namche Bazaar.
Overnight: Namche Bazaar. (B, L, D
The trail descends steeply downward so you need to walk slowly and under control as your shaky legs continuously battle the rocky terrain. After crossing the suspension bridges over the fast flowing Dudh Koshi and its tributaries the trail becomes more level and natural. By today you start to get warmed up by the light breeze. Any remaining sore throats and colds will be gone by today as you pass through this charming mountain air. Although you are traveling the same route down, you will feel completely different views. You will walk through the Sherpa villages' noticing impressive faith in Buddhism and culture of prayer stones and prayers flag while you walk through the villages. Upon arrival in Lukla, you can stretch those sore legs and recall the experiences of the last couple of weeks. You will be experiencing the culmination of a fantastic trek on a happy note with everyone back safe and sound with a smile on faces!
Overnight: Lukla (B, L, D)
Today, you will be flying back to Kathmandu after your long mountain journey. The early morning flight will drop you in Kathmandu. You can either rest or explore Bhaktapur with our City Tour Guide. The old city of Bhaktapur, with its pagoda roofs and its harmonious blend of wood, mud-brick, and copper, looks extraordinarily beautiful.
This day will be dedicated to visiting historical and cultural places in Kathmandu with local Spanish speaking guide. You will be visiting the Buddhist monastery of Boudhanath, the largest stupa in Nepal and the Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, Hindu ceremony site, Patan Durbar Square and then conclude with a visit to the Monkey Temple, a mix of Hinduism and Buddhism, from where you enjoy a beautiful view of Kathmandu. Overnight: Hotel
Your safety is of paramount concern whilst traveling with Himalayan Trailfinders. Please note that your leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Every effort will be made to keep to the above itinerary; However, as this is adventure travel in remote mountain regions, we cannot guarantee it! Weather conditions, the health condition of a member, unexpected natural disasters etc, can all contribute to changes in the itinerary. The leader will try to ensure that the trip runs according to plan, but please be prepared to be flexible if required.