Standing as high as 8,848 m (29,029 ft) above sea level, Mt. Everset is Earth’s highest mountain and attracts tourists all over the world. Located on the border of Tibet and Nepal with its north face in Tibet and the south face in Nepal, the part in Tibet is universally referred to the “North Slope” while the south part in Nepal is taken as the “South Slope”. Even though you have already visited Mt. Everest in Nepal side, a visit to the North Slope in Tibet is still well worth taking for the following reasons.
You can enjoy the different scenery of Mt. Everest in China side
The Mountain is situated in Mt. Everest National Nature Reserve, Tingri County of Shigatse City, Tibet. Due to the different climate and landscape, the scenery of Mt. Everest in Tibet side is very different from that in Nepal.
On the Nepal side, the terrain is very different. Trekking to the South Slope of Mt. Everest from Lukla, you will ascend through beautiful forests and valleys to the lower slopes of the Himalayas.
On the Tibetan side of Mt, Everest, it is high-altitude plateau landscape with mountains all around. Instead of trees or grass, you can only see the sketching snow belts and feel the relentless cold gale. However, in the Tibet side, you can appreciate much more significant Himalaya Mountains and more stunning panoramic mountain views. What’s more, the summit of Mt. Everest, which is invisible from base camp in Nepal, can be clearly visible from the Everest Base Camp in Tibet.
You can also visit Rongbuk Monastery in China side
Another addition to the attraction of EBC in Tibet is the famous Rongbuk Monastery. Known as the “official” highest Buddhist monastery in the world, Rongbuk lies alongside the Everest Base Camp, and has played a very important role in the history of Mount Everest.
Founded in 1902, the monastery is part of the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism, and houses both monks and nuns inside its walls. It is classed as the best place to get great views of Mount Everest, as well as the record-breaking altitude.
Nowadays, the monastery is a prominent tourist attraction for visitors to EBC, and the new base camp for tourists visiting Mount Everest lies alongside the monastery. And you can even stay in the modern monastery guesthouse while you visit.
You can enjoy the panorama of Himalaya at Gawu La Pass on the way to ECB in China side
Also known as Geu La Pass, Gawu La Pass (5198m) lies in Tingri County of Shigatse, between the villages of Che and Tashizom on the Zhufeng Road towards Mount Everest. One of the most beautiful mountain passes in Tibet, this amazing site is one of the best places from which to view the major Himalayan Mountains over 8,000 meters in height. The panoramic view of the Himalayas from Gawu La is outstanding, and is well worth the long drive on its own.
From the crest of the pass, where tours normally stop to admire the view, you can get a good and clear view of the main mountains that exceed 8,000 meters. These mountains include Mount Everest (8,848m), Mount Makalu (8,463m), Mount Lhotse (8,516m), and Mount Cho Oyu (8,188m).
A visit to EBC China side is safe and time-saving
While visiting Mt. Everest in Nepal means a long and possibly dangerous hike of around nine days, a trip to EBC in Tibet is actually safe and time-saving. And with the road running all the way to Rongbuk Monastery and the Everest Base Camp itself in China side, it is the easiest way to access Mount Everest.
For those visiting EBC from Nepal side
For those visiting Tibet from Nepal, the route to EBC takes you through Gyirong Valley and Tingri County to get to the base camp. The ascent from Gyirong Port on the border to the base camp is immense, in terms of altitude, so visitors that cross the border and head straight for EBC do not normally stay overnight at the base camp for safety. Usually, you will need to stay overnight in Tingri when visiting EBC during a Kathmandu to Lhasa tour.
From Gyirong Port itself, the road to EBC is just 322 kilometers, and can easily be driven inside a single day. The route from Gyirong Town to EBC takes you along the G216 north, until you reach the G219, where you turn southeast and head past Lake Peiku tso to reach the base camp and Rongbuk Monastery. The road from Gyirong to EBC is a very well paved route, with asphalt for the entire distance of the road.
For those visiting EBC from Lhasa
For those traveling to EBC from Lhasa, the Tibetan capital, the route is much safer, as you will acclimatize firstly in Lhasa and then along the way. Once you arrive in Tibet for your trip to EBC, you will spend the first few days in Lhasa, sightseeing while you acclimatize to the increase in altitude. Then you will travel overland from the capital to Gyantse and Shigatse, stopping overnight at around 4,000 meters. This allows you to adapt to the increases in altitude between Lhasa and EBC.
During our classic 8-day Everest Base Camp small group tour from Lhasa, the altitude acclimatization means that you will be able to stop overnight at EBC, staying in either the Rongbuk Monastery Guesthouse, or one of the Tent Guesthouses if you prefer. And there are distinct advantages to being able to stop overnight. Not only do you get to view the stunning snow-clad Mount Everest at sunset and sunrise, but you also have the opportunity to enjoy the starry nights at EBC. The base camp is one of the many locations in Tibet from where you can get a good view of the Milky Way, our own Galaxy, as well as many other stars and heavenly sights. For stargazers, this is the perfect chance to get a good view of stars you might not normally see from lower altitudes and other places.
So the question of whether it is still worth going to EBC in Tibet after already visiting EBC in Nepal has a very simple answer: Yes, it is. There are definite advantages to visiting EBC in Tibet, with things you can do and see in Tibet that you cannot in Nepal. So if you are already planning a trip to EBC in Nepal, why not pop over to Tibet while you are there and view the summit of Everest from the best location on the planet – The Northern Base Camp on the Roof of the World.