Everest Base Camp Trek Itinerary
Mt. Everest base camp is found on countless bucket lists around the world, and for good reason. The Himalayas, including Mt. Everest, are massive, awe-inspiring, and often times, spiritual.
The Everest region has so much to offer. Since many different treks and climbing opportunities lead adventurers through many of these villages, take some time to orient yourself with the villages you might visit.
Depending on the itinerary given you, and the strengths and weaknesses of your particular group, you may or may not visit all of the listed villages below.
9,186 ft / 2,799m
Lukla is the starting and ending point for all expeditions that go in and out of the Everest region. This is for many reasons, one being that the Tenzing-Hillary Airport is one of two airports in the region, thus allowing easy and quick access to an otherwise difficult region to reach.
In the Khumbu region, there are as many trekking and climbing options as there are peaks and valleys to explore; it seems endless. But when all is said and done, they all go through Lukla.
8,700 ft / 2,651m
Phakding is positioned as the mid-way point between two of the larger villages: Lukla and Namche Bazaar. It’s also more often than not the first village you will stop and sleep at, skipping Lukla in order to gain ground on your way to Everest base camp.
It’s nestled in a beautiful forest, deep in a mountain valley.
Hiking to and from Phakding is refreshing and pleasurable. The trail follows the Dudh Koshi River, making the journey interesting and exciting since there are many suspension bridge crossings.
11,280 ft / 3,438m
Namche Bazaar can be considered “civilization,” when comparing it to the surrounding villages, due to its many hotels, restaurants, hospital, military base, access to a small airport, and the headquarters of the Sagarmatha National Park.
Trekkers and climbers alike will often spend at least two nights in Namche in order to acclimatize to expected higher elevations.
Namche is the last village you can get goods and gear you might need for the upper mountain.
12,660 ft / 3,858m
Tengboche is perched upon a small but significant mountain prow. Its position in the valley provides unparalleled views of both up and down the Khumbu valley.
Tengboche also boasts one of the most famous Tibetan buddhist monasteries in the region. The Tibetan monks can be seen in full regalia, practicing the sacred rites of Tibetan buddhism.
The strategic location of Tengboche makes it a perfect place to view Mt. Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, and Ama Dablam. Because of this, many trekkers will turn around here, having accomplished their goal of viewing Everest with their own eyes.
14,300 ft. / 4,358m
Dingboche is a cross-roads of sorts. There are many trail options that depart from Dingboche. You can reach both Island Peak’s (Emja Tse) and Ama Dablam’s basecamp from Dingboche. You can also continue up the Khumbu valley to reach Mt. Everest base camp.
Since Dingboche’s elevation is a mid-point between Everest’s and Lukla’s elevations, trekkers and climbers will often spend two nights here, making an acclimatization hike on the second day, then returning for the night.
15,207 ft. / 4,635m
Lobuche is spectacularly placed. It sits beneath the massive wall of Nuptse, which stands 10,000 ft. overhead.
The stunning views only get better as an evening acclimatization hike takes you to the lateral moraine of the Khumbu Glacier. Looking down onto the glacier, you can see ice lakes, seracs, and massive chunks of glacial ice.
Up valley, you can see the towering mountain called Pumori. It’s snow, ice, and rock texture makes it stand out amongst the giants that surround it.
16,961 ft. / 5,169m
Gorakshep was once the basecamp for Mt. Everest. Now it’s a launching point to reach both the modern-day base camp, and the summit of Kala Patthar. The summit of Kala Patthar is easily one of the best locations to view Mt. Everest without having to climb a major peak.
The elevation and cold weather at Gorakshep can make staying here difficult. Be sure to acclimatize correctly and to have the best trekking/climbing gear available. After all, it’s cheap life insurance.
14,070 ft. / 4,288m
Pheriche is a small village with a big role. It is here that the advanced aid clinic for the Himalayan Rescue Association is based. All the acquired serious injuries climbers receive will likely land them in this small village. The medical rescue is basic in terms of western hospital standards, but well advanced as far as wilderness medicine goes.
Another important fact about Pheriche is that it is located in a serene river bottom. The serenity can’t easily be explained, but trust me when I say, you’ll not want to leave the valley once you step into it.
12,467 ft. / 3,800m
Phortse is a small village on the western side of the Dudh Koshi River. It’s perched high up on a mountain slope, which has been cut away and terraced for agricultural use.
The quaint village is hard to get to, but once you’re there, you will not regret the spanning views it offers.
Usually saved for one of the last villages you visit, Phortse allows you the unique opportunity to look down the valley and see all tremendous distance you traveled.