everest base camp
hikers in Namche bazaar
Stupa in Deboche
Boy looking at Everest
dingboche accommodation
yak carrying to everest
Hikers in Lobuche
tributes Thukla Pass
everest base camp sign
everest base camp rock
Hikers in Pheriche
helicopter flying everest
light aircraft runway lukla airport
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Everest Base Camp trek with helicopter return

12-day tour: 9 days to Everest base camp returning by helicopter + 3 nights in Kathmandu

12 days
English (other languages available as extra)
Starts: Pick-up at Kathmandu airport upon arrival of your flight
Ends: Transfer to Kathmandu airport according to your flight departure time.
Flexible cancellation policy


This 12-day private tour follows the iconic route to Everest Base Camp and does so in only 9 days, as the return is by helicopter, shortening the trek duration by 3 days and reducing the original Everest Base Camp Trek route from 81 miles (130 km) to 54 miles (87 km). And it is done without missing any places, as the distance not covered is the return journey, which is exactly the same as the outward journey. In addition, the tour includes 3 days in Kathmandu, one on arrival, one to get to know the city with a cultural tour, and one to take the departure flight. As you can imagine, the highlight of the tour, besides visiting Everest Base Camp, is the helicopter flight, which gives us a unique view of Mount Everest.

So that you don't have to worry about anything, during the hiking days all services are included (food, accommodation in selected hotels/guesthouses, permits, guide...).

But this tour is much more than a trekking route with views of the great Himalayas (Everest, Pumori, Lhotse, Nuptse...), it is an immersion in the Sherpa culture, from the guide's explanations to the villages and places visited.

Sounds good, doesn't it? Here are all the details of your next adventure.

Tour details


  • All airport transfers
  • Roundtrip flights between Kathmandu/Manthali and Lukla
  • 2 nights in a 4* hotel in Kathmandu in double room with half board
  • Helicopter flight from Pheriche to Lukla
  • Guided tour in Kathmandu (in English)
  • 9 nights of lodging in shared room during the tour
  • Full board during the trek
  • Professional trekking guide in English
  • Luggage porters during trekking (1 porter for every 2 travelers)
  • Administrative fees, taxes and entrance fees to all cultural sites and national parks
  • Sleeping bag and protective bag for your luggage

Not included

  • Meals in Kathmandu
  • International airfare and airport departure tax
  • Personal equipment for trekking
  • Travel insurance with emergency evacuation coverage at high altitude
  • Tips

Important information

👌 This tour is in private service, with a guide only for your group, not shared with other travelers.

🛩️ During the months of March, April, May, October and November the domestic flight may depart from Manthali, in which case a private transfer will be included.

🛩️🧳 The domestic flight has a baggage allowance of 15 kilos, each additional kilo has a cost of 2 to 5 USD.

❌ This route has no age restrictions, but it is physically demanding, so it is essential to be in good physical condition and not to suffer from medical conditions that may be aggravated due to the altitude.

📋 It is mandatory to have a medical insurance with coverage for routes at very high altitudes.

Cancellation policy

Free cancellation! If you cancel at least 5 days before the start of the tour, you will receive 100% of the amount paid. After this period, in case of no-show or non-completion of the tour, no refunds will be made.

Tour itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu and transfer to the hotel.

Welcome to Nepal!

Upon arrival of your flight, you will be picked up at Kathmandu International Airport and taken to your 4 star hotel.

That same evening, around 5 pm you will have a tour briefing with your guide to coordinate all the details, check the equipment and documentation for the trek.

Afterwards, you will celebrate your arrival in Nepal and the beginning of the adventure with a dinner together at the hotel.

As the arrival time depends on the flight schedule, no other activities are planned for this day.

hotel katmandu ebc

Day 2: Flight from Kathmandu or Manthali to Lukla and trekking to Phakding

- Difficulty: Medium

- Distance: 5 miles (8.2 Km)

- Duration of the hike: 3 to 4 hours.

- Elevation gain: 4,590 feet (1,400 m) to 8,560 feet (2,610 m)

- Highlights: Incredible views during the flight.

Early in the morning you will take the flight to Lukla, gateway to the Khumbu region and where we will start the trek.

The flight departs from Kathmandu or Manthali. In case of flying from Manthali, a private transfer will take you there, it is a 6 hour drive starting at 2 am.

In just 20 to 25 minutes you will be in Lukla, have breakfast and start the route to Phakding. This first stage runs along the Dudh Koshi River, crossing several suspension bridges and passing through picturesque Sherpa villages. The last stretch is a climb that will take us to Phakding, where we will spend the night in a guesthouse.

light aircraft at Lukla airport

Day 3: Trekking from Phakding to Namche Bazaar

- Difficulty: Medium-high.

- Distance: 7.5 miles (12 Km).

- Duration of the hike: 6 to 7 hours.

- Elevation gain: from 8,560 feet (2,610 m) to 11,290 feet (3.441 m)

- Highlights: Views of Mount Thamserku 21680 feet (6,608 m).

We have breakfast and the route begins, as yesterday we continue walking along the Dudh Koshi river, crossing some bridges and passing through some villages. In this first part of the route we will not find big slopes. The second part of the route is different, we enter the Sagarmantha National Park and during the next two and a half hours the difference in altitude increases, but every effort has its reward, and as we gain altitude we begin to have views of the Himalayan range: peaks above 19,700 feet (6,000 m) high and glacial rivers, accompanied by prayer flags and small stone formations. We will have lunch en route and in the afternoon we will reach one of the great villages of the Everest region: Namche Bazaar, where we will stay in a small hotel.

Couple on poster Sagarmatha national park

Day 4: Acclimatization hike from Namche Bazaar to Everest View Hotel.

- Difficulty: Medium.

- Distance: 3.4 miles (5.4 km).

- Duration of the hike: 4 to 5 hours.

- Elevation gain: 11,290 feet (3.441 m) to 12,730 feet (3,880 m)

- Highlights: Views of Everest 29,032 feet (8,849 m)

From Kathmandu the altitude gained is already over 6,500 feet (2,000 m). To avoid altitude sickness, we will spend the day in Namche Bazaar, thus avoiding further ascent and giving the body additional time to acclimatize. If you wish, this day you can take a route of just over 3 miles (5 km), passing through Syangboche, a village famous for its views of the highest mountain in the world. Finally, you arrive at the Everest View Hotel, which offers views of Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse and Ama Dablam.

In addition, such a short route allows for free time, and Namche Bazaar is the perfect place, as well as its markets and restaurants, or even continue to learn about the local culture with a visit to the Sherpa Museum.

Hotel Everest View

Day 5: Trekking from Namche Bazaar to Tengboche

- Difficulty: High

- Distance: 6.5 miles (10.5 km)

- Duration of the hike: 5 to 6 hours.

- Elevation gain: from 12,730 feet (3,880 m) to 12,664 feet (3,860 m)

- Highlights: view of the Tengboche monastery at sunset and the Himalayas in the background.

The trek begins with a short climb to the top of Namche Bazaar to take the path that runs halfway up the valley formed by the river Dudh Koshi. All along the route you will find stupas and always in the background you will have as a guide the Everest and the Ama Dablam. The last 3 kilometers of the route are a climb of more than 1,640 feet (500 m), until finally reaching Tengboche. This village is home to the largest monastery in the Everest region, in which every day in the afternoon a ceremony is held open to anyone who wants to join and is especially popular with expeditions, which take the opportunity to ask permission to the mountains to climb to the top.

Tengboche Monastery

Day 6: Trek from Tengboche to Dingboche

- Difficulty: high.

- Distance: 7.2 miles (11.5 km).

- Hiking time: 5-6 hours.

- Elevation gain: from 12,664 feet (3,860 m) to 14,465 feet (4,410 m)

- Highlights: Buddhist stupa and closer view of Ama Dablam, Nuptse and Lhotse.

The day begins with a gentle descent through a forest of conifers and rhododendron. Gradually the road becomes slightly ascending and leads us to the village of Pangboche, famous for its terraced agriculture. We leave the forest behind and the landscape begins to change, much more rocky and with less vegetation. The last part of the route begins, and having always in sight the Ama Dablam, we continue a steady climb to Dingboche,

Buddhist dingboche stupa

Day 7: Acclimatization route in Dingboche to Nangkartshang Peak

- Difficulty: medium.

- Distance: 3.2 miles (5.1 km).

- Hiking duration: 4-5 hours.

- Elevation gain: from 14,465 feet (4,410 m) to 16,676 feet (5,083 m)

- Highlights: Views of Ama Dablam from Nangkartsang peak.

Again we will spend a day acclimatizing to avoid altitude sickness and will not continue ascending. Only a short hike is planned to Nangkartsang peak, with an altitude of over 16,600 feet (5,000 m). At this altitude, in addition to the views of Ama Dablam, we will also see Lhotse, Makalu or Cho Oyu.

This route will take us just over 5 hours, so you will have free time to visit the village or just enjoy the calm in a tea house.

Dingboche to Nangkartsang

Day 8: Trek from Dingboche to Lobuche

- Difficulty: high

- Distance: 5 miles (8 Km)

- Hiking time: 5-6 hours

- Elevation gain: from 14,465 feet (4,410 m) to 16,108 feet (4,910 m)

- Highlights: The views of the Thukla Pass and the climbers' memorial stones.

A good part of today's route climbs up the Khumbu Khola valley. Especially, the kilometer before reaching the Thukla Pass has a steepness that will make us strive, but it will be worth it. The Thukla Pass, well known among experienced mountaineers in this area, is not only a viewpoint with beautiful views. This place is a memorial, composed of hundreds of small formations that honor and remember climbers, Sherpas and adventurers who never returned from their last Himalayan adventure. Like all prayer sites, it is decorated with the characteristic colorful flags that abound throughout Nepal.

After this point the slope is much less steep and in just over 1.25 miles (2 km) we will reach Lobuche, a village that at almost 16400 feet (5,000 m) has a privileged view.

hikers in Thukla Pass

Day 9: Everest Base Camp trek and overnight at Gorak Shep

- Difficulty: high.

- Distance: 7.3 miles (11.7 km).

- Hiking time: 8-9 hours.

- Elevation gain: from 16,108 feet (4,910 m) to 17,598 feet (5,364 m)

- Highlights: Everest Base Camp

Finally the long awaited day!

We started the trek to Everest Base Camp. Although the route is not very demanding, the altitude and rocky terrain add to the difficulty of this stretch. Finally we arrive, we will have time to see the camp and the expeditions that are preparing to climb to its summit, as well as enjoy the atmosphere of this place.

After a while, we return by the same route until we reach Gorak Shep, where we will spend the night.

hikers at everest base camp

Day 10: Trek to Kala Patthar and Pheriche for helicopter flight to Lukla

- Distance: 9.5 miles (15.2 km).

- Hiking time: 8-9 hours.

- Elevation gain: from 17,749 feet (5,140 m) to 18,225 feet (5,555 m)

- Highlights: Helicopter flight in front of Everest.

Today we will reach the highest altitude of the entire route, the 18,225 feet (5,555 m) summit of Kala Pathhar. This is undoubtedly one of the best places to photograph Everest and the surrounding peaks. We start the descent to Pheriche, where the helicopter will be waiting for us to take us to Lukla.

This is one of the highlights of the tour, and you can be sure that this helicopter flight will exceed your expectations. Fasten your seat belt and enjoy!

Helicopter from Pheriche to Lukla

Day 11: Flight to Kathmandu and cultural tour

Early in the morning, we will take the flight back to Kathmandu. In case direct flights from Lukla to Kathmandu are not operating (very common in the months of March, April, May and October and November), the flight will be to Manthali and from there a private transfer will take you to the hotel in Kathmandu.

After lunch, you will be picked up for a tour of the Kathmandu Valley, where you will visit the main UNESCO heritage sites.

patan durbar square tour katmandu

Day 12: Transfer to Kathmandu Airport

As on the first day, today there are no activities planned, so at the time you indicate, a private transport will pick you up to take you to the international airport. This way, we will put an end to this adventure.

katmandu airport transfer

What to bring to Everest Base Camp trek with helicopter return

During the route we will find ourselves in higher elevations, so you have to be prepared for changing weather, from walking in shorts to rainy and cold days. We will find areas where you can wash your clothes, so you can reduce the number of pieces you carry.

4-season sleeping bag (available for rent)

Personal backpack of 35 liters



Neck warmer



Thermal T-shirt (first layer)

Fleece (second layer)

Warm down jacket (available for rent)

Goretex jacket (third layer)

Thermal pants

Mountain pants (2)

Waterproof pants cover

Mountain shorts

Thin gloves

Thick and waterproof gloves

Thermal socks

Hiking socks

Waterproof hiking boots


Resting shoes / slippers

Personal medication (include cough syrup)


Sunscreen and lip balm

Mosquito repellent


Photocopy of passport

Refillable bottle or camelbag

Toilet hygiene products

Water purifier


High protein snacks

Dry bag for documents

Cash (15 USD per day)

In addition, during the winter season (November to March):

Mini crampons


Where does the tour Everest Base Camp trek with helicopter return start

The best way to get to Nepal is through Tribhuvan International Airport, located in Kathmandu. Once you land in Kathmandu, they will be waiting to take you to your hotel in the city and take you back to the airport at the end, so you don't have to book any additional transfers.

Questions & Answers

  • How to avoid altitude sickness?

    The best way to prevent altitude sickness during this tour is to be fit. We advise you to train beforehand and once in Nepal to avoid smoking, alcoholic beverages and heavy meals.

  • How are the bathrooms during the route?

    During most of the route the WCs are western style, but in the higher altitude areas you can find some of Asian style or even this same style but very "rural".

  • How are the showers?

    Showers are located outside the room. Up to Namche Bazaar there is no additional charge for hot water. From this location they may charge 5USD for hot water.

  • From where does the flight to Lukla depart?

    During peak seasons (March, April, May, October and November), the flight will depart from Ramechhap/Manthali due to air traffic saturation in Kathmandu. During all other months, the flight will depart from Kathmandu. The dates indicated are for reference only, as they may change depending on the airline's decision.

  • Do the porters carry all the luggage?

    One porter is assigned to every two travelers and will carry part of your luggage in special bags to protect it. You will have to carry with you a small backpack with what you need for each day's route.

  • Is it possible to have the guide in another language?

    Yes, it is possible to have a guide in another language, it has an additional cost of 360USD for the whole group during the trekking.

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