I was to meet Bhole Nath (Another name for Shiva) again, this time in Kathmandu, Nepal at the Pashupatinath Temple. Here, the temple is crowded with animals like monkeys, goats, sheep, birds and hen. There was a huge sculpture of Nandi made of brass just inside the temple. The sadhus pray for pujas and hawan. I walked around the temple and found a huge pond right in the middle of the temple. The pond is made out of brick walls and inside is green muddy water. At the interior of the pond, there is a huge statue of Shiva covered with serpents which is a majestic sight. I bought some rudraksh beads from there. Each rudraksh were different from others. One of the notable ones among them is called Do Mukhi Rudraksh, the two-faced rudraksh beads. Another one I found peculiar was the Panch Mukhi, the rudraksh with five heads. I sat down with the pujari of the temple and did my father’s shraaddha. I prayed for his soul to rest in peace and asked for his forgiveness. Doing this in one of the holiest places pleased me and I was happy. I could now move ahead in life without a huge burden on my shoulders.
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Best time to visit Kathmandu is from December to March
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Our next stop was Boudha Stupa. Such a breath of fresh air after the temple visit. It is so heartbreaking to see that most of the stupa got damaged because of the devastating earthquake. But even with the renovation in progress, the vibe of Stupa was absolutely serene and had a calming effect on all our senses. We took a long photowalk all around the stupa and weather gods were particularly kind to us that evening. This was my most favourite stop at Kathmandu. You can satify your urban side by dropping into a fancy Himalayan Java Coffee here that sells some amazing coffee. Now who would say no to affogato with a view?!
Pashupatinath is regarded as one of the most significant and sacred temple of Lord Shiva (Pashupati). Built in the 5th century, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is a unique example of the Nepalese style of architecture. The main attraction is an impressive statue of a large bull or Nandi covered in gold.
Kathmandu Durbar Square
The last stop of the day was Kathmandu Durbar Square, large parts of which were also lost to earthquake. I still loved walking around here. A large open Durbar area, filled with numerous souvenir stalls surrounded by beautiful roof top cafes and restaurants. What a great juxtaposition of new and old! The indianness in us, oozing out at each stall, haggling away for a few hundred rupees. We wished to go to a few other places but our tired legs gave up.We zeroed in on Black Olives Cafe for dinner, a lovely cafe close to our hotel at Thamel. Good food, Gorkha and Everest beer and great company.. one couldn't ask for more.
Later, stroll through the old Durbar Square, an excellent example of ancient Newari architecture. This iconic landmark contains a series of palaces, courtyards and temples built between the 12th and 18th centuries by the ancient Malla Kings of Nepal. The rest of the day is at leisure to enjoy exploring the markets, pubs and casinos. Overnight in Kathmandu (B)
Swoayambhunath stupa situated west of Kathmandu with the eyes of Buddha painted on its pinnacle overlooking the righteous behavior of the valley inhabitants. Since this stupa is located on a hilltop, it offers excellent views of the Himalayan ranges and entire Kathmandu valley floor. Perhaps this is the best place to see the Cultural Harmony of local people.
Holding excitement and curiosity within us, we began the ride towards the beautiful city of lakes passing Maitighar - Tripureshwor - Teku then Kalanki. We stopped briefly in Teku to get new and safer helmet, which is definitely an important thing to consider for safe highway ride. Crossing the congested traffic of Kalanki - Nagdhunga road we joined the Prithvi highway, two-lane yet one of the busiest highway in the country. We swirled down the winding road until Naubise, the ride till was enjoyable one as there were comparatively less traffic.
Everest Base Camp Trekking
The trek begins from Kathmandu with a flight to Lukla or the Tenzing-Hillary Airport. Flight to Lukla itself can be no less than an adventure as the airport is enlisted as the most dangerous airport in the world, by virtue of the location, altitude and topography. The real Everest Base Camp Trek commences from Lukla, when you start your trek to Namche and the Base Camp crossing many Sherpa villages and settlement areas on the way. Another feature of the Everest Base Camp Trek is the opportunity to visit Gokyo Valley, the Gokyo-Ri or the peak and the beautiful Gokyo Lake. Gokyo is one of the most beautiful villages in the Khumbhu region of Everest. Also, the popular Cho-La Pass lies along the Everest Base Camp Trek which offers great views of the mountains including the all famous Everest. The total cost for the trip or the tour depends on several factors as per your convenience. The preferred type of accommodation in Kathmandu or Pokhara makes a difference in the totality of the cost (budget to 5 star accommodations). The chosen mode of transport also affects the cost of your package, for example the prices may vary widely from flight compared to private car / van, tourist or local buses. The number of guides and porters too affect the total cost of your trip. For these reasons the same route / tour price may vary considerably. If you want any further information regarding price then you can also visit our official site.
Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979, Boudhanath Stupa is one of the oldest and largest stupa and a centre of Tibetan Buddhism in Nepal. It is said to contain the holy relics of the past Buddha, Kashyapa, who is venerated both by Buddhists and Hindus. Overnight in Kathmandu (D)
Or the Bhimesen tower. Prime minister Bhimsen Thapa's second creation.Presently the tower rises above 60 m (9 storied tall) with the 8th floor having a circular balcony from which visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the Kathmandu city. The architecture of the dazzling white beaytu is a crosbeed of Mughal and European styles. Towering like a lighthouse over the labyrinthine old town, this white, minaretlike tower near the post office is a useful landmark.
Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park
After crossing that dusty road, we entered to the Shivapuri National Park through the Army Check Point (luckily we were not stopped for any park formalities), from there the road was paved one for some time. We got out from the city chaos, the air cleared up and beautiful nature was ruling the area. We followed nice uphill road till some unknown point inside the National Park from where we had the awesome view of 'Ganesh Himal Range'. We started descending on the bumpy and winding way up to Chhahare, Nuwakot. We stopped there and had black-eyed peas with black-tea. We still had to travel for at least an hour to meet the Trishuli Highway in Battar that leads to Dhunche through Bidur, district headquarter of Nuwakot.
The Garden of Dreams
The soi-disant "Kaiser" made mini-Versailles with pavillions and environments representing the six traditional Nepali seasons (spring, summer, monsoon season, early autumn, late autumn, and winter). After his time the garden's gazebos, fountains, statues and cupolas fell into disrepair, and were recently (2006) restored by Goetz Hagmuller and the tireless Austrian team of art historians who also organized the Patan Museum.
I packed by bags and left Kathmandu on the 15th of October, full moon day and last day of the festive holiday. Flight time was 13:40 so I went to TIA on time, but due to so called VIP movement, almost all domestic flights were delayed by at least two hours. I had no options than waiting in the airport lounge. Luckily, the delay was less than told, so I completed the boarding and check-in formalities and at around 14:15, I was in the aircraft. We were then told that there will be some more delay due to ATC's permission, which continued for 15-20 mins. The aircraft took off at 14:42 and rounding the urban agglomeration and surrounding green, vegetated slopes it flew towards the east. Watching Green hills, floating clouds and beautiful Himalayan peaks, flight went smoothly. Views of mountains like Dorje Lakpa, Jugal, GauriShankar, Melungtse, Mount Everest, Kanchenjunga from ~11000 feet were just awesome - to some extend, I was happy, my camera was happy. After 40 minutes of scenic flight, landing gear touched the ground. It took around 20 minutes to collect my backpacks and got out of Bhadrapur airport. It was 16:00.
Each year in November, around 200 students from around the world travel to Kopan monastery for one month of meditation and insight into the Dharma. Once the home of the astrologer to the king of Nepal, Kopan is a now a thriving monastery of over 300 monks, and a spiritual oasis for hundreds of visitors yearly from around the world. A great place to learn about Tibetan Buddhism, there's classes on Buddhism everyday at 10am besides Saturday. Opening once every week, on the top of the hills(Kathmandu outskirts) this is a great shrine to visit.
Kathmandu Metropolitan City
On time board our flight from T3, Delhi international airport to Kathmandu . On your arrival at Kathmandu airport, took help an airport representative to get transferred to our respective hotels Summit Residency as booked. After some rest, proceeded for an excursion to Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Perhaps the least changed of all the cities in the Kathmandu Valley, with a distinct medieval feel. Pottery and weaving are still traditional industries here. Architectural wonders abound, including the Palace of Fifty Five Windows, Golden Gate and the magnificent five-storied pagoda-style Nyatapola Temple. Note: Indian Passport or an Election Id is the only valid document for adults (18 yrs & above) to travel to Nepal. For children please carry School /College Id card (with Photograph & Address) & Birth certificate for small children. After, Day 4 at Pokhara, we drove back to Kathmandu. On arrival, checked into the hotel. Rested of the evening is at leisure. The next day, after having a leisurely breakfast at the hotel, we enjoyed a city tour of Kathmandu, visiting temples of Pashupatinath, Boudhanath, Swayambhunath, temple of the living Goddess and stroll through the old Durbar Square. Later in the evening, enjoyed a traditional way of Dining at “Nepali Restaurant” with Nepalese cultural dance. The following day, we left back for Delhi
Kumari Temple & Vivekanand RockBoth kumari temple and vivekanand rock are situated opposite to each other in kanyakumari. People are generally not allowed to click pictures here but we somehow managed to click a few.It was built in 1970 in honour of Swami Vivekananda who is said to have attained enlightenment on the rock.
Patan Durbar Square
I write this review to remember how wonderful Patan Durbar square was. Last month only i have visited this place and now this amazing place was destroyed by earthquake. One of the most amazing heritage site in Nepal was destroyed by earthquake. buildings are amazing, heritage Hindu kingdom. There are a number of historic temples including some extraordinary erotic carvings on one of the temples in a traditional South Asian style. The square also houses the Patan Museum, which is simply amazing. It is easy to walk from here to the nearby Mahabuddha temple. There are fairly regular religious processions and performances in the square as well.
We got wake up call from Prachesh at 6:00. That didn't matter most as we were already up. He said to get to our place (Lokanthali) from Pepsicola within 30 minutes. After being fresh, we dressed up and checked for any forgotten stuffs and I went to receive Prachesh in Lokanthali Chwok as he was waiting there. We got back to room at around 6:45. We left Lokanthali at 7:00, I was pillion rider to Sunil's bike and Prachesh was riding alone. The plan for that day was to have bike ride till Dhunche following 'Tokha - Chhahare - Battar' road then start the trek and reach Singh-Gumba (Chandanbari - a place popular for Cheese factory has a very famous monastery) till the evening.
Kathmandu flight to Lukla and trekking up to Everest base camp and trek back to Lukla
Mount Everest (8848m), king of the all mountains in the world.
Sightseeing tour of Kathmandu city: Kathmandu's stone-paved lanes and old markets, like Ason & Indrachowk give true history of one of the oldest states of ancient Nepal. The main highlights of Old Kathmandu city are Kathmandu Durbar Square with Museum, Kumari Ghar, Hanuman Dhoka and many other temples dotted inside the Durbar Square area.
As we crossed Koteshwor, Sunil realized that the 'Bill Book' was on another Jacket and we had to return to get it. In no time, he turned the bike towards the room, reached there, took the missed small book and we were immediately back on track. Prachesh was waiting in Anamnagar. It didn't take much time for us to reach there as early morning traffic of the capital was low. We continued the ride till Goma Ganesh Petrol Pump passing Gairidhara, fueled our bikes as well as had light breakfast in nearby cafe. From there we continued the ride through Maharajgunj, Dhapasi then followed the Tokha road passing Tokha bazaar. Rough and bumpy road inside the city was making the ride torturous. The condition of roads after leaving Tokha bazaar was even worse. Our ride passed through the dusty countryside road and if any bigger vehicle overtook, we won't get any option rather than wait on the roadside for the dust to settle. I can't even imagine what will happen if it rains.