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Food

  • All breakfasts, 2 lunches and 2 dinners are included. In the teahouses the breakfast will be a fixed set menu usually consisting of porridge or muesli, with either toast, chapatti or pancake, plus an egg or omelette and a cup of tea/coffee. Any additional items that are not included in the set menu should be ordered and paid for separately. We do not include lunch and dinner on trek allowing you to choose what you want to eat. Lunch will be taken at a teahouse en route (except when camping) - sometimes one of your guides will go ahead with the group's order to make it more expedient. Dinner will be in the same teahouse that you sleep at (this is custom in Nepal as teahouses base their room rate on it). Although most lodges have almost identical menus, they are reasonably extensive and offer a varied selection, ranging from traditional Nepalese dhal bhat to pizza and apple pie. Dhal bhat is the staple diet in Nepal and comes in many different forms but generally comprises some curried lentil dhal and meat or vegetables, some rice, and a pickle/chutney. Another popular snack is momos; a type of Nepalese dumpling, fried or steamed, filled with meat or vegetables. Although meat is available in the teahouses, we advise against eating it on trek. The meat has often been carried in the heat from lower altitudes for several days before reaching the lodges and can cause stomach upsets or illness. Germs can also be spread by handling dirty money - we recommend using hand sanitiser. During the two nights camping all food is included and will be prepared by an expedition cook. Trekkers usually sit in a different dining tent to climbers as the climbers will be preparing for their summit attempt. If you have a gluten free diet, then we strongly recommend you bring some extra food and snacks with you to supplement the food on trek as there will be little variety available for you, particularly for breakfast. Even many of the soups are from powder/packets and contain gluten. *Drinking Water* Staying hydrated is important when undertaking any physical activity but particularly so at altitude where it is generally recommended to drink at least 3-4 litres per person per day. We strongly encourage you not to buy bottled water on trek as this contributes to the growing problem of plastic pollution in Nepal’s trekking areas. The teahouses sell boiled water for approx. Rs150-300 per litre (the price increases the higher you trek) which should not require treating. This is also perfect for a bedtime refill as it can double up as a hot water bottle.  Alternatively, all teahouses will provide cold water free of charge, if requested. Although this should not be drunk untreated, we recommend that you bring a reusable bottle (or two) and use an effective form of water treatment. There are a wide range of products available these days which are more effective than traditional purification tablets - we recommend talking to an outdoor retailer for the latest advice as technologies are improving all the time: make sure to check the product’s performance in cold/freezing conditions and consider battery life (lithium batteries are best in cold conditions). Handheld UV filters such as a ‘SteriPEN’ are widely available to purchase from online retailers such as Amazon and Ebay – they’re very effective, can treat 1 litre of water in a couple of minutes and the water is ready immediately – look for lightweight lithium battery models and remember that you will need to bring a wide-mouthed bottle (e.g. Nalgene) for use with these devices. There is also an array of water filter and purifier bottles on the market, such as ‘The Grayl’ or ‘Water-to-Go’ but please note that these tend to have a small capacity and the filter systems will be less effective if they freeze so are less practical for high altitude treks such as this. While camping, our staff will collect and boil drinking water from the mountain streams/snow and ice and fill up your water bottles for you, but you may wish to use your own water purification treatment as well.

Activities

  • Walking & Trekking
  • Point-to-Point
  • 1

    Start Kathmandu.

    The tour starts at our hotel in Kathmandu. The group flights arrive into Kathmandu in the afternoon and those travelling on them will be met at the airport and transferred to our hotel. There will be a full trek briefing this evening. *Royal Singi Hotel *(or similar)

  • 2

    Short but spectacular flight to Lukla (2800m); trek to Phakding.

    We fly to the mountain airstrip of Lukla (2,800m), and set off on the first short leg of our trek, heading northwards up the valley of the Dudh Kosi (or 'milk river'). We descend from the small plateau, down into the forested valley. The trail offers some tantalising views before reaching the small settlement of Phakding (2,652m), where we spend our first night. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 2,652m)

  • 3

    Follow the Dudh Kosi and ascend to Namche Bazaar, with time to explore the Sherpa villages.

    Heading out of Phakding we follow the Dudh Kosi northwards. This day's walk takes us through magnificent forests with glimpses of the mountains ahead. We cross the river several times by bridges as we pass through the villages of Benkar, Monzo and Jorsale. A final bridge brings us to the foot of the steep climb to Namche. Halfway up this ascent we may get our first glimpse, cloud-permitting, of the summit of Everest appearing majestically behind the great ridge of Nuptse-Lhotse. A last 300m of climbing brings us to Namche Bazaar, the Sherpa capital and the main town in the area. Namche is a prosperous Sherpa town and an important trading centre. It has a weekly market on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning but the town bustle all day every day with trekkers, coffee shops, bakeries and stores selling all kinds of trekking and climbing gear as well as Tibetan souvenirs.  *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 3,440m)

  • 4

    Acclimatisation walk to Kunde and Khumjung; descend to Kyanjuma.

    We climb steeply out of Namche past the airstrip at Shyangboche, to the Everest View Hotel, the highpoint of our day at 3,880m. Built by the Japanese this spectacularly situated hotel with wonderful views of Everest and Ama Dablam is an ideal place for a tea break. Descending through forest we come to Khumjung, where we have lunch close to the Sir Edmund Hillary School. After lunch we walk up to Kunde and visit the Edmund Hillary Hospital. The twin villages of Kunde and Khumjung are set below Khumbila, the rocky peak sacred to all Sherpas. For much of the walk we have great views of Ama Dablam and other Himalayan giants. We walk back down through Khumjumg, to the monastery. Sadly it was damaged in the earthquake but is now being repaired. Inside is a small box and after paying the entry fee (which goes towards the repairs) we will be shown the only Yeti skull in the world! Descending to the main trail we spend the night at Kyanjuma We climb steeply out of Namche to the Everest View Hotel. Built by the Japanese this spectacularly situated hotel with wonderful views of Everest and Ama Dablam is an ideal place for a tea break. Continuing, we trek to the villages of Kunde and Khumjung set below Khumbila, the rocky peak sacred to all Sherpas. In Kunde we can visit the Edmund Hillary hospital, and there should also be time to visit the monastery in Khumjumg, where for a small donation we will be shown the only Yeti skull in the world! Descending to the main trail we spend the night at Kyanjuma. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 3,600m)

  • 5

    Trek through the Sherpa heartland to the monastery at Thyangboche for superb mountain views.

    This morning we descend to the river; we cross it at the little settlement of Phunki Thangkha at 3,250m, then climb steeply through the forest to Thyangboche at 3,867m. We will be here by lunchtime and in the afternoon we will visit the famous monastery. The sunset and sunrise on the fantastic panorama of mountains surrounding us are not to be missed - Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse and Ama Dablam provide a wonderful backdrop to our teahouse. Look out for Himalayan Tahr in the forest surrounding the monastery. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 3,867m)

  • 6

    Continue up the Khumbu Valley and then the Imja Valley to Dingboche.

    We descend through the forest to Devoche and a little further on we cross the rushing Imja Khola, whose valley we now follow. Climbing steadily the trail enters Pangboche, at 3,900m, the highest permanent settlement in this valley. Ascending the valley, we have lunch at Shomore, after which we leave the trees behind and cross a wooden bridge at the confluence of the Khumbu and Imja Kholas. A short steep climb brings us to Dingboche, a summer settlement where great peaks surround us. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 4,350m)

  • 7

    Spend the day at Dingboche for acclimatisation.

    We spend a day at Dingboche to continue our acclimatisation. Those adapting well to the altitude can climb Nangkartshang Peak at 5,100m for great views of Makalu, Lhotse, Chalotse, Tawoche and Ama Dablam. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 4,350m)

  • 8

    Continue the ascent to Lobuje.

    The trail climbs steeply out of Dingboche past a chorten and ascends the valley gradually to Dugla at the end of the terminal moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. From here we have a short, steep climb up to Chukpo Lari, a beautiful, yet poignant place where there is a line of memorials in tribute to the climbers who have died on Everest and from where we have a beautiful panorama of the peaks lying on the Nepal-Tibet border. The trail then eases off as we follow the valley to Lobuje, a tiny hamlet with a few teahouses. The sunset on Nuptse is not to be missed. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 4,930m)

  • 9

    Follow the Khumbu Glacier to Gorak Shep.

    We leave early and follow the Khumbu Glacier northwards to Gorak Shep (5,184m). The trail undulates up and down the moraine with some short steep sections. The trail is rocky in places as we are now on the lateral moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. It will take us 3-4 hours to reach Gorak Shep where we will have a rest and something to eat. In the afternoon we climb steeply above Gorak Shep to the small peak of Kala Pattar, 'Black Rock', at 5,545m from where we can look down over the base camps of the various Everest expeditions. This climb affords a magnificent view of the Khumbu Glacier and above all a close-up view of the world's highest mountain. We return to Gorak Shep for the night. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 5,184m) (Trek Profile: 3.5-4 hrs walking Lobuje to Gorak Shep and 4 hrs up and down Kala Pattar) 

  • 10

    Continue along the lateral moraine to Everest Base Camp. Camp overnight.

    A short but tough walk to Everest Base Camp. We start by walking across the sandy flat at Gorak Shep and climb onto the lateral moraine of the Khumbu glacier. The trail ascends the side of the glacier for a couple of hours before finally descending onto the rocky glacial moraine itself. The trail winds up and down through fascinating ice seracs to the area known as Everest Base Camp, which in spring is full of expedition teams as they prepare to climb the mountain. We walk past the base camp rock (5300m), which is covered in prayer flags and where the normal trekking groups go to, and continue through the rocky moraine into the actual base camp. We will get to our camp by lunchtime and the afternoon is free to gaze in awe at our surroundings. We will be right below the Khumbu Ice Fall and we can appreciate just how difficult it is to negotiate a route through the huge blocks of ice. Nuptse towers above us and Pumori rears up behind us. *Full-service camping *(sleeping altitude 5,400m)

  • 11

    Explore the area around Everest Base Camp. Camp overnight.

    We spend the whole day at Everest Base Camp with time to absorb the way of life on expeditions. After a relaxed breakfast we have a walk round Base Camp and through some of the ice seracs. We will meet climbing Sherpas preparing to climb and may well be able to watch climbers as they ascend the Khumbu ice Fall. We have lunch in camp and can visit the Everest ER medical tent if it is there and if they are quiet. *Full-service camping* (sleeping altitude 5,400m)

  • 12

    Long descent to Pheriche.

    Today is a long day as we leave Everest Base Camp after breakfast and retrace our steps to Gorak Shep and further down to Lobuje, where we have lunch. We continue on down to Dugla from where we take the right-hand trail and descend into the Pheriche Valley. Once we reach the valley bottom it is an easy walk along into the village of Pheriche. *Teahouse (Sleeping altitude 4,243m)*

  • 13

    Retrace our steps to Kyanjuma.

    Descending through Pheriche, we cross a small bridge and have a short climb before descending to join the main Imja Khola Valley. We follow the valley down to Pangboche through an alpine meadow landscape. We drop down to the rushing river then walk through the peaceful rhododendron forests to the village of Devoche from where we climb back up to Thyangboche on the ridge for lunch. We descend off the ridge to Phunki Tenga and walk back to Kyanjuma, where we spend the night. *Tea**house *(sleeping altitude 3,600m)

  • 14

    Descend through Namche to Monzo.

    The walk to Namche Bazaar takes us along a beautiful undulating trail high above the Dudh Kosi. We have some time in Namche and after lunch we descend through Namche Bazaar and pick up our outward trail again to Monzo, where we stay tonight. *Teahouse* (sleeping altitude 2,850m)

  • 15

    Continue to Lukla.

    We retrace our steps to Chaunrikhara where we start the last climb to the airstrip at Lukla. *Teahouse *(sleeping altitude 2,800m)

  • 16

    Fly to Kathmandu.

    We fly back to Kathmandu and transfer to our hotel. *Royal Singi Hotel *(or similar)

  • 17

    Free day in Kathmandu to explore the city.

    Today is free for sightseeing in Kathmandu (it is also a spare day to allow for any delays in the flights to or from Lukla). You may wish to visit the monkey temple at Swayambunath, one of the largest Buddhist Stupas in the world at Bodnath, or the most important Hindu temple in the valley at Pashupatinath. We offer a full range of sightseeing tours, which can be booked and paid for locally. Please see the Optional Excursions section of the Trip Notes or the Exodus notice board in the hotel in Kathmandu. *Royal Singi Hotel* (or similar)

  • 18

    End Kathmandu.

    The tour ends in after breakfast. Those on the group flights will be transferred to the airport in time for the daytime flight back to London. **

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