EBC Trek – Day 4 – Namche Bazaar – Acclimatization Day (Part-I)

By    March 6th 2017    11 Comments  Posted in Adventure, Asia, Everest Base Camp, Nepal, Trekking

Namche Bazaar – The Gateway to the mountains!

We woke up early in the morning and were gifted with a splendid view of the town Namche Bazaar and the morning sun rays on the ridge of Mt Kongde.  Namche Bazaar at an elevation of 3440m above the sea level is the most happening town in the Khumbu region and the gateway to the mountains.  A market takes place on every Friday and Saturday in the center of the town. If you look from distance it would appear as if a second hand cloth market with everything spread out on the ground. But it trades all brand new items from grocery, fresh vegetables, clothes, foot wears, meats to alcohols. Prices of each and every thing are very high as they need to bring from down the valley or Kathmandu. A litre of mustard oil was selling at Nepalese Rs.400/- (NRP 300/- for vegetable oil) and Nepalese Rs. 4000/- for a home grown live chicken. There is a big gap between the prices to locals and tourists. So if you want to buy something and have porter or guide with you, get them to make the purchase for you.

Weekly market in the center of the town!

Weekly market in the center of the town!

Look closely - alcohol, glass cleaner, milk powder, tomato soup all are spread out on the ground together for sale!

Look closely – alcohol, glass cleaner, milk powder, tomato soup all are spread out on the ground together for sale!

Almost anything you might need for the trek ahead like down jacket, shoes, socks, cloths, caps,  scarves, sleeping bags, sun screen cream, lip balm, tissue paper and  trekking maps etc can be bought on the street of Namche Bazaar. The town has a German Bakery too; well know in the region for providing good quality of western food including pizza. It also has a small health unit, two chemist shops and ATM of Nepalese Bank. Oh yes, I saw there a shop of cobbler too. The Buddhist stupa of Namche has been badly damaged by 2015 earthquake and still awaits the repairing.

The happening street of Namche Bazaar!

The happening street of Namche Bazaar!

The Stupa of Namche Bazaar

The Stupa of Namche Bazaar

In Khumbu region they only grow potatoes and that is not enough even. So as you go high, you get mainly potato as the option for vegetable dish. Namche Bazaar has a population of around 500. It has more tea houses (lodges) than the residence of locals. Children get here only primary education and thereafter either they quit study or go to the Sir Edmund Hillary School at nearby village Khumjung. Those who can afford further cost, get their higher education from Kathmandu.

The hike to the Everest View Hotel

After the difficulty of our last day hiking to Namche Bzaar, the acclimatization or rest day here was well deserved. But rest day is not a day for lie-in and rest, as ‘rest day’ is a term for an acclimatization day when you climb high during the day and then sleep low at night. So while you are not actually trekking to your next destination, you still hike to much higher elevation to help your body to adjust with the high altitude more easily – a painful but necessary evil! The most common walk on the rest day at Namche Bazaar is to the Everest View Hotel, then climb down to the village Khumjung and by the late afternoon come back to Namche Bazaar.

“Amphitheater” like Namche Bazaar

“Amphitheater” like Namche Bazaar

Early in the morning we set out from our lodge along the main trekking route to Everest Base Camp. After climbing only a few hundred meters vertically we arrived at a junction. The path straight goes to the Everest Base Camp and the stepper one on the left takes you to the Everest View Hotel. Looking at the climb anybody would certify it a much harder than that of yesterday to Namche Bazaar. Slowly, slowly, bistari, bistari we hiked to the airstrip of Syangboche at the elevation of 3790m. The runway of Syangboche certainly surprised us as it was made of just cutting the mountain sides and also a smaller one than the Lukla airport. No passenger aircraft flies from here and it is used only to carry supplies by Helicopter. But there is no concreted helipad too.

The airstrip of Syangboche

The airstrip of Syangboche

A helicopter was landing on Syangboche airstrip

A helicopter was landing on Syangboche airstrip

We continued climbing further up. The panoramic view was captivating us all along the way with the hide and seek of Mt. Thamserku and Mt Kongde Ri amidst the cloud. Finally, after a hike of two hours we reached the Everest View Hotel at 3880m!

View of Mt. Everest with coffee from Everest View Hotel

Everest View Hotel

Everest View Hotel

We hiked to the Everest View Hotel as it offers foods, snacks, tea, coffee and drinks etc while you enjoy the view of Mt Everest from their lawn. Well Everest was not visible as it was covered by clouds but we paid Nepalese Rs.750/- for 2 small cups of Hot Chocolate.

Sitting Area at Everest View Hotel

Sitting Area at Everest View Hotel

Trekkers came here for a view of Mt Everest with a cup of coffee

Trekkers came here for a view of Mt Everest with a cup of coffee

That's me waiting for my hot chocolate! Mt Everest was hidden under the cloud.

That’s me waiting for my hot chocolate! Mt Everest was hidden under the cloud.

While returning, we went to Khumjung, a beautiful village about which I will write in my next post to follow.

You can read the day to day account of my Everest Base Camp Trek here- 

  1. An Enthralling Flight to Lukla, Nepal
  2. EBC Trek – Day 1 & 2 – Lukla – Phakding – Toktok
  3. EBC Trek – Day 3 – Toktok – Monjo – Jorsalle – Namche Bazaar
  4. EBC Trek – Day 4 – Namche Bazaar, Khumjung – Acclimatization Day (Part-II)

11 thoughts on “EBC Trek – Day 4 – Namche Bazaar – Acclimatization Day (Part-I)”

  1. 2travellingsisters says:

    Spectacular views!

    1. Anupam Chakraborty says:

      Thank you so much!

  2. yogensarswat says:

    Beautifully narrated !!

    1. Anupam Chakraborty says:

      Thank you Yogen for your kind words.

  3. Kalpanaa says:

    Hope you enjoyed your trek. I loved the EBC trek and Namche.

    1. Anupam Chakraborty says:

      Yes I did enjoy my trek. Thank you Kalpanaa for stopping by 🙂

  4. It brings back so many memories! Mostly of how tired I was when I went and that it was my birthday at Namche Bazaar!

    1. I know that. Infact, your travel stories to EBC inspired many including me to go there. Thank you very much Mridula!

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