Everest Base Camp is the starting point for hardcore climbers who dream to reach the peak of Mount Everest -8,848.9m. It requires a week of trekking from Lukla to reach EBC or by a short method through Helicopter flight. Either way, trekking to Everest Base Camp has become the objective of many avid trekkers around the world. And in this Everest Base Camp Trek Guide, I will elaborate on everything you need to know about trekking at Everest Base Camp.
Basic things to know about Everest Base Camp:
|Trekking Difficulty||Challenging Level Trek|
|Best Time||Spring & Monsoon Season|
|Trekking Permits for EBC Trek||Sagarmatha National Park Permit, TIMS Card, Local Permit|
- You will experience heaven on the earth
- There are many routes to experience the Everest Base Camp Trek
- Best Sunrise & Sunset views
- Complete isolation from modern civilization
- Thrilling Flight to Lukla from Kathmandu
What to expect from Everest Base Camp Trek?
Located in the Khumbu region of Nepal, the Everest Base Camp trek has a tremendous amount of history and culture preserved and protected from present fast-paced modernization. From the epic wilderness to panorama views of 4 tallest giants (Mount Everest -8848.9m, Mount Lhotse -8,516m, Mount Makalu -8,470m, Cho Oyu -8,201m) resting in the Everest region, trekking in EBC is an experience like no other.
Looking at the outer beauty of EBC, no one can expect the outcome of this trek. With proper preparation, one can expect a good result while with no proper guide or preparation you know what will be the result. However, all the trekkers will experience that struggle and sacrifice to reach Everest Base Camp.
It may sound demotivating, but it’s the truth of trekking at higher altitudes like EBC.
So, what to expect from Everest Base Camp Trek?
First of all, the EBC trek will be both physically and mentally challenging. Even a single inexperienced hiker in your group can affect your trek as well. During the trek, you will be cut off from the outside world which may be good for some trekkers who are consumed by wanderlust but not everyone.
A minimum of 5 to 7 hours of walking will be your day-to-day routine during the trek and sometimes you will need to face unexpected bad weather also. The trekking season becomes so crowded that you will not be alone throughout the whole trek.
So, after all, why do people trek to Everest Base Camp? you may ask.
In simple words, it is an addiction. Addiction to being in a wilderness, touched by the cool breeze, sounds of wildlife, and spiritual energy. Life is a struggle but you may or may not get what you want even after struggling but in an adventure like EBC you will surely get the best outcome. And to make it happen, we will also provide you with all the information you will need to prepare for your EBC trek.
Multiple Trekking Routes Map of Everest Base Camp:
The ultimate trekking experience to the EBC is not just bounded by a certain route rather there are other multiple choices of trails to experience and enjoy the trek.
Here are four ways with outline itineraries of each map that you can experience the EBC trek. Note that, each trekking map route is highlighted with the yellow mark for easy reading and the arrival day & departure day are excluded from the itinerary.
Everest Base Camp Trek Map:
Outline Itinerary for Everest Base Camp:
Excluded Arrival & Departure from the itinerary.
Day 01: Flight to Lukla & Trek to Phakding – 3 Hours
Day 02: Phakding to Namche Bazar Trek – 6 Hours
Day 03: Acclimatization Day in Namche Bazar
Day 04: Namche Bazar to Tengboche 6 Hours Trek
Day 05: Trek to Dingboche – 5 Hours
Day 06: Acclimatization Day in Dingboche & Hike to Nangkasrtshang
Day 07: Trek to Lobuche – 6 Hours
Day 08: Trek to Everest Base Camp & Back to Gorakshep – 7 Hours
Day 09: Hike to Kalapathar & Trek down to Pheriche – 8 Hours
Day 10: Trek to Namche Bazar – 7 Hours
Day 11: Namche Bazar to Lukla – 7 Hours
Day 12: Fly Back to Kathmandu
EBC via Gokyo Lake Map:
Outline Itinerary of EBC via Gokyo Lake:
Day 01: Kathmandu to Lukla & Trek to Phakding – 4 Hours
Day 02: Lukla to Namche Bazar – 6 Hours
Day 03: Acclimatization Day in Namche Bazar
Day 04: Trek to Dhole – 6 Hours
Day 05: Dhole to Machhermo – 5 Hours
Day 06: Trek to Gokyo – 5 Hours
Day 07: Acclimatization Day and Hike to Gokyo Ri 5,357m
Day 08: Trek to Thangnak – 4 Hours
Day 09: Climb to Cho-La Pass & Trek to Lobuche – 7 Hours
Day 10: Trek to Everest Base Camp & Back to Gorak shep – 7 Hours
Day 11: Hike to Kalapathar early morning & Trek down to Dingboche – 7 Hours
Day 12: Trek to Namche Bazar – 7 Hours
Day 13: Trek to Lukla
Day 14: Fly back to Ramechhap/Kathmandu & transfer to the hotel
EBC with Heli Ride
Outline Itinerary of EBC with Heli Ride:
Day 01: Heli ride to Lukla 2,800m & Trek to Phakding
Day 02: Trek to Namche Bazar
Day 03: Acclimatization Day at Namche Bazar
Day 04: Trek to Deboche 3,820m via Tyangboche 3,860m
Day 05: Trek to Dingboche 4,450m
Day 06: Second Acclimatization Day at Dingboche
Day 07: Trek to Lobuche 4,910m
Day 08: Trek to Everest Base Camp 5,364m via Gorakshep 5,180m & return back to Lukla by Heli
Day 09: Fly back to Ramechhap/Kathmandu
EBC Three High Passes
Outline Itinerary of EBC Three High Passes:
Day 01: Fly to Lukla 2,800m & Trek to Phakding – 3 Hours
Day 02: Trek to Namche Bazar 3,440m – 6 Hours
Day 03: Rest Day at Namche Bazar for Acclimatization
Day 04: Trek to Tyangboche – 6 Hours
Day 05: Tyangboche to Dingboche – 6 Hours
Day 06: Hike to Chhukung & Acclimatization
Day 07: Cross Kongmo-La 5,535m & Trek to Lobuche
Day 08: Trek to Gorakshep & Everest Base Camp
Day 09: Hike to Kalapathar & Dzongla
Day 10: Cross Tsho-La (Cho) 5,420m & Descend to Thangnak 4,700m – 7 Hours
Day 11: Trek to Gokyo Lake – 4 Hours
Day 12: Traverse over Renjo-La & Descend to Lungdhen – 6 Hours
Day 13: Trek to Thame 3,880m – 6 Hours
Day 14: Trek to Monjo 2,880m through Namche Bazar
Day 15: Head back to Lukla from Namche Bazar
Day 16: Fly Back to Kathmandu
Jiri To Everest Base Camp Trek Map
Outline Itinerary of Classic Jiri to Everest Base Camp:
Day 01: Drive to Shivalaya via Jiri – 7 Hours
Day 02: Trek to Bhandar – 5 Hours
Day 03: Trek to Sete – 6 Hours
Day 04: Trek to Junbesi 2,675m via Lamjura-La – 6 Hours
Day 05: Trek to Nunthala – 6 Hours
Day 06: Trek to Bupsa Danda – 6 Hours
Day 07: Bupsa Danda to Surkhe – 6 Hours
Day 08: Surkhe to Phakding trek – 5 Hours
Day 09: Trek to Namche Bazar – 6 Hours
Day 10: Acclimatization Day at Namche Bazar
Day 11: Trek to Tengboche – 5 Hours
Day 12: Tengboche to Dingboche – 5 Hours
Day 13: Dingboche to Lobuche – 5 Hours
Day 14: Trek to Gorakshep & Everest Base Camp – 6 Hours
Day 15: Hike to Kalapathar & Trek to Pheriche – 5 Hours
Day 16: Trek to Tengboche
Day 17: Trek to Monjo Through Namche Bazar
Day 18: Namche Bazar to Lukla
Day 19: Fly back to Kathmandu
Weather in Everest Base Camp: Guide for Choosing the best time for EBC Trek
The weather at Everest Base Camp is always at a freezing point throughout the whole year and things like rain, fog & snow during the trek make the atmosphere even more extreme. After reaching Namche Bazar, you will start to feel the temperature dropping till Everest Base Camp.
Despite the freezing temperature, the Spring and Autumn season is considered the best time to trek to Everest Base Camp. While the Monsoon and Winter season is taken as the deadly season for trekking.
Because Spring & Autumn seasons is the best season for trekking, the routes will be very crowded till EBC. Similarly, it gets hard to find rooms at the time of these peak seasons. Whereas, during Pre-Monsoon & Pre-Winter, it is possible to trek in EBC even though Monsoon & Winter is considered a deadly season. Also, it will be even easier to find accommodation during Pre-Monsoon & Pre-Winter seasons.
So, what I mean to explain is that each season can be trekked with a proper understanding of the weather and has its own perks. Not to miss out, the No 1 reason for ruining the trek is also due to weather.
For better clarification, here is the detailed overview of each 4 seasons for trekking in EBC.
Reason to Trek in Spring Season:
The reason to trek in Spring Season is due to warm weather, clear views, fresh air, and everything starting to bloom making the journey memorable & fresh. Compared to the Monsoon season, the Spring season will be a little crowded because most people postpone their travel until the high-peak season.
Due to clear weather most of the time, there will be fewer flight cancelations during the Spring season too. For people who have less time to stay in Nepal, and want less crowd during the trek and warm weather, the Spring season is recommended.
If you are unaware of which month of the Spring season may be even better among March, April and May then the month of April will be good. Still, pack raincoats and sunblock gears with you during the trek.
The temperature in the Daytime: 12°C-15°C
The temperature on Night-Time: -1°C to 2°C
The best month to trek during Monsoon Season:
Trekking during Monsoon season may sound crazy but they are not so extreme nor impossible. You can time your trek during the Monsoon season too, the month before & the month after the monsoon season i.e., Pre-June or late August. During this shoulder time, there will be less rainfall and you can get the chance to experience the best weather of the Monsoon season to the fullest.
However, you will still need some luck for the Lukla flight, and an extra day in your trek in case of any delay in your schedule.
The perks of trekking Everest Base Camp during the Monsoon season are:
-You can get your accommodations a little cheaper than before in some places as well as you can haggle for discounts more easily.
-It’s not like there will be rainfall all day which makes it possible to have clear & warm weather too. If lucky, you will have the best photo of majestic mountains during monsoon season over other seasons.
The temperature in the Daytime: 22°C
The temperature on Night-time: 4°C
Reason to Trek in Autumn Season:
The Autumn season brings different colors to the environment for a perfect photoshoot & sings a different tune to calm your body & soul. Among all those reasons out there, the best reason I found to trek in Everest Base Camp during the Autumn season is; able to indulge in Sherpa culture, foods & drinks with no boundaries, embracing the true reason for trekking.
In a world of noises, pollution & bustling, the soothing temperature of the Autumn season makes the trek more treasurable. Although Spring is the new beginning & brings transformation to the wilderness, Autumn brings the best out of nature through the ripening & harvest process.
Similarly, the biggest festivals of Nepal i.e., Teej, Dashain & Tihar are celebrated during the Autumn season.
The temperature in the Daytime: 17°C
The temperature at Night-time: -8°C
Best Month to Trek in Winter Season:
People trek in the winter season which is a little risky but worth it to experience due to its exotic atmosphere than other seasons. With the trees weighed down by snow, the trail being blissfully quiet, & the chill air touching your skin, the winter season can be more rewarding than other trekking seasons.
However, even if there is a proper guide for trekking in the Winter season on EBC, the unpredictable weather makes it still hard to trek. Yet, Pre-Winter and Post-Winter are considered possible to trek in Everest Base Camp.
The perks of Trekking in Everest Base Camp in Pre-Winter & Post-Winter:
-During winter, the trail will be all to yourself making the trail more rewarding and blissfully quiet. It is the perfect time to avoid mass crowds.
– Nature is at its peak with the finest detail in the scenery better than photoshop. You can definitely anticipate something good in this season.
The temperature in the Daytime: 15°C during Pre-Winter & Post-Winter
The temperature at Night-time: -14°C
Cost for Everest Base Camp Trek
More than 30,000 tourists trek in this region following different types of itineraries as mentioned in the Multiple Trekking routes map of Everest Base Camp. This is why the price of the EBC trek varies according to the itinerary of those packages.
The only thing that every package of EBC trek costs include National Park Permit, Guide & Porter, Rural Municipality Entrance Fee, Domestic Flight to Lukla, Lodges/Hotels, Meals, and other minor expenses during stay in Kathmandu.
Here is the detailed cost of that inclusion of the EBC trek:
Sagarmatha National Park Permit: NPR 3,000
Sagarmatha National Park permit allows you to pass into the national property of Nepal where NPS (National Park Service) uses that money for conserving wildlife, and historical things and maintaining pollution.
Rural Municipality Entrance Fee Cost: NPR 2,000
The money is utilized for the development of the routes/paths and managing the historical places. They also maintain the pollution and security in the area.
Domestic Flight to Lukla from Kathmandu/Ramechhap: Approx. $195 per flight
The most expensive thing is a domestic flight from Kathmandu/Ramechhap to Lukla and to Ramechhap/Kathmandu from Lukla. It is $195 for one way so a two-way flight cost was around $390 in 2020. Lukla is only one small airport which is a starting and ending point for trekking. Only small aircraft can fly to this place so it makes a really high price.
Lodges/Hotels cost during trekking=$5 to $200 per person per night
You can get accommodations in the EBC trek from cheap to expensive one. The price ranges from $5 to $200 according to where you are staying and what type of package you have booked. If you are with a guide, it is the responsibility of the guide to book your accommodation according to your package.
Normally, every different place has its local hotel management committee. This committee has made a decision to charge NPR 500 rupees per person for an overnight at the normal guest house for a normal room. If you took an attached bath bedroom then it can be more expensive.
Meals cost while EBC trek=$5 to $15 per one meal
Like the accommodations price, meals price also ranges according to where you are staying & what food you are eating. The meals on a normal package consist of Nepali cuisine, Continental cuisine, Chinese cuisine & Italian cuisine. But if your package is a service trek package then you have to pay for your own meal. Normal meals cost $5 to $15 per meal whereas the luxury meal will cost $30 to $35 per meal.
Trekking Guide Cost: $25 to $40 per Day
A trekking Guide is a must if you are trekking in Everest Base Camp for the first time. Most of the trekking guides are young & have experience. They are responsible for answering your questions regarding the trek as well as alerting you of any kind of misconduct at local places during the trek.
Similarly, the cost of hiring a guide differs according to the agencies and package. This is why the price for a hiring guide ranges from $25 to $40 per day.
Other Minor costs during the EBC trek:
There are some minor prices which you will have to pay during traveling in Kathmandu. Such as airport picks up and drops, transportation costs to reach domestic airports, hotels & foods in Kathmandu, porter costs, guide costs, etc. The cost can vary so we have not mentioned the actual cost but a minimum of $100 will be enough for a week.
You can check our complete breakdown for Cost of Everest Base Camp Trek for detailed information.
Guide to Everest Base Camp Trek Food and Accommodations:
After landing in Kathmandu, the diverse cuisine of Nepal can be intimidating for first-time visitors to Everest Base Camp. Varieties of food choices will make you a little anxious when thinking about ordering. The accommodation in Kathmandu will be good but throughout the EBC trail, you will start to experience different kinds of hospitality & services.
For those who are unfamiliar with cuisine & accommodation during the EBC trek, here is a small guide to cover everything for you.
Accommodations in Everest Base Camp:
Also known as Tea houses, finding room in EBC during the peak seasons like Spring & Autumn season will be a headache. As a matter of fact, people will even stay in the dining hall of Tea houses if they couldn’t find any room. The only way to avoid these situations is by hiring a well-experienced guide who will take the responsibility to book the room for you. Or, you will need to trek during the shoulder time of the Monsoon & Winter season.
As always, rooms are categorized as normal rooms and luxury rooms even in the EBC trail. However, the luxury rooms will be only available up to Namche Bazar which can cost you up to $200. Why up to Namche Bazar?
Because of the topographical structure, constructing star hotels is very difficult & impossible without enough manpower.
After Namche Bazar, every tea house will provide you with normal rooms which will cost you around $5 to $50 per night. The rooms will include beds and essential furniture in them but mostly without charging plugs and attached bathrooms. There are a few tea houses in Deboche that will cost you $60 for a room.
Keep in mind that low price is mainly applied during extreme situation like the off-season. At the time of peak season, book the room as soon as you find it.
Complaining about the rooms is also a waste of time, it’s “take it or leave it“. You will need to adjust yourself and enjoy nature not rooms. Still, if you are early in some destinations, you can go for a room quality check.
While staying at tea houses, you will normally not find any attached toilets in your rooms, and the water will be cold as ice or even frozen in the morning. So, the best tip while staying in tea houses is to carry toilet paper and hand sanitizer with you.
Foods in Everest Base Camp:
After a long day of exploring & walking, the best thing to do during Everest Base Camp is to try different types of cuisine. The main difference between Kathmandu cuisine and EBC cuisine is the spices and ingredients that are used to prepare the meals.
You can have your own choice of meals in tea houses from Nepali cuisine, Continental cuisine, Chinese cuisine, Italian cuisine, and many more. If you are new to Nepali cuisine then let me warn you that most Nepali foods include spices. Both veg and non-veg dishes can be found on the trek.
The most popular meal of Nepali cuisine is Dal Bhat (rice & pulses), a dish that is well suited for providing energy. Since not all tea houses have bakery shops and cafés, enjoy them in Namche Bazar.
The most frequently asked question about food on the EBC trail is whether “you should eat meat along the Everest Trek or not?”
Even though it is recommended not to eat meat during the trek because they are spoiled, many trekkers still eat it. Nobody would have sold meat if there were no trekkers asking for meat. So, it is up to you and your stomach that either you can digest that meat or not.
Everest Base Camp Trek Difficulty:
EBC is a Challenging level trek because you have to walk 4-6 miles per day facing many steep hills, day-to-day elevation changes, unpredictable weather, steady climb, slippery trails, and other varying difficult terrains. With multiple routes to enjoy Everest Base Camp i.e., EBC via Gokyo Lake, Jiri to Everest Base Camp, and Everest Three High Passes, it may get even more challenging.
How risky is Everest Base Camp Trek? Guide to preparing for the EBC trek:
While there is risk in trekking any mountain trail due to avalanches, landslides, and earthquakes which are incredibly rare, the Everest Base Camp trek does not show too much of a threat to trekkers. The only main threat that should not be overlooked is “Altitude Sickness”.
Most trekkers get affected by mild AMS at Gorak Shep, and moderate AMS is common but there are cases of severe AMS too. For severe AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness) immediate treatment is necessary or else it can affect the life of the trekker. So, it is hard to overlook these things while trekking.
Dealing with AMS is however easy if action is taken immediately. The local guides & hotels are well prepared with oxygen, as well as helicopter evacuation can also be done. Just don’t get the HAPE & HACE which is the worse case of AMS. You can check our prevention guide for Altitude Sickness during the trek in Nepal.
Similarly, if you are unable to sleep during the trek then it is due to low oxygen levels at higher altitudes. Some sleepless night is common even for guide and porter. Just do not take any type of medicine or liquor to help you sleep. If you really feel hard to breathe and getting symptoms of AMS then contact your guide as soon as possible.
So, how can you prepare for the EBC trek to avoid altitude sickness?
Just a simple formula and that is by walking slowly on the trail instead of wasting unnecessary stamina to complete the trek early. Follow the guide instructions as they will already give you a short brief of upcoming destinations and time to cover them.
As for the guide to prepare for Everest Base Camp Trek, here are the most common 8 tips for you to be ready.
- Exercise to build the stamina for an average of 5-8 hours of walk-in EBC
- Create a mentality that you can do it. Be mentally prepared
- Make your trekking pace and be comfortable with it. Walk Slowly on Trail
- Create a healthy diet plan even for the trekking
- Prepare a light backpack for your trek
- Build the habit to drink enough fluid & to stay hydrated
- Go for a hike from time to time in a week
- Pack the essentials gears for the trek
Travel Insurance for Higher Altitude Trek:
Not every insurance can cover the loss up to the 6,000m altitude. The most recommended travel insurance from many of our clients was World Nomad. But why you will need travel insurance for higher altitude treks some people may ask.
It will be easier to rescue by Helicopter evacuation if you have travel insurance. Also, it will cover any kind of loss during the trek as well as it is for safety measures. However, keep in mind that travel insurance is to cover your loss but not to make your trek easy.
The trek depends upon you if you can or cannot. Things like a guide & without a guide can also affect your trek. So, let’s dive a little into how “With Guide” & “Without Guide” can change your trek.
Everest Base Camp Trek with Guide:
Having a trekking guide with you is like hiring a partner for your trip who will look after you, care for you, take all the responsibilities & guide you to your destination. Some guide work for agencies & some guides are self-employed. However, no matter where they work, guides are always excellent in communication skills, social skills & organizing skills.
Generally, higher altitude treks like Everest Base Camp, High Passes, and Gokyo Ri are challenging level treks that require proper guidance. It is possible to take guidance from books, blogs,s or any other method but when it comes to hiring guides, it is the most effective way.
The best suggestion for any trekkers who are trekking in peak seasons like Spring & Autumn is that they should hire a guide. It makes it easy to find rooms and help from others when you hire a guide for Everest Base Camp Trek.
Everest Base Camp Trek without Guide:
Only experienced trekkers who know the path and know how to tackle any harsh situation can trek to Everest Base Camp without a guide.
Most of the time, trekkers without a guide can be seen during the off-season which is the best time for them. Again, trekking during the off-season is also very risky without a guide due to the possibility of getting lost. There are cases where trekkers are lost on the trail. Sometimes, they are found and rescued but sometimes it’s the opposite.
Packing Guide for Everest Base Camp Trek:
Finally, the most important part of this EBC complete guide is how you should manage your backpack and what should you pack for the EBC trek. To tackle those harsh weather, and altitude sickness and to manage costs for EBC, packing the right gear & efficiently is the right choice.
Overview of Necessary gears to pack for EBC:
Here is the list of gears, accessories, and other useful requirements to packing for Everest Base Camp.
-Warm Softshell Gloves (1 pair)
-Wicking long-sleeve T-shirts (2-3 Pairs)
-Thermal Underwears (2-3 Pairs)
-Fleece Jacket (2 Pairs)
-Insulated jacket or Down Jacket (1 pair)
-Waterproof Jackets & Pants
-Hiking Boots (1 pair)
-Spare Shoes (1 pair)
-Camp Shoe or Sandal (1 pair)
-Cotton socks (2 pairs)
-Woolen hiking socks (4 pairs)
First Aid Kit & Toiletries:
-First Aid Box (include Diamox, Pain-killer, Aspirin, Antibiotics)
-Water Bottles/ Water Bladder
Other Essentials Accessories:
-Book & Cards
Ending the EBC trek Guide with Best Tips:
Tips should not be ignored while a free tip is given to you. Among the 50 best tips for Everest Base Camp trek, here are some of the most important tips for you.
- Do not miss out on the view from Kalapathar (5,545m):
Mount Everest cannot be seen from EBC which is why if you trek to Kalapathar, you can have the best 360° view of mountains including Mount Everest.
- Always walk slowly on the trail
Never walk to finish the trek early. Instead, take your time and slowly walk to avoid short breaks.
- Acclimatize on the EBC trail:
Acclimatization is very important in the EBC trail to adapt to the altitude. This day is also a test day whether you can stay at that altitude & continue your trek or not.
- Be careful with Donkeys & Yaks Caravan:
Trekkers sometimes neglect where to stand from upcoming donkeys & Yaks caravan which results in possible dangers & accidents like falling from cliffs. Whenever you see the line of Yaks & Donkeys caravan, stand close to the wall side, not the cliff side.
- Careful with your Photography:
The wilderness & mountains of the EBC trail are indeed extraordinary which can sometimes blind people. There are cases where tourists got into accidents when taking selfies, photos, or videos. A small tip but lifesaving.
We are open to feedback. If you have questions or any inquiries then you can email us. We will keep updating this Everest Base Camp Trek guide. Best of luck with your trek.