17 Aug 2022 Nabin Baniya
Tenzing Hillary Airport Lukla
Lukla is a small village in the Everest region. It is the gateway to the Everest region. The entire traveler to Mt Everest and other points passes through this village. Lukla is popular for the Tenzing Hillary airport. Tenzing Hillary airport Lukla lies in Lukla village of Khambu which is popular as Solukhumbu district. This Solukhumbu lies in Province No. 1 in eastern Nepal.
Lukla is situated at an elevation of 2900 meters above sea level. The Lukla airport is enclosed on one end by a 600m drop off a cliff face and on the other end by a solid stone wall. The runway of this Lukla airport is 9400 feet on top of a 2000 feel cliff. Due to the risky location and length, the airport has been rated as one of the most dangerous airports in the world.
Despite the dangers of airports and dangerous flights, it is also one of the most Spectacular flight experiences. It is a lifetime experience and doing Everest base camp without this feels incomplete Adventure. The flight is 35 to 40 minutes from Kathmandu to Lukla unless any bad weather. The breathtaking scenic flight above the snowcapped Himalayas is the highlight of the travel itself.
Lukla Airport in Lukla village
Lukla airport is situated at 2860 meters. It is a small town/village at the foot of Mount Everest. The beautiful town is found in the northeast of Nepal. The village is well known as a place with many goats and sheep. It is also known as the trading of mountain products in the lower belt of Nepal, India, and Tibet. The Lukla is the place buzzing with the happy sound of Excited adventure trekkers either getting ready to hit the trail or finishing off their adventure. We can see many celebrating at pubs and hotels with a well-deserved beer or some other drinks. The yoga, luxury, exciting Everest base camp trek challenge starts with a flight to Lukla and ends with a flight off from Lukla.
Facts of Tenzing Hillary airport Lukla
- Lukla Airport got its name from Tenzing Hillary Airport in 2008 after the name of Tenzing Norgey Sherpa and Sir Edmund Hillary. They are the first people to get to the top of the world’s highest mountain.
- The fastest way to reach Lukla airport from Kathmandu is a 35 to 40 minutes flight by plane.
- Sherpa people are well known for their mountaineering skills and were actively involved in the construction of Lukla airport.
- The airport was built on the leadership of Sir Edmund Hillary in 1964.
- The airport has a short runway with a length of 527m and 30 minutes which causes difficulty in landing and take-offs.
- The flight from Kathmandu to Lukla offers stunning views of mountains, landscapes and Valleys. Indeed, it will be a scenic world-class fly.
- There would be at least 60+flights everyday during the prime trekking season which makes the airport one of the busiest domestic airport in Nepal.
- The plane to/from Lukla is very small, so there is no fixed seats to sit therefore travelers are recommended to sit left when you are flying to Lukla Similarly on the right when fly to Kathmandu. This will reward you with an incredible mountain view.
- At lukla airport, there is no Rader system, but there is radio communication system to takeoff and landing.
- The baggage allowance for this domestic flight is 15 Kg including hand luggage.
- In 2010, the history Channel broadcast lukla airport as the world most dangerous airport.
- The cancellations of flight are bound to happen often because f weather frequently changes in lukla.
What make Lukla airport the most dangerous airport in the world?
Answer: The airport is danger because of the very short runway. Another reason is the airport is situating on high elevations from sea level. The adverse weather conditions make it quite a gut-wrenching ride when taking off and landing which is often. Since the origin we have only around few (3) fatal crashes. All this happened due to bad weather. Considering that there are multiple daily flights between Kathmandu and Lukla the number aren’t bad at all making the airport pretty safe.
When is the Best time to fly Lukla?
Answer: As we all know that lukla is a heartland of The Khumbu region. This is also known as Everest region. People in massive numbers fly in and out every day during peak trekking season and expedition season. The weather of lukla depends upon the season of the year. In autumn (sep-Nov) and spring (march-may) is the best season to travel this region. During this time the sky gets clear almost every day s the flights are on time and very less risky. There is fewer clouds and the speed of wind is also less. We have a super good visibility for landing. The airport is also dry and relatively safe in landing. With this comfort and nice environment definitively spring and autumn are the best time to Fly lukla and trek Everest base camp.
What is the Cost of a Lukla flight?
Answer: The Kathmandu to Lukla flight cost is only 180 USD per person. The 25 minutes flight allows 10 kg luggage along with 5kg hand carry. As for the Indian nationals, the flight costs only around 147 USD per person. The price comes up and down.
Is there any other way to get Lukla?
Answer: If you are not a fan of flying or you want to keep it Authentic, you can take a jeep or public bus from Kathmandu to Jiri and trek five to six days to reach lukla. We also have other options of taking jeep to salleri and trek 3 days to reach lukla. We can also fly Phaplu and trek 3 days to lukla.
Is Flight to Lukla Safe?
Answer: Despite being the most dangerous airport in the world, lukla airport safely carried out 50+ flights daily. This 50+ flight is during the peak trekking and expedition season. Almost more than half of the trekkers who visited Nepal annually tend to fly into Lukla airport. The lukla airport is comparatively more dangerous statically than a typical commercial domestic airport in Nepal, still its pretty safe. The aviation officials of Nepal and local airlines are very concerned about the acceptable flight conditions and regulations for aircraft making the journey to lukla. Due to danger the Nepal civil Aviation Authority of Nepal have rules that pilot should have 1 year of experience and need to fly with experience certified pilots more than 10 times in lukla.
What if flights Get Canceled for Several Days?
Answer: Due to high chance of bad weather delaying flights, It is recommended that trekkers build in some days at the end of their trek and not have an international flight to soon after the schedule Lukla to Kathmandu Flight. The maximum recorded bad weather is 11 days. In case of long delays we have an options of helicopter charter flight from lukla to Kathmandu. It is an expensive options which cost between USD 2000 to 2500 for a five seated helicopter. In case of flight canceled, you can claim 100% money back from the place you book flight.
Which plane fly in lukla and what are the airlines?
Answer: Only a twin otter size plane can land at Lukla airport. Company like Tara air, Summit Air, Sita Air, Goma air and Also Nepal airlines do regular commercial flights in this airport.
What is Nepal Government doing for safety flight to lukla?
Answer: Due to Difficulty in landing the civil Aviation authority of Nepal sets high priority where a pilot with 100 short take off and landing (STOL).The certified pilot who have 1 years experience attest and completer 10 flights to lukla with certificate instructor pilot only allowed to land on this airport.
Nabin is a seasoned trekking and hiking guide, and the proud operator of Magic Himalaya Treks, Nepal’s premier company for Everest Base Camp trek, Annapurna Base Camp trek, and other thrilling adventures. With a wealth of experiences and valuable insights, Nabin’s website offers comprehensive information on trekking in Nepal.