This spring I had the opportunity to fulfill a long-standing dream of mine to trek in Nepal on a wilderness medicine education trip that included some time in Kathmandu and a trek to Everest Base Camp at 17,590 ft., and Kala Patthar, a trekking peak at 18,500 ft. By the end of the trip I had experienced the chaotic and exotic city of Kathmandu, seen stunning peaks such as Mount Everest and Ama Dablam, pushed myself to the second highest point I had ever been at, and made new friends on the trail. It was an amazing journey through some of the most beautiful mountains in the world. I left the US on April 23 and after approximately 31 hours on planes and in airports (Phoenix-LA-Seoul-Kathmandu), I arrived at Kathmandu in the early afternoon, met by Jiban Ghimire, owner/manager of Sherpa Shangri-La Treks & Expeditions http://www.shangrilatrek.com a Nepalese guiding company. Jiban is fluent in English and was immediately friendly and effusive as he explained about Kathmandu while we (the several who had just arrived) were driven to our hotel, The Yak & Yeti. I can highly recommend the Yak & Yeti as a clean, quiet oasis amid the constant din of Kathmandu. The hotel is located just south of the Royal Palace, and near enough to the old town and Thamel regions to be a quick walk. We stayed in the superior rooms, a step below the suites and deluxe rooms. The room wasn’t too cramped, was clean and comfortable. The staff are extremely friendly and helpful, the facilities very nice and clean, and the breakfast buffet excellent and filling, with everything from fruits to cereal to regional fare and omelets made to order. All our other meals were taken out and I’ll comment on some of the restaurants later. Also, a quick plug for Sherpa Shangri-La and Jiban Ghimire now and a more in-depth evaluation as I post more. Jiban and everyone associated with Sherpa Shangri-La were fantastic throughout the whole trip, providing for our comfort and safety during the trip with expertise and a friendliness that goes beyond a traditional guiding service. Should, or rather when, I return to Nepal I will be using Sherpa Shangri-La again.
By David Boswell