If there is one epic adventure on the planet, it has to be the trek to the base of mighty Mt. Everest (29,035'), Mother Goddess of the Snows. This is one of the greatest hikes in the world and the realization of a dream for many. Our perfectly planned trek brings us to the top of Kala Patar (18,365'), a non-technical peak with sensational views of Everest’s magnificent Southwest Face, and then to Everest Base Camp itself by way of the great Khumbu Glacier. En route, we acclimatize and explore with three very special Exploration Days that take us off the main Everest route for spectacular hikes to remote Ama Dablam Base Camp (15,400') and high into the Chukhung Valley. Amazing hikes, stunning Himalayan panoramas, exquisite Tibetan Buddhist monasteries, the delights of Sherpa culture, and accommodations in cozy Sherpa lodges make this an unforgettable adventure. Our own private cook staff travels with us to prepare our meals along the way.
Because of our Trek Leader’s vast experience in the area, we used several trails that aren’t known to many trekkers and we were invited into Sherpa homes, which was wonderful. I had been dreaming of this trip for 30 years and now those dreams are fulfilled.
— Lisa L., Berkeley, CA
In this fabled city, we explore golden temples and fascinating artisan markets.
Lukla / Namche / Tengboche
After flying to Lukla, we trek to the remarkable Sherpa village of Namche Bazaar (11,270'). We have a day to explore this famous Sherpa hub, where yaks roam the streets and bustling outdoor markets are held twice a week. Hiking farther up into the Khumbu Valley, we come to Tengboche Monastery (12,650'), gloriously surrounded by spectacular mountains. Ama Dablam (22,494'), one of the most spectacular peaks in the Himalaya, rises regally just up the valley.
Ama Dablam Base Camp / Chukhung
The next few days bring us across remarkable terrain seldom explored by most trekkers. Hiking through rhododendron forests, we reach our camp below spectacular Ama Dablam. The next day, we feast our eyes on amazing perspectives of the icy giants of the Everest region on our hike to Ama Dablam Base Camp (15,400'). Heading farther off the main trail, we camp at spectacularly located Dingboche (14,100'), where our options include a hike to the settlement of Chukhung (15,584'), surrounded by massive glaciers, or a hike toward Island Peak Base Camp (16,690').
Kala Patar / Everest Base Camp
A ridge walk takes us back to the main Everest trail, where we hike up the Khumbu Glacier’s moraine to the yak grazing pastures at Lobuche. On Day 12, we make our much-anticipated ascent of Kala Patar—“Black Rock”—the highest point of our trek at 18,365 feet. Here we experience the classic up-close view of Everest, a magnificent panorama of its entire South Face and most of the West Ridge (one of the best views one can get without climbing it!). The next day, our optional hike to Everest Base Camp grants us the incredible vista of the Khumbu Icefall and a fascinating journey in mountaineering history.
Lukla / Kathmandu
Enjoying our final vistas of the mighty peaks of the Himalaya, we hike a remote route along the steep northern side of the Imja Khola Valley to reach the undisturbed tranquility of Phortse, a charming Sherpa village at the mouth of the spectacular Gokyo Valley. With luck, we'll see Himalayan tahr (wild goats) en route. After an overnight in the lively Sherpa hub of Namche, we hike back to Lukla for a final overnight in the mountains, then fly to Kathmandu on Day 18 and depart on Day 20.