Start line, Tenzing-Hillary Everest Marathon, Nepal

Tenzing-Hillary Everest Marathon with Paul Goldstein

18 days
from
£2,999
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Challenging
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Trip code: 
TNM
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Point-to-Point
Group size:
4–16
Min age:
18

The world's highest altitude marathon, from Everest Base Camp to Namche Bazaar

The Tenzing-Hillary Marathon takes place on 29th May each year to celebrate the anniversary of the first ascent of Mount Everest by the late Tenzing Norgay Sherpa and Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953. 2020 will be the 18th edition of this monumental event - the highest altitude marathon in the world. Take part in this challenging 42km/26mile race, starting from below the ice seracs at Everest Base Camp and finishing in Namche Bazaar with Exodus' Paul Goldstein who will be undertaking this endurance test in a giant tiger suit to raise money for the 'Worth More Alive' campaign in the fight to save the Bengal tiger from extinction. Paul, together with Exodus Travels, is raising money to work with and educate local communities about the plight of the tigers, and their value to tourism in India. We ask anyone booking onto this trip to support this cause.

Please note:

  • The Flight Inclusive and Land Only price for this trip includes a US$999 marathon entrance fee
  • The Activity Level (Challenging / 5) is for the trek only. Please read the 'Is This Trip for You?' text under Essential Information or in the Trip Notes for details about the marathon

If there is enough interest from those who are keen to show support but not wanting to run the marathon, Exodus will consider operating a non-runners supporters trek - please enquire. 

Highlights

  • Compete in the Tenzing-Hillary Marathon on 29th May, the anniversary of the first ascent of Everest
  • Support Paul Goldstein (who will be running in a giant tiger costume) in raising money for the 'Worth More Alive' campaign to save the endangered Bengal tiger
  • Led by mountaineer Valerie Parkinson who has over 30 years' experience of Himalayan trekking 
  • Camp at Everest Base Camp at the foot of the Khumbu Icefall
  • Chance to trek up Kala Pattar for close-up views of Mount Everest

Key information

  • 3 nights standard hotels, 11 nights teahouses and 2 nights full-service camping
  • 12 days point-to-point walking plus 1 full 42km/26mi marathon, with full porterage 
  • Fully marshalled race, with the additional support of Exodus guides 
  • Runners must have previous (recent) experience of trekking at altitude, have run other marathons, and will need to train under fell, trail, cross-country or mountain conditions
  • Group normally 4 to 16 plus tour leader and local staff. Min. age 18 yrs
  • Altitude maximum 5545m, average 3900m
  • Travel by private minibus and 2 internal flights
  • The trek portion involves between 5 and 8 hours walking per day, with some longer days
  • Staff carry oxygen and a first aid kit 
  • Countries visited: Nepal

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 3 lunches and 3 dinners are included
  • Morning bed-tea on trek and welcome drink at each overnight lodge
  • 3 nights standard hotels, 11 nights teahouses and 2 nights full-service camping (sleeping mats are provided)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Led by valerie Parkinson, plus local staff (staff to client ratio of 1:4 on trek). Fully marshalled race  
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Full porterage throughout trek 
  • Everest Marathon Kitbag 
  • Marthon participation medal, certificate, souvenir tracksuit and T-shirt
  • Trekking map (provided locally)
  • Trekking permit and national park fees

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request, Kathmandu only)
  • Visas and vaccinations
  • Sleeping bag (hire in advance)
  • Down jacket (hire in advance) 
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3943
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

13

Days of Walking & Trekking
Pace:

Approximately 5-8hrs walking per day on average, with some longer days, plus 1 full marathon

Terrain:

High altitude; including steep, rocky terrain

Day by day breakdown
Day 38.0km/5.0miles
Day 415.0km/9.0miles
Day 510.0km/6.0miles
Day 66.0km/4.0miles
Day 710.0km/6.0miles
Day 88.0km/5.0miles
Day 98.0km/4.0miles
Day 1013.0km/8.0miles
Day 115.0km/3.0miles
Day 1342.195km/26.219miles
Day 146.0km/3.7miles
Day 1513.0km/8.0miles
Tenzing-Hillary Marathon finish line, Namche Bazaar, Nepal

Responsible Travel

Tourism can be a real help to local communities, providing income, positive cultural exchanges and a financial incentive to protect their natural environment. Ours is a 'total approach' to responsible tourism, covering everything from the way we plan and operate our trips to the practices of Exodus as a company. 

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

Exodus has set up and supported many projects in Nepal over the decades, from installing solar cookers and donating smokeless stoves (a safer means of cooking, which helps prevent eye and lung problems), to supporting a tree nursery in Braga (in the Annapurna) 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 which was used to provide immediate and longer-term relief, with thanks to our loyal customers and friends. One of Exodus' proudest achievements, in partnership with volunteers from Nepal Medical College, was running a medical camp in Thulopatel in 2016 where over 1,500 patients from rural communities were treated for a variety of ailments. Exodus also worked with Health Partnership Nepal and sponsored their medical camp in Charikot in 2017. To date, Exodus has also sponsored more than 1200 Freedom Kits (providing sanitary wear) for women in Nepal.

To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

London
to
London
  • Day 1

    17 MAY - Depart London

    The group flight is an overnight flight departing London this evening.

  • Day 2

    18 MAY - Arrive Kathmandu

    The tour starts at the Hotel Royal Singi in Kathmandu. The group flights arrive into Kathmandu in the morning and those travelling on them will be met at the airport and transferred to our hotel. There will be a full briefing this evening where you will be given your marathon kitbag, T-shirt and bib. 

    Royal Singi Hotel 

  • Day 3

    19 MAY - 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. At this time of day when there is usually light traffic, the drive should take about 4 hours. Please be aware that roads in Nepal are not of the same standard as in the west, there may be potholed areas and the last section is unsurfaced. The flights to Lukla start from approx. 6/6:30am. 

    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
  • Day 4

    20 MAY - 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 bustles 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
  • Day 5

    21 MAY - 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 scalp in the world! Descending to the main trail we spend the night at Kyanjuma.

    Paul Goldstein and his support team will join us at the lodge in Kyanjuma this evening. Look out for the tiger suit coming around the mountain! Paul will accompany you from this point onwards, until the day after the marathon (30th May), when he will get a head start back to Lukla and Kathmandu. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 3,600m)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    22 MAY - 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
  • Day 7

    23 MAY - 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
  • Day 8

    24 MAY - 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.

    Tea-house

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 9

    25 MAY - 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. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 4,930m)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 10

    26 MAY - Follow the Khumbu Glacier to Gorak Shep; optional ascent of Kala Pattar

    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.

    We will need to reorganise our kitbags tonight. Tomorrow morning, we will leave our main luggage at Gorak Shep and take with us to Base Camp only a small bag with enough gear for the next 2 nights and for race day. Exodus porters will take your smaller bag to Base Camp before doubling back to collect your main kitbag from Gorak Shep on their way back to Namche.

    Teahouse (sleeping altitude 5,184m)

    (Trek Profile: 3.5-4 hrs walking Lobuje to Gorak Shep and 4 hrs up and down Kala Pattar) 

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 11

    27 MAY - 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, report to the marathon organisers, 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 5,364m)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 12

    28 MAY - Everest Marathon briefing and mock race. Camp overnight

    There will be a full marathon briefing and a mock race today. Participants may be required to report to the race doctors who are stationed here prior to tomorrow's race. 

    As excitement and anticipation builds, we spend the rest of the day gently exploring the area around Base Camp to acclimatise and prepare for tomorrow's race. We may be able to meet climbing Sherpas preparing for or returning from their summit climb and may well be able to watch climbers as they ascend/descend the Khumbu Ice Fall. If it is there (and they are quiet), we can visit the Everest ER medical tent. 

    Full-service camping (sleeping altitude 5,364m)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 13

    29 MAY - MARATHON DAY: Everest Base Camp to Namche Bazaar

    We'll be up early to eat some breakfast before the race - it's recommended to finish eating approx. 2 hours before. The race starts at 07:00 in the morning (around sunrise). Exodus' Paul Goldstein and his striped tiger suit will be ready and raring to undertake this endurance test in support of the 'Worth More Alive' campaign, raising money to protect the endangered Bengal tiger... wish him and his feline friend luck! The first approx. 5km present the most challenging terrain of the marathon as the trail crosses back over the rocky, boulder-strewn Khumbu Glacier back to Gorak Shep. Joining the main Everest trail, the footing becomes easier. The route descends through Lobuche (9.6km/6mi, 4,940m) and on to Dingboche (17.3km/10.7, 4,359m), where runners will make a loop at Biber before continuing along the Imja Valley. Orsho (21km/13mi) marks the half way point and you should really start to notice the higher oxygen levels here. Continue through Pangboche (27.5km/17.1, 4,012m), Deboche, Tengboche (32.6km/20.3, 3,868m) to Phunki Tenga (34km/21.1) - here you cross a bridge over the river and tackle the longest climb of the race, ascending 523m up to Khunde. The marathon culminates with one last descent past the Hillary School into Namche Bazaar (3,550m). Any supporting non-runners will be waiting in Namche to cheer you on over the finish line!

    It's not surprising that a Nepali runner, Mr. Deepak Rai, holds the record, with a staggeringly rapid time of 3 hours 28minutes and 27 seconds (2006).

    Noodle soup or porridge will be available at Dingboche. Your main kitbag that you left at Gorak Shep will be waiting for you in Namche. Your smaller bag that you left at Base Camp will arrive either later today or early tomorrow morning.

    Teahouse (sleeping altitude 3,550m)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 14

    30 MAY - Descend to Monzo

    Spend a leisurely morning resting or exploring Namche before making the short descent to Monzo. Paul will part ways with us again today, setting off for Lukla and the journey back to Kathmandu. 

    Tea-house (sleeping altitude 2,850m)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 15

    31 MAY - 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
  • Day 16

    1 JUNE - Fly to Manthali (Ramechhap) airport and transfer to Kathmandu

    We fly back to Manthali (Ramechhap) airport and transfer to our hotel in Kathmandu. Please note that 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 17

    2 JUNE - 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 18

    3 JUNE - Fly to London

    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.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

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).

Vaccinations

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.

Eating and Drinking

Breakfast is included throughout the trip and lunch and dinner is included at Base Camp and on marathon day.

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. Whilst camping, all meals are included and will be a mixture of Nepali and Western dishes. On marathon day noodle soup or porridge will be available at Dingboche. Please bring your own energy or protein gels/bars/electrolyte sachets for race day.

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 from powder/packets 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 Trip Notes suggest.

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.

Weather

The main trekking season in Nepal is from October to 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. 

Pre-monsoon/spring: May. May is generally the warmest month during the trekking season, typically with strong sunshine during the day - at high altitudes where the air is thin, the UV rays are strong and SPF50 sun cream is recommended. Temperatures will vary with altitude and have been less predictable in recent years. Rain cannot be ruled out but is usually in the form of light showers in the afternoons if it occurs. At higher altitudes precipitation will be snow, not rain, and sudden snow showers are possible in spring. Mornings are generally clear, and a haze often builds up in the afternoons in spring. In general, day time temperatures on trek may reach highs of 20-22ºC, although in the shade it may drop to 10-15ºC not allowing for any wind chill. Mornings and evenings will be cooler, say 5-10ºC. At the higher reaches of the trek temperatures at night and early morning may fall below freezing (usually no lower than to -5-8ºC in May but extremes are always possible). It is very hot in the lowlands and temperatures rise to 35ºC in Kathmandu. 

Whilst extreme weather conditions are not common in May, mountain regions are particularly changeable and unpredictable, and it is possible to have sudden hot or cold fronts and you should be prepared for extremes beyond the conditions described above.

Kathmandu

Kathmandu

Is this trip for you?

'Worth More Alive' fundraising

This trip is a charity fundraiser, the proceeds of which will go towards renovating two impoverished schools (catering for around 1000 students) in Bandhavgarh, India as part of the 'Worth More Alive' (WMA) project which Exodus and Paul Goldstein have supported for many years. Bandhavgarh National Park is home to the endangered Bengal tiger, and the WMA project works with the local communities surrounding the park to educate them about the importance of protecting these beautiful animals, and the benefit that preserving them rather than hunting them can bring to the region from tourism. We kindly ask that anyone taking part in this trip also supports this cause.

Need to know

The activity level (Challenging / 5) refers to the trek only. For details about running the 42km/26mile full Tenzing-Hillary Everest Marathon (the world’s highest marathon) you should read this section and the itinerary carefully. The marathon starts at Everest Base Camp and ends in Namche Bazaar.  A GPX map of the route is available HERE

There are 12 days point-to-point walking plus the race day itself. There is full porterage for your main luggage throughout but you will need to carry your own day pack. 

The race is accurately measured, fully marshalled and there will be attendants at regular checkpoints, and drink stations. There will be an official timekeeper and runners will wear an electronic wristband that allows the race organisers to keep track of your progress. In addition to the official race event staff, there will be a minimum of 1 member of Exodus staff for every 4 clients, headed up by Exodus leader and mountaineer Valerie Parkinson. Marathon Doctors will also be on hand at Base Camp and on race day, and there will be arrangements in place for medical and emergency evacuations.

In order to partake in this trip, you must be in good health and exceptional physical condition. The marathon organiser (Himalaya Expeditions) requires all participants to complete a Medical Form signed by your doctor stating that you are healthy, free of injury and comfortable at high altitudes. You will also be required to complete the organiser’s Registration Form: whilst Himalaya Expeditions accept no liability, this does not affect your rights in relation to Exodus Travels, based on our booking conditions and the Package Travel Regulations.

You must have previous (recent) experience of trekking at altitude. You should have run other marathons and will need to train or race under fell, trail, cross-country or mountain conditions beforehand in order to prepare for it.

The terrain at the start may be snow-covered, crosses the undulating rocky moraine of the Khumbu Glacier, and involves numerous steep and uneven stone steps and mountain trails. As well as the terrain, the altitude is what makes this tough. The race starting point is 5,362m and there will be 2,777m of ascent and 4,579m of descent before reaching the finish line at 3,540m. The maximum altitude on this tour is 5,545m (Kala Pattar) and the average is approximately 3,900m. This itinerary includes three acclimatisation days in addition to the two compulsory days for marathon entrants at Base Camp prior to the race. Please read the ‘Altitude Warning’ in the Trip Notes. There is also a free day in Kathmandu at the end of the tour to allow for Lukla flight delays. Please ensure that your insurance covers you to the maximum altitude of this trip and for the marathon: if taking out insurance through Exodus, we will provide an endorsement letter confirming the terms of cover for the marathon.

Please also note that if you have a fear of heights or suffer from vertigo then this trip may not be suitable for you as there are several high suspension bridges (all with mesh sides) along the trail, which are unavoidable. 

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.

Please Note: Even if the departure date is guaranteed and you have booked onto the tour, your marathon registration will initially be 'On Request' until we have successfully reserved your place. We will endeavour to reserve your marathon place as soon as your booking is confirmed but cannot do so until we have received the following information from you:

  1. Completed Medical Form
  2. Completed Registration Form
  3. A scanned copy of your passport
  4. A copy of your travel insurance certificate
  5. Your size for the race T-shirt (and souvenir tracksuit):

                  Chest (inches): 30-32(XS), 34-36(S), 38-40(M), 42-44(L), 46-48(XL), 48-50(2XL)
                  Waist (inches): 28-30(XS), 30-32(S), 32-33(M), 33-34(L), 36-38(XL), 40-42(2XL)

Loyalty discount or Exodus vouchers or any other discount cannot be redeemed on this tour.

Amendment to Exodus’ Booking Conditions:

As places are limited for the marathon event, Exodus will book your marathon place as soon as we receive your booking. There is a non-refundable registration fee for the marathon and as such, Exodus will need to take a higher booking deposit than normal for this tour, which will be non-refundable and non-transferable. If you cancel your tour you will lose your deposit. This is an amendment to Exodus’ booking conditions.

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.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3943
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels, Lodges & Camping

This tour spends three nights in a comfortable hotel in Kathmandu, eleven nights in lodges (teahouses) and two nights full-service camping at Everest Base Camp.

 In Kathmandu we usually stay at the Hotel Royal Singi, 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 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). Most lodges in the Everest region offer Wi-Fi. - below Kyanjuma you have to pay for it in each lodge (approx. NPR500 per stay). Above Kyanjuma you can buy an Everest link data card for about NPR2000 that should work in all the lodges above Kyanjuma. Sometimes the Wi-Fi may not work because of the poor network coverage or power cuts.

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. As a general rule, the higher altitude you go to, the more basic the lodges and the more expensive food and services become. The lodges at Gorak Shep are very basic. 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.

For the two nights camping, mattresses are provided and you will sleep in tents pitched on the glacial moraine. There will be a dining tent with chairs, toilet tents and full camp staff. All food and hot drinks, snacks and water are provided whilst camping.

Extra Accommodation

If you require any additional accommodation in Kathmandu either before or after the tour, Exodus 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 hotel nights in Kathmandu only (subject to availability). While in the tea-houses and camping, single rooms/tents cannot be guaranteed but if a single room is available in the lodge that night, you can pay locally on a day by day basis.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3943
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Be the first to post your review! If you have recently returned from an Exodus adventure and want to help other travellers with your feedback then simply use the link below to post your holiday review.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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