Everest Base Camp is the base camp of the world’s highest mountain Mt. Everest (8848 meters) located on the Nepal and China border. Climbing the mountain from the Nepalese side is more feasible and popular than from the Chinese side. So, naturally, trekkers from around the world are attracted to the trek to the base camp of Mt. Everest even though they aren’t climbing the mountain. Therefore, the Everest Base Camp trek is one of the sought out and most popular treks in the world.
Where is Everest Base Camp located?
Everest base camp is located in the Khumbu region of Nepal. The area is protected under Sagarmatha National Park ‘Everest National Park’ which is also the UNESCO World Heritage Site. One needs to fly to a small airstrip in Lukla from Kathmandu to get into the Khumbu region. Then start the trek all the way to the base camp. Alternatively if one doesn’t wish to fly to Lukla, they can trek to Lukla after a drive from Kathmandu to Jiri and start the trek which takes about 8 days till Namche Bazaar.
During the trek to the Everest Base Camp, one witnesses many interesting things from the beautiful natural landscapes to the unique culture and traditions of the Sherpa community, Buddhist monasteries, Mani walls, Chortens, yaks, high mountain villages, and of course views of some of the world’s highest peaks like Mt. Lhotse (8516m), Mt. Nuptse (7816m), Mt. Cho Oyu (8201m) and Mt. Everest (8848m) itself. So, before venturing out into this most exciting trek, do not forget to do the following things which will add more adventure to your trek.
1. Great Photography on the flight in/out of Lukla from Kathmandu
One thing you should not miss is the great photography that too in the Everest region with some of the world’s highest peaks including Mt. Everest. Photography begins to start once you board the flight from Kathmandu to Lukla which is about 30 minutes. Get your camera ready for some series of majestic mountains during the flight. Other popular spots for photography are the Everest Base Camp, Kalapathar, Namche Bazaar, Tengboche; you will find all the locations you visit most interesting for photography.
2. Greeting with Namaste!
Namaste is the most common greeting in Nepal when you start a conversation with anyone. It’s like saying hello to a friend, respect to the elderly. It can be used at any time of the day, mornings, noon, or evening. During the trek, if you greet the locals with Namaste, they’d be happy to return it with a warm smile and nice Namaste greeting to start up any talk.
3. Picture or video of one of the most dangerous airports in the world ‘Lukla’
Lukla airport is also known as ‘Tenzing Hillary Airport’ is considered one of the most dangerous airports in the world. The airport has a very short runway and is located on a vertical cliff. Most trekkers love to take selfies or pictures of this airport and also video should there be landing or taking off of any places flying back to Kathmandu or flying to Lukla.
Below is “Lukla airport landing and take off”.
4. Sagarmatha National Park Office, Monjo
Sagarmatha National Park Office at Monjo is the entrance to the Everest region and the national park. Here your Everest permit is also issued or checked if you have already issued it back in Kathmandu. You are instructed what to do and what not to do in the park at its office. You can also explore more about the park by asking the staff at the office. A photograph of it can be a good idea.
5. Sherpa Cultural Museum, Namche
Namche is a small village in Khumbu and the gateway to Everest. Namche has many lodges, hotels, restaurants, pubs, trekking shops etc. Besides these don’t forget to visit the Sherpa Culture Museum which gives a good insight into the Sherpa culture, civilization and to know more about legendary climbers including Tenzing Norgay Sherpa.
6. Tibetan Market at Namche in the evening
Tibetan Market at Namche in the evening is a great place to be in Namche. Enjoy the hustle and bustle of the Tibetan market and you can even find clothes, trek gears and equipment at a cheaper price.
7. Let the yaks and mules pass by
En-route trek you will encounter several times yaks and mules carrying heavy loads. They don’t like to stop and keep on moving. You should make their way and let them pass by, and let them go first. Otherwise, they will pass you away. So, please be careful. Yaks and mules are the only means of transportation after Lukla all the way to the Everest Base Camp.
8. Hotel Everest View hike from Namche
Hotel Everest View located just above Namche Bazaar is considered as the hotel located at the highest location in the world. Usually, on the third day of the Everest Base Camp trek, you hike to Hotel Everest View as a day side-excursion and also to get your first most clear view of Mt. Everest. Have a tea/coffee at the hotel, click some great snaps and hike back to Namche.
9. Visit Tengboche Monastery
Tengboche Monastery is the biggest and important monastery in the Khumbu region. Monks every evening offers a prayer in the monastery where you can join and offer your prayer too. It’s just spiritual and cleanses your mind to be a part of it. The chanting prayers and the good fragrances of incense will rejuvenate you and also adds extra energy to your trek.
10. Photograph of the Everest Base Camp signboard
Trekkers love to capture the picture of the signboard pointing the way towards the Everest Base Camp. It makes your trek more memorable and later recall what you have achieved. After the trek, you will feel proud that you have been to the world’s highest base camp.
11. Kalapathar hike
Without the hike to the Kalapathar, the most popular Himalayan viewpoint from where Mt. Everest is seen more closely, the trek to Everest Base Camp seems incomplete. Rarely a few people click their photographs at Kalapathar once you get there with the enormous Himalayas at it’s background. From it’s summit Mt. Pumori is just in front of you and Mt. Everest and it’s adjacent peaks closer by. It’s great photography of some of the world’s highest mountains including Mt. Everest from Kalapathar.
12. Take the right turn of the mani or mani wall
Taking right turn of the manis or mani wall will be the ‘Good Luck’ as per the Tibetan tradition and culture. You can notice everybody is taking the right turn of manis in the mountain. Rolling the Manis is offering the holy prayer to Buddha. Mani or mani walls are stone walls or huge stones where prayers offered to God are written.
13. Writing names at the Everest Base Camp
Once you get to Everest Base Camp, you will see many stones with names written on them. Also, many trekkers busy scribing their names on stones at the base camp. Now, it’s your turn to jot down your name on these stones for later memory.
14. Taste Thenthuk
Similar to Thukpa ‘Thenthuk’ is Tibetan food. Thenthuk is actually a noodle and vegetables boiled and served with some spices. This dish also keeps your body warm in the mountain. Thenthuk is a special dish in Khumbu. You can add some more species if you wish. Do not forget to taste it during your Everest Base Camp Trek.
15. Keep Khumbu region Clean
Last but not least and the most essential thing to do is Keeping the Khumbu region clean. Do not disturb any wildlife or birds; do not harm the wilderness and harmony among the ecological organisms. The trek is through Sagarmatha National Park and numerous small mountain villages. Do not throw garbage indiscriminately. Keep Khumbu Region clean.