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Village Volunteering & Everest Base Camp Trek 33 Days

Most popular package! Group volunteering at Batase Village, then Everest Base Camp trek.

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Overview

This is the ultimate experience! It combines our 21 day group volunteering program with a trek to Everest Base Camp. This is a very popular choice for many of our volunteers and it’s easy to understand why. When in Nepal you really should take the time to see the mightiest mountains in the world. By choosing to do it this way, you will also be saving money, as we offer a discount to all of our volunteers who go on to trek Everest Base Camp. Amazing package, which is fully guided and supported.

Highlights

  • Kathmandu
  • Buddhist Temples
  • Himalayan Mountains
  • Volunteering at local school
  • Batase Village
  • Rhododendron Forests
  • Sunrise over Mt Everest
  • Scenic flight to Lukla
  • Namche Bazaar
  • Everest Base Camp
  • Day 1: Kathmandu Arrival Day (1400m)
  • Day 2: Kathmandu Introduction & Exploration
  • Day 3: Kathmandu to Chisopani (2100m)
  • Day 4: Chisopani to Batase Village
  • Day 5: Batase Village – Your New Base
  • Day 6: Batase Village – The Real Work Begins
  • Days 7-14: Batase Village - Eat, Sleep and Repeat
  • Day 15: Batase Village – Day Off
  • Day 16: Batase Village – Final Day of Volunteering
  • Day 17: Batase Village – Last Day, Prepare to Leave
  • Day 18: Batase Village to Nagarkot
  • Day 19: Nagarkot to Bhaktpaur
  • Day 20: Bhaktpaur to Kathmandu
  • Day 21: Kathmandu fly to Lukla (2800m) Trek to Phakding (2655m)
  • Day 22: Phakding – Namche Bazaar (3446m)
  • Day 23: Acclimatisation Day. Namche to Khumjung (3550m)
  • Day 24: Namche to Tengboche (3865m)
  • Day 25: Tengboche to Dingboche (4,410m)
  • Day 26: Acclimatisation Day. Dingboche to Chukkung (Short walk) (4,730m)
  • Day 27: Dingboche to Lobuje (4940m)
  • Day 28: Lobuje to Everest Base Camp (5545m) to Lobuche
  • Day 29: GorakShep (5160m) to Kala Patthar (5545m) to Lobuje (4940m)
  • Day 30: Lobuje to Somare
  • Day 31: Somare to Namche
  • Day 32: Namche to Lukla
  • Day 33: Lukla – Kathmandu
  • Day 1: Kathmandu Arrival Day (1400m)
  • Day 2: Kathmandu Introduction & Exploration
  • Day 3: Kathmandu to Chisopani (2100m)
  • Day 4: Chisopani to Batase Village
  • Day 5: Batase Village – Your New Base
  • Day 6: Batase Village – The Real Work Begins
  • Days 7-14: Batase Village - Eat, Sleep and Repeat
  • Day 15: Batase Village – Day Off
  • Day 16: Batase Village – Final Day of Volunteering
  • Day 17: Batase Village – Last Day, Prepare to Leave
  • Day 18: Batase Village to Nagarkot
  • Day 19: Nagarkot to Bhaktpaur
  • Day 20: Bhaktpaur to Kathmandu
  • Day 21: Kathmandu fly to Lukla (2800m) Trek to Phakding (2655m)
  • Day 22: Phakding – Namche Bazaar (3446m)
  • Day 23: Acclimatisation Day. Namche to Khumjung (3550m)
  • Day 24: Namche to Tengboche (3865m)
  • Day 25: Tengboche to Dingboche (4,410m)
  • Day 26: Acclimatisation Day. Dingboche to Chukkung (Short walk) (4,730m)
  • Day 27: Dingboche to Lobuje (4940m)
  • Day 28: Lobuje to Everest Base Camp (5545m) to Lobuche
  • Day 29: GorakShep (5160m) to Kala Patthar (5545m) to Lobuje (4940m)
  • Day 30: Lobuje to Somare
  • Day 31: Somare to Namche
  • Day 32: Namche to Lukla
  • Day 33: Lukla – Kathmandu

Itinerary

Day 1: Kathmandu Arrival Day (1400m)

Day 1: Kathmandu Arrival Day (1400m)

Your arrival in Kathmandu. You’ll be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel in the city, by a friendly Take on Nepal team member. All volunteers in your group, regardless of where they come from or when they arrive, will be initially housed in the same hotel, giving you the opportunity to get to know each other from Day 1. The excitement builds and the adventure begins.

Day 2: Kathmandu Introduction & Exploration

Day 2: Kathmandu Introduction & Exploration

Begin the day with breakfast at your hotel. A Take on Nepal Team Member will provide orientation and information about the following day’s trek, to Chisopani. You will be reminded of everything that is needed for your time in the village and shown shops to stock up for the trip ahead.

As Kathmandu is the starting point for all Himalayan trekkers, many shops do exist to cater to Western tastes, although they are quite basic. Any luxuries you cannot do without, should be brought with you from home. It’s also a good idea to carry a stock of energy bars (or chocolate), as these can be difficult to get hold of once you reach the village. These bars could prove a lifeline, if you find the local village food difficult to eat. As well as chocolate bars, we recommend that you purchase toilet paper and any other essential items you may have forgotten. You will also be able to hire/purchase a sleeping bag from a shop in Kathmandu.

After breakfast and the introduction, you’ll be guided to the famous Buddhist Swayambunath Temple in Kathmandu. This temple attracts Buddhists and tourists from around the world. The view of Kathmandu valley from the top of the temple is stunning.The group will then enjoy a local lunch at a typical Nepali restaurant. The time after lunch is allocated for purchasing items for your time in the village.

In the evening, the group will come back together to enjoy a traditional Nepali dinner, after which you will have the opportunity to discuss any concerns and will be briefed on the following day’s plans. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 3: Kathmandu to Chisopani (2100m)

Day 3: Kathmandu to Chisopani (2100m)

Time to hit the road, so put on your walking boots. The day starts early, with a 7am breakfast at you hotel, after which a car/mini bus will take you on a one hour drive to Sundarijal, on the outskirts of Kathmandu. Your walk to Chisopani will begin in Sundarijal. The trek from Sundarijal to Chisopani takes about six hours. The unpaved road from Kathmandu turns into a trail near a small hydroelectric plant. The trail enters through the Shivapuri Watershed and Wildlife Reserve. The first settlement you will come across is Mulkharka, with Tamang inhabitants. The route heads down the ridge through a forest of oaks and rhododendron to Chisopani (2300m.) This will be a long day, taking in some truly stunning scenery, and should provide you with some great memories. The pace will be slow, so you don’t need to be super fit to enjoy the experience. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 4: Chisopani to Batase Village

Day 4: Chisopani to Batase Village

Wake up early to enjoy the sunrise over the Himalayan mountain range. We strongly encourage everyone to wake up to this unforgettable experience. After breakfast, we will commence our downhill walk to Patybanjyang, where you will experience some great views of the Himalayas. After a short stop in Patybanjyang, we will walk uphill towards Batase Village. The surrounding scenery is breathtaking, looking across a vast valley to see rice fields, villages and people going about their daily lives in rural Nepal. This section of the walk will take you along the ridge of a mountain overlooking the other surrounding mountains. Many travellers have commented on it being a humbling experience. Upon arriving in Batase village at approximately 3pm, you will meet Som’s family and enjoy your first meal in the village. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 5: Batase Village – Your New Base

Day 5: Batase Village – Your New Base

The sounds and sights of the village, children chattering, cocks crowing and a sunrise over the Himalayas, is what will greet you this morning. Enjoy it with a hot cup of tea, in the shadow of snow topped mountains, followed by a group orientation session with your group leader. After breakfast, you will be guided to the village school where you will be introduced to the principal, teachers and students. You will return to the hostel for lunch.

When the children return from school, we encourage you to assist them with their chores (collecting firewood, cutting grass, preparing dinner, etc.), or you have the option of playing and teaching some new games with the younger children and assisting with homework.

Dinner will be provided at approximately 6:30 pm. The evening is your free time to do with as you choose. Many volunteers have loved spending time with the hostel children, teaching and learning through stories, dance and song around the fire. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 6: Batase Village – The Real Work Begins

Day 6: Batase Village – The Real Work Begins

After breakfast, you’ll go to the local school and be provided with orientation about your placement in the classroom. The local students have encountered Western volunteers before, and always find the experience enjoyable. You will return to the hostel at 1pm for lunch, after which you’ll be given the option of returning to the school to continue teaching the students, or carrying out light duties within the village, such as farm work, painting or dinner preparations. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Days 7-14: Batase Village - Eat, Sleep and Repeat

Days 7-14: Batase Village - Eat, Sleep and Repeat

On these days your work at the school and in the village will continue as outlined in Day 6. During the week, you’ll be given choices of activities to participate in. Though the first day teaching in the school and working with the villagers can be a little daunting, you’ll find that you quickly get used to the experience. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 15: Batase Village – Day Off

Day 15: Batase Village – Day Off

Time for some R&R! Enjoy a relaxing day with your group. Your local guide will take you to the highest mountain top in the village, where the views of the surrounding mountains are spectacular. Here you will enjoy a picnic lunch and some relaxing time, before walking back down to the village for dinner. This day will also be an opportunity for you to share your experiences and thoughts with your group members and leader. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 16: Batase Village – Final Day of Volunteering

Day 16: Batase Village – Final Day of Volunteering

On this, your last day of volunteer work, you will spend the morning teaching classes. You will enjoy your last lunch in the village, with the school teachers. After lunch, you’ll say your goodbyes to the teachers and the students, before returning to the hostel. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 17: Batase Village – Last Day, Prepare to Leave

Day 17: Batase Village – Last Day, Prepare to Leave

Today is a rest day in the village, before your departure for Kathmandu. This is also a good time to catch up on your washing, drying and packing, in preparation for your departure the following morning. PS: The view from the washing line never looked so good.[Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 18: Batase Village to Nagarkot

Day 18: Batase Village to Nagarkot

After breakfast you will say your goodbyes to your new friends in Batase, and begin the beautiful hike to the famous village of Nagarkot. It will be a lovely day of walking alongside mountain ridges. Nagarkot is a popular spot, due to its spectacular views of the Himalayan ranges and of the Kathmandu valley. After settling into your hotel, you will have a rest before enjoying a nice dinner with your team. [Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included]

Day 19: Nagarkot to Bhaktpaur

Day 19: Nagarkot to Bhaktpaur

Wake up at sunrise to view the spectacular and famous sunrise in Nagarkort. This morning you are in with a good chance of seeing the mighty Mount Everest! After breakfast, you will make the short journey down to Bhaktpaur. Bhaktapur is listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, you will see beautifully preserved courtyards and buildings in this old city centre. Bhaktapur is known for the beautiful artworks made from stone, metal and wood. When in Bhaktapur, you must try the curd the city is famous for, it is called JuJu Dhau and is served in traditional clay pots. You’ll never taste anything like it again. Spend a night in a hotel in Bhaktapur. (Breakfast, lunch & evening meal included)

Day 20: Bhaktpaur to Kathmandu

Day 20: Bhaktpaur to Kathmandu

After breakfast, you’ll be driven back to our hotel in Kathmandu. The journey through the busy, bustling streets of Kathmandu will take approximately 1 hour. Once you settle back into your hotel, you will have the rest of the day to do as you choose. Many people take the time to shop (our local guide can advise you on the best shops in the area), others enjoy exploring the cultural side of the city. In the evening, you’ll enjoy a traditional Nepali meal with your group. [Breakfast & dinner included]

Day 21: Kathmandu fly to Lukla (2800m) Trek to Phakding (2655m)

Day 21: Kathmandu fly to Lukla (2800m) Trek to Phakding (2655m)

In the morning, group members will take a spectacular forty-minute flight from Kathmandu to Lukla; this will be the most exhilarating flight of your life! Lukla is located 2865m above sea level, in the Khumbu region of Eastern Nepal. You will have awe inspiring views of the terraced landscape and river valleys below. After you arrive, your trek begins straight away, with a lovely, short walk to Phakding. Words cannot describe the feeling you will have when you are there. Be prepared to be overwhelmed!

Day 22: Phakding – Namche Bazaar (3446m)

Day 22: Phakding – Namche Bazaar (3446m)

Today the real trekking begins. Walk through stunning forests filled with rhododendron, alongside a river named in Nepali as the “milky river”, due to its milky colour from the flow of melting of ice. The day’s trek ends at Namche Bazaar. Namche Bazaar is incredible! A trading town, the hub of the Everest region right there in the foothills of Mount Everest. It’s like something out of a movie!

Day 23: Acclimatisation Day. Namche to Khumjung (3550m)

Day 23: Acclimatisation Day. Namche to Khumjung (3550m)

Enjoy the beauty of Namche’s village, as well as the friendliness and hospitality of its local Sherpa people, who have the most wonderful smiles. There is much to see and enjoy in this remote traditional village. You will take a short trek up to a Sherpa village named Khumjung and from there, you will return to your lodge in Namche.

Day 24: Namche to Tengboche (3865m)

Day 24: Namche to Tengboche (3865m)

It’s not a huge day of walking today, which allows for a sleep in, unless you want to wake up to see a spectacular sunrise over Ama Dablam and Mount Everest! (You really should!) You will begin your trek with breathtaking, unforgettable views of Mount Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Cholatse, Kantaiga, AmaDablam and Thamserku. The walk will end in beautiful and spiritual Tengboche.

Day 25: Tengboche to Dingboche (4,410m)

Day 25: Tengboche to Dingboche (4,410m)

If you haven’t already, it is likely that you will begin to feel the effects of the high altitude. A short day’s journey to Dingboche, consists of a trek downhill and a crossing of the Imja River, before climbing to Dingboche.

Day 26: Acclimatisation Day. Dingboche to Chukkung (Short walk) (4,730m)

Day 26: Acclimatisation Day. Dingboche to Chukkung (Short walk) (4,730m)

Spend the day acclimatising. Your guides will take you on a peaceful and spectacular walk to Chukkung. This walk will allow you to experience incredible views of the world’s highest peaks and allow you to adapt to the higher altitude.

Day 27: Dingboche to Lobuje (4940m)

Day 27: Dingboche to Lobuje (4940m)

The ascent will continue up to Khumbu Glacier, where you will pass a cemetery remembering the lives of the people who have died on Everest. It’s a very spiritual and traditional Buddhist place of respect.

Day 28: Lobuje to Everest Base Camp (5545m) to Lobuche

Day 28: Lobuje to Everest Base Camp (5545m) to Lobuche

A challenging ascent to GorakShep, where you will be rewarded with a breathtaking view of Mount Everest and Pumori. Today’s the day! The day you will succeed in reaching the base of the world’s highest peak. With excitement in your heart, you’ll walk along the famous Khumbu Glacier and up to Everest Base Camp (5545m). Here, you will enjoy a breathtaking view of the Khumbu Icefall from Everest Base Camp, before descending to Lobuche for the evening.

Day 29: GorakShep (5160m) to Kala Patthar (5545m) to Lobuje (4940m)

Day 29: GorakShep (5160m) to Kala Patthar (5545m) to Lobuje (4940m)

An early start this morning, for sunrise at Kala Patthar. It’s a difficult hike but well worth it, the views are spectacular! After your time at Kala Patthar, you will return to Lobuje for an overnight stay.

Day 30: Lobuje to Somare

Day 30: Lobuje to Somare

An easy descent down to Somare, filled with amazing views of the mighty Himalayas. You will never tire of your surrounds. You will feel so much at peace and at one with nature.

Day 31: Somare to Namche

Day 31: Somare to Namche

Today you will walk downhill to Namche Bazaar, you will be walking on the same track as you did on your way up to Everest Base Camp.

Day 32: Namche to Lukla

Day 32: Namche to Lukla

An easy walk down to Lukla for the final night’s stay in the Everest region. There’s time to explore Lukla and relax, before your flight the following morning.

Day 33: Lukla – Kathmandu

Day 33: Lukla – Kathmandu

Take a return flight from Lukla to Kathmandu, where you can relax and reflect on your incredible experiences and achievements. This evening, you will enjoy a final, farewell dinner with your guide and group members.

Rates

DatesAvailableCost (AUD)
Sunday, July 1, 2018 - Thursday, August 2, 2018 Available $3430
Sunday, November 25, 2018 - Thursday, December 27, 2018 Available $3430
Saturday, January 5, 2019 - Wednesday, February 6, 2019 Available $3430

Inclusions

What's Included

  • Hotel and airport transfers
  • All transportation within Nepal during the 33 Day Package
  • Flight: Kathmandu-Lukla-Kathmandu
  • All necessary paper work and permits (ACAP, TIMS)
  • Accommodation in Kathmandu and teahouses during the trek
  • An experienced English-speaking trek leader (trekking guide), porters to carry luggage
  • Meals: All breakfasts, welcome and farewell dinners, all meals in Batase village and on the trek. Full details on meals provided each day are outlined in the detailed itinerary above.
  • A comprehensive medical kit
  • All government and local taxes
  • Entry into all cultural sites and National Parks

What's Not Included

  • Nepalese visa fee
  • Lunch and dinner in Kathmandu
  • International airfare to and from Kathmandu
  • Travel and rescue insurance
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Additional hot drinks
  • Deserts and entrees
  • Hot shower
  • Internet Access
  • Travel insurance and evacuation insurance
  • Phone Calls
  • Charging of your devices
  • Bottled or boiled water
  • Laundry
  • Bar Bills
  • Tips for guides and porters

Checklists

Clothing and Equipment

The mistake many people make, is having too much stuff. There is nothing worse than carting clothing and equipment with (at altitude) in Nepal and ultimately not having needed it. The below list outlines the standard clothing we recommend you take for trekking, 14 – 15 days in the mountains.

Clothing

  • Heavy fleece long sleeve top
  • Mid weight long sleeve top
  • Zip-off full leg hiking pants and additional pair of hiking shorts
  • Stretch/lycra type full leg pants
  • Thermal fleece style long pants
  • Waterproof and windproof jacket with hood (Gore-Tex or equivalent) or Down Jacket
  • Thermal long sleeve tops (2)
  • Thermal long johns (1)
  • 2 T-shirts for hiking (polyester or equivalent with good wicking properties –cotton is not recommended)
  • 2 T-shirts for ‘after hiking’ (cotton is okay)
  • Heavyweight gloves or mittens with waterproof outer shell
  • Lightweight gloves (synthetic or poly-prop)
  • Warm hat / beanie and neck-warmer
  • Underwear (3 – 4 pairs)
  • Additional set of thermal underwear (can double up as pyjamas)
  • 3 – 4 pairs heavy weight woolen hiking socks
  • 2 pairs lightweight / thin comfortable socks
  • 1 pair of sturdy hiking boots with spare laces
  • Joggers or sandals for the end of the day when your trek has finished.

Equipment and Other

  • Light weight head torch (LED)
  • Digital camera
  • Backpack (30 – 40 litres)
  • Sleeping bag inner sheet (optional but nice to have)
  • Sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Water bottle, buy in Kathmandu (1 litre capacity)
  • Trekking poles (optional)
  • Waterproof leucoplast tape or similar for preventing blisters (available at chemists)
  • Small personal towel
  • Personal toiletries (include soap for washing clothes)
  • Wet Wipes (100 plus)
  • First aid kit (Optional)
  • Sweets / chocolate (buy in Kathmandu)
  • Tissues
  • Lip Balm

If you do not already own these items, we highly recommend that you purchase or hire these items in Kathmandu. They are made to a high quality and it’s always great to support the local economy. Another option is to hire a sleeping bag and jacket at a cost of approximately AUD$50 for each item for a period of 14 days.

FAQ's

Trekking and Volunteering

How do I book or reserve a place on one of your treks?

You can make a booking by clicking this link.

When do your treks depart?

Treks depart each month, throughout the year. Dates vary depending on the arrival date of a particular group. We can accommodate different departure dates in the same month if required.

When trekking, do we have to travel as part of a group?

No. If you are a couple or small group, and you wish to travel alone, we can accommodate you. We try to bring trekkers together into groups as we find it’s a more enjoyable experience for all, but if you wish a more individual trek for yourself or your companions, we’d be happy to arrange this.

About Volunteering

How do I apply to become a volunteer?

You can apply by clicking this link.

How much spending money will I need as a volunteer?

You will have access to ATMs in Kathmandu. We recommend that you carry a minimum of $100 cash with you, make sure this is in $10s and $20s, as you will be paying for your visa at the airport and it safeguards against any issues when you have the correct money.

Some people have asked how much extra money they should take with them. Most of your expenses are covered by the money you have paid, but if you enjoy shopping (and the shopping in Kathmandu is fantastic!), we recommend that you budget around $350 for your stay.

All volunteers should have access to an emergency fund, in the event they decide volunteer life is not for them, or they decide to take a break from village life for a few days. In circumstances such as these, the volunteer would need to cover the costs of transport when departing the village early, and the costs of any extra stays in hotels. For this reason, we recommend that volunteers carry an ATM card so that they can access emergency funds from home if required.

Where will I be staying during my volunteer program?

Your accommodation in Kathmandu and Chitwan will be in a hotel with ensuite facilities. You will share your room with someone of the same sex. In the village you will be housed in hostel type accommodation. You will share your room with a maximum of 3 other people and the facilities are shared. Village accommodation is basic but comfortable, and the rooms are clean.

I want to volunteer with my friends? Can we work and stay together?

We are very happy for you to share the experience with your friends and we will work with you to ensure that you can be accommodated together during your time in Nepal.

I’m only 17, can I still volunteer?

You must be 18 by the date of departure. We do provide the option for a parent/guardian to sign paperwork that grants permission for you to join the program if you are under 18. We would also encourage you to consider inviting an older family member to accompany you on the program to Nepal.

I’m not a university student. Can I still volunteer?

Yes! As long as you are willing to volunteer and improve the lives of the villagers in Nepal, we are more than happy for you to join the program.

I’m ready to go but my parents are worried!

We strongly encourage your parents to contact us, as we welcome parental involvement. We will answer any questions your parents may have through email or telephone contact.

What if I need to cancel?

Once we have accepted your application, we begin to incur costs for you, as we book accommodation, internal travel, reserve your spot in the game park and so on. So your deposit is non-refundable.

Everest Base Camp Trek Questions

Is it scary?

This is a difficult question to answer, as it depends on personality. Some people love the thrill of flying into Lukla and crossing high suspension bridges, but others have to overcome many fears to make this experience a reality.

From my own personal experiences, I tend to be the latter. I’m not a risk taker and I worry a lot. Having flown into Lukla airport and trekked the Everest Base Camp Trail, I can say my fears were unfounded. I enjoyed the flight and found the trek to be the most incredible experience of my life. After crossing the first suspension bridge the rest did not bother me, in fact, I started to look forward to them!

Whenever you trek with us, you will be surrounded by a team of professionals who know what to look out for and will constantly be keeping your wellbeing at the forefront of their minds. Our guides will always put your mind at ease and will act quickly in a situation where you may be feeling uncertain. You’re in safe hands!

Will I be giving back to the people of Nepal?

When you trek with us, you are most definitely helping the people of Nepal. As one of the only companies hiring young women, you will be supporting our very important work of ending early marriages and human trafficking. We pay above award wages and treat all our team members as family members, we want a happy and productive team and we believe we have achieved that.

Our team will share the culture and traditions of Nepal with you, leaving you feeling connected to not only the spectacular mountains, but also to the people of Nepal, who will leave an imprint on your heart. Take on Nepal co-founder Som Tamang, is the founder and president of the not for profit organisation, Friends of Himalayan Children Inc. (FHC). FHC works in remote villages to provide educational opportunities to thousands of children and a safe and nurturing home to 50 young children. Take on Nepal is committed to giving back to Nepal on many different levels. By choosing us as your preferred trekking company, you will be too.

What cultural traditions should I be aware of?

The most important one to be aware of, when trekking to Everest Base Camp, is the many Stupa’s. A Stupa is a Buddhist shrine. Your guide will point them out to you. You must always walk on the right side of the Stupas; in Buddhism it’s considered important to go clockwise, this relates to always moving forward in life, not having regrets or going backwards (anti-clockwise).

Nepal is a developing country, many people live in poverty. It is considered polite to finish all the food on your plate. If you are simply too full to finish your meal, please offer the food to a friend or guide.

It is considered disrespectful to shout in the mountains of the Everest region. Always use a normal speaking voice and refrain from yelling out, unless you absolutely must!

Your guide will make you aware of any other cultural traditions you need to know, during your trek. Please do not hesitate to ask your guide lots of questions. Our guides appreciate you showing an interest in their country and you will leave Nepal full of interesting information.

What training do my guides have?

All our leading guides undergo a training course to receive their license. We do not allow our clients to trek without an experienced, licensed guide leading the way. Our guides also do first aid training and will be offered every opportunity to attend mountaineering, hiking and biking courses wherever possible.

Take on Nepal believe that a well-trained team of professionals, will guarantee positive outcomes. We are also one of the only companies that fly our young trainee guides into Lukla, to begin their journey as trainee guides/porters. Most companies hire their team at Lukla as it reduces their flight expenses.

Lukla has been described as the “most dangerous airport in the world”, is this really the case?

We feel this is an unfair title. When researching statistics related to the airport, it’s easy to see why this is an exaggeration. Over the past 40 years, there has been only one fatal plane crash. During peak season, up to 30 flights take off and land to/from Lukla, on a daily basis. The airlines are very careful not to fly, unless the conditions are perfect. For this reason, we recommend you always allow a minimum of 2 days free at the end of your trek, before returning to your home country. This will ensure you do not miss your return flight.

The title “most dangerous airport” was given due to the altitude at which the planes land, the surrounding mountains and also because of the length of the runway. It is a short runway, with a steep gradient to allow for flights to land safely. We are sure that you will find it to be an exciting and exhilarating experience!

Do I need to be super fit to be reach Everest Base Camp?

No, you do not need to be super fit to undertake this trek. However, the fitter you are, the easier and more enjoyable the experience will be. To get prepared, we recommend you stick with the training plan we will provide to you, to ensure the best possible outcome for you for the trek.

We have seen people of all ages and sizes successfully reach Everest Base Camp, fitness is not dependent on size, it is strength that matters most. Strength of mind and self-belief is also another crucial factor, in achieving your goal to reach Everest Base Camp.

Are my porters treated well?

We go above and beyond to ensure our porters are treated with respect. We do not allow our male porters to carry more than 20kg and our female porters 15kg. This is much less than other companies. Our porters are paid fair wages and tips are divided evenly amongst guides and porters. We view our porters as an integral part of our team and treat them with the respect that is deserved.

How much money should I tip my guide and porter?

Although our team are paid wages for the work they do, tipping is a way of showing gratitude for a job well done. As a general rule, the average tips given to your team (guides and porters) are 10% of the cost of your trek. For example, if you paid $2,000 for your trekking experience, $200 would be a kind and respectful amount to pay to your team.

We also want to stress that in the unlikely event that you are unhappy with the level of service received from your team, you are not obligated to tip.

Keep in mind that tips make a big difference to the lives of our guides and porters, this money always goes to good use, generally towards caring for their families. Your generosity has a wonderful roll on effect in Nepal. Generous tips result in happiness all round. You will leave Nepal knowing you have rewarded the people who have made your experience what it was and your team will feel gratitude for your kindness.

I can only get time off to do the trek in December/January. This is off season, is it too cold to trek during this time?

We understand many trekkers can only get time off work during the Christmas period, this also happens to be the off season in Nepal. From my personal experience of trekking in Nepal, I must say this is my favourite time of year to trek. Although the temperatures are lower, especially once you reach an altitude of above 4,000m, the skies are always clear and blue and the views are second to none. The trails are much quieter and the trekking lodges are less busy, which raises the level of service you receive. Also, flights in and out of Lukla are more reliable, as the weather tends to be predictably clear. Finally, and most importantly, you’re just about guaranteed a great view of Mount Everest!

If you follow our packing list, you will be warm enough at night and cool enough during the day.

Am I guaranteed to see Mount Everest?

No, it is not guaranteed that you will see Mount Everest. In fact, it’s only during certain seasons that you will see the mighty mountain and when you do see it, your view will be between cloud coverage. For your best chance of seeing Mount Everest, we recommend you trek between September and February. During the Summer monsoon months (June, July and August), it is unlikely you will see Everest, but you will certainly know you’re amongst the giant mountains of the world, and will often be walking above the clouds, an incredible feeling!

Do I need to trek in a group? I would like to undertake the trek with my partner or on my own.

Our treks can be customised for large groups, small groups, couples and also individuals. The costs outlined on our website are based around groups. If you are trekking as an individual or couple, there may be a small additional cost.

What is the food like on the Everest Base Camp Trek?

When you trek with Take on Nepal, all main meals are included in the cost of the trek. At each tea house and trekking lodge, you’ll be provided with a menu to choose your meal from. Feedback in relation to the food on the trek is always positive, the menu caters for all tastes!

It is our strong recommendation that you order the traditional Nepalese meal of Dahl Baht for at least 1 or 2 of your daily meals. Dahl Baht consists of rice, vegetable curry and lentil soup. It is a meal that will meet most of your nutritional needs, whilst also being filling and tasty. The people of Nepal have a saying “Dahl Baht Power, 24 Hour!” meaning it provide the energy required for 24 hours.

What is the accommodation like on the Everest Base Camp Trek?

Accommodation is always on a twin share basis, in cozy lodges along the trekking route. The rooms are basic, they are small with two single beds. You’re provided with a blanket and pillow, but you need to have a sleeping bag to be comfortable and warm at night.

When staying in the lodges, most of your time (other than sleeping) will be spent in the dining room. These Tibetan-style timber dining rooms are an oasis after a day of trekking. They are warm, homely and filled with happy trekkers and guides chatting contently to one another.

Is the itinerary flexible?

Yes! We’re more than happy to adjust the itinerary to make your dream trek a reality. Some people choose to have additional days trekking, while other people are short on time and the itinerary needs to be adjusted to fit in with the time frame allowed. Our expert team can provide you with advice. If you have additional days to spare, we recommend that you join one of our city tours. Kathmandu has a lot to offer!

What should I bring with me?

This is itemized on each tour page. Please note, we highly recommend that you purchase as much as you can in Kathmandu, by purchasing quality goods in Nepal, you will be supporting the local economy.

Will I have internet and mobile phone reception during the trek?

This is your choice. You will have the option of purchasing internet (Everest Link).

Are there shops for me to buy essentials during the trek?

There are small tea houses and lodges along the trails, that sell some necessities. We highly recommend that you have everything you need, before commencing the trek, that way, everything you purchase along the trail will be additional luxuries (such as fruit, biscuits, pringles and soft drink). Prices along the trail are very high and this is out of necessity. We fully encourage you to buy luxury items along the way, in order to support the local economy.

Is it possible for me to have a woman guide?

Take on Nepal are very proud to be one of the only companies hiring and training a team of women. We work alongside some of the most vulnerable women in Nepal, providing them with opportunities that are unheard of within Nepal. Our young women guides are trailblazers, paving the way for other young women who wish to break free from the cycle of early marriage and poverty.

When we first started bringing young women along as trainee guides and porters, lodge owners and trekking guides were shocked, and would sometimes disapprove of what we were doing. Attitudes are slowly shifting and now if a woman guide/porter is not working with our group, we are asked about their whereabouts.

Nepal is a male dominated country. Female education is not valued and the expectation is early and more often than not, pre-arranged marriage. Our work with young women in Nepal begins in our co-founder Som Tamang’s home village of Batase. Through the humanitarian not for profit organisation “Friends of Himalayan Children Inc.” we ensure the girls in the village are given every opportunity to attend school. We break down barriers that stop young village girls from achieving their full potential. If the girls attend school and show motivation towards work opportunities, we support them to continue their education in Kathmandu, whilst also providing employment as trainee guides and porters with Take on Nepal. Hiring young village women is something that as a company we are most proud of.

Practicalities

What should I wear on my feet while trekking?

Make sure you wear an old, trusted pair of reliable and comfortable trekking boots or shoes. If purchasing a new pair, do so a minimum of 4 weeks prior to departure, to allow time to break them in properly. It is so important to avoid the possibility of getting blisters, something as simple as that could negatively impact on your trek. We recommend you wear woolen socks when trekking, as they keep your feet warm and dry.

How much money do you recommend I bring with me for my trek?

Your trekking fee covers most of your costs, including all of your meals, accommodation, permits and the flight in and out of Lukla (where this destination is included in your trek). However, the costs of “luxuries” are not covered (such as coffee, sweets, alcohol and other souvenirs you may wish to purchase along the way). We recommend you budget approximately $20 per day, to comfortably cover any additional expenses you may encounter.

What can I expect to happen if the flight in/out of Lukla is cancelled or delayed?

This can happen due to weather conditions. If your flight in or out of Lukla is delayed, you may end up having to wait 1-2 days for another flight. We recommend that you allow an extra couple of days, when booking your flight out of Nepal, to allow for such an occurrence. The additional time spent in Lukla or Kathmandu will be a personal expense to you, but we will be very happy to organise any logistics, such as your accommodation in Lukla or Kathmandu. Another option is to use a privately chartered helicopter. The cost for this is high, but it’s a guaranteed way to ensure you meet any deadlines you may have.

How much weight can my porter carry?

We’re different to most other trekking companies, in that our porters are often female (to empower and provide employment), and we set the limit at 15kg. Many other trekking companies use 1 porter for 2 clients, with an expectation they carry up to 40kg; we do not agree with this and do not want to place such hardships upon our team members. 10kg is plenty for your trek and you would also be carrying your personal daypack, which generally weighs 5kg.

Will I have access to the internet and other telecommunications during my trek?

You will have reliable Internet access in most places. Many lodges on the Everest Base Camp Trek have Internet access, but you must purchase usage. On other treks it varies, but overall, coverage in Nepal is reasonable but slow. Our team has access to satellite phones during treks, to call for support in the event of an emergency.

Can you provide me with more information on your terms and conditions and also information on your cancellation policy?

Yes, please famialise yourself with our detailed terms and conditions and our cancellation policy. Do not hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have. We’re always happy to help!

Health & Safety

How do I know if I’m physically strong enough for the trek?

If you’re in doubt about whether or not you would be able to undertake the trek, we recommend that you visit your doctor for a health check. Overall good health and determination, combined with good coordination and balance, will all work in your favour.

How will I be supported if I have an injury, or if I become sick during the trek?

Your safety is our number one priority. Our professional guides are skilled and experienced when responding to emergencies. Take on Nepal have a comprehensive risk management document, that ensures most possibilities have been carefully addressed and plans put in place. Our guides are all trained in First Aid and through their experience and knowledge, know when to call a helicopter for an emergency evacuation. With Take on Nepal, you are in safe hands.

How will I adjust to the change in altitude?

At altitude, sickness can set in at any time. We pace our treks to allow your body to adjust to the change in climate and our team monitoring your wellbeing, throughout the trek. The most common form of altitude sickness is actually called “Acute Mountain Sickness” (AMS). It’s the least dangerous form and symptoms include a light headache, nausea, loss of appetite, insomnia and fatigue. In most cases, it is treatable through rest and many people make it to their destination. If your condition worsens, you will be evacuated out of the region by helicopter, to receive medical treatment at a hospital.

I’m a female, is it safe for me to travel alone?

As a female, Nepal is generally very safe. Many of our team members are female and much of our work centres around empowering young women and girls. Most, if not all of our treks, will have a female staff member on board, who will give you strength and inspiration as you trek through the mountains of Nepal.

Trekking In Nepal

What does an average day of trekking in Nepal look like?

You will trek for between 4 and 7 hours every day. Our treks are moderately paced, it is not a race. We want you to enjoy the experience and to learn about your surrounds from your guide.

What kind of accommodation is used?

Most accommodation during your treks will be in trekking lodges; the lodges provide basic sleeping facilities and tasty meals. Local families usually operate the lodges. Your evenings will be spent chatting to your guides, porters and fellow trekkers. Unless you have paid an additional charge for a single room, you will share your room with 1 or 2 other trekkers of the same gender. Couples will share a room of their own. Again, the lodges are basic; do not compare them in your mind to any accommodation you have stayed in in Western countries.

Where and what will we be eating during our trek?

On the more heavily touristed trekking trails, such as Everest Base Camp and the Annapurna treks, you will be able to choose from menus with quite a few choices. You will eat dinner and breakfast at the lodge you are staying in, lunch will be at another lodge along the way. Daal bhaat is guaranteed to be on the menu at every stop off, and you can be sure this will be what you guide and porters will be eating. Daal Bhaat isn’t just the most popular meal in Nepal, for many Nepalis it’s the only meal they ever eat. Twice a day, every day of their lives and they don’t feel they’ve eaten properly without it!

What training do my guides have?

All our leading guides undergo a training course to receive their license. We do not allow our clients to trek without an experienced, licensed guide leading the way. Our guides also do first aid training and will be offered every opportunity to attend mountaineering, hiking and biking courses wherever possible.

Take on Nepal believe that a well-trained team of professionals, will guarantee positive outcomes. We are also one of the only companies that fly our young trainee guides into Lukla, to begin their journey as trainee guides/porters. Most companies hire their team at Lukla as it reduces their flight expenses.

What precautions do I need to take in relation to drinking water?

You will be able to purchase bottled water all along your trekking route. As a general rule, the cost increases the more isolated you are. We highly recommend you take water-purifying tablets with you, or a water-purifying pen. These can also be purchased in Kathmandu. During your trek, it is crucial that you drink plenty of water, if you don’t, the risk of becoming unwell is much higher.

Getting Organised

Do I need insurance or vaccinations?

Travel Insurance is compulsory if you wish to participate in the program. We will require a copy of the insurance certificate and you must also bring a hard copy of your insurance certificate with you to Nepal. You need to ensure that the travel insurance purchased insures for helicopter evacuation above 5500m.

Nepal does not require any vaccinations in order to enter the country. However, we strongly recommend that participants consult with a doctor before departing for Nepal, for information about immunisations and advice on how to stay healthy while traveling.

What do you recommend that I take on my trip with me?

The mistake many people make is having too much stuff. There is nothing worse than carting clothing and equipment with you for 2 weeks (at altitude) in Nepal and ultimately not having needed it. The list below outlines the standard clothing we recommend, for trekking 14 – 15 days in the mountains.

  • Heavy fleece long sleeve top
  • Mid weight long sleeve top
  • Zip-off full leg hiking pants and additional pair of hiking shorts
  • Stretch/lycra type full leg pants
  • Thermal fleece style long pants
  • Waterproof and windproof jacket with hood (Gore-Tex or equivalent) or Down Jacket
  • Thermal long sleeve tops (2)
  • Thermal long johns (1)
  • 2 T-shirts for hiking (polyester or equivalent with good wicking properties –cotton is not recommended)
  • 2 T-shirts for ‘after hiking’ (cotton is okay)
  • Heavyweight gloves or mittens with waterproof outer shell
  • Lightweight gloves (synthetic or poly-prop)
  • Warm hat / beanie and neck-warmer
  • Underwear (3 – 4 pairs)
  • Additional set of thermal underwear (can double up as pyjamas)
  • 3 – 4 pairs heavy weight woolen hiking socks
  • 2 pairs lightweight / thin comfortable socks
  • 1 pair of sturdy hiking boots with spare laces
  • Joggers or sandals for the end of the day when your trek has finished.

Your packing list should include the following equipment:

  • Light weight head torch (LED)
  • Digital camera
  • Backpack (30 – 40 litres)
  • Sleeping bag inner sheet (optional but nice to have)
  • Sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Water bottle, buy in Kathmandu (1 litre capacity)
  • Trekking poles (optional)
  • Waterproof leucoplast tape or similar for preventing blisters (available at chemists)
  • Small personal towel
  • Personal toiletries (include soap for washing clothes)
  • Wet Wipes (100 plus)
  • First aid kit (Optional)
  • Sweets / chocolate (buy in Kathmandu)
  • Tissues
  • Lip Balm

If you do not already own these items, we highly recommend that you purchase or hire these items in Kathmandu. They are made to a high quality and it’s always great to support the local economy. Another option is to hire a sleeping bag and jacket at a cost of approximately AUD$50 for each item for a period of 14 days.

What items should I NOT take with me for my trek?

Jeans, Jumpers / Sweaters, Dress Shirts, Dress Shoes, Dresses or Hair Dryers.

What about entry fees into national parks and trekking permits, do you organize that?

We organise all this for you. All the costs are included in the cost of your trek.

What time of year do you recommend I undertake my trek?

All seasons have their pros and cons, but as a general rule, the best time to trek in Nepal is from February to May, when the temperature has warmed after Winter. September through to December is also a fabulous time to trek, during these months the clouds start lifting after the Monsoon rains of June and July, which often leaves you with spectacular views of the Himalayas.

Essentials

Will I be able to do this?

Yes! If you are physically fit, if you love the outdoors and if you have a positive attitude, you will make it. Altitude sickness or injury can end your trek, but this only affects a small percentage of people who trek. Being amongst the tallest peaks in the world is a feeling that cannot be described in words and we recommend that you undertake some basic fitness training, prior to your departure, to ensure it is a positive experience for you.

Do I need to have a guide?

You can go it alone, but we can assure you it would be a vastly different experience. Our guides bring with them knowledge and experience; this becomes a bridge between the two cultures. You are guaranteed to learn so much more about Nepal and the terrain through which you are trekking, when you are guided. You are also providing employment to people who rely on tourism to survive, they are passionate about their work and we are sure your guide will soon become a friend to you.

I understand that my guide and porter may be female. Can you give me more information about this?

In the mountain villages of Nepal, opportunities for women are few. Many young girls have little or no education, and marriage at an early age is still common. Take on Nepal and Friends of Himalayan Children Charity have been working to change this, for many years.

As Take on Nepal has grown, we’ve begun hiring young women and girls from Batase, first to work as porters and then as guides, roles that up to now have been seen as exclusively male. For young village girls, early exposure to paid work as porters and the experience of interacting with Western women, is an eye opener. It provides them with a glimpse of other possible futures, futures far different from the lives their mothers lived and to the lives they may have thought they were going to live.

The trekking industry in Nepal is a male dominated environment. Women guides are unheard of, which is surprising when you consider that a huge proportion of Western trekkers visiting Nepal are women. Spend a few nights staying at various lodges on the trails and you will see that 60% of all trekkers are women, many coming from European countries. At Take on Nepal, we’re all about empowering women, giving the village girls the opportunities that their brothers have and opening their eyes to the possibilities of a larger world.

Can I take my children to Everest Base Camp?

It is becoming quite common for families to trek to Everest Base Camp together. Children aged 9 and upwards have trekked comfortably to Everest Base Camp and why not take your parents too! Age should not be a barrier to undertake this experience, as long as family members are fit, healthy and have a positive frame of mind, it is a possibility. We can tailor a trek specifically for the needs of your family, as we do recommend adding a few extra days on to the trek.

Do I need to undertake a training program to complete my trek?

This is highly recommended as the fitter you are, the more you will enjoy the experience. We offer a helpful training program for you, once you have booked, and we’re always on hand to answer your questions. Our team will support and encourage you throughout your trek. Our treks are paced to allow plenty of time for you to reach your daily destination. However, if you choose to undertake the trek without prior training, you will be fine, as long as you have great willpower and plenty of stamina to get you through the tough times.

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Testimonials

There are many trekking companies out there that promise lifelong experiences and breathtaking views of the Himalayas. Take On Nepal and Friends of Himalayan Children provide more than that by putting the money towards helping to provide a home, education and opportunities to young Nepalese kids that otherwise would not. It was truly inspiring to see the work Som has done and is continuing to do in the small village of Batase. The culture and concept of education to the students in the school is nothing I have ever experienced. Being a teacher back home in Australia, I have seen how western society takes education for granted. The students in the school have a visible hunger for learning – unfortunately due to their realization of the harsh reality of the lack of opportunity their homeland provides. I will cherish the experiences I had volunteering in Batase and trekking to Everest Base Camp with me for a long time as well as the impact I know I made in the lives of those young kids.

Mitch Clisby - (November 2016)

There is no better way to see Nepal for the first time than doing a joint Volunteering program and Everest Base Camp trek with this incredible team. To see the work and incredible effort Som and his organisation put in all year round to create what they have is just wonderful and the sense of involvement from this experience is like no other. I felt as though I found another family in everyone I shared my time with there. I don’t think there are many programs anywhere else in the world that give you a feeling as strong as this. It really sets fire to something in you that makes you want to start doing things, helping, changing, continue to see the children grow and keep in contact with everyone who was a part of the journey. Six weeks in Nepal could not have been spent any better, apart from staying longer. From running with incredible athletes through the Nepalese hills and witnessing the most beautiful smiles I’ve ever seen every day I spent there, to trekking to the base of the highest mountain in the world with people I could trust from spending the past few weeks with, I am over the moon I chose to go with Take on Nepal. I’ll be back very soon!

Alex Aves - (February 2017)

My time in Batase village and on the Mt Everest base camp trek, with Take On Nepal, was honestly the most amazing month of my life! I could not have had a more eye opening or rewarding experience, and without the Take on Nepal Team, the memories that I will forever cherish, would not have been possible.

I recommend this amazing company to any person who craves an authentic and real experience. Any person has the power to make a difference such as the simple act of a smile or creating a sense of hope. This is possible with education and love as the vector of change, through challenging and broadening perspectives, which is exactly what Take on Nepal strives for.
There were some moments on this trip, where I was completely taken back in awe when learning the incredible stories of some of the Batase villagers, as well as hearing the pure passion, dedication and determination, which Som and Susan both share, in making a difference to the lives of those in Batase. The work that Take on Nepal does has really inspired me personally and I am sure I will be back to help Take on Nepal and Friends of Himalayan Children, in any way that I can!

To our Take on Nepal team, I really want to say thank you, and I can honestly say that although I came to Nepal with the ambition to help others, Nepal helped me in a way that I will forever be grateful for! Thank you so much!! If anyone who is reading this is thinking of going to Nepal, please take a a leap of faith and just do it! You will not regret it!

Lizzy Georgopoulos - (January 2018)

I initially came to Nepal to volunteer and teach the students of Batase village through Take on Nepal. I immediately wished that I had organised to also do the Everest Base Camp trek and the team was very accommodating and allowed this wish to come true. Throughout the trek our guides were extremely supportive and went out of their way to ensure we successfully achieved our goal of reaching Base Camp, this included making alterations to individuals itineraries in order to accommodate delays due to illness. This allowed myself to sleep at lower altitudes and achieve the rest I needed to recover, and catch up with the rest of the group as soon as possible to continue the trek. I can’t recommend Take on Nepal highly enough as their care and attention to each individual member of the trekking team goes above and beyond what I could have ever expected and is far greater than the level of care I witnessed of other guides we met while trekking to and from our destination.

Michael Schmidt - (Australia, March 2017)

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