The Everest Base Camp trek starts in the village of Lukla, which is at the maddest height of 2860 meters. It continues, on a ten day walk to the base camp of Mount Everest at an elevation of 5,364 meters (17,598 ft).
This trek is within a similar level of the Annapurna Circuit trek. Although most of the difficulty in the Annapurna Circuit is before and after Thorong La Pass. In Everest Base Camp trek, it is spread through the whole route.
The journey begins with the 30 minutes flight from Kathmandu to Lukla. For many people this would be the shortest flight they have ever traveled on and an exciting departure to a journey. This flight takes you to the Khumbu region of Nepal. The plane flying from Kathmandu to Lukla has no radar system on board. So they cannot know if the weather condition is suitable where we will be landing, due to this, long delays occur regularly.
Lukla has the variety of shops in large where one can have basic western style meals and pickup any last minute items for trekking and climbing ahead. There are many restaurants at Lukla so you can have your meal before your first day of trekking. A typical menu of Lukla will have large variety of food. People usually avoid eating meat here onward, as there is no good cold storage and possibilities of getting a sick stomach are very high.
Back in 2015, one week from now, I left Europe for first time. It was a big deal for me, since I had been exploring many regions all around my continent, but never went out of it. I wanted so badly to go to Asia, it had always called my attention, but I didn’t really want to go to the typical tourist spot. Plus I needed to find inner peace at that moment of my life. So going to a country that not many people visit sounded like the right thing to do. So I chose Cambodia, and visited a Cambodia Elephant Sanctuary.
During the first week of my trip, I had been going North. After the capital, Phnom Penh, I departed to the Stung Treng province, where I enjoyed the 4.000 islands of the Mekong river. And then I was for a few days in Banlung, at the Ratanakiri Province, where I had the pleasure to see a few waterfalls and a volcano with a forest and lake in it. However, one of the most exciting parts of my first Asian trip was about to arrive. I ended up in the Mondulkiri province, basically because I heard it was atypical of Cambodia. It wasn’t so hot, neither so low (in altitude) as most of the country.
Back in October 2016, I was at the last part of my Japanese trip, and I did part of the Kyoto Trail. I normally go to places with local immersion in mind, so my trip to Kyoto wasn’t going to be less. I sent a couple of CouchSurfing requests in order to get hosted and/or visit the city with the hand of a local. And the good luck was with me this time.
I had the great pleasure to meet Hiroshi (Hiro for friends), a local. Well, he isn’t really from Kyoto, but had been living there for 4 years at that time. So he knows very well the city and it’s surroundings. He and I became a good match even while talking via CouchSurfing and other messaging apps. He liked walking here and there. Getting into local places, no matter if they were very popular or not. Moving through the cities with a bycicle or on foot. And of course, hiking.
During the last winter I accomplished one of my childhood’s dream. See the Himalayas and do an Annapurna Trekking or an Everest Trekking.
Why did I pick the Annapurna Massif as my first adventure in the Himalayas? Easy, I got to talk with several people while on my Eastern Asian trip and all of them agreed that it was the best choice as a first contact with the Himalayas. Basically, because it has several options.
Some people go to Poon Hill, which is the easier trek. Others do the Annapurna Base Camp or the Annapurna Circuit, which are harder and take longer. And then, there are who do them all, Poon Hill, Annapurna Base Camp and the Annapurna Circuit.
I wanted a challenge, not just to see the roof of the world. But I wasn’t so sure I’d be able to make it to the end. That was my biggest fear before I finally decided to do this trekking. Happily, I ended up sleeping at the house of a trekking guide in Kathmandu. Thanks to CouchSurfing. I didn’t know he was a guide though, since he didn’t say anything about it in his profile. Continue reading Annapurna Trekking, still a challenging experience
When I first heard about Crater Ijen, or Kawah Ijen as Indonesians call it, I was going from the volcano Mount Bromo to Probolinggo, and then I was going to head to Banyuwangi, the nearest city to Kawah Ijen. Before going to Banyuwangi, I only knew that there was a volcano close to the town, but I did not know what was I going to see over there.
The first thing that the people I met in Mount Bromo told me, was that there were sulfur mines in the crater, that did not surprise me, since I had been in Japan during the previous months to my trip in Indonesia, and that was pretty common to see, although not the mines.
But what astonished me the most was when they told me that you could see blue flames at night, coming out of the sulfur mines. That really blew my mind! I was imagining the blue fire I had seen tons of times when I cooked at home with gas or when I prepared a barbecue with my friends, but I could not imagine to see that in a bigger scale. However, there were other facts that would make my hike to Kawah Ijen a deeper experience.