Annapurna Sanctuary & Mt. Everest Base Camp Treks travel blog

Boudhanath Stupa

Dalai Lama photo in monastery

Monka praying in monastery

Women & prayer wheels

Women burning incense

Woman painting on cotton cloth

Monkey Temple

Sue & Holy Men

Durbar Square Hippie Temple

Woman & flowers Durbar Square

Hi everyone,

Kinda jet lagged. Woke up at 3 a.m.

Met most of the group last night. There are 3 Brits, 1 Frenchie, 1 Aussie, 5 Canadians, and 2 Danes. I'm the token American. I'll try to represent well! 2 others are due tomorrow.

Today (Monday) we went to 3 places in Kathamandu.

First stop: Boudhanath Stupa. This is one of the most important places of Buddist worship in Nepal. It was removed from the craziness of the streets, and somewhat quieter, which made it nice to visit. There are many monasteries nearby, and many Tibetan refugees. The stupa is beautiful. We walked clockwise around it, spun prayer wheels, went into 2 monasteries, and went to the school where they teach the painting on the cotton cloth.

Second stop: Swayambhunata, aka the monkey temple because the monkeys hang out here. We had a short visit here unfortunately. If you have more time, you can hike the 300 steps up the hill to the top. We took the road and entered rather high on the hill. The stupa is built on a hill and has many different parts to it. Amoungst all the religious parts were commercialism, so I didn't get the same religious feeling as I did at the first stupa.

Third stop: Durbar Square. This place has many temples (Hindu) and is the area the kings used to live & rule from. In the 60's it was the gathering place for hippies, and they have nicknamed one of the temples "Hippie Temple". It was a fun place to visit and was completely different than the stupas. Visiting the stupas was more religious with many people praying, burning incense, etc. Durbar Square was more of a fun place, but not religious.

We walked back to our hotel and then we get together for dinner. The streets of Kathmandu are small, crowded, barely fit 2 small cars at a time, have lots of motorccycles on them, and you can never relax while you are walking. Also, the air pollution here is the worse I've ever been in. It's very hazy, then add vehicle exhaust, open burning, power plant exhaust, and alot of other sources and you end up with horrible air quality. I'm looking forward to getting out of Kathmandu and going to the country.

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