EVEREST VIA GOKYO

Everest Base Camp
via
Gokyo Lakes

19 Days $2999 ex Kathmandu

Accommodation

3 Nights Hotel Stay
15 Nights Tea House

Transportation

Mostly on foot
Transfers and flights included

Included Meals

18 Breakfasts
18 Lunches
19 Dinners

Trip Grade

Category 4
Extreme Expedition – Cold

Charity

As I step out of the plane onto the shortest, steepest runway I have ever seen, I pull the zipper of my coat to the top of my neck. Day One, and I’ve already learned layers are important here; the weather is capricious. Our guide ushers us into a nearby guesthouse where tea and biscuits are served. From outside the wooden window, I can see why Nepal is a playground for outdoor enthusiasts. My mind fills with the adventures in front of me.

I chose Gokyo because it is one of the few places left untouched, a real-life Shangri-La. Few travelers can say they’ve seen Everest from such a distance, and on this trek, I get to experience Nepal from trails less traveled. Snow-capped peaks inspire dreams of exploration and freedom. 

In the morning, the hiss of a pressure cooker wakes me. Even though I am far away from my own home, I’m reminded of what’s most important — laughter over home-cooked meals, the camaraderie of a group, my desire to test my own limits as a traveler. And tea. Lots of tea. 

While our porters and guides easily climb sharp ridges, I’m encouraged to take it slow. I make my way behind jhopke, animals that look part yak and cow, and we step carefully over rocky routes that circle farm lands. When the clouds part, skies flash otherworldly blue. Waterfalls tower above us. 

In Namche Bazaar, our group is told to acclimatize before continuing on. Cafes sell Snickers and apple pie, and trekkers from all over the world toast to adventure and stories textured with the unexpected. I notice that people here are quick to laugh. When rain comes, wood-burning ovens warm our frozen fingers, and children watch us gather around evening campfires. The nights are cold, and I find comfort in hearty home-cooked vegetables pulled straight from the garden. 

Along the way, monks read prayers in ancient monasteries. I can hear their chanting from outside the stone wall inscribed with Tibetan script. Our guides and porters are patient and kind. They sing traditional Nepali songs as we climb ridges and navigate swinging suspension bridges over the Dudh Kosi River. My heart grows heavy as we walk past memorials for those who have lost their lives during expeditions. The ring of bells tied around the necks of cattle fade into the distance.

“If you cannot understand that there is something in man which responds to the challenge of this mountain and goes out to meet it, that the struggle is the struggle of life itself upward and forever upward, then you won’t see why we go. What we get from this adventure is just sheer joy. And joy is after all the end of life. We do not live to eat and make money. We eat and make money to be able to enjoy life. That is what life means and what life is for.”

George Mallory

Everest Base Camp is established on the Khumbu Glacier which flows down the valley at about 1 meter per day. As such, mountaineering campsites need to be constantly constructed and deconstructed to accommodate this movement.

Everest. Gokyo. They appear like dreams. Vivid blue skies and shimmering white peaks are as close to perfection as anyone can get. The blue jewel of a mountain lake takes my breath away. Sitting at the base of these visions, listening to glaciers move and snow rolling down slopes, the sky vibrates with energy. When we reach these destinations, our group celebrates. Guides share hot water and Khukuri rum, and I smile contentedly with our success. Though it’s not an easy trek, I am floating with a sense of accomplishment. 

Warm showers wait for me at the base of the mountain. I am unsure how I will navigate saying goodbye to this place that has inspired me. A piece of my heart has been tucked into the countryside here. The Everest region would just be a mountain if it weren’t for the stories of the people who have climbed it, and my own story is now intertwined with this place. Your story could be written here. 

It’s an uncontested fact: this trip will change you.

The Journey

Your group leader will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel where you can relax, meet your teammates and take a stroll through Kathmandu’s bustling streets. We’ll enjoy a traditional Nepali dinner together and watch a cultural performance before getting much needed rest. (D)

Visit some of Kathmandu’s most noteworthy sights, including the white dome of Boudhanath and UNESCO’s Pasupatinath. You will learn about Nepal’s religious diversity while seeing ancient religious practices firsthand. At night, we’ll discuss the itinerary for our trek and what to expect in the days leading to Everest Base Camp.

A small plane will take us high into the Himalayas where the snowy peaks of the Khumbu region welcome us to Lukla’s short, steep runway. Here we will start our journey by making our way through Sherpa villages and farming communities. The gushing Dudh Koshi River carves through boulders and mountainsides, and we’ll cross suspension bridges high above freezing waters. After a gentle walk, we’ll reach Phakding, where a home-cooked meal will warm and refuel us for tomorrow’s trek.

A day’s walk will lead us to the tiered Sherpa settlement of Namche Bazaar, and our bodies will begin to feel the pull of higher elevations. We’ll take our time, stopping at Lorsale village for lunch and crossing rickety bridges with care. Alluring vistas and gorges will enhance our views of white-capped mountains. Upon reaching the picturesque village of Namche, we’ll rest for the evening and spend tomorrow acclimatizing.

Namche is complete with cafes and bakeries, so you’ll have plenty to do while letting your body adjust to higher elevations. Our guide will plan side excursions to suit your tastes and keep feet moving. In the afternoon, stop by the Visitor Center or explore some of the nearby rock ledges for memorable photographs.

A short, easy walk from Namche is the village of Khumjung. Here we have several activities planned, including a visit to a yak farm to learn about the region’s farming practices and a trip to the Hillary School, an educational initiative established by Sir Edmund Hillary and his team. We can also explore the airstrip at Syangboche and see views of Mt. Everest from the luxurious Everest View Hotel. The Khumjung Monastery, home to yeti remains, is a must-see, and you’ll have time to relax and enjoy afternoon views of Mount Khumbiyela.

Crossing bridges over the Dudh Koshi, our destination is Dole, a charming farming community with a handful of teahouses. An upward trail carries us to the ridges of Mong La, a Sherpa village boasting the oldest stupa, a Buddhist structure for worship. With towering mountains and the glistening Cho-Oyu watching over this community, Dole is the perfect place for a good night’s sleep.

To allow our bodies to get used to the altitude, we will make our gently way to Machhermo. Our climb will be steady, offering views of Kyojo Ri and Macchermo peaks. Passing settlements and the village of Luza, we will enter the area where the Yeti was reportedly spotted. In the afternoon, attend an informational lecture at the Himalayan Rescue Hospital before saving a warm meal prepared fresh by the friendly innkeepers at Machhermo.

Venturing over a ridge filled with Buddhist shrines, we will see spanning views of the valley and white Himalayan crests. We will descend towards the river before regaining altitude and attempting a steep climb up the moraine of the Ngozamba Glacier. Passing over a bubbling stream, the trail will begin to even out until bringing us to the first lake, Longpongo, where a monk’s footprints are reportedly preserved in stone. The second lake Taboche Tsho is a turquoise vision, luring us further into the Gokyo region. After lunch, we will have time to explore and savour this phenomenal landscape before nestling into a comfortable teahouse for the evening.

Sunrise on top of Gokyo Ri is magic. We will rise early to watch the Everest region turn purple and gold with the rays of morning. Here, you will understand exactly why we have ranked this trek as one of our favourites. After sipping morning tea, we will make our way back down to Thangnak, across the Ngozumpa Glacier. Tonight’s warm meal will be even more delicious, and after the hard work you’ve put in, you’ve earned it; the trek today is a challenging one, but well worth your efforts.

This is probably the hardest day of the trip. Start with a steep climb before the trail drops down to the bottom of the Chola pass. Another steep climb this time through rocks follows. Look out for Buddhist prayer flags on the top of the pass and incredible views. The ground can be icy as the trail descends again through huge rocks, followed by easy walking to Zungla

Start the day by tackling the two-hour hike up to the Kalapatthar, the best viewpoint of Mt. Everest, Mt. Nuptse, Mt. Pumori, Mt. Amadablam, Mt. Thamerserku and Mera Peak. Take lots of photos before trekking down to the lodge at Gorekshep for breakfast, and then continuing down to Lobuche.

Today you reach the famed Everest base camp. But there’s a three-hour walk along the ridge of the Khumbu glacier first. Drink in the majestic views, before finally spotting the Buddhist prayer flags – a sign that you’ve made it. After exploring, trek down to the lodge and spend the remainder of the day relaxing and enjoying the experience.

An easy day hiking downhill through the valley to Dingboche, passing through a few Sherpa villages along the way. After Pangboche it descends further to the river and across a bridge. Next up is Tengboche where an ancient monastery sits on the top of the hill. At the monastery witness the Buddhist evening chanting ceremony, a deeply moving cultural and spiritual experience.

Begin walking steeply downhill through a beautiful rhododendron, then climb steeply through the pine and juniper forest to Khumjung. Explore Khumjung village and after lunch continue your trek to the Namche Bazzar.

Enjoy an invigorating morning descent through pine forest to Monju. After a National park checkpoint, the trail continues to the Phakding for lunch before the final stage of your trek to Lukla. Take the time to reflect on what you have achieved, experienced and learned as for many people it’s not just a physical journey but a spiritual one too.

35minute Trans Himalayan flight
Due to the weather flights are usually in the morning. Your guide will take care of airport formalities and luggage transportation, so you can enjoy breakfast at the lodge. When your guide receives news about your flight, you’ll head to the airport in time to watch your plane land. After a quick photograph, you’ll fly to to Kathmandu and have a private transfer to your hotel.

Free day for shopping and departure
After breakfast in your hotel, we’ll drop you at the airport to catch your flight home, or onto your next adventure. If you have a late flight, you’ll have plenty of time for last minute shopping. But eventually, it will be time to say goodbye.

Includes

  • Arrival and Departure transfers on both domestic and international flights.
  • 3 nights accommodation at Harati Manor Hotel twin share
  • OPEN and CHOICE of Full board meals while on expedition.
  • One Trekker: One Porter Policy
  • Accommodation at clean and comfortable tea houses or lodges.
  • Welcome dinner with the cultural program as listed in the itinerary.
  • Half day guided city tour with world heritage entrance permit as listed in the itinerary.
  • All Domestic flights and airport tax.
  • Private transportation to and from the starting and ending points of the trek as applicable.
  • Free use of quality trekking gear – sleeping bag, fleece liner, down jacket, rain poncho.
  • Professional local trek leader with Wilderness First Aid.
  • Portable Altitude Chamber (PAC) / Gamow Bag (A life-saving device in case of Acute Mountain Sickness) along with a comprehensive First Aid Kit.
  • Assistant trekking guides and other support staff for Everest base camp trek.
  • Trekking map.
  • Personal Sherpa Porters to carry all personal gear.
  • Insurance of all staff including Porters.
  • Warm clothing and required trekking gear for Porters like Gortex jacket /trousers, trekking shoes, woolen hat, woolen gloves, woolen shocks, sunglasses etc.
  • Complimentary souvenir Tshirt.
  • TIMS Trekking permit

Excludes

  • International flights
  • Insurance
  • Tips and beverages

Journey Extensions

Check out our Journey Extensions for those that want to stay a little longer or try something different along the way.

Nepali Ghar Room

In the heart of Thamel, is the Nepali Ghar Hotel. The Nepali Ghar punctuates the new trend of modern hotels and breezes an ode to Nepalese traditional styles. These traditions afford a warm and homely environment for all adventurers. The hotels Delux rooms are luxurious and open with excellent facilities. The hotel has a restaurant that serves great food as well as a fitness centre.

If you would like to stay at the Nepali Ghar Hotel as part of your package of 2 nights before and 1 nights after an expedition the extra price will be $550 (for all 3 nights).

For twin rooms where you share the room, the price is $300 per person twin share.

Nepali Ghar Room

In the heart of Thamel, is the Nepali Ghar Hotel. The Nepali Ghar punctuates the new trend of modern hotels and breezes an ode to Nepalese traditional styles. These traditions afford a warm and homely environment for all adventurers. The hotel’s Delux rooms are luxurious and open with excellent facilities. The hotel has a restaurant that serves great food as well as a fitness centre.

If you would like to stay at the Nepali Ghar Hotel as part of your package of 2 nights before and 1 night after an expedition the extra price will be $300 per person twin share (for all 3 nights).

For single rooms for these nights the extra price is $550.

No Roads Expeditions provided a fantastic Nepal adventure. They are a highly professional team. Local, knowledgeable, and friendly guides provide all the support you need for a wonderful trek and experience. Our fantastic guide, Horizon, followed the company protocols to ensure our health was the main priority. The 1 porter per trekker policy provides employment and doesn’t overload the porter as you often see with other companies. The team at No Roads arranged all travel, insurance, and accommodation with no fuss and was great to deal with. I look forward to contacting the team again for my next adventure. The guided trek, food, and accommodation were all top class.

Jessica

Trek responsibly with trained porters and guides

Our team are committed to making sure your journey is a safe and memorable one. Each guest is paired with one porter (we have a 1 Porter 1 Trekker policy) to ensure a comfortable trek, and all of our guides receive medical and mountaineering training to make sure your experience is pleasant. We provide safety equipment and bring necessary medical supplies on each trip.

Enjoy local and cultural experiences with our knowledgeable team

With side excursions to monasteries and farming villages, we take our guests on trails less travelled by other climbing companies. Along the way, our footsteps will cross the shadows of Ama Dablam as our bodies adjust to higher elevations and more rugged terrain. Returning home, we’ll travel down a different route that allows us to encounter ancient Tibetan rituals at the Buddhist Thyanboche monastery.

Prepare for an adventure of a lifetime

Before we begin our trek, our team will review our itinerary to Lukla and answer your questions about what to expect in the days leading to your Gokyo and Everest Base Camp trek. The Dudh Koshi River has carved a natural trail for us to follow as we hike towards the picture-perfect village of Namche Bazaar. We’ll spend several nights adjusting to the altitude before making our way into the hidden valleys of Khunde and Khumjung. From there we depart the normal route to Everest Base Camp and head northwest toward Gokyo. This is a very high altitude section where we will be sleeping well 4500 meters for several nights and trekking passes in excess of 5000 meters. We will rejoin the main Everest Base Camp trail after we cross the Cho La and head toward  Gorak Shep to prepare for our final ascent to see the ice-blue Khumbu glacier. Your stamina will be tested as we wake before sunrise to climb Kalapathar, a peak resting at 5545 meters above sea level. Here, the first rays of the morning will paint mountaintops copper and gold, and we’ll bask in the breathtaking beauty of the Himalayas. This is truly a moment you’ll never forget.

We get asked a lot of questions about the Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes trek. The following are certainly the most common however if you have another question please let us know or the answer may be found in our Trip Notes section.

How hard is the Everest Base Camp via Gokyo Lakes trek?

This trek is a step up from the normal Everest Base Camp trek which is surprisingly not too difficult other than the altitude and weather. The Gokyo Lakes section has several very high sections and passes which makes trekking more difficult. You will need to train for this trek, to ensure your body is fit enough for these pass sections. The enemy on this trek is altitude. As such we need to take it slowly so our bodies acclimatise. We have 2 acclimatisation days on this trek where we spend the day hiking to a higher altitude, before heading back down for our bodies to recover.

Do I have to carry my own gear?

You do not have to carry you own gear all the way to Everest Base Camp. Our 1 Porter 1 Trekker policy allows us to carry all your gear for you during the day. Your bag will be at the tea house ready for you to freshen up at the end of the day. All you need to carry is a day pack which will have some wet weather gear in it such as the supplied poncho, possibly warmer clothes, water and sunscreen and some money. Usually the pack will weigh around 5kgs.

What are the Tea Houses like on the Everest Base Camp via Gokyo Lakes trek?

Your accommodation along the way will be the iconic Nepali Tea Houses. These Tea Houses are one of the highlights of the trip. We have handpicked what we think are the best Tea Houses along the trail to Gokyo and Everest. Warm and inviting, each Tea House consists of a communal hall with tables and chairs scattered around the perimeter and central to the room is the heater, which as the sun falls below the horizon becomes a focal point. 

The Tea House serves up delicious food from Western staples such as fried potatoes to Nepali dal bhat. We have an open menu policy, so you can pick anything from the menu.

Bedrooms fan out from the main communal room either at the same level or upstairs. Bedrooms are usually basic and bathrooms are shared. 

Each Tea House has its own history and are incredible places to stay, to fill our bellies, warm our hands and to meet other hikers from all over the world. Put simply, we love Tea Houses.

This trip is for those who want to get off the beaten trail to Everest from a different angle, and who love adventure and at times pushing themselves to higher achievements. This is an incredibly beautiful hike, nestled in among the highest mountains on the planet. I love this trek and get excited every time I am asked to guide it.

Dawa
Nepal Guide

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