Everest Base Camp Trek Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailor Made Adventures
Destinations:
Nepal
Programmes:
Walking & Trekking
Trip Code:
TNT
Activity Rating - Challenging
Challenging

You have a good level of fitness and are looking for a physically challenging holiday.  Previous experience is essential for activity based trips.

17 Days Flight Inclusive
16 Days Land only
Min age: 16

Trip Overview

Taking us to the most iconic base camp of all at the foot of the greatest mountain in the world, Mount Everest (8848m), this is one of the world's classic treks. Walking through Sherpa country past cultivated fields and small villages, we have time to acclimatise before reaching spectacular high altitude scenery: the incredible monastery at Thyangboche, views of Ama Dablam, Everest and other mighty Himalayan peaks. As well as reaching Base Camp, we have the opportunity to climb Kala Pattar (5545m) for a magnificent view of the highest mountain on Earth.

We also offer Expedition Departures with the exclusive opportunity to spend two nights camping at Everest Base Camp in spring, at a time of year when the climbing parties are preparing for their Everest summit attempt.  Please see trip code TNTA for further details.

At a Glance

  • 3 nights standard hotels and 12 nights teahouses
  • 12 days point-to-point walking with full porterage
  • Group normally 4 to 16 plus tour leader and local staff. Min. age 16 yrs
  • Altitude maximum 5545m, average 3900m
  • Travel by private minibus and 2 internal flights
  • Between 5 and 8 hours walking per day, with some longer days
  • Staff carry oxygen and a first aid kit on trek
  • Expedition departures available in April including 2 nights camping at Everest Base Camp
  • Countries visited: Nepal

Trip Highlights

  • Trek to Everest Base Camp, following in the footsteps of the great climbing parties 
  • Explore Namche Bazaar and soak up the Sherpa culture
  • Walk amidst the world's highest mountain range, with incredible views of Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse and Ama Dablam
  • Visit the hilltop monastery at Thyangboche
  • Ascend Kala Pattar for close up views of Mt Everest

Is This Trip for You?

For those confident of their physical fitness, this is a challenging grade trek (level 5) with a chance to walk to Base Camp and ascend Kala Pattar, from where we get superb close-up views of the highest mountains in the world. Please refer to our activity level guidelines and walking and trekking fitness training guide.

There are 12 days point-to-point walking with full porterage throughout - you need only carry your daypack. You should have some previous trekking experience and if you do not partake in regular exercise or hill walking then you should do some physical preparation beforehand. The trail crosses approximately seven modern suspension bridges (twice), all of which have mesh sides but some are quite long and high and anyone with a strong fear of heights or vertigo may find them difficult.

The maximum altitude on this trek is 5,545m and the average is approximately 3,900m. Ample time is given for acclimatisation, but altitude is a factor and must be considered - we ask you to refer to the altitude warning within the Trip Notes.

Walking hours stated within the itinerary are given as approximates only. Timings stated exclude lunch stops and will vary depending on the pace of your group.

Why Trek with Exodus? 

• Over 30 years’ experience of organising treks in Nepal.
• ‘Ask an expert’ – talk to Exodus office staff who have done the treks themselves.
• Experienced English-speaking local leaders who are qualified in first aid and trained in recognising and dealing with altitude sickness.
• One of the highest staff to client ratios on trek - 1 staff member: 4 clients.
• All staff (leaders, guides and porters) are fully insured and paid a fair wage.
• Carefully planned ascent rates and itineraries with built-in acclimatisation and contingency days.
• Staff carry oxygen and a first aid kit.
• Self-assessment AMS cards used to monitor every client at altitude.
• Established protocol for Lukla flight delays – see below.

Internal Flight Delays

Please note that adverse weather conditions at Lukla airport occasionally mean that flights to/from Kathmandu cannot operate. We include an additional day at the end of the itinerary to allow for this, but on occasion, persistent bad weather may delay the start of your trek or your return to Kathmandu.

Should there be a lengthy delay at the start of a trip we will aim to provide a shortened Everest trek, but if adverse weather conditions continue and the main objective of the trek become impossible to reach, an alternative trek to another region of Nepal will be offered. When fixed-wing planes are unable to fly, but helicopters to Lukla are available, clients may choose to travel by helicopter; in this event, the price per person will be approximately US$500-600 per person, of which Exodus will cover half.

Should there be a significant delay at the end of your trek, we will endeavour to get you on the first fixed-wing flights to Kathmandu available. Should helicopters be able to fly, we will consider paying for these on a case by case basis to enable clients to meet their international flights. In the case of persistent adverse weather, Exodus will re-book international flights for Flight Inclusive clients, but please be aware that clients booking on a Land Only basis will be responsible for re-booking their onward travel and for any associated costs.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Group

The group will generally be between 4 and 16 people. 

We have representatives in Kathmandu who will look after your transfers to and from the airport and will be around to answer other questions you may have about your trek. There is an Exodus desk and noticeboard in the Royal Singi Hotel in Kathmandu. The desk is manned morning and evening.

All departures will have an English-speaking Nepali Tour Leader throughout the trip who will be assisted by Nepali Trekking Guides. All Exodus leaders are highly experienced and as well as Exodus leader training courses they are all trained in wilderness first aid. The trekking guides are licensed by the Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) and also receive additional training through Exodus.

On all of our Nepal treks there will be one member of trek staff for every four clients - this ratio may change if for any reason a guide has to stay behind with a member of the group. The leaders are assisted by additional guides and as many porters or dzos (cow-yak hybrids) as necessary to carry the kitbags. All your main gear is carried for you and you only have to carry whatever you require for that day's trek. Dzos carry four client's kitbags each and porters carry two – kitbags should be restricted to 12kg maximum (however please note the weight allowance on the Lukla flights). Porters are given porter clothing for treks above 4,500m (windproof jacket and trousers, boots, socks, gloves, hats, sunglasses). All the trekking staff are insured by our local partner in Nepal.

Adult min age:
16
Min group size:
4
Max group size:
16

Itinerary

TNT Trip Map

Land Only

Start City:
Kathmandu
End City:
Kathmandu

Flight Inclusive

Start City:
London
End City:
London

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Kathmandu.

    The tour starts at our hotel in Kathmandu. There will be a full trek briefing this evening.

    Royal Singi Hotel

  • Day 2

    Drive to Manthali (Ramechhap) airport; short but spectacular flight to Lukla (2800m); trek to Phakding

    We will need to depart the hotel at around 2-3am to drive to Manthali (Ramechhap) airport to catch our flight to Lukla. At this time of day when there is usually light traffic, the drive should take about 4 hours. Roads in Nepal are not of the same standard as in the west, there may be potholed areas and the last section is unsurfaced.

    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. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 2,652m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 8 km / 5 miles
    Activity (hours):
    3
  • Day 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. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 3,440m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 15 km / 9 miles
    Altitude gain (m):
    790
    Activity (hours):
    6.5
  • Day 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.

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 3,600m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 10 km / 6 miles
    Altitude gain (m):
    160
    Activity (hours):
    6
  • Day 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. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 3,870m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 6 km / 4 miles
    Altitude gain (m):
    270
    Activity (hours):
    4-5
  • Day 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, at 4,350m, a summer settlement where great peaks surround us. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 4,350m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 10 km / 6 miles
    Altitude gain (m):
    480
    Activity (hours):
    6.5
  • Day 7

    Spend the day at Dingboche for acclimatisation.

    We spend the 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. There is the option to climb halfway to the peak or for the energetic it takes about 3.5hrs to the top. It’s a tough and steep climb but well worth the effort for the amazing views. We return to Dingboche for a late lunch and the rest of the afternoon is free to relax and acclimatise.

    Tea-house

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 8 km / 5 miles
    Activity (hours):
    5 (acclimatisation walk around Dingboche)
  • Day 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. We stop here for a tea break and a snack before the 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. In the late afternoon there is the option to walk up onto the lateral moraine of the Khumbu glacier and the sunset on Nuptse is not to be missed. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 4,930m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 8 km / 4 miles
    Altitude gain (m):
    580
    Activity (hours):
    5-5.5
  • Day 9

    Visit Everest Base Camp; overnight at Gorak Shep.

    Today is a very long, hard day as we leave very early, following 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 as we are now on the lateral moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. It will take us about 3 hours to reach Gorak Shep where we will have a rest and something to eat. From here to base camp and back there are no lodges so we will fill our water bottles and take some snacks for the 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, where in spring, we might see in the distance some of the expedition teams as they prepare to climb the mountain. From the Base Camp we get fantastic close up views of the Khumbu Ice Fall and we can appreciate just how difficult it is for the climbers to negotiate a route through the huge blocks of ice. Nuptse towers above us and Pumori rears up behind us. After a short photo stop by the Base Camp rock we retrace our steps to Gorak Shep. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 5,184m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 13 km / 8 miles
    Altitude gain (m):
    250
    Activity (hours):
    9-12
  • Day 10

    Climb Kala Pattar (5545m) for classic mountain views of Everest; descend to Pheriche.

    We have another hard day as 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 and retrace our steps to Lobuje for lunch and then continue on down the valley to the lower altitude of Pheriche for the night. (Please note that the walk to Everest Base Camp and the climb of Kala Pattar are both very tough. Sometimes we may change the order in which we tackle the walks depending on the group's ability and weather conditions). 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 4,243m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 14 km / 9 miles
    Altitude loss (m):
    940
    Activity (hours):
    10-11
  • Day 11

    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 up to Kyanjuma, where we spend the night. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 3,600m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 13 km / 8 miles
    Altitude loss (m):
    650
    Activity (hours):
    7.5-8
  • Day 12

    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.

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 2,850m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 11 km / 7 miles
    Altitude loss (m):
    750
    Activity (hours):
    4.5-5
  • Day 13

    Continue to Lukla.

    We retrace our steps to Chaunrikhara where we start the last climb to the airstrip at Lukla. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 2,800m)

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 13 km / 8 miles
    Altitude loss (m):
    50
    Activity (hours):
    4.5-5
  • Day 14

    Fly to Manthali (Ramechhap) airport and transfer to Kathmandu

    We fly back to Manthali (Ramechhap) airport and transfer to our hotel in Kathmandu. At this time of day there can be heavy traffic, especially coming into Kathmandu itself, and the drive is likely to take 5 hours or more. 

    Royal Singi Hotel 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 15

    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 within the Trip Notes or the Exodus notice board in the hotel in Kathmandu.

    Royal Singi Hotel 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 16

    End Kathmandu.

    For land only travellers the tour ends after breakfast.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
Altitude charts
TNT Altitude Chart

All ascents, descents and distances listed above have been measured by our local partners or tour leaders. Please note that different GPS measuring devices can give differing results dependent on the barometric pressures at the time. Measurements stated throughout these trips notes are given to help you understand the types of terrain and distances you will encounter.

Accommodation

Hotels & Lodges

The twelve nights on trek are spent in lodges (teahouses) and the three nights in Kathmandu are in a comfortable hotel.

In Kathmandu we usually stay at the Hotel Royal Singi, a 4-star hotel located within walking distance of the Thamel district. All rooms have en suite facilities and there is a restaurant, a bar and an outdoor courtyard. There is complimentary Wi-Fi in the hotel lobby and Wi-Fi  throughout. There is an Exodus desk in the hotel lobby and an Exodus representative will usually be available daily in the mornings and evenings.

The teahouses are basic but adequate; please be realistic about what to expect in the mountains. We ask that you read our Nepal Destination Guide for further details about the lodge facilities. 

The hub of the teahouse is the dining room, usually decorated with colourful traditional rugs, sometimes with a stove or heater (some lodges charge a fee to put the heater on). Most teahouses sell snacks and other essentials such as tissues, soap and toilet paper. Almost all lodges have electricity but it is not wholly reliable and lighting may not be bright enough to read by – a torch is essential. Electrical charging facilities are generally available only in the dining room (charged at approx. Rs150-350 per hour per device). Many of the lodges use solar power so sometimes there is not enough electricity for charging. Many lodges have Wi-Fi these days – in some areas it works well but in others it is slow and temperamental.

We book twin-share bedrooms throughout this trek. Beds with foam mattresses, bedsheets and a pillow are provided. Bedrooms are unheated and can get cold at night so you will need to bring or hire a sleeping bag.

Most lodges have only one or two basic toilets and sometimes these are located outside the main lodge building. Toilets are usually Asian ’squat’ style; although many lodges have now installed ‘western style’ seated ones. Toilet paper is not provided so you should bring your own or buy it locally (please dispose of it the bin provided – do not put it in the bowl). If there is not a flush handle, there should be a container of water to pour down – if it is empty (or frozen) please either refill it or ask the lodge to.

Some lodges now have hot 'showers' (charged at approx. Rs250-500 per shower). Sometimes a hot shower is simply a bucket of hot water and not a shower head.

Standards of cleanliness vary especially in the peak trekking season and in winter when the water freezes at night. Please report any problems to your leader or the lodge and be vigilant in your personal hygiene regime – use soap or hand sanitizer gel before and after toilet breaks, snacks and meal times.

As a general rule, the higher altitude you go to, the more basic the lodges and the more expensive food and services become.

Extra Accommodation

If you require any additional accommodation in Kathmandu either before or after the tour, we can book this for you (subject to availability), please enquire with your Sales Consultant.

Single Accommodation

If you prefer your own room, we offer a single supplement for the three nights in Kathmandu only (subject to availability). While in the teahouses, single rooms cannot be guaranteed but if a single room is available that night, you can pay locally on a day by day basis.

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single only guarantees a room for single use. It does not always mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Single supplement from CHF 130.00

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

Breakfast is included throughout the trip.

In the teahouses breakfast will comprise of a choice of bread (a slice of toast, chapatti or Tibetan bread), a choice of egg (boiled, fried or omelette), and a choice between either muesli or porridge each day. Hot tea/coffee will also be served. On specific days, there will not be a choice for breakfast and either a trekkers breakfast (egg, hash brown, baked beans and toast) or a pancake with jam/honey will be served - these options are not available in all teahouses and so we have only included them in locations where they can be guaranteed.

Lunch will be taken at a teahouse en route - 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.  

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 powdered and contain gluten. Gluten free breakfast options will be limited to vegetable fried rice and a choice of egg, and on specific days only, a trekkers breakfast (without the toast / with an extra egg) will be served. Breakfast options for vegans will be limited to a choice of muesli/porridge with water each day, and on specific days only, a trekkers breakfast (without the egg), or vegetable fried rice will be served. If you are lactose intolerant as opposed to vegan then the same will apply although you will also have a choice of egg each day. 

If you buy imported food and drink whilst on trek you will spend more than the suggested amount.

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.

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 with you and use an effective form of water treatment. There are a wide range of products available these days which are more effective than the 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 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 are 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.

Transportation

For airport transfers we use a private minibus. Flights to and from Lukla will usually be in a Twin Otter or Dornier plane.

Flying in Nepal

Many of our treks in Nepal use domestic flights to reach the trekking areas. The mountainous terrain is often subject to changeable weather which makes flying conditions complex. In addition the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) of Nepal does not operate to the same standards as those of western nations. The EU has recently chosen to highlight the relatively poor safety record in Nepal, and as of December 2013 all Nepalese registered airlines have been included on the EU ‘Banned list’ preventing them from flying in EU airspace. While no Nepalese-registered airlines currently fly within the EU, the EU have instigated this ban to encourage the CAA of Nepal to tighten its systems governing Nepalese aviation. Flying within Nepal is therefore a known risk and the current travel advice issued by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office provides an overview which we encourage you to read.

In response to general concerns over this safety record, Exodus asked independent air safety experts to visit Nepal on our behalf to assess the suitability of the available carriers. Following these comprehensive audits, Exodus decided to restrict our use of airlines to only those approved as part of the most recent audit. It remains our firm policy to only use these approved carriers for our customers and further audits will take place regularly. For emergency situations, we also have an approved list of helicopter companies for our use.

Exodus is supportive of the EU’s move to put pressure on the CAA of Nepal in this way. We are hopeful that, alongside our own risk control measures, this will make a difference to all who fly in Nepal. Please consider the information above when deciding to book this holiday.

Weather & Seasonality

Weather Information

The main trekking season in Nepal is from October to mid-May when daytime temperatures at most altitudes are generally comfortable for walking, the sky is clear much of the time and rain and snow are occasional occurrences. Daytime temperatures will vary from 15ºC to 35ºC in the Kathmandu Valley to around 10ºC at 3,600m and progressively lower the higher we go. Different seasons offer different advantages for trekking.

Post Monsoon/autumn: Mid-September to November. This is the main trekking season in Nepal. Day temperatures in Kathmandu are approximately above 20ºC. Skies are usually clear and days on trek are sunny and mild with clear mountain views. Nights will be colder with temperatures dropping as low as to minus 10ºC at the highest altitudes.

Winter: December to end February. Despite the cooler conditions this is an ideal time to trek in Nepal. Skies are usually very clear especially in December and the mountain views are at their best. Nights will be very cold with temperatures down to minus 15ºC to minus 20ºC at the highest altitudes but days are pleasant and sunny. The trails are also much less busy at this time of year. In Kathmandu maximum daytime temperatures are 19ºC.

Pre-monsoon/spring: March to May. Both day and night temperatures will be warmer in general but often a haze will build up in the afternoons. It is very hot in the lowlands and temperatures rise to 35ºC in Kathmandu. Flowers bloom in this season and this is one of the reasons people chose to trek in spring.

Snow can be expected on any departure, usually at the higher altitudes.

Please remember that in any mountain area the weather is never wholly predictable and you should be prepared and equipped to deal with any differences in weather beyond the conditions described above

Weather Charts

Kathmandu

Kathmandu

Joining Instructions

Travelling flight inclusive from London: 17 days

The group flight from London is an overnight flight departing the day before Day 1 of the itinerary.

Flights from London

We normally use the scheduled services of Turkish Airways or occasionally Oman Air (depending on availability). As flight timings and schedules change regularly we recommend you call one of our specialist sales staff or your agent to confirm up‐to‐date timings. Please note timings may change at a later date and cannot be confirmed until approximately two weeks before departure.

Internal flights during the trip are with a local airline.

Travelling land only: 16 days starting and ending in Kathmandu

Your trip normally starts at our hotel in Kathmandu in the afternoon of Day 1 of the itinerary. Details of how to reach the start point are provided in the Final Joining Instructions ‐ sent approximately two weeks before departure.

Please pay attention to the Internal Flight Delays section of the Trip Notes.

As advice about luggage allowances for both hand and hold luggage is subject to change, we suggest you check the airline's website for the latest information prior to your departure. The usual, standard check-in baggage weight allowance is 20kg.

Regional Flights

The Flight Inclusive price is based on a London departure, but we are happy to tailor this to your local or regional airport. Please ask about flights from local or regional airports.

If booking regional flights other than with Exodus, you must allow a minimum connecting time (in addition to the international check-in time) of 1 hour at Gatwick, and 1.5 hours at Heathrow; this is longer than the official minimum, but baggage handling is known to be subject to delays.

Free Transfers

Exodus offers FREE airport arrival and departure transfers on any flight for this trip, for both Land Only and Flight Inclusive clients. Unless specified otherwise, the transfer will be to the Exodus start (or pre-tour) hotel and from the end (or post-tour) hotel, and will be on the date on which the tour starts/ends; transfers to other hotels in the same city and/or on different dates may attract an extra charge. Transfers may be shared with other Exodus customers on the same flight, or on a flight with similar arrival times. All those taking advantage of the free airport transfers must provide full flight details for both arrival and departure in advance. 

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Transfers Details

The cost of a taxi is likely to be about £6/US$10 should you decide to make your way independently.

Location start:
Kathmandu
Location end:
Kathmandu

What to Take

Essential Equipment

It is essential that you have suitable clothing and equipment for your trek to protect from the elements and trail conditions. Please download our Everest Region kit list HERE for reference. Please ensure that you follow the advice for the time of year you will be trekking and for your tour (trip code TNT).

All luggage for the trek should be packed in a soft duffel bag / Exodus kitbag. Many people find it easiest to pack the duffel/kitbag inside a wheelie case which can be left in at the hotel Kathmandu free of charge with anything not needed for the trek, whilst the duffel/kitbag will be carried by your porter on the trek.

Animals are usually used for porterage and each carries four kitbags (where human porters are used, they carry two bags each), therefore please respectfully limit your kitbag to 10kg maximum per person. There is also a weight restriction on the flight to and from Lukla of 10kg checked baggage plus 5kg hand luggage. If your check-in luggage exceeds this, there is an excess luggage charge (approx. £1 per kg).

There can be unseasonal snowfall on any trek. You may want to bring a pair of Yaktrax (mini-crampons) or similar if you have a pair. If your leader thinks there may be snowfall they will recommend carrying a pair for safety. It is possible to buy them in Kathmandu or Namche cheaply.

We recommend bringing at least one standard passport photo with you just in case of need as although they are not currently required for your trekking permit or to obtain a visa on arrival (provided you use the electronic visa kiosks), regulations can change at short notice or the kiosks may be out of order (in which case a photo will be required).

Equipment hire

There are many equipment shops in Kathmandu where you can buy much of the above clothing. The quality does vary and cannot be guaranteed so you should choose carefully.

The following equipment can be hired through Exodus - the equipment is good quality and will keep you warm but it is bulky and you should take this into account when packing due to the weight limits for both porterage and domestic flights. Hire equipment should be requested and paid for in advance of travel but will be provided locally in Kathmandu. Approximate hire prices are as below:

Down jacket (approx. 1.8kgs): from £45
4 season sleeping bag (approx. 2.3 kgs): from £45
Package including a down jacket and a 4-season sleeping bag: from £63

Donations for porters, children and the elderly

If while packing, you find a spare bit of space in your bag then you may be interested in donating to one of Exodus' projects. Exodus supports a Porter Clothing Bank in Kathmandu, as well as children in local schools in Kathmandu and various villages, and an old people's home in Kyanjin Gompa in the upper part of the Langtang Valley. If you have any old walking gear this can be donated to porters, and similarly, any warm clothing or blankets would be appreciated by the old people's home - please leave these items with your leader or at the Exodus desk at the Royal Singi Hotel. Books, stationery, games, warm clothes/underwear etc. suitable for children aged 5-18 years should be taken to the Ambassador Garden Home in Thamel and given to Prakash Lammichanne. Contact No: +977 1 4700724.

Exodus Kitbag

If you book this trip, we provide an Exodus kitbag to pack your luggage in whilst on trek. Once you have booked you will be sent instructions on how to claim your free bag (they will not be sent out automatically). There are also details on how to claim for another item from the Exodus shop should you already have one of these. If you book via an agent, it is at the agent’s discretion and you should speak directly to them to arrange delivery. Please note that if you book less than three weeks before the departure date we cannot guarantee that your kitbag will arrive before your trip starts, so if this is the case please contact us on [email protected] to let us know. For full T&Cs see www.exodus.co.uk/kitbags.

Kala Pattar, Nepal

Practical Information

Passport

Nepal

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Visa

Nepal

Most nationalities require a visa for Nepal, which can be obtained in advance or on entry. All Nepal tourist visas are multiple entry. We recommend that you apply in advance as queues on arrival can be very long – applications can be made directly through the Nepal Embassy (by post or in person) or through our recommended visa agency, Travcour. The current cost for a visa in advance is GB£20 for a 15-day visa and GB£35 for a 30-day visa for UK passport holders (plus processing and postage fees if applying through Travcour).

The current cost for a visa on arrival is US$30 for 15 days, US$50 for 30 days, or US$125 for 90 days for UK passport holders. The fee can be paid for in any major currency at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. On arrival in the immigration hall there are 3 queues (if you have obtained a visa in advance go straight to (3) - immigration):

(Step 1) Fill in a 'Tourist Visa' form: either online before travel (recommended) via the Department of Immigration website - print the submission receipt with barcode (valid for 15 days) and bring it with you, or use the electronic kiosk machines on arrival at the airport. If using the kiosks, after inserting your passport the machine will automatically fill out an application form, take an electronic photograph of you and print a paper slip. If the machine won’t read your passport you can complete the details manually using the touch screen. We recommend taking 1 passport photo with you just in case. (Step 2) Proceed to the visa fees collection counter and pay the visa fee (we advise to take some cash) – make sure to keep the receipt. (Step 3) Lastly, go to the relevant immigration desk and present your tourist visa form, payment receipt and passport to obtain your 15, 30 or 90-day visa stamp. Please check you have been given the correct visa duration.

Non-UK nationals should check requirements with their nearest embassy (a few nationalities are not permitted visas on arrival).

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

Vaccination

Nepal

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A.

There is low to no risk of malaria throughout Nepal and antimalarial tablets are not usually advised although may be considered for certain higher risk groups; you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice. The risk is highest in the low lying southern ‘terai’ districts bordering India.

A yellow fever certificate is only required if travelling from a country with risk of yellow fever transmission or for travellers having transited for more than 12 hours through a country with risk of transmission.

Dengue fever is a known risk in Nepal. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. As of August 2019, there has been a recent outbreak of Dengue fever in southeast Nepal and we therefore recommend you take extra precautions to avoid mosquito bites (such as wearing full length trousers, long sleeves and applying insect repellent during the day as well as at dawn and dusk).

Most of our trips to Nepal go to high altitudes where there is a risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness. Our itineraries are designed to enable everyone to acclimatise to these altitudes, but you should be aware that it is still possible for you to be affected. Please refer to the Altitude Warning within the Trip Notes for further advice on AMS.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

The above information can change at short notice; as we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Altitude warning

This trip includes one or more nights over 3500m above sea level, where there is a genuine risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). If left untreated AMS can be life-threatening. We expect most clients to experience some mild symptoms of altitude sickness, such as headaches and shortness of breath while walking or sleeplessness. Our leaders are trained to identify symptoms of severe AMS and if a client requires extra care, arrangements such as rapid descent will be made immediately.

On some days this trip climbs faster than commonly published ascent rate recommendations. Based upon an assessment by our external safety and medical advisors and our risk assessment process, we consider the ascent rate is acceptable due to the additional safety measures that are in place for our customers. All our trips operating at high altitude meet our internal altitude safety standards that minimise the risk of serious incidents occurring whilst travelling at altitude.

A number of medical conditions or medications can reduce your body's ability to acclimatise. This may affect your performance and make you more susceptible to AMS. If you are worried about any pre-existing conditions, such as heart conditions, or your overall physical ability, you must seek medical advice prior to booking. The drug Diamox (also known as acetazolamide and normally only available on prescription) has been shown to aid acclimatisation in some individuals, and therefore may reduce the risk of AMS. Clients considering using Diamox should speak to their doctor about the drug, its side-effects and a prescription. Please note that while we endeavour to assist all our clients in achieving their goals, there may be times when your leader decides to delay or stop your ascent based on your overall condition, or the onset of AMS.

Please note: that while we endeavour to assist all our clients in achieving their goals, there may be times when your leader decides to delay or stop your ascent based on your overall condition, or the onset of AMS.

If you are not taking out Exodus Travel Insurance, make sure that your policy covers you up to the maximum altitude on this trip (if trekking in the Himalaya your policy should also cover the use of a helicopter for emergency medical evacuation).

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

Nepal's Timezone:
Asia/Kathmandu +0545 (GMT +05:45)

Electricity

Nepal's Electricity:

230V, 50Hz. On teahouse treks the majority of lodges now have electricity and charging facilities in the communal areas for batteries, for a fee (around Rs150-350 per hour). Battery life can be affected by cold - lithium batteries are best.

Money

Nepal's Currency

The national currency of Nepal is the Nepalese Rupee (NPR), with an exchange rate at the time of publication of approximately 141 to the UK£ and 113 to the US$.

It is illegal to import or export rupees, but foreign currency is not limited, provided it is declared on arrival.

Keep your change receipts, as you will need them if you want to change rupees back into hard currency at Kathmandu airport.

ATM Availability

There are ATM machines in Kathmandu. Please do not rely wholly on ATM machines as many are broken or run out of money and most have a limit of less than GB£100 which you can withdraw at any one time. If you are on the group flight you will only have 1 night in Kathmandu before leaving for the trek and it is difficult to withdraw all the money you need for the trek through ATM’s. 

Credit cards are accepted in many of the larger shops and restaurants in Kathmandu and are now accepted in the lodges in Namche Bazaar.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

We recommend taking your personal spending money in cash and changing it on arrival at Kathmandu airport (most major currencies including Dollars, Pounds Sterling or Euros can all be changed easily) - there is a currency exchange before and after immigration. Please note that any marked, torn or damaged notes may not be accepted. £50 notes or any Scottish or Irish Currency cannot be changed in Nepal. Hotels in Nepal are permitted to change a limited amount of cash but not large amounts. If you have time to go into Thamel before the trek, then there are plenty of money changers there. Please note that travellers' cheques cannot be exchanged in Nepal.

It is possible to buy things like beer, soft drinks, chocolate, toilet paper etc. from the teahouses en route. Spending habits are subjective, so it is impossible to give an exact amount of spending money required, however as a rough guideline, we recommend between GB£300 and GB£500 (approx. US$370-620) per person in total (inclusive of tips, expenditure on trek, and meals in Kathmandu). Imported drinks and snacks are relatively expensive. Your expenditure will be towards the top end if you buy boiled water rather than treating cold water, and depending on how many hot showers you take, if you pay to charge electrical devices, drink alcohol, use Wi-Fi on trek, and so on. 

Optional Excursions

A number of optional tours and activities are available from Kathmandu.

Prices for a half day sightseeing tour start from £25 (approx. US$40) per person, based on a group of 6 and above. For all trips, return transport and a qualified sightseeing guide are included. The price does not include lunch or entry fees. Please enquire with your leader in Kathmandu, who will be able to provide further information.

An optional Everest sightseeing flight is available (again, please book this locally through your leader or the Exodus desk in the Royal Singi Hotel in Kathmandu). Anyone taking an internal sightseeing flight in Nepal should pay particular attention to the statement 'Flying in Nepal'.

Tipping

Tipping is very much part of the culture in Nepal and although entirely at your discretion, it is usually expected. Often people would like to tip in recognition of good service but are unsure how much would be appropriate - for this reason a Tipping Information Sheet will be provided locally with some recommendations - these are intended as a guideline only.

We recommend budgeting approximately Rupees NRs 6,000- NRs 10,000 (appro£45/US$57 - £70/US$90) per person in total for tips for your trekking crew, excluding a tip for your leader. Regardless of the number of clients on a trek, there is a minimum number of staff required for the trek and for this reason, the recommended tipping amounts per person for groups of 7 people or less are a little higher: NRs 7,500-NRs10,000 (approx. £55/US$70 - £70/US$90) per person. If animals have been used rather than Sherpa porters it will be the smaller amount. 

To show appreciation to your tour leader a tip of around Rs2000-3000 (approx. GB£15-£20/ US$20-25) per person for the tour would be appreciated. You may like to pass an envelope around the group so that everyone can put in whatever amount they like anonymously, and this can then be given to the leader on the last night of the tour. 

A small amount should also be allowed for the tipping of hotel porters (Rs100 per room per time), restaurants (10% of the bill if good service) and drivers (Rs500 per group for half a day).

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Exodus has a longstanding relationship with our local partner in Nepal, having worked with the family business for over 30 years. We employ local leaders, guides and staff throughout and work with family-run hotels wherever possible, such as the Hotel Royal Singi.

Exodus has set up and supported many projects in Nepal over the decades, from installing solar cookers and donating smokeless stoves, to supporting a tree nursery in Braga (Annapurna’s) and helping supply water and hydro-electric power to several villages.

Following the 2015 Nepal earthquake, Exodus’ emergency fundraising appeal raised over a quarter of a million pounds. This enabled us to provide immediate and longer-term emergency support in the necessary areas. Exodus worked with volunteers from Nepal Medical College to run a medical camp in the remote village of Thulopatel in 2016, and sponsored Health Partnership Nepal to run a medical camp in Charikot in 2017. We are also proud to support Freedom Kit Bags (providing sanitary wear) for women in Nepal..

To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here... and follow the link to Himalayan Community Support.

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

In an emergency, please contact our 24 hour out of hours service on +44 (0) 844 326 7041.

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

TRAVEL AWARE –STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to www.exodus.co.uk for online booking, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.