In the Khumbu Pasanglhamu municipality of Solukhumbu district of Nepal lies the small town of Lukla. Between the high hills lies the World’s Most dangerous airport, Lukla Airport, internationally known as Tenzing-Hillary Airport. It is a small domestic airport that flies between Kathmandu - Lukla and vice versa. Lukla is the gateway to Mount Everest. It is starting destination of all Everest trekkings and Expeditions.
The airport was constructed under the guidance of Sir Edmund Hillary alongside the local sherpas. Hillary wanted to build the airport on flat lands, but the local farmer refused to give up their lands. So, the airport was built where it is now. So, in 2008, to honour the personalities Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, the airport was titled Tenzing-Hillary Airport in January.
In 2010, the History channel ranked Lukla airport top spot in its program titled “Most Extreme Airports”. The airport resides at an elevation of 2,846 m above sea level. Moreover, the runway is 527 m long and 30 m wide with an inclination of 11.5 per cent. Apart from that, the weather in this region is quite unpredictable. Strong winds, thick clouds, rainfall and low visibility are among the main factors that make this mountain flight challenging to even experienced pilots. Thus, the unpredictable weather and geography of Lukla make Lukla airport the World’s most extreme airport.
Tenzing-Hillary airport is among the most active domestic airports in Nepal. In favorable weather conditions, there are around 50 flights from Kathmandu - Lukla and vice versa. The overall flight duration is 30 minutes. In addition, flights like Sita, Summit and Tara run on these routes daily. As an alternative option to Tenzing-Hillary Airport, one can charter a helicopter or drive to the nearby village of Phaplu or Jiri and hike to Lukla.
Due to Lukla airport’s bad reputation, trekkers might think, “Does Lukla Flight worth it?” Well, the flight is not as scary as advertised on TV and in newspapers. Moreover, only experienced pilots can fly in this region. Besides that, taking some risks in life adds an extra adventure and memories which you might feel proud of in future. However, those who don’t want to take risks can drive to Jiri and Phaplu and hike to Lukla for 4 to 5 days. From Lukla, one can start their Everest Base Camp Trek, Everest High Passes Trek, Everest Expedition, and many other popular Everest treks.
If you have any queries regarding Lukla flight’s risk factors or any popular treks in Nepal, remember Nepal Hiking Adventure Company Pvt. Ltd. We are a team of professionals working in this tourism sector for decades. So, we have the experience and knowledge to answer all your queries and help you plan your vacation.