Everest Base Camp Trek Itinerary

For many travellers, Nepal is one of the ultimate bucket lists. From experiencing the hustle and bustle of Thamel as the backpackers' haven to the once in a lifetime Himalayan Base Camp experience.  For many years, Nepal has ranked as one of the top 5 destinations according to main travel sites such Lonely Planet, Tripadvisor or National Geographic and most certainly the reason for this is the destination most often referred to as 'Base Camp'.  But what really is this 'Base Camp'?  Google defines this as the camp from which mountaineering expeditions are set out.  So it is likely the foot of a major mountain. 

Nepal is the home to the highest mountain in the world called the Everest.  While many know the name, not everyone would know it's location and which country it legally belongs to.  And the first stage to climb that infamous mountain is to actually reach the even more famous 'Everest Base Camp' or THE Base Camp.   I met several clients (my wife being one of them!) who thought of EBC as THE Base Camp.  But do you know there are actually more than 300 base camps in Nepal?  Yes, not one, not five, not ten and not even a hundred! There are 334 (to be exact) basecamps! Yes, the country is basically dotted with base camps and these are open for exploration!  I must admit, I probably have only been to not even 20 of them! The most famous, however, and the most visited and explored is the Everest Base Camp. I guess you could say it is the gateway to the mother of all mountains!

While it is an amazing experience, there are also some perils along the way, and it is important that all trekkers are aware of this.  Altitude sickness is one of the most common risks, but this can be mitigated (in most cases) with a proper itinerary.  EBC trek is actually listed as one with the highest rates of high altitude sickness.  Regardless of your fitness level or how experienced you are in high-altitude mountaineering, following the recommended itinerary (or at least the acclimatisation requirement) could prevent this.  I have seen experienced and even professional trekkers get airlifted from this trek to Kathmandu for experiencing severe cases of high-altitude sickness.  Which is why it is very important to follow certain itinerary when going for treks over 5,000m high mountains. 

Hopefully, this article will give you some idea of the itinerary you can follow when you start planning your Everest base camp trek.  And there are several options, depending on the number of days you have and the type of travel experience you wish to have. If you have any questions about this article, please do not hesitate to post a comment at the bottom of this page.  If you enjoy reading, we would also appreciate giving us a rating please on the right side-popping box or sharing our article.  

5 or 7 Days Everest View

5 or 7 days Everest View Trek Itinerary; If you only have a week to spare to see the Everest but would want to experience some treks in Nepal, don't despair as this is doable! Within 5 to 7 days of trekking in Sagarmatha National Park, this allows you to catch a glimpse of the Mt. Everest.  This trek, also known as Everest View trek, is probably the shortest possible trek you can take in Nepal that is near the Everest region. This is a great option for those with very limited time in Nepal or those young kids.  This is also recommended for travellers who are not physically fit to climb over 4,000m but would not want to miss out on the opportunity to see the Everest in this lifetime! I assure you, the view of the Himalayas from Namche and Tengboche is breathtaking! Sample itinerary could be:
Days                         Day to Day Itinerary         Elevation       Trek hour
   Meter     Feet
1 Fly from Kathmandu to Lukla and trek to Phakding 2,650m 8,694ft 3-4 hour trek
2 Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazar 3,450, 11,328ft 6-7 hour trek
3 Acclimatisation & side trip to Syanbouche, Everest View Hotel, Khumjung 3,850m 12,631ft 6-7 hour trek
4 Trek from Namche to Tangbouche 3,870m 12,696ft 7-8 hour trek
5 Trek from Tengboche to Monjo 2,836m 9,301ft 6-7 hour trek
6 Trek from Manjo to Lukla 2,860m 9,383ft 6-7 hour trek
7 Fly to Kathmandu from Lukla 1,300m 4,265ft 30 Min. flight

If you don't have the 7 days to spare, you can make this itinerary in just 5 days too but may have to miss Tengboche!  However, the Everest view from Tengboche is much nicer and a closer look so it is highly recommended that you don't miss this town. Here is how you travel may be if you only have 5 days:

Days                                Day to Day Itinerary         Elevation     Trek hour
   Meter     Feet
1 Fly from Kathmandu to Lukla and trek to Phakding 2,650m 8,694ft 3-4 hour trek
2 Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazar 3,450, 11,328ft 6-7 hour trek
3 Acclimatisation & side trip to Syanbouche, Everest View Hotel,Khumjung 3,850m 12,631ft 6-7 hour trek
4 Trek from Namche to Lukla 2,836m 9,301ft 7-8 hour trek
5 Fly from Lukla to Kathmandu 1,300m 4,265ft 30 Min. fllight

10 Days  Gokyo

10 Days Gokyo Valley Trek Itinerary; One of the highest lakes (in terms of altitude) in the world, Gokyo Valley has been recently named as one of the 7 most stunning natural wonders of Asia.  Gokyo is a sacred valley and home to the five holy lakes of Nepal. In the sample itinerary below, this should take you through 3 out of 5 lakes on our way to Gokyo Ri.  Gokyo Ri at 5,357m high in altitude is probably the most scenic place throughout the trail. I remember the first time I set my sights on Gokyo - it was love at first sight (don't tell my wife!).  I knew then that for me, there is no place on earth (not because I am a Nepali) that could beat this view...  

Gokyo Valley trek rewards the traveller with a magnificent panoramic view of the four peaks of the Great Himalaya ranges - all of which have an altitude of above 8,000 m including the Mt Everest at 8848 m. The other three are Mt. Lhotse (East and Shar) at roughly 8500 m, Mt. Makalu at 8,482 m and Mt. Cho-yu at 8,200m.  Not to mention that actually the Everest Base Camp trail is already very scenic!!   

To most EBC enthusiasts, Gokyo Ri is probably less well known than Kalapatthar for viewing the Everest.  This is because Kalapatthar provides a closer look of the Everest, although the view in Gokyo Ri is likely more astounding.  A sample itinerary is provided below. Note that this does not to EBC itself, but the highlight of this trip, is Gokyo Valley instead. 

Days                                Day to Day Itinerary         Elevation     Trek hour
   Meter     Feet
1 Fly from Kathmandu to Lukla and trek to Phakding 2,650m 8,694ft 3-4 hour trek
2 Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazar 3,450, 11,328ft 6-7 hour trek
3 Acclimatisation & side trip to Syanbouche, Everest View Hotel, Khumjung 3,850m 12,631ft 6-7 hour trek
4 Trek from Namche to Dole 4,038m 13,248ft 7-8 hour trek
5 Trek from Dole to Machhermo 4,470m 14,665ft 5-6 hour trek
6 Trek from Machhermo to Gokyo 4,700m 15,419ft 6-7 hour trek
7 Trek to Gokyo Ri (17,575ft) and trek down to Dole 4,038m 13,248ft 8-9 hour trek
8 Trek from Dole to Monjo 2,836m 9,301ft 7-8 hour trek
9 Trek from Monjo to Lukla 2,860m 9,383ft 5-6 hour trek
10 Flight back from Lukla to Kathmandu 1,300m 4,265ft 30 Min flight

12 Days EBC

12 Days Everest Base Camp Trek Itinerary; (EBC) at 5,360m is the classic route known to most trekkers who want to explore the Everest region of the Himalayan ranges.  Every trekker's dream is to stand on the foot of the mother of all peaks, the Mt Everest, and observe the ice fall doctors as they pave the way and prepare the Sherpa rituals on the Khumbu icefall for a commercial expedition.  Anyone fit enough to walk 5 - 8 hours and cross a minimum of 400m to a maximum of 600m a day, can complete EBC trek within 12 days of time.  Every travel company has the unique itinerary, however, in my over 10 years of experience in this area and having trekked this area countless times, 12 days itinerary would be the ideal schedule for someone with a good level fitness and experience in high-altitude treks.
Days                                Day to Day Itinerary         Elevation     Trek hour
   Meter     Feet
1 Fly from Kathmandu to Lukla and trek to Phakding 2,650m 8,694ft 3-4 hour trek
2 Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazar 3,450m 11,328ft 6-7 hour trek
3 Acclimatisation & side trip to Syanbouche, Everest View Hotel, Khumjung 3,850m 12,631ft 6-7 hour trek
4 Trek from Namche to Tangbouche 3,867m 12,687ft 6-7 hour trek
5 Trek from Tengboche to Dingboche 4,413m 14,478ft 5-6 hour trek
6 Rest day in Dingboche & day exploration at Chukung or Nagarjun Hill 5,000m 16,404ft 5-6 hour trek
7 Trek from Dingboche to Lobuche 4,930m 16174ft 6-7 hour trek
8 Trek from Lobuche to Gorakshep, same day trek to Everest Base Camp. 5,250m 17,224ft 7-8 hour trek
9 Trek from Gorakshep to Kalapatthar (5,550m) and trek to Pheriche 4,370m 14337ft 8-9 hour trek
10 Trek from Pheriche to Namche 3,450m 11,328ft 7-8 hour trek
11 Trek from Namche to Lukla 2,860m 9,383ft 7-8 hour trek
12 Flight back from Lukla to Kathmandu 1,300m 4,265ft 30 Min flight

14 Days EBC-Recommended

14 days Everest Base Camp Trek Itinerary (Recommended); Most of the travel website would recommend 12 days itinerary for an EBC trek.  In my experience, 14 days would be most suitable to those who loves hiking and trekking but have never been on a high altitude trek before or someone with completely zero experience of hiking (yes, EBC trek could still be a reality no matter how experienced or not-so-experienced you might be!). The reason for 14 days is to make sure high altitude sickness could be avoided or prevented as much as possible. I will explain why... If you have not experienced any high altitude trek before in your life, it could be difficult to reach certain elevations in just a couple of days or even hours.  For example, the trail to EBC requires a change of 1500m in just one day alone! The flight from Lukla to Kathmandu takes you from 2,850m to 1,300m in just 30 minutes!  For someone who is not so used to this kind of change, your body may not adopt quickly.  
Not to mention the required hikes of at least 5-8 hours in a day.  Due to this elevation change coupled with the physical activities from hiking/trekking, it is VERY important (I cannot stress this enough!) to allow some days for acclimatisation or allow the body to slowly adapt to the changes.  A majority of trekkers are probably born at sea level or at most 500m.  In Nepal, Kathmandu itself is already 1,300m from sea level and Lukla airport seats at 2,850m. Throughout the treks, you also will gain some 500m to 700m (5 to 8 hours) a day more of elevation. Now imagine how your body will respond in this situation?  Difficult and hard... yes that's right! We value your health and safety, so we want to make sure you will be fine throughout.  So here you go, my most recommended itinerary to many of my clients:
Days                                Day to Day Itinerary         Elevation     Trek hour
   Meter     Feet
1 Fly from Kathmandu to Lukla and trek to Phakding 2,650m 8,694ft 3-4 hour trek
2 Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazar 3,450m 11,328ft 6-7 hour trek
3 Acclimatisation & side trip to Syanbouche, Everest View Hotel, Khumjung 3,850m 12,631ft 6-7 hour trek
4 Acclimatisation & side trip to Thame (largest Sherpa village in Khumbu) 3,750m 12,303ft 8-9 hour trek
5 Trek from Namche to Tangbouche 3,867m 12,687ft 6-7 hour trek
6 Trek from Tengboche to Dingboche 4,413m 14,478ft 5-6 hour trek
7 Rest day in Dingboche & day exploration at Chukung or Nagarjun Hill 5,000m 16,404ft 5-6 hour trek
8 Acclimatisation & side trip to Island Peak base camp or Chunkung 5,087m 16,690ft 7-8 hour trek
9 Trek from Dingboche to Lobuche 4,930m 16174ft 6-7 hour trek
10 Trek from Lobuche to Gorakshep, same day trek to Everest Base Camp 5,250m 17,224ft 7-8 hour trek
11 Trek from Gorakshep to Kalapatthar (5,550m) and trek to Pheriche 4,370m 14337ft 8-9 hour trek
12 Trek from Pheriche to Namche 3,450m 11,328ft 7-8 hour trek
13 Trek from Namche to Lukla 2,860m 9,383ft 7-8 hour trek
14 Flight back from Lukla to Kathmandu 1,300m 4,265ft 30 Min flight

16-18 Days Gokyo EBC

Gokyo Chola-pass and EBC trek Itinerary (Highlights of Everest region) Now here is another option... If you have more than 2 weeks to spare, or 18 days to be exact, this is the best option for you. This adds another twist to the classic EBC route, which makes your itinerary an off-the-beaten version!  In previous sections, we went from Gokyo to Kalapatthar to Everest Base Camp.  While Gokyo is the most scenic, everyone wants to reach EBC as that is really the ultimate goal for most trekkers.   This recommended route combines the best in both options... You get to experience the very scenic Gokyo Valley and its lakes, view the Everest as close as possible from Kalapatthar and of course, reach the Everest Base Camp and more!! In order to combine both Gokyo and EBC, this will require crossing Chola pass and about 16 to 18 days of travel time in total.  Chola is the shortest high pass (or referred to as a peak) that connects the Gokyo Valley with the Everest Valley.  The summit of Chola is at 5400m has mainly ice and snow.  It has breathtaking views of Mt. Makalu and Mt. Amadablam, two of the highest mountains in the world.  Although it is mainly most of the ice, it is not required to have special gears such as crampons or ice axe or technical climbing gears.  But it is not an easy pass as sometimes the weather and snowfall could contribute to the complexity of reaching this peak.  If you are an independent traveller, it is not recommended to venture into this pass by yourself because of the weather condition.  

We mentioned Kalapatthar (5548 m) so many times in the article, but we probably have not done justice to how worthy it is to reach this place.  It is probably the closest (and the best place) to view the Everest.  Actually, at the base camp itself, you cannot view the peak of the Everest, so Kalapatthar is the best option for this.  This is also the highest point throughout the trail.  It gives a 360-degree view of Mt. Pumori, Mt. Nuptse, Mt. Amadablam,  Mt. Thamserku, Mt. Kantega, Mt. Lhotse and of course, Mt. Everest.  If you think you are up for this challenge, here is the detailed  itinerary for Gokyo Chola EBC trek:
Days                                Day to Day Itinerary         Elevation     Trek hour
   Meter     Feet
1 Fly from Kathmandu to Lukla and trek to Phakding 2,650m 8,694ft 3-4 hour trek
2 Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazar 3,450m 11,328ft 6-7 hour trek
3 Acclimatisation & side trip to Syanbouche, Everest View Hotel, Khumjung 3,850m 12,631ft 6-7 hour trek
4 Trek from Namche to Dole 4,038m 13,248ft 7-8 hour trek
5 Trek from Dole to Machhermo 4,470m 14,665ft 5-6 hour trek
6 Rest Day in Machhermo; Short hiking. 4,470m 14,665ft 5-6 hour trek
7 Trek from Machhermo to Gokyo 4,700m 15,419ft 6-7 hour trek
8 Trek from Gokyo to 4th lake and back to Gokyo 4,700m 15,419ft 6-7 hour trek
9 Trek to Gokyo Ri (17,575ft) and trek down to Thangnang Kharka 4,366m 14,324ft 8-9 hour trek
10 Trek from Thangnang Kharka to Dzongla via Chola Pass (5,350m) 4,830m  15,886ft 8-9 hour trek
11 Trek from Dzongle to Lobuche 4,930m 16174ft 5-6 hour trek
12 Trek from Lobuche to Gorakshep, same day trek to Everest Base Camp 5,250m 17,224ft 7-8 hour trek
13 Trek from Gorakshep to Kalapatthar (5,550m) and trek to Pheriche 4,370m 14337ft 8-9 hour trek
14 Trek from Pheriche to Tangbouche 3,867m 12,687ft 4-5 hour trek
15 Trek from Tangbouche to Manjo Jorsale 2,836m 9,301ft 7-8 hour trek
16 Trek from Manjo to Lukla 2,860m 9,383ft 5-6 hour trek
17 Fly from Lukla to Kathmandu 1,300m 4,265ft 30 Min flight
To give enough acclimatisation for your body, I would highly recommend adding 1 more rest days  in Namche.   So this would require 18 days instead of 17.   But of course, if you are expert high-altitude trekker, 17 days would probably be enough, but if you have spare days, who wouldn't want to explore these places more!! I assure you, this will be a travel you will never forget! I personally know of at least one person who literally shed tears when she saw the view from Gokyo

20 Days-Jiri to EBC

20 days Jiri to Everest Base Camp trek Itinerary; While the other options require easy transportation to reach Lukla, this itinerary travels through the traditional route.  We start the trek from Jiri to Everest Base Camp Trek.   If you are hardcore trekkers and backpackers, this would suit you well.  

Going back to history, this is the same route followed by Tenzing Norgay Sherpa and Edmund Hillary in their first ascent of the Mount Everest in 1953.  To some of you who may not know, they are the first ones to summit the Everest successfully.  This version of the EBC trek route also combines the beauty of the trail and also allows the traveller to experience the exceptional culture of the region.  Instead of taking the easy (but very scenic and quite expensive) 30-minute flight from Kathmandu to Lukla, this requires a local bus to Shivalaya via Jiri where you start the trek.  It takes about 8 days before reaching Phakding (which in other options usually is Day 2 in itinerary).   While this requires more trekking hours, this rewards the traveller with a more appreciation for the colourful culture and people of Nepal.  Those who more willing to venture and challenge themselves into the real mountain life and take the 'road less travelled', will probably benefit from this option.  Note that this requires almost 3 weeks of travel and treks.  There is a gradual ascend within this route as it will take you from Jiri at 1,900m, all the way to 5,550m so it gives you the proper acclimatisation you need. Here is a sample itinerary you can follow:
Days                                Day to Day Itinerary         Elevation     Trek hour
   Meter     Feet
1 Kathmandu-Shivalaya (via Jiri) by local bus or private jeep. 1,800m 5,905ft 8-9 hour drive
2 Trek from Shivalaya - Bhandar 2,200m 7,217ft 7-8 hour trek
3 Trek from Bhandar - Sete 2,575m 8,448ft 8-9 hour trek
4 Trek from Sete - Junbesi 2,700m 8,858ft 7-8 hour trek
5 Rest and Acclimatisation in Junbesi 2,700m 8,858ft 5-7 hour trek
6 Trek from Junbesi - Nunthala 2,220m 7,273ft 8-9 hour hike
7 Trek from Nunthala - Bupsa 2,100m 6,889ft 7-8 hour trek
8 Trek from Bupsa to Surke 2300m 7,545ft 7-8 hour trek
9 Trek from Surke to Phakding - 2,650m 8,694ft 5-7 hour trek
10 Trek from Phakding - Namche Bazar 3,450m 11,328ft 6-7 hour trek
11 Acclimatisation & side trip to Syanbouche, Everest View Hotel, Khumjung 3,850m 12,631ft 5-7 hour trek
12 Trek from Namche Bazaar - Tengboche 3,867m 12,687ft 6-7 hour trek
13 Trek from Tengboche - Dingboche 4,413m 14,478ft 5-6 hour trek
14 Rest day in Dingboche 5,000m 16,404ft 5-6 hour trek
15 Trek from Dingboche - Labouche 4,930m 16174ft 6-7 hour trek
16 Trek from Lobuche to Gorakshep, same day trek to Everest Base Camp 5,250m 17,224ft 7-8 hour trek
17 Trek from Gorakshep to Kalapatthar (5,550m) and trek to Pheriche 4,370m 14337ft 8-9 hour trek
18 Trek from Pheriche - Pangboche - Tengboche - Namche Bazaar 3,450m 11,328ft 7-8 hour trek
19 Trek from Namche Bazaar - Lukla 2,860m 9,383ft 7-8 hour trek
20 Fly from Lukla - Kathmandu 1,300m 4,265ft 30 Min flight

Conclusion

There are several options you can take depending on itinerary and how much time you have. Think about this first you are planning to step in, one of the highest altitude treks in the world with the highest rates of high altitude sickness. The really important things you have to understand is itinerary and we suggest you choose the best one fits in your fitness. We wish you all the best for your trek, and thanks for reading until the end. If you have questions, we are eager to help you plan your trip or give you an idea on how you can plan a reliable itinerary for the Everest Base Camp Trek. In case if you want to contact us via email you can reach us at nestadventure@gmail.com. How do you find this write up? Do drop us a note or a comment below. If you enjoy reading, we would also appreciate giving us a rating on the right side-popping box or share our article. This is the only way we know that you stopped by our page and read it.    

About Rajendra Khanal (Raj)

Rajendra Khanal (Raj) Born and raised in Gorkha, Nepal, I am proud to call the Manaslu region my home! I have been in the travel business for over a decade from being a porter, to being a guide, to being a manager and finally a founder of NEST Adventure. So you could say, I know my way well enough in the Himalayas especially in some of the off-the-beaten trails in Nepal like Manaslu, Kanchenjunga or Mustang
I am passionate about travelling and I strongly believe that seeing the world shouldn't break the bank (at least not too much!).  I have been to over 15 countries in Asia, Americas and one-third of the Europe (.. Latin America, Australia, and Canada are on my bucket list..one day!) as a backpacker myself, I am happy to share the experience about Nepal Himalayas. If you think I can be helpful planning your trip to Nepal, then do not hesitate to contact me. at nestadventure@gmail.com. I am also available on Whats app and Viber +977-9851052042 Or If you are interested to know more about me follow on  Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram
 
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