Tea Houses are a form of accommodation unique to the Himalayas. They’re also the main lodgings featured throughout our Nepal: Kathmandu & Everest Base Camp gay climb.
We enlisted Head Honcho and frequent Out Adventures host, Robert Sharp, to give Inquisitive Alpinists a tour of one such accommodation. Take a look!
Tea Houses began as an extra source of income for locals inclined to open their doors to Himalayan hikers. For a few rupees, these entrepreneurially inclined individuals provided trekkers a roof, a hot meal, linens, in some cases a shower, and yes, tea. Today, they’re the only accommodation on well trodden routes in the region.
On Out Adventure’s gay ascent, we’ll stay in a variety of Tea Houses varying in quality and size. In the accompanying video series we feature the exceptionally well-kept Tea House, Yeti Mountain Home.
Rule of Thumb
The higher you climb, the more basic the Tea Houses. This applies to quality of bedding, access to electricity, internet, meals, hot water and more.
Note: It’s very important all travellers understand the Tea Houses nearest Base Camp are extremely basic. But rest assured, we’ve personally stayed in every Tea House and have selected the best of what’s available.
Beds and Linens
A third of our accommodations do not provide appropriate linens and sleeping bags. Therefore we recommend bringing a 4-season sleeping bag rated for -9C/15F as well as an appropriate liner.
Note: Rental sleeping bags and liners are available at the outset of Out Adventures’ gay trek. Quality cannot be guaranteed.
To contrast the dormitory above, the images below are examples of more basic accommodations featured on our tour.
Showering and Restrooms
Most Tea Houses at low altitudes have reliable hot water. But with thinning air comes cooler showers, so expect more than one frigid rinse under the faucet.
In terms of privacy, “ensuite” is a roll of the dice. In some instances you’ll have a private shower + toilet. In others you’ll only have an ensuite shower and the toilet is communal. And others still, everything will be communal. Generally speaking, ensuite showers are free to use while communal showers will require a few rupees.
Finally, while most Tea Houses feature flushing toilets, you may encounter a few long drop latrines en route. Pinch your nose, pop that squat and remember this is an adventure!
Expecting Eggs Florentine and a French Press for breakfast? Then allow us to suggest a more luxurious gaycation…
Not only will daily treks be tough, but the meals at Tea Houses are simple affairs. For example oatmeal or a plain omelette for breakfast and a lentil soup, rice and beef or chicken for dinner. The intention is refuelling, not fine dining.
For a small fee, hikers can purchase regional Wifi cards at your Tea House or in local shops in order to get online. But be warned, connections are slower than molasses in a freezer.
Larger Tea Houses will offer to charge your devices for a nominal fee.
Electric heating will be available in the common area of all Tea Houses. It is turned off in the evenings. Some of the more upscale Tea Houses will provide guests with electric blankets or a hot water bottle to sleep with.
The one thing you will enjoy at every Tea House is an epic view. Watch…
Want to see more from Robert’s Everest adventure? Watch the full video here.
Consider climbing the Mother of the Universe with a band of like-minded gay men on our annual Nepal: Kathmandu & Everest Base Camp tour.
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