If you've got a sense of adventure and a desire to rough it a bit in the Himalayas, this is an ideal Everest-area tour! During your five days, you'll have the support of a local guide who can offer knowledge about the region’s optional activities or the array of food choices available in each town.
Budget accommodations include modest hotels or teahouses run by local families. Although meals are at your own expense, you decide where, with whom and what to eat, allowing you the freedom to choose meals to suit your budget.
Click on View Additional Info for a map overview of the entire trip.
Day 1: Kathmandu – Phakding
Head to the tour office in the morning in Kathmandu, where you’ll meet your expert local guide and be introduced to your small group. Then, drive to the airport by minivan and board a small plane for Lukla – the gateway to Mt Everest!
Revel in the excitement of the adventure ahead as you appreciate the spectacular vista out your window and get to know your like-minded travelers. If the weather cooperates, you’ll have fine views of the magnificent snow-capped Himalayas below.
When you land in Lukla, your guide will provide your small group with a short safety briefing and help you gear up to begin your first trek. Starting at around 9,300 feet (2,800 meters), put on your daypack and enjoy a fairly gentle introduction to the Himalayan region, allowing you to acclimatize to hiking at high elevation.
Follow the milk-white Dudh Kosi River for approximately three hours to the small village of Phakding. Here, you’re free to explore the town, purchase meals and interact with the locals; your guide will help you to experience Nepali culture at an authentic teahouse, or you can just relax in the company of your small group for the evening.
Overnight: teahouse lodge in Phakding
Day 2: Phakding – Namche Bazaar
In the morning, set out for Namche Bazaar, about 5 miles (9 km) from Phakding. You’ll find the trek up to the halfway point of Jorsale relatively undemanding, crossing the Dudh Kosi River several times along the way.
After you reach Jorsale, a small village built on an outcropping above the river, walk down to the riverbank, where you’ll hike for quite a while before the challenging ascent to Namche Bazaar – the largest settlement in the region.
An hour or so before reaching your destination, get your first view of Mt Everest looming in the distance (weather permitting). The eye-catching sight of the stunning mountain range will make the uphill climb you just made worthwhile!
When you arrive in Namche Bazaar, catch your breath at an elevation of 11,290 feet (3,440 meters). Relax for the rest of the day, exploring the village center where a daily Tibetan market is held, or purchase a meal with tea.
Overnight: teahouse lodge in Namche Bazaar
Day 3: Namche Bazaar – Monjo
Fortify yourself with a good breakfast (own expense) for the steep 1.5-hour climb along a well-maintained trail to the Hotel Everest View, situated in Sagarmatha National Park. Hiking about a mile and gaining 300 feet in elevation, you'll find that the walk is well worth it!
When you reach the world’s highest hotel, enjoy an unobstructed close-up view of Mt Everest and the surrounding peaks, including the awe-inspiring Mt Ama Dablam. After taking in one of the most beautiful panoramas you’ll ever see, return via the now-derelict Syangboche airstrip past Namche Bazaar.
The 4-hour trip is mostly downhill to the tiny settlement of Monjo, where you can kick off your boots and relax with a fulfilling meal, good company and a night’s rest.
Overnight: teahouse lodge in Monjo
Day 4: Monjo – Lukla
Today, embark on a 4-hour return hike to Lukla, retracing the route from an earlier part of your trek.
When you arrive in the village, celebrate your successful Himalayan journey with your small group! If you'd like, explore the variety of shops catering to trekkers, or relax at one of the teahouses providing a western-style meal.
Overnight: teahouse lodge in Lukla
Day 5: Lukla – Kathmandu
Embark on a 45-minute, early morning flight by twin-engine plane back to Kathmandu where your trip concludes. Your guide will transport you back to central Kathmandu and drop you off at your own hotel.