Everywhere is viable for "option 1". Option 2 is more problematic, but you will definitely manage once you take on the trail.
Anyway, let's get to the point. This is one of the best journeys I have ever taken in my life. It is totally worth it despite all the tiredness, cramps and leg-ache. The staff including porters and our guide are all really nice and accommodating to our requests. The food turns out to be so much better than expected as well.
I would recommend anyone who is looking for a strenuous yet rewarding excursion to take this once-in-a-lifetime chance.