Most who walk to Lukla (rather than fly) do so from Jiri (1,905m), Nepal over 5-8 days of trekking.
The main downside is the terrible 10 hour bone rattling bus ride Kathmandu to Jiri.
Here’s a little known alternative — Tumlingtar (460m) to Lukla. (8-12 days)
- fly Kathmandu to Tumlingtar (avoiding the dangerous roads)
- start lower. More time for acclimatizing to altitude.
- very few hikers means few & rudimentary bhattis (teashops) with simple menus. Mostly dal bhat.
- you can hike independently or hire a porter / guide en route as needed
Sue and Howard have hiked via Tumlingtar three times. Read one of their trip reports: