Mt. Everest Base Camp

Many people dream of climbing Mount Everest, the world’s highest mountain, although reaching the summit might be out of your reach you can take a trekking tour in Tibet and reach the Mt. Everest Base Camp or even Camp 2 and 3. While getting to Everest you’ll also enjoy many sites along the way.

There are two Everest Base Camps, one on the Nepal side of the mountain and the other in Tibet. The North Base Camp in Tibet is used as a setting off point for climbers on their way up the mountain. It is the last chance to replenish supplies and regroup before scaling the Northeast ridge of the mountain. With an altitude of 5,150 meters the Everest Base Camp is also a good place for climbers to stop for a while and let their bodies acclimatize before facing even higher altitudes and risking altitude sickness. During the summer the North Everest Base camp is accessible by 4X4 vehicles. At the North Everest Base Camp there is a distinction between facilities for tourists and facilities for serious climbers. The tourist base camp is between Rongbuk Monastery and the climbers’ base camp which is further up the mountain at the foot of Rongbuk glacier.

Travelers to the North Everest Base Camp require a permit, in addition to a Tibet visa; this permit must be arranged by the tour company in Lhasa which plans to take you on your journey to Everest. A tent village has been established at the Everest Base camp to accommodate tourists, in addition there are tea houses and pit toilets.

Trekking Tours to Everest Base Camp

On a 15 day organized tour of this kind you will get to see the city of Lhasa including the Potala Palace, Johkang Temple and Barkhor Market before heading out towards Gyantse Kumbhum Monastery as you pass the Nanchan Kangtsang Glacier and the Yamdrok-yutso Lake. The tour will take you to Sakya Monastery and Lhatse, before heading for the Mount Everest Base Camp. After a night in Rongpuk tent Guest House the group walks to the Base Camp. On route to Camp 1 you’ll pass the Rongpuk Glacier and explore this area as your body adjusts to the high altitude. From Camp 1 there is more scenic trekking to reach the Interim Camp and from there passed the Changste Glacier the group moves further up the mountain. Towards the end of the trekking tour the group reaches Camp 3 which is only 2400 meters from the top of Everest. After enjoying the surroundings the group slowly makes their way back to Lhasa.

On a 12 trekking tour the group takes a different route, this time via Old Tingri, through the Tingri plain and Ra-chu Valley. After a night in Lunthang the group gets into serious hiking as they make their way to the top of Lamna La where the night is spent in a tent. The tour continues into sparsely populated areas for a night in the small village of Zommug before moving on to the Rongphu Monastery and a hike to the Everest Base Camp. On the return journey the tour stops at the Xiqian hot springs.

Explore Namche Bazaar On An Everest Base Camp Trek

If you are heading out on an Everest Base Camp trek, there are many exciting experiences and new sights awaiting you, from the stunning views to the cultural gems to be found along the route. A place that combines both the cultural and natural wonders of the Himalayas is Namche Bazaar which, located at 3,500 metres, is one of the first main stops on the trek, where travellers are encouraged to take some time to rest and acclimatise themselves. With its lively atmosphere, beautiful surrounding landscapes, and interesting cultural attractions, there is plenty to see and do – here are some of them.

Practicalities

Travellers who stop in Namche Bazaar on their Everest Base Camp trek usually do so via the route from Lukla, which can be trekked in a day but is often spread over two for better acclimatisation. Once in Namche Bazaar itself, trekkers will find a welcoming and easygoing village with a range of cafes and restaurants, accommodation and shopping, as well as other useful facilities such as money exchanges. In terms of climate, the weather tends to be cold throughout the year, and warm clothes are a must – thankfully, extra layers of clothing can be easily purchased here, along with any extra trekking gear that travellers may wish to buy before continuing on their way.

What to Do

As well as ambling through the village and watching local life bustle by, or relaxing in one of the many good eateries, there is much to do for those interested in learning about local history and culture during their Everest Base Camp trek. Museums include the Museum of Tibetan Herbal Medicine, and the insightful Museum of Sherpa Life, while for gaining a good feel of what traditional life is like in a Sherpa village the weekly Namche Market, which occurs every Saturday morning, is always interesting. To aid with acclimatisation, there are a variety of short treks that can be made from the village, with plenty of attractive scenery and worthwhile sites to visit along the way.

Namche Bazaar: History

The village that today’s visitors see when they stop there on the Everest Base Camp trek route is a very different place to the Namche Bazaar of a century ago, which in turn was very different to its earlier incarnations. Originally a simple trading post, conveniently located at a point where mountain trade routes crossed, it grew slowly into a small village – until the advent of Everest exploration, when it saw a new kind of traffic: hopeful mountaineers on their way to tackle the great mountain. Given its altitude, it is an ideal spot for acclimatisation, and so has grown along with the popularity of Himalayan trekking, while still retaining its local ambiance.