Basecamp typically refers to the confluence point of the long, winding trail and the mountains. These camps are dotted by colourful tents of mountaineers preparing themselves to make the ascend of their lifetime. But, as trekking continues to grow exponentially in Nepal, the basecamps aren’t just intermediate points anymore. Today, these basecamps are a sought-after trekking destination themselves. That is because the route to these foothills of the peaks consist of the most classic sections of the Himalayans.
Today, we bring you our pick of 5 best base camp treks in Nepal.
Everest Base Camp Trek
Everest Base Camp is the mother of all base camp treks in Nepal. After all, it leads you to the base camp of the highest peak on the earth and offers close-up views of it. Over decades, the base camp has attracted thousands and thousands of trekkers and mountaineers towards it. By embarking on the journey to the Everest Base Camp, you will be following in the footsteps of legendary mountaineers like Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay.
The route to the base camps boasts of lodges and hotels ranging from luxurious ones to economic options. There are accommodation sites every few hundred meters along the way. However, you should know that despite the abundance of lodging facilities, it will be very challenging to find rooms during peak season. Therefore, we suggest you to make early preparations if you intend to go on this incredible journey.
Kanchenjunga Base Camp Trek
Although not as famous as Everest Base Camp trek, Kanchenjunga Base Camp trek is more adventurous, enthralling, and dangerous by miles. Kanchenjunga, the third highest peak on the planet, is a gigantic massif of numerous peaks in Eastern Nepal. Now, visualise the view of it from the base camp. Breathtaking.
The peak is forbidden to climb, but the trekking route was opened in 1998. However, you can only trek through this route as a part of an organised trekking group. If you prefer secluded and remote trails over the mainstream ones, this trek is perfect for you. There are two ways to the base camp. One will take you the northern base of the mountain, while another will take you the southern base. However, for a more elevated experience, you can combine routes by crossing either Lapsang La Pass (5,160m) or Mirgin La Pass (4,663,) or Lapsang La Pass (5,160m).
Annapurna Base Camp Trek
Annapurna Base Camp trek is hands down the most versatile trekking route featured on this list. This trek will offer you ample opportunities to see the several peaks from the 55km long Annapurna Massif, including one peak over 8,000 meters. And, once you reach the base camp, it will feel like you have entered an amazing amphitheater of mountains.
The trek can be completed with 7 to 12 days. One of its huge advantage is that it offers more close-up views of the mountains without the acclimatization problems of the Everest base camp treks. But, it also has a similarity the aforementioned trek. This route too can be packed with flocks of tourists in the peak season. If you add Ghorepani and Poon Hill to your itinerary while returning, you will have excellent views of Dhaulagiri Massif as well.
Makalu Base Camp Trek
At 8,463m, Mt. Makalu is the eighth highest peak on earth. It is also notorious for being a killer mountain. Luckily, the trek to its base camp isn’t as difficult. Compared to the routes in the Everest and Annapurna regions, the trails here are far more isolated and secluded as well.
The trek is far more challenging as the comforts of popular trekking regions aren’t available. But, you will be rewarded with absolutely beautiful mountain views for your hard work. On top of that, the route itself passes through some very iconic viewpoints that will bring you face to face with majestic mountains like Makalu, Baruntse, and the Everest! The trek will begin and end in Num, Taplejung. Although there are few basic accommodation sites open all along the route now, they are only open dependably during the peak season.
Ama Dablam Base Camp Trek
Ama Dablam has earned a name for itself as the most beautiful peak in the Himalayans. Standing high at 6,812 meters, it is a lovely pyramid-shaped peak. To trek to its base camp, you can either go on an exclusive Ama Dablam base camp trek or combine it as a side trip during other treks in the Everest region. That is a huge bonus in itself!
Although the peak is considered to be very hard to climb, the journey to its basecamp is quite pleasant. The trek starts in Lukla and climbs through picturesque Sherpa villages. The trail is not as packed with tourists as the ones leading towards Everest base camp. After you reach the base camp, you will be met by spectacular views of mountains like Nuptse, Kangtega, Lhotse, and Ama Dablam.