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Lukla To Monjo – Day 1 Trek To Everest Base Camp


by Natalya Coss



Welcome to the breathtaking journey of trekking from Lukla to Monjo, the gateway to Everest Base Camp. Nestled in the majestic Himalayas, Nepal is a country known for its stunning landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and the world’s tallest peak, Mount Everest. The trek from Lukla to Monjo offers a mesmerizing experience, taking you through picturesque villages, lush forests, and incredible mountain vistas.


Lukla, situated at an altitude of 2,860 meters (9,383 feet), serves as the starting point for this exhilarating trek. It is here that you will feel the anticipation and excitement of embarking on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. With its vibrant atmosphere and stunning mountain backdrop, Lukla sets the tone for the journey ahead.


As you leave Lukla behind, you will soon find yourself in the village of Phakding. This is the first stop on the trek and serves as an excellent introduction to the remote mountain life of Nepal. Nestled on the banks of the Dudh Koshi River, Phakding offers picturesque views and a warm Sherpa hospitality.


Continuing on the trail, you will reach Monjo, a small village located in the Khumbu region of Nepal. Monjo is the gateway to Sagarmatha National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that is home to the legendary Mount Everest. Here, you will experience the awe-inspiring beauty of the Himalayas up close and personal.


Throughout this trek, you will encounter the unique culture and traditions of the Sherpa people, known for their mountaineering prowess and warm hospitality. You will have the opportunity to visit monasteries, interact with locals, and gain insights into their way of life.


With every step, you will be surrounded by breathtaking mountain views, including the iconic peaks like Ama Dablam, Thamserku, and, of course, the majestic Mount Everest. The Everest Base Camp Trek is not just a physical challenge but a spiritual journey that leaves a lasting impression on trekkers from all walks of life.


Whether you are an experienced trekker or a novice adventurer, the Lukla to Monjo trek is an unforgettable experience. It tests your endurance, rewards you with stunning natural beauty, and offers a chance to immerse yourself in the rich cultural tapestry of Nepal.


So, lace up your hiking boots, pack your backpack, and get ready to embark on an extraordinary journey from Lukla to Monjo. From the thrilling trails to the warm smiles of the locals, every moment on this trek will be etched in your memory forever.


Lukla: The Starting Point

Lukla, often referred to as the “Gateway to Everest,” is a small town nestled in the Khumbu region of Nepal. Situated at an altitude of 2,860 meters (9,383 feet), Lukla serves as the starting point for trekkers embarking on the journey to Everest Base Camp. This bustling town is home to the Tenzing-Hillary Airport, one of the most dangerous airports in the world.


Arriving at Lukla is an adventure in itself. The breathtaking flight from Kathmandu to Lukla offers a glimpse of the magnificent mountain peaks, including the mighty Everest. The thrill of landing on the short and sloping runway of Tenzing-Hillary Airport adds to the excitement and sets the tone for the trek ahead.


As you step off the aircraft, you will be greeted by the refreshing mountain air and a vibrant atmosphere. The town is alive with the energy of trekkers, guides, and locals going about their daily lives. Colorful prayer flags flutter in the wind, creating a spiritual ambiance.


Accommodation options in Lukla range from teahouses to guesthouses, providing trekkers with a cozy place to rest and rejuvenate before setting off on their trek. It is also an excellent opportunity to meet other like-minded adventurers and share stories and advice.


From Lukla, the trail gradually descends through picturesque Sherpa villages, terraced farmland, and tranquil forests. The Dudh Koshi River accompanies you along the way, glistening with its turquoise waters and adding to the serenity of the surroundings.


The trek from Lukla offers a glimpse into the traditional Sherpa culture. Along the trail, you will pass through villages like Phakding, where you can witness the Sherpa way of life. Sherpas are known for their warm hospitality and rich history of mountaineering. Interacting with the locals gives you a deeper understanding of their traditions and customs.


As you embark on your trek from Lukla, the views of the snow-clad peaks begin to reveal itself. Ama Dablam, the “Jewel of the Himalayas,” stands tall as a testament to the grandeur of the mountains. The beauty of the landscape is unparalleled, with every turn of the trail offering a new perspective.


As you bid farewell to Lukla, you will feel a mix of excitement and anticipation for the journey ahead. The trek from Lukla to Monjo is a remarkable adventure that will push your limits, test your endurance, and reward you with unmatched natural beauty and cultural experiences.


So, take your first step from Lukla, and let the mountains guide you on a journey of a lifetime. The adventure has just begun, and the memories you create along this trail will stay with you forever.


Phakding: The First Stop

After departing from Lukla, the first stop on the trek to Everest Base Camp is the charming village of Phakding. Located at an altitude of approximately 2,610 meters (8,561 feet), Phakding offers trekkers a welcome respite after their initial descent from Lukla.


As you make your way along the trail, you will be captivated by the picturesque beauty of Phakding. The village is nestled in a serene valley, surrounded by towering mountains and lush greenery. The sound of the Dudh Koshi River flowing nearby adds to the tranquil atmosphere.


Phakding is a popular resting point for trekkers, offering various accommodation options such as teahouses and guesthouses. These establishments provide comfortable rooms and warm hospitality, ensuring trekkers have a pleasant stay. The teahouses also serve delicious local cuisine, allowing you to replenish your energy for the upcoming days of trekking.


Exploring the village of Phakding is a delightful experience. As you stroll through the narrow streets, you will encounter charming Sherpa houses, prayer wheels, and fluttering prayer flags. The villagers, with their warm smiles and welcoming nature, create a memorable cultural exchange.


The highlight of a visit to Phakding is the beautiful monastery, located at the heart of the village. The monastery is a serene and spiritual place, adorned with intricate Buddhist artwork and statues. Take a moment to soak in the peaceful ambiance and offer prayers for a safe and successful trek.


During your stay in Phakding, it is also worth taking a short hike to the nearby village of Thame. This picturesque village is home to the famous Thame Monastery, which holds great cultural significance for the Sherpa people. The monastery hosts colorful festivals and rituals throughout the year, providing a glimpse into the religious traditions of the region.


As you leave Phakding and continue on your journey, you will be filled with a sense of anticipation for what lies ahead. The trek from Phakding to Monjo promises even more stunning landscapes, challenging trails, and encounters with the local Sherpa community.


Remember to take your time, acclimatize properly, and enjoy the beauty and tranquility that Phakding offers. It is not just a rest stop but a place to appreciate the wonders of the Himalayas and the unique culture of the Sherpa people.


So, take a deep breath, soak in the serenity of Phakding, and get ready for the adventure that awaits as you continue your journey towards Everest Base Camp.


Monjo: The Gateway to Sagarmatha National Park

Welcome to Monjo, the gateway to Sagarmatha National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the legendary Mount Everest. Situated at an altitude of approximately 2,835 meters (9,301 feet), Monjo serves as a crucial checkpoint for trekkers on their way to Everest Base Camp.


As you approach Monjo, you will be captivated by the breathtaking natural beauty that surrounds the village. The towering peaks of the Himalayas, including Ama Dablam, Lhotse, and the iconic Mount Everest, create a majestic backdrop that will leave you in awe.


Monjo is a quaint Sherpa village that offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere to trekkers. The village is dotted with traditional stone houses, colorful prayer flags, and prayer wheels. The sound of murmuring streams and the chirping of birds in the surrounding forests add to the serenity of the location.


One of the main attractions of Monjo is the entrance to Sagarmatha National Park. As you pass through the park’s checkpoint, you will enter a world of unparalleled natural beauty and biodiversity. The park is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including the elusive snow leopard, musk deer, and various species of birds.


As you trek through Sagarmatha National Park, you will be amazed by the lush forests of rhododendron, pine, and birch trees that blanket the landscape. The sound of gushing rivers and cascading waterfalls adds to the symphony of nature that surrounds you.


While in Monjo, it is worth taking a detour to visit the mesmerizing village of Jorsalle. Located just a short distance away, Jorsalle offers picturesque views of the Dudh Koshi River and the iconic Hillary Suspension Bridge. This suspension bridge, named after Sir Edmund Hillary, crosses the roaring river and serves as a symbol of the region’s rich mountaineering history.


Another point of interest in Monjo is the Everest View Hotel, which offers a breathtaking panorama of the Everest region. From here, you can catch a glimpse of the awe-inspiring Mount Everest, as well as other prominent peaks in the area.


Interacting with the friendly Sherpa people in Monjo is a delightful experience. Their warm smiles and hospitable nature make you feel welcome and at home. Take the time to learn about their traditions, visit the local monastery, and immerse yourself in the rich Sherpa culture.


As you bid farewell to Monjo and continue your trek towards Everest Base Camp, you will be filled with a sense of excitement and anticipation. The journey ahead is packed with challenging trails, stunning vistas, and unforgettable experiences.


So, take a moment to appreciate the beauty and tranquility that Monjo and Sagarmatha National Park offer. The gateway to Everest Base Camp is not just a checkpoint, but a symbol of the extraordinary adventure that awaits.



The journey from Lukla to Monjo is an extraordinary trek that takes you through some of the most breathtaking landscapes in the world. From the bustling town of Lukla, the starting point of the trek, to the charming village of Phakding, and finally to the gateway of Sagarmatha National Park in Monjo, every step of the way offers stunning views and unforgettable experiences.


As you traverse the rugged trails, you will be surrounded by majestic mountain peaks, lush forests, and traditional Sherpa villages. You will have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of the region, interact with the friendly Sherpa people, and witness their deep respect for the mountains.


The trek from Lukla to Monjo not only challenges your physical endurance but also rewards you with the immense beauty and serenity of the Himalayas. The panoramic views of the snow-capped peaks, the sound of gushing rivers, and the peaceful monasteries along the way create an atmosphere of tranquility and spiritual connection.


Each stop along the trek, from Lukla to Phakding and onwards to Monjo, offers its own unique wonders. Phakding serves as the first stop, providing trekkers with a chance to rest and rejuvenate amidst the picturesque surroundings. Monjo, on the other hand, is a gateway to the world-renowned Sagarmatha National Park, a sanctuary of natural wonders and home to the mightiest peak of them all, Mount Everest.


The entire journey is not just about reaching Everest Base Camp but about the incredible experiences and memories you create along the way. From the adrenaline-inducing flight to Lukla, the warm welcome of the Sherpa people, the breathtaking views of the Himalayas, and the sense of accomplishment as you take each step closer to your goal, the trek becomes a life-changing adventure.


In conclusion, the Lukla to Monjo trek is a remarkable journey that combines physical challenge, natural beauty, and cultural immersion. It is an opportunity to explore the majestic Himalayas, witness the resilience of the Sherpa people, and connect with nature on a profound level. Whether you are a seasoned trekker or a first-time adventurer, this trek will leave an indelible mark on your heart and soul.


So, lace up your boots, pack your backpack, and embark on this remarkable trek that will take you to the foothills of the world’s highest mountain. The memories and experiences gained on the trek from Lukla to Monjo will be cherished for a lifetime.