Ten Top National Parks Around the Globe

by , SmarterTravel Staff - July 9, 2007 See all photo galleries
Yaks at Everest Base Camp, Nepal


The Nepalese name for Mount Everest is Sagarmatha (meaning "goddess [or head] of the sky"), and visitors will indeed be far from sea level in the national park that shares the peak's name. The park offers stunning views of jagged mountains, miles-long glaciers, deep valleys, and wildlife including the oft-spotted Himalayan tahr and Musk deer and the rare snow leopard and lesser panda.

Getting to the park is also no easy feat—you'll need to walk two to 10 days from nearby airports or fly into Syangboche, the highest airstrip in the world. You're better off leaving planning to the professionals. Intrepid Travel offers a 15-day expedition to the Everest Base Camp for as low as $680, plus a local payment of $200. You must be in peak physical condition to do the 12-day hike from Lukla to the foot of Mt. Everest. The trip takes a remote mountain path through the Himalayas, and guests spend the night in teahouses, learning about local traditions and culture.

Yaks at Everest Base Camp, Nepal (Photo: WeAreAdventurers;

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