Mt. Everest basecamp trail
Credit: fotoVoyager

Forget climbing the mountain. See the beautiful sights on one of these inexpensive tours

A big part of experiencing Everest is enjoying the surrounding areas: the shops in Durbar Square, the breathtaking views of Everest and the Majestic Mountains, and the general landscape. Summitting Everest is expensive and unnecessary, costing individuals upwards of $50,000—not to mention the two months (at least) you’ll have to devote to climbing the mountain. Even though Will Gadd claims climbing Everest is no big deal, it is understandable why some people opt out.

Whether you're a novice climber or you aren’t financially ready to tackle the Big E, touring Nepal is still something every adventurer should have on their bucket list. Here are two ways you can experience Everest’s surrounding areas without having to attempt the climb.

Everest on a budget

Highest elevation: Namche Bazaar, 11,350 ft/3440 m
Price: 2 people travelling $1,889/person* - 10 people travelling $1,595/person*
Duration: 22 days, 21 nights

Believe it or not, this 22-day trek happens to be the more affordable way to tour the Everest region. It gives you more opportunities to visit with locals as you hike through, and stay in many villages including Kathmandu, Lukla, Namche Bazaar, Kalapathar, and Thyangboche.

The trip includes 3 nights at the Hotel Shanker in Kathmandu, and an 18-night tea house trek with an English-speaking Sherpa guide and porter, plus all of your meals during this time. Tea houses are more comfortable than tents, but less comfortable than the beds that you would sleep on during the ‘Everest in comfort’ trip.

More information: Your Journey

Everest in comfort

Highest elevation: Namche Bazaar, 11,350 ft/3440 m
Price: $2,313 per person*
Duration: 11 days, 10 nights

This 11-day journey is shorter and more expensive than the 22-day trip, but it's the way to go if you want to experience a luxury vacation while still seeing the sights of the Everest region. This luxury trip takes you through many of the same villages as the above trip, including Kathmandu, Lukla, and Namche Bazaar.

During your travels, you're free to explore the local villages on your own and will experience some of the local culture, but staying in luxury hotels won't get you as close to the communities as the tea-house tour would.

More information: Your Journey

Whether you choose to stay in tea houses or luxury hotels, or try to summit the mountain, there's one thing that will remain the same: the sheer beauty of the Everest region. The scenery alone is worth travelling to see.

* Prices do not include international airfare, insurance or gratuities during the trip.