There are two Everest Base Camps, located in Nepal and Tibet, China. While the Chinese side can be easily accessed by road, reaching Nepal's base camp requires a challenging trek of 7+ days or a helicopter ride due to altitude issues.
The Everest base camp in Nepal is located at a staggering height of 5,364 meters (17,598 ft) above sea level, higher than most mountains in Europe, Antarctica, Africa, and Oceania. The base camp in Tibet is at an altitude of 5,150 meters (16,900 ft).
The Everest base camp is approximately 200 km away from Kathmandu, the capital city, and 65 km from Lukla, known for having the most dangerous airport in Nepal.
Over 40,000 trekkers used to reach Everest base camp annually before the Covid-19 pandemic. With the momentum picking up again in late 2021, this number is expected to be reached or exceeded soon.
Trekking to Everest Base Camp can be dangerous due to extreme cold, strenuous walking, and altitude sickness (AMS). The oxygen level at the base camp is only around 80%. However, with proper training, preparation, and mindset, these challenges can be overcome.
Outside of the spring months (March, April, May), trekkers, not mountain climbers, are the main visitors to Everest base camp.
Choosing the right time for the Everest base camp trek depends on personal preferences. For clear mountain views, September to February are the best times; for spotting wildlife, December to February are ideal; for birdwatching, March to May is the best time, and for observing wildflowers, April to August is recommended.
The Everest base camp trail offers views of more than 100 named and unnamed peaks, but all viewpoints must be completed to see them all.
The "World's Highest Marathon" recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records starts from Everest base camp.
Sherpas and their settlements can be found along the trail, as they are experts in climbing Everest and have adapted to the high altitudes since birth.
Mount Everest cannot be seen from Everest base camp itself.
Due to the rapid melting of the Khumbu glacier on which Everest base camp is located, the base camp is continuously moving year by year.
During the climbing or expedition season (Spring), Everest Base Camp becomes like a small town, with thousands of tents in various shapes and styles, hot shower facilities, electricity, a helipad, a hospital, waste management systems, and telecom towers.