4-day trip to Nepal
An itinerary that includes a visit to the cities of Kathmandu, Patan, Bhaktapur, Pashupatinath, Bodhnath.
Katmandu: Durbar Square, old Royal Palace (Hanuman Dhoka), Kumari Chowk, temple of Shiva and Parvati and Kala Bhairab (Black Bhairab)
During the flight to Katmandu, we could enjoy the wonderful view of the whole Himalayan range.
In the central area of Kathmandu , where there is the Durbar Square, we found all the most important monuments of the city: from the old Royal Palace (Hanuman Dhoka) to the Kumari Ghar Palace where the Kumari (the bodily incarnation of the goddess) resides. It is a girl who is chosen at the age of four, five years and who is worshipped by the faithful until she menstruates, after which she loses her divine nature and is replaced. I show a detail of the Shiva and Parvati Temple, where, from an upstairs window, the god and his wife look at what happens in the square below.
I cannot end this brief illustration of Katmandu without showing the photo of Kala Bhairab (Black Bhairab). It is the most gloomy and terrifying depiction of the god, represented in its most frightening appearance.
Katmandu: Stupa Pashupatinath, the biggest in Katmandu
The visit to the largest Stupa in Kathmandu impressed us, not only for its size, but also for the intensity and mysticism of the all-seeing eyes of the Buddha.
Close to the Stupa, there are numerous monasteries (called Gompa) with schools for monks.
We could also attend a religious ceremony and took a picture of a small monk playing with a car.
Nagarkot village viewing the Himalayas chain and local scenes towards Bhadgaon
After admiring the grandeur of the Himalayas, although we were cold, we went down walking along a trail which crosses rural farms; the walk allowed us to enjoy very interesting scenes of rural life. As usual, our attention has been given to children, but also to the simple daily life scenes.
We returned to the main road where we saw a large expanse where a number of women was busy collecting rice.
Bhaktapur (or Bhatghaon ): Goddess Kalì, Royal Palace and Temple of Visnu Nerayana
Bhaktapur (or Bhatghaon) was the capital of the valley since the fourteenth century; it was completely restored and has several important monuments, all very interesting. Among the most important ones, there are the monument dedicated to Goddess Kali, the Royal Palace and the Temple of Vishnu Nerayana.
Certainly, the most curious aspect of the town is given by the rice left to dry on the pavement of the streets. Moreover, at the public fountain, women, not only were washing clothes and filling water jugs but also did not hesitate to wash themselves, hair included.
Pashupatinath: the most important Hindu temple in the Indian continent watered by Bagmati river
Pashupatinath hosts the most important Hindu temple, not only the most important of Nepal but of the whole continent of India.
The town is watered by the Bagmati River which is considered holy as the Ganges is and along its banks there are many “Gaths” (staircases) and we could see several cremation rites.
Katmandu: Stupa Swayambhunath
The visit to the Buddhist temple of Swayambhunath impressed us because it is located on top of a hill inhabited by a large number of monkeys.
The main feature of the temple, in addition to the numerous and colourful prayer flags which flap from the pennants on the top of the stupa, is the Buddha’s nose designed in the shape of a question mark.
It represents the number one in Nepal and this number is the symbol of unity.
Bhaktapur (or Bhatghaon): Temples dedicated to Lord Ganesh and other pagoda temples
We went to the medieval town of Bhaktapur (or Bhatghaon). There are three important temples dedicated to Lord Ganesh, the patron of the city.
The town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
There are several pagoda-style temples; the most important one is the Nyatapola temple.