Sagarmatha National Park is home of the highest peak in the world – Mt. Everest (8,848 m). The area was declared national park in 1976. The park which also has several other peaks all above 6,000 m, was established as a World Heritage Site in 1979.
With most of the park above 3,000 m, Sagarmatha is full of rugged terrain with deep gorges, glaciers and huge rocks. The Park boasts of a variety of wildlife and over 118 species of bird. While the forest is dominated by silver fir, birch, rhododendron and juniper trees, animals such as musk deer, the Himalayan tahr, the ghoral, the serow, the wolf, and the Himalayan black bear may be spotted by trekkers in this region.
Endangered species seen by a lucky few include snow leopard, red panda, and two varieties of dazzling pheasants – the crimson-horned and the impeyan, Nepal’s national bird. Smaller animals like marmots, pikas and martens are also found here.
The region ranges in altitude from less than 2,000 m above sea level at Jiri to the high peaks of the Himalaya at over 8,000 m. Hence the flora and fauna is diverse with dense forest of pine, oak and the flowering rhododendrons up to 4,000 m. The latter are one reason to make a trip to Nepal in the spring when the hills between 2,000 m and 3,500 m are a riot of colors.
The best time to visit the park is during the autumn months of October-November and from March-May in summer.