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You don’t have to be an endurance athlete to experience Mt Everest

Secondary Categories: Nepal

From mesmerizing helicopter flips, to staying in the Everest View Hotel and even trekking to Everest base camp, there are several ways for Average Joes to get up close and personal with the world’s highest peak.

Rising majestically on the border of Nepal and China, Mount Everest has captivated the human imagination for centuries. While attempting to reach the summit is the preservation of a select few (fewer than 7000 people have made it thus far) this shouldn’t stop the rest of us from wanting to feel some of Everest’s magic. This journal article will look at a few ways regular travelers can experience Mt Everest. But before we do that, here are a few Everest fun facts.

  1. Top of the pile: Standing at a staggering height of 8,848.86 meters (29,031.7 feet), Mount Everest holds the title of the highest point above sea level on our planet. It’s so staggeringly high that its summit pierces the boundary between the Earth's troposphere and stratosphere!

  2. What’s in a name?: Mount Everest was named after Sir George Everest, the British surveyor-general of India from 1830 to 1843. Interestingly, Everest himself objected to having the mountain named after him, suggesting that a local name be used instead. His misgivings were ignored and the mountain retained the name Everest, albeit with its local Nepali name, Sagarmatha, also recognized.

  3. Still growing: Mount Everest is not a static structure; it's still growing! The peak is a part of the Himalayan mountain range, which is still being formed by the collision of the Indian and Eurasian tectonic plates. This collision pushes Everest skyward at a rate of about 4 millimeters per year.

  4. S is for Sherpa: The Sherpa people, indigenous to the region surrounding Everest, have a deep cultural and spiritual connection to the mountain. Renowned for their mountaineering skills, Sherpas serve as guides and porters for climbers attempting to summit Everest. Their expertise and resilience are invaluable to the success of expeditions on the mountain.

  5. The Death Zone: Above 8,000 meters (26,247 feet), the air is so thin that it cannot sustain human life for an extended period. This zone, known as the "Death Zone," poses severe risks to climbers due to low oxygen levels, extreme cold, and unpredictable weather.

  6. Giant trash heap: Over the years, expeditions have left behind tons of trash, including oxygen cylinders, tents, and human waste. Efforts are underway to clean up the mountain and promote responsible climbing practices to preserve this natural wonder for future generations.

  7. Record breakers: Since Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay's historic ascent in 1953, thousands of climbers have attempted to reach Everest's summit. Among them, there have been numerous remarkable achievements, including the youngest (13 years) and oldest (80 years) climbers to summit, the first ascent without supplemental oxygen (Reinhold Messner and Peter Habeler), and the fastest ascent: Lhakpa Gelu Sherpa did it in a barely believable 10 hours and 56 minutes!

See it for yourself

Helicopter flying near Mount Everest in the Himalayas, Nepal

Luckily you don’t have to risk frostbite to experience Everest for yourself. These days, there are several ways to behold the glory of Everest as a tourist, each offering its own unique perspective and thrill.

Helicopter tour with Everest breakfast

For a truly indulgent experience, why not enjoy breakfast with a view? Upgrade your Everest experience with a helicopter tour that includes a stop at an exclusive mountain lodge where you can savor a delicious repast while gazing out at Everest and the surrounding peaks. This 4 to 6-hour round trip excursion, which begins and ends in Kathmandu, is extremely popular among SA Expeditions clients as it allows you to get closer to Everest than any of the other options - speak to your Destination Expert about adding it to your itinerary.

Everest View Hotel

View of Mount Everest in the Himalayas at Namche Bazaar, Nepal
The breathtaking mountain village of Namche Bazaar.

If you’re after a more relaxed approach, the Everest View Hotel offers a luxurious retreat with unmatched views of the world's highest peak. Located in the village of Namche Bazaar, this five-star hotel boasts panoramic windows in every room, allowing guests to wake up to the sight of Everest bathed in morning light. Enjoy gourmet cuisine, spa treatments, and cultural experiences while immersing yourself in the natural beauty of the Himalayas. Your Destination Expert will gladly incorporate a night (or two) into your Himalayan adventure.

Scenic flight

This one-hour round-trip flight (Kathmandu to Kathmandu) offers fantastic views of Everest and the entire Khumbu region. From the comfort of your seat, you'll witness the awe-inspiring beauty of the world's highest peak, its snow-capped summit glistening in the sunlight. This is a more affordable (but not-quite-as-spectacular) alternative to the heli flip.

Trek to Everest Base Camp

If you’re really up for a challenge, trekking to Everest Base Camp is a bucket-list pilgrimage like few others. Your journey begins in the bustling town of Lukla, after which you’ll wind your way through picturesque villages, lush forests, and rugged mountain trails. Along the way, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of Everest and its neighboring giants, culminating in a dramatic arrival at Base Camp itself. Standing in the shadow of the world's tallest peak is a truly humbling experience - speak to your Destination Expert about making your trekking fantasies a reality.

Mount Everest and silhouette of climbers at Himalayas, Nepal

What are you waiting for?

No matter which option you choose, witnessing Mount Everest in the flesh is an experience that will stay with you for a lifetime.

Check out our most popular Nepal itineraries here. Then speak to a Destination Expert about adding a little bit of Everest into the mix.

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