Tea houses have become a common term when it comes to trekking in the Himalayas of Nepal including Everest Base Camp. To those who are not familiar with the term ‘Tea Houses’, it isn’t only the shop that sells tea but is a small hotel in the trail of the trek that serves accommodation including bed and breakfast. Tea Houses are the best way to explore the history and culture of the people living there and preserving their culture and tradition serving the trekkers.
Originally, tea houses meant a small shop selling tea and a place to rest for the travelers. But later on, with the increasing number of trekkers, these tea houses started to develop into the lodge that offers the place for overnight stay and food. Generally, you will find the local staff and owner in the tea houses providing the enthintic culture. The prices in the tea houses are usually cheap and affordable.
Tea houses are the most famous model of accommodation for the trekkers in the Everest region that offer a clean and safe place for the night stay. The typical tea house offers all kinds of services for the comfortability of its customers. After walking for hours and hours you need a comfortable and safe place to stay. A tea house along the trail offers necessary basic amenities like showers, hot meals, and electricity.
Staying in a tea house is highly recommended as it helps to experience the unique culture and traditions as well as the lifestyle of rural Himalayan peoples. It also helps to be more close with local peoples which makes the take more exciting. The local people are very friendly. You will be overwhelmed by the love and affection they offer.
Toilet, shower, and room
All the tea houses are different in the quality of the services they provide. Especially the accommodation’s quality and the price are determined by the altitude, location, and market completion of the tea houses. There are many tea houses on the trail of EBC as every year thousands of trekkers trek on this route. On the higher altitude, the facilities won’t be as comfortable as at lower altitudes. Similarly, the price in the higher altitude is more expensive than the lower altitude. Almost every tea house in the Khumbu region has a twin room which offers a room with two single beds in the two sides of the room and a small tea table in between. They offer a pillow, beds sheets, and bed cover but taking sleeping bags is recommended because it gets too cold during nights.
Most tea houses nowadays offer you multiple options for the food and beverage menu. The most common that you will get for lunch and dinner in every teahouse is Dal Bhat which is also known as the national food of Nepal. And for breakfast, you will have boiled egg, bread, biscuit, and chapatis. However, some tea houses offer vegetable pizza, soup, omelets, and basic cheese. The price of the snacks and beverages increases with the increase in altitude.
Intake of any meat dishes is not recommended in the upper Himalayas as they might not be fresh and safe for consumption. According to Sherpas’ beliefs animals are not slaughtered in the mountains therefore the meat is brought from the lower altitude which takes days. Having traditional rice and vegetables is the best food for your health while trekking in the Himalayas.
Almost every Tea house has an internet connection and offers Wifi hotspots with a certain charge. The wifi in this tea house is not as fast as you find in cities but you can send a message or upload a picture. If you want to be connected to the internet, you can get a prepaid Data sim Card for Ncell or NTC Sim Card for the high-speed data connection.
Things to consider
It is recommended to trek through the trekking agencies to ensure your safety and comfortable trek in the EBC trek and find the best tea houses. Trekking agencies will know the best tea houses en route and book it for you in advance. The food in the tea houses is available until 7 AM, therefore make sure you reach there before 7 pm. The transportation of foods is quite difficult and costly due to the altitude and lack of transportation. Therefore finish whatever you have taken on your plate. Wasting foods is considered a bad habit, so finish the food or take less.
Tips for staying in the tea houses
- The use of toilet paper is rare in the tea houses in Nepal. Therefore, you may want to carry a few packs of tissue paper or toilet paper if this is what you are comfortable with. Similarly, many toilets may not be able to flush paper without clogging so dispose of the paper properly.
- Taking a hot shower after a long walk in the Himalayas is what every trekker wants. Therefore many tea houses offer some buckets of hot water which is boiled in gas or fire so they charge a certain amount. So you need to inform the staff of the tea house to bring a bucket of hot water.
- Charging your phone or any electronic gadgets is only possible in the dining hall as there won’t be any plug socket in your room. For this, you will be charged $1 to 2 per hour.
- Reach the tea house before 7 pm for the food. The day is comparatively shorter in the Himalayan region therefore people eat their food before 7 pm. Similarly reaching the teahouse is necessary for your own safety.
- Carry your own pillow cover and sleeping bag. Although tea houses offer you a blanket and pillow it is better to carry your own sleeping bag for hygiene as well as there is colder at night.
- Be friendly and comfortable while talking with the people of tea houses.it helps to understand the culture and lifestyle of the local people. Similarly, talking with them helps you understand the difficulties and problems they face while living in high altitudes.