An amazing Everest Base Camp helicopter trek clubbed with an inspiring Everest Trek. This Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes Helicopter Trek offers you a rare opportunity to walk under the foothills of some of the world's highest peaks and enjoy a luxurious helicopter flight over the Gokyo Valley. Visit picturesque Sherpa villages carved on mountainsides and step inside ancient Buddhist monasteries in the Khumbu region. Stay at cozy traditional teahouses run by Sherpa families and trade stories with other travelers from around the world. Board a helicopter and fly over Everest Base Camp. Hover close to Mount Everest and other 8,000 and 7,000 meter peaks. Gokyo, with its mesmerizing landscape and emerald lakes, will leave you awestruck. Enjoy a 360-degree view of the Himalayan giants from Kala Patthar.
Before heading off to Everest, you explore the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Kathmandu. Walkthrough the medieval palace square in Patan, a kingdom of the Malla rulers, and discover exquisite works of Nepalese art and architecture. Visits to Boudhanath and Pashupatinath, the two important Buddhist and Hindu spiritual centers in the city, will touch your soul. Your Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes Helicopter Trek begins from Lukla. Walk across Sherpa settlements before reaching Namche, the economic hub and the Sherpa capital of the Khumbu Region. Spend a day here soaking in the mountain views. Explore Everest Base Camp via helicopter. Fly close to Mount Everest (8,848m) and other 8,000 meter peaks. Moreover, a brief stopover at Kala Patthar (5,550m) and Gokyo will let you soak in some of the most beautiful sights on the planet. Fly high above the jewel-like Gokyo Lakes and icy glaciers. Enjoy the stunning landscape from the comfort of the helicopter. Before the helicopter lands in Lukla, you get a bird’s-eye view of the picturesque Sherpa settlements and Sagarmatha National Park. Finally, celebrate the completion of your Everest adventure in Lukla with your local crew.
If you want to try out our other heli treks, we suggest you check our other popular Everest helicopter treks - Everest Base Camp Heli Trek-11 days, Everest Base Camp Short trek Heli Return-12 days, and our one-day heli tour, Everest Base Camp Helicopter Tour. If you are interested in a pure trekking experience, we recommend you try out any of our Everest Treks.
|Day 1||Arrival in Kathmandu (1,400m/4,592ft)|
|Day 2||Sightseeing in Kathmandu & Trip Preparation|
|Day 3||Fly to Lukla (2,840m/9,316ft) Trek to Phakding (2,610m/8,561ft):|
|Day 4||Trek Phakding to Namche Bazaar (3,440m/11,284ft)|
|Day 5||Acclimatization day at Namche Bazaar (3,440m/11,284ft)|
|Day 6||Heli tour of Everest Base Camp (5,364m/17,594ft) Gokyo Lakes (4,790m/15,712) and Kala Patthar (5,550m/18,204ft)|
|Day 7||Fly from Lukla to Kathmandu (1,400m/4,592ft)|
|Day 8||Final Departure|
Our airport representative will meet you at the airport and escort you to your hotel. After a brief rest, attend a pre-trek briefing. Meet your trek leader who will apprise you about the trail's condition, how each day of the trek is going to be like, and the basic dos and don’ts. If you have any questions, you can ask your trek leader.
Check your gear for the final time. If you have forgotten an item, you can buy or hire it from any shop selling trekking gear. You won’t have to go far as you will find such stores lining the streets of Thamel.
We make your first day in Nepal memorable by inviting you to an authentic Nepali feast. One of our representatives will be joining you for a traditional Nepali dinner and cultural program at a Nepalese restaurant.
Overnight in Kathmandu.
Take a guided tour of three UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the city. After breakfast, you get on a private vehicle with your guide and head to Boudhanath.
Located towards the north-eastern part of the city, Boudhanath Stupa is an important center of Tibetan Buddhism. It is the biggest stupa in Nepal, and according to local legend, the remains of Kasyapa Buddha (an incarnation of Lord Buddha) lie beneath the stupa.
Boudhanath consists of a huge white dome placed on a representation of a giant mandala. On the top is a gilded square topped by a tapering tower. The four sides of the square, painted with the Buddha's all-seeing eyes, look out in the four cardinal directions.
Also, visit Pashupatinath Temple, the oldest and the most important Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva in Nepal. The Hindu cremation site of Arya Ghat lies next to the temple on the banks of the Bagmati River.
From the eastern side of the river, one can see the last rites being performed by the dead relatives as the corpses are lit on the funeral pyres. One can’t help but ponder on the transitory nature of human existence while watching such scenes.
Your last stop is Patan. A medieval kingdom of the Malla kings Patan is also known as Lalitpur or the ‘City of Artisans’. Make your way to Patan Dubar Square and discover medieval artisans' exquisite creations crafted on stone, wood, and metal.
Explore Krishna Temple, Patan Palace Museum, Kumbeshwar Temple, Golden Temple (Hiranyavarna Mahavihar), Mahabouddha Temple, etc.
Overnight in Kathmandu.
Catch an early flight to Lukla and fly east. From the window of your plane, get a glimpse of an undulating chain of mountains stretching as far as the eyes can see. As the plane approaches Lukla, you get to see the real giants, the eight-thousanders. Brace yourself for an exciting touch down at the narrow runway.
After landing at the Tenzing-Hillary Airport, meet other members of the crew. Sort and pack your belongings and get going. Make your way through the bustling Lukla Bazaar and head down a trail that leads to the Dudh Koshi River Valley.
Walk carefully as you share the trail with mule trains and porters carrying heavy loads. Walk past mani stones inscribed with sacred mantras, chortens (Buddhist shrines), and colorful prayer flags. Mountain folks believe that these protect travelers from harm. Cross a metal suspension bridge over the Dudh Koshi River to arrive at Phakding. This is a charming settlement filled with traditional cottages and teahouses. Head to a teahouse and, after a brief rest, explore the village. Down the village, the milky white river of Dudh Koshi flows downstream. Surrounded by green hills and forests, this is a scenic spot, ideal for taking pictures. Afterward, get back to the teahouse, have dinner and retire for the night.
Overnight in Phakding.
From Phakding trek to Namche Bazaar. Head up on an easy trail, past forests of pine and rhododendron. Make your way across pristine glacial rivers via metal suspension bridges swaying gently as people walk to and fro. The walk past the Hillary bridge, the highest suspension bridge in Everest Region, is an expereince to remember.
You make your way through the ecologically rich Sagarmatha National Park. A UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site, the park is home to Himalayan flora and fauna and some of the world’s highest peaks. The final leg of today’s trek takes you on a steep ascent all the way to Namche Bazaar.
Get the first view of Mount Everest before entering Namche. The sight of the snowy Himalayas soaring so close makes you forget your aching limbs. Namche, the largest Sherpa settlement in Khumbu Region, is cut deep on the mountainside, like a bowl. The town offers a range of accommodation choices, from high-end chalets to budget teahouses. Make your way to a teahouse where your guide has booked a room for you and get refreshed.
Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Spend an extra day at Namche Bazaar. Coffee shops, bakeries, restaurants, internet cafes, ATM booths and souvenir shops line the lively bazaar.
You can hike up to Hotel Everest View, a popular Everest viewpoint that lies just above Namche. To reach the viewpoint you need to walk past Shyangboche, which has one of the highest airfields in the world at 3780m. From the vantage point you get close up views of Mount Everest, Ama Dablam, Lhotse and Nuptse.
You can also take a walk to the Sherpa villages of Kunde and Khumjung. The settlements of Khumjung and Kunde are two of the oldest Sherpa settlements in Khumbu Himal.
While Khumjung has a monastery that houses the scalp of a Yeti (the abominable snowman), Kunde’s popular landmark is the hospital established by Sir Edmund Hillary, the first mountaineer to scale Mount Everest. After the excursion, head down to Namche again. Overnight in Namche Bazaar.
Pack your things and get ready. After breakfast, you will be embarking on one of the most unforgettable adventures of your life, a heli tour in the Everest Region.
The helicopter takes off as soon as you are comfortably seated. The experienced pilot flies the chopper close to the mountains allowing you to view 7,000 and 8,000-meter peaks from a close range.
If your trip falls during the climbing season, you will see climbers scaling the snowy cliffs looking like ants. At Everest Base Camp, the frozen landscape will be filled with colorful tents. From the comfort of your helicopter, watch the spectacular Khumbu glacier and Icefall.
Enjoy a brief stopover at Kala Patthar(5,550m) and Gokyo. The time will be enough for you to soak in the views and take pictures. Before heading to Lukla, the helicopter flies over the Gokyo Valley.
The stunning Gokyo Lakes and glaciers flanked by an undulating line of the highest peaks in the world are a feast for your eyes. Enjoy this heavenly spectacle before the chopper heads down to Lukla. Prior to the final landing, enjoy aerial views of Sherpa settlements and the Sagarmatha National Park.
Overnight in Lukla.
Leave Lukla behind and fly to Kathmandu. From the aircraft’s window bid goodbye to the mountains under whose shadows you had walked the past few days. On reaching Kathmandu, check in to your hotel and take rest.
No activities have been planned for the day. If you want to explore more of the city you can do it on your own or book a guided tour at an extra cost. Go souvenir shopping at Ason Bazaar or Thamel or visit some of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites with a guide.
Celebrate the completion of your amazing holiday with a complimentary farewell dinner. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Our staff will drop you at the international airport three hours before your flight departs. Let us know if you want to extend your trip and visit more places. We run tours all over the Himalayas- Bhutan, Tibet and India
Spring (March to May) and autumn (mid-September to November) are considered as the best seasons for Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes Helicopter Trek. The weather stays dry and clear during these times, which makes it ideal for trekking and enjoying unobstructed views of mountains. The days are warm and the nights chilly. On the downside, however, these are peak seasons, and the trails get crowded and busy.
During spring, the hillsides are verdant and covered with wildflowers, including rhododendron blooms. It is also the climbing season, and the Everest Base Camp is transformed into a tented city filled with climbers and Sherpa guides.
Autumn is the most popular season for Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes Helicopter Trek. With the end of the wet monsoon season, which clears the skies of dust and impurities, you can enjoy crystal clear views during this season. Timing your trek around October will allow you to experience the most important festival in the Everest region, Mani Rimdu. This festival is held in the monasteries of Tengboche, Chiwong, and Thame.
You will be flying to and from Lukla via a fixed-wing carrier. After the completion of your trek, on Day 6, you board a helicopter from Namche and take a helicopter tour. From Namche, you fly to Everest Base Camp and enjoy a brief stopover of about 5 to 10 minutes at Kala Patthar (5,550m) for panoramic views of Mount Everest and other peaks. Later, you fly towards Gokyo Valley and enjoy the beauty of the pristine Gokyo Lakes with another brief stopover. Afterward, you fly back to Lukla.
The helicopter flight above tall mountains, glaciers, emerald lakes, and Sherpa settlements is an awesome aerial experience, one you will remember forever. The heli flight also lets you skip the tedious return trek via the same route to Lukla.
Flying to the Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla has its own challenges. The chief among them is the weather. The airport is built on a narrow plateau, over a steep cliff. Navigating the plane along the short and narrow runway is difficult when strong winds whip across the mountains. Surrounded by some of the highest peaks in the world, the weather here is unpredictable and changes frequently. It would be clear and sunny one minute, and the next moment the clouds will appear, and everything will turn hazy. Flights operate only when the weather is stable and visibility clear.
The chances of your Lukla flight getting canceled cannot be ruled out. If this happens, your trek may get extended by a day or two. So come prepared and keep buffer days so that you may not miss your international flight.
If there is a long delay due to bad weather, we will try to secure a space for you on a helicopter flight. The cost for the heli flight is not included in the trip price and should be borne by you.
Due to congestion at the Kathmandu airport during the high season (spring and autumn), flights to and from Lukla now operate from Manthali Airport in Ramechhap. The airport lies 132km (4hrs 30mins drive) from Kathmandu.
However, airline companies operate their first and last flights directly from Kathmandu and Lukla (KTM-LUKLA-KTM). If you book your trip early, we can try to secure a place for you on the direct flight to or from Lukla. It will be easier and more comfortable to fly directly from Kathmandu to Lukla and vice versa, instead of making that additional journey to Ramechhap.
Helicopter Flights to Everest Region will operate from Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu.
The permits needed for the Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes Helicopter Trek are – 1) Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit, and 2) Khumbu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit. Unlike other treks in the Nepal Himalaya, you won’t be needing a TIMS (Tourist Information Management System) card.
Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit can be obtained from the Nepal Tourism Board’s Office in Kathmandu or at the park’s entrance gate in Monjo by paying NRS 3000. For citizens of SAARC countries, the fee is NRS 1500. You need to fill out the permit form and show your passport or a copy of your passport.
To get the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu Rural Municipality Entrance Permit, you need to be in Lukla. You have to pay NRS 2000 for the permit at the rural municipality counter, which lies at the edge of the village.
You won’t have to worry about queuing up to get the permits as the company, or our guides will arrange all the permits for you.
Remember, you will be trekking to the world’s highest trekking destination, Everest Region. The highest elevation you will reach is 5,550m above sea level. In this environment, there is less oxygen which will make breathing a bit difficult.
To let your body get used to the thin air, you need to walk slowly, steadily and keep your body hydrated. If you try to hasten and walk fast to reach your destination in less time, chances are you may suffer from AMS or Acute Mountain Sickness.
AMS symptoms like dizziness, headache, nausea, shortness of breath, fatigue, etc., are seen at elevations above 2000 meters. Usually, these symptoms occur once you reach Namche or beyond Namche.
Taking Diamox and a good night’s rest may work for mild cases. Drinking plenty of fluids (water, tea, soup, etc.) and keeping your body hydrated will also help to keep the sickness at bay. One should take necessary precautions to ensure that the condition does not worsen. But if the symptoms worsen, one may have to return to a lower elevation and get medical help.
There are clinics at Lukla, Namche, and Pheriche which offer basic care for minor ailments. In the worst-case scenario, an air evacuation will be arranged, where the patient will be flown to Kathmandu to receive medical aid. AMS, if untreated or ignored, can take your life.
Our experts have included an extra day in Namche (3,440m) for acclimatization to let your body used to thin air.
The chart given below will give you a rough idea about the oxygen level in the atmosphere on the trail.
Everest Base Camp
It is important to keep your body hydrated on the trail as dehydration also causes AMS. One should drink at least 3-4 liters of fluids daily.
We dissuade you from buying bottled water as it adds up to the thrash problem in the mountains. Moreover, like everything else, bottled water is also expensive in the mountains.
We highly recommend you to carry a reusable water bottle with you, one that can hold hot water.
You can use one with a steri pen or an inbuilt filtration system like LifeStraw.
You can also use water purification tablets to treat the water. While the water in the mountains tends to be pure and without impurities, it’s better not to take chances and filter or treat the water before drinking.
Using chlorine or iodine tablets to treat the water may alter its taste. You can add flavored electrolyte powder (which is readily available at pharmacies in Kathmandu) to mask the bitter chemical taste. Adding electrolyte to your drinking water may also be beneficial as the minerals (sodium, potassium, magnesium, etc.) you lose while walking gets replenished.
Teahouses offer boiled drinking water at an additional cost. You may have to pay around 1 USD per liter or pot (every teahouse uses a different sized pot).
Despite being the world’s highest trekking trail, internet connection (though erratic and irregular at some places) is available in the Everest Region.
While trekking, you can connect with your loved ones, post updates, and upload pictures on social media. You may have to pay extra for using the Wi-Fi hotspot at lodges en route.
It will be cheaper and easier to get a sim card (preferably Ncell) in Kathmandu and purchase internet data that could last you for your entire trip. Ncell offers 3G connectivity up to Everest Base Camp (5364m).
Everest Link, another local internet provider, also offers paid internet access on the trail. You can purchase the username and password at any of the teahouses or shops along the trail.
As opposed to popular belief, you don’t need a lot of complicated gear and equipment for an Everest adventure. Here’s a basic checklist of the essential items that you should not forget to bring with you during your Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes Helicopter Trek:
These are only some of the essential items. Find a more detailed list by clicking here.
Most of the trekking equipment is available on hire in Kathmandu. You can keep your baggage light by only packing the essential items and renting or buying the rest in Kathmandu. Shops in Thamel offer branded as well locally made gear and equipment.
You can leave your spare luggage in your hotel’s storage room. It is completely safe and free. But do make sure to lock your luggage before leaving it at the storage unit.
Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes Helicopter Trek takes you to the highest trekking trail in the world. Having an experienced local guide accompanying you will enrich your trip in so many ways. Trekking with a person who has in-depth knowledge of the mountain will also keep you safe and secure.
When you book a trek with us, we pair you up with one of our local guides. All our guides have experience of more than 10 years and have a vast knowledge of the area you are visiting. They have completed the trekking guide course and have the required government license to work as mountain guides. They can communicate in English and have received training on wilderness first aid and crisis management.
A chief guide or trek leader will lead the trek. For every 4 trekkers, there will be an assistant guide assisting them personally. One porter will carry the luggage of 2 clients. Make sure that your luggage does not exceed 15 kg, as the porter can only carry a weight of 30 kg.
We believe in the ethical treatment of our staff. All our Guides and Porters are provided with weather-appropriate gear and clothing to battle the harsh weather in the mountains. Before the start of a trek, we ensure that our mountain guides are fully insured. They are given fair wages and treated with respect.
We seriously follow the guidelines set by IPPG (International Porter Protection Group) and offer assistance to porters to develop other skills. A portion of the booking fee goes to fund the education of our field staffs’ kids.
For Everest Base Camp Gokyo Lakes Helicopter Trek, you need a good travel insurance policy that offers you coverage for all activities and altitudes included in your itinerary. The highest altitude you reach is 5,550 meters, and your travel insurance should offer you suitable coverage up to this elevation.
Though we take your safety as our number one priority, we cannot rule out mishaps and emergencies that may occur at this altitude. There is less oxygen in the environment, and trekkers usually suffer from Acute Mountain Sickness, which could prove to be fatal if not treated on time.
Walking in a treacherous mountain environment also exposes you to physical injuries. Therefore make sure that your insurance covers the cost of all injuries and emergencies that you can possibly face during this trekking adventure.
Your insurance policy should especially cover the cost of helicopter evacuation and hospitalization in case of an accident or medical emergency, as these happen to be quite expensive. Check for vaccination requirements as some travel insurance policies make it mandatory to immunize yourself before leaving your country.
Before you decide on a policy, be mindful and don’t forget to read the fine print. It would be advantageous for you to choose a company that offers insurance cover on both domestic and international flight cancellations and lost or stolen baggage.
We ensure the safety of our clients by following all safety protocols during the trip. This itinerary has been designed by travel experts and veteran guides who have trekked on this route innumerable times.
To prevent AMS, an extra day in Namche has been added to the itinerary. Our guides always carry a first-aid kit and pulse oximeter (to measure the oxygen level in your blood) with them. The guides assigned to you have more than 10 years of experience and know what steps to take during an emergency. They are well-trained in wilderness first aid and crisis management.
If a client shows symptoms of AMS and needs to descend to a lower elevation, an assistant guide will escort him/her and follow the safety protocol. He will closely monitor the client’s condition and take the required steps needed for the client's well-being.
If he/she feels alright after a night’s rest, the guide will escort the client back to join the group. But if the condition worsens, the client will be escorted down to Lukla or get airlifted to Kathmandu for expert medical aid.
A typical day on the trail begins with a wake-up call at around 6 AM by your guide. Freshen up and get ready. Pack your belongings and head to the dining area for breakfast by 7 AM. Check your luggage for the final time and fill your water bottle before you hit the trail by 8 AM, along with your guide.
To avoid walking in the heat and enjoy clear views of the mountains, you make an early start. En route, there will be short breaks to enjoy the views and take photographs. You stop for lunch at a local teahouse around noon or mid-day. After a quick rest of about an hour or 40 minutes, you get back on the trail and continue till you reach your overnight stop.
Upon reaching the stop for the night, you head to your teahouse, check in, and have some rest. Tea with some light refreshments (cookies or biscuits) will be served at 5 PM.
Exchange stories or play cards with other trekkers and sherpas till dinner is served (around 7 PM). After dinner, your guide will brief you about the next day’s trek – the route you will take, difficulty, where you will stop for lunch, etc. Afterward, retire for the night and have a well-deserved rest.
From Lukla to Phakding, you trek for about 3-4 hours. The trek from Phakding to Namche involves a hike of 6 to 7 hours. On Day 6, you enjoy a helicopter tour to Everest Base Camp, Kala Patthar, and Gokyo Lakes and return to Lukla on the same day.
Travel responsibly and try to limit any negative impact on the environment. Limit the use of plastic and be mindful about throwing waste in the mountains. When you trek with us, you will be supporting local communities (from the guides and porters to teahouse owners). We, as a company, support sustainable tourism and patronize local businesses. We partner with service providers who work towards saving the environment. As an active member of KEEP (Kathmandu Environmental Education Project), we make sure that our trips are environmentally friendly.
If you have booked a package with us you won’t be spending much as accommodation and 3 meals are already included in your trip price. You may have to personally pay for items like beverages and drinks, extra snacks, hot showers, electronic device charging, wifi etc. USD 20 to 30 (NRS 2000-3000) per day will suffice.
In all our Everest Treks the teahouses that we use have western toilets. In luxury lodges and teahouses in the lower elevations the rooms come with attached bathrooms and hot showers. At higher elevations the facilities may be a bit basic and you may have to share the bathroom with other travellers. Please do note that in case of extreme cold, the water in the toilet basin may freeze and you may have to use an Asian (also known as ‘squat’) style of toilet that is located outside. Please do carry toilet paper rolls with you at all times. It is important that you carry enough rolls of toilet paper and hand sanitizer while trekking.
If the flight gets cancelled due to bad weather there is no alternative but to stay an extra day. You will have to bear the cost for the accommodation. Sometimes even when the airlines cancel their flights, helicopter companies offer charters. If you would like, you can take a heli flight. This will incur an extra cost and you have to pay for it.
There is mobile network in the Everest Region. If you get a local SIM (Ncell or NTC) you can use your mobile phone to communicate easily. As this is a mountainous area the network may get erratic at times. At most places the network is good enough for internet use and video calls. Our climbing guides also carry a Satellite Phone for emergencies.