Enjoy Mani Rimdu En Route to Everest Base Camp
One festival that is certainly worth including on your trip to Everest Base Camp, is the Mani Rimdu Festival. A festival that is celebrated annually in accordance with the Tibetan lunar calendar, and the completion of the harvest, Mani Rimdu brings together villagers from many areas of the Khumbu region, which lies to the Nepalese side of Everest Base Camp.
The Mani Rimdu Festival originates from the Tibetan Monastery, Rongbukh, though it is now held at the Thyangboche Monastery. The Monastery itself sits at an altitude of over 12,887 feet and a stop here will certainly prepare you for the next 5,000 or so feet you will tackle before reaching Everest Base Camp. The celebrations consist of prayer and dance ceremonies, during which monks will don masks that represent the divine personages they worship, whilst performing ritual dances as they re-enact Buddhist stories of old. The monks dress in orange robes, with crescent-shaped, yellow hats adorning their heads, as they announce the beginning of the festivities with a cacophony of instruments ranging from bugles and conch shells to long brass horns.
The festivities continue for at least three days and both travellers and Sherpas alike can enjoy entertainment as well as an education on the history and fundamental beliefs of Buddhism. The dances performed by the Monks purportedly mean many things, but one in particular appeals to the Gods for protection of the people. This, alongside the blessing you can receive from the head Lama once you have made a contribution of corn or grain to the monk community, is bound to ensure that you have safe passage as you continue on your way to Everest Base Camp.