KATHMANDU VALLEY: KATHMANDU is the capital city of NEPAL. The beautiful rolling green hills and shimmering snow peaks surround it. In the ancient time the valley was a big Lake and a TIBETAN patriarch named Majushree came from CHINA. He drained the valley and started the settlement for human being. KATHMANDU valley is also known as a city of temples and Stupas. The popular heritage sites in the valley are: –
PASHUPATINATH TEMPLE: Literally PASHUPATINATH means ” Lord of all the Living Creatures”. According to the Hindu religious belief Lord PASHUPATINATH is the almighty God and savior of all human beings. It is therefore said that all Hindu should pay homage to Lord PASHUPATINATH at least once in their lifetime for their eternal liberation and ultimate peace. It is believed that Lord Shiv with Sakti is the center of the creation, savior and destruction.
BOUDHANATH STUPA: It is the biggest Stupa in South Asia built in the fifth century AD. Before the present day Stupa was build, it was an overnight camp of TIBETan businessmen. The TIBETAN Merchants used to offer prayer at the Stupa, which they had built during their trade trip to NEPAL and TIBET. Later it was named “LITTLE TIBET”. Today it is the best site to observe TIBETAN lifestyle, culture and religious practices of monks. It is also popular for TIBETAN Jewelry, hand-woven carpets, thankas, masks, khukuri knives and many more TIBETAN products.
KATHMANDU DURBAR SQUARE: Located at the heart of city center, KATHMANDU Durbar square was the royal residence of united NEPAL uptill 1889 AD. Today it is a center of tourist attraction for medieval palaces and skyscraper temples. There are hundreds of temples including the temple of the living Goddess ” Kumari”. The erotic carving, fierce image of Kalbhairab, Garuda, and monkey god Hanuman are some of the outstanding images.It is the best shopping place for curios and antiques, flutes, woodcarving, masks, handloom products, souvenirs and many more. It is a worth visiting site of KATHMANDU valley.
SWOYAMBHUNATH STUPA: Located on a small hillock to the west of KATHMANDU city center is the stupa of SWOYAMBHUNATH.It was an important center of Buddhist learning. The great stupa of SWOYAMBHUNATH is an architectrual model of its kind. From here the visitors would have the excellent look over view of the KATHMANDU valley. It is the center of religious harmony in NEPAL. This site is popularly known as “Monkey Temple”.
PATAN DURBAR SQUARE: PATAN Durbar square is also one of the best architectural sites of NEPAL. The Krishna Temple built by stone is an outstanding example of Shikhar style architecture of NEPAL. On the stone fringes of this temple, the scenes from the Hindu epics Mahabharat & Ramayana, are depicted artistically. The Sundari Chowk inside the medieval palace is another example of best and wonderful woodcarving in NEPAL. The other sites not to be missed are: Golden temple, Kumbhesor temple, Maha Boudha temple and Rudravarna mahabihar.
BHAKTAPUR DURBAR SQUARE: BHAKTAPUR city was founded in 889 AD. It is 13 km east from KATHMANDU.The old palace square of BHAKTAPUR contains famous “Fifty-five windows palace”. It was the royal palace of Malla kings then. The golden gate in this square is the unique master piece of the Nawari art work in the whole of NEPAL. This old square is like an open museum of Hindu temples. The other famous sites are the ancient royal bath, the courtyard of Taleju shrine, the museum of art and history, the pottery square, the majestic Nyatapola temple , the famous Peacock window and the Dattatraya temple .You can feel the mythical air of timelessness in BHAKTAPUR.
NAGARKOT: NAGARKOT is popular tourist destination for the panoramic view of the great Himalayas and surrounding rolling green hills and valleys. There are world-class hotels and restaurants. The EVEREST view tour is a common attraction to all to view the Mount Everest. Located on an altitude of 2099m NAGARKOT is the best place for the beautiful sunrise.
LUMBINI: LUMBINI is the birth place of Siddhartha Gautam; the Buddha.He was born in LUMBINI 2600 years ago. He was the Shakya prince who later turned into Buddha, the enlighted one. He became the apostle of peace to this Earth. He is also called the light of Asia and the prophet of Buddhism in the world. Today Buddhism has become the main religion of millions of people. The most important site in LUMBINI is Mayadevi temple where Buddha was born. There is a pool near by this temple where Lord Gautam Buddha had his first bath. Also, the Ashoka pillar built by the emperor Ashoka in 250BC, is the historic monument that proves the authenticity of the birth place of Buddha.
According to the master plan prepared by a JAPANESE architect Kenzo Tange, LUMBINI is being developed as a Buddhist pilgrimage site by LUMBINI DEVELOPMENT TRUST. The LUMBINI village is being developed as a tourist residential village with all facilities. There are different stupas and Gompas developed by different countries like CHINA, JAPAN, THAILAND, SRI-LANKA, KOREA, MYANMAR and others. LUMBINI is not only a holly land but also a peace land too where you can have peace in its true meaning.
CHITWAN NATIONAL PARK: NEPAL is one of the richest countries in the world in term of the wild life and vegetations. In early days it was a hunting reserve of the then rulers the Ranas. Later, government declared it as a protected area under the name of CHITWAN NATIONAL PARK. The attractions of the park are royal bengal Tiger, one horned Rhino, migrated and local birds, Elephants, and many more wild animals. Roaming around the National park on the elephant back is the most exciting moment. Inside the park and outside there are luxurious hotels and restaurants.The 2 nights & 3 days package program to enjoy the wildlife safari is suggested. The access is easy and comfortable by both air and surface from KATHMANDU.
POKHARA VALLEY AND RIM
Two hundred kilometers west of KATHMANDU, nestled in a valley beneath the ANNAPURNA Mountain lies the city of POKHARA. POKHARA is virtually in the geographical center of NEPAL . Located on the main road between KATHMANDU & BHAIRAWA , there may be no other place in the world from which the great Himalayan peaks can be admired from such a close distance. The town of POKHARA has quietly won the hearts of travelers from around the world. Many visitors find their most lasting impression of Nepal comes from the awesome ” FISH-TAIL ” of majestic MACCHA-PUCHARE mountain reflected in the still waters of POKHARA’s Fewa Lake. POKHARA’S seclusion made it a place of mystery in the past . Once arriving in POKHARA you would definitely say – “Ohh ! The Mountain is still Young ” .
POKHARA is the finest natural city of the world and is marked by a half dozen lakes of varying sizes , all linked by a trekking trail. Hence, it is also known as a lake city of Nepal. It is Nepal’s tourism capital and the second largest tourist destination too. Experience it by heart : it is honeymooners’ paradise.
The sites not to be missed in POKHARA are Devi’s Fall , Fewa Lake & Barahi Temple , Sarangkot Hilllock , Beganas Lake , Seti Gorge , Mahendra Cave , International Mountain Museum , Bindabasini Temple & Kahun Danda.
DAVI’S FALL: – It is a beautiful waterfall formed from the outlet of Fewa Lake. Why it is named Davi’s fall might be the matter of interest. One Day Trekkers named Devin and David had their bath down to the Fewa dam but unknowingly the doors of the dam opened to reduce the water level. Both the trekkers did not notice the signal to run away and sadly they were washed away and one of them mysteriously disappeared down into the underground passage beneath the fall. Since then the fall was named Davi’s fall. It is worth visiting site of POKHARA.
SARANGKOT: – Sarangkot is a small hill on the north west side of POKHARA. It is the best place for Sunrise and Mountain View like Machhapuchre (Fishtail), Annapurna range, and Dhaulagiri range, Lamjung Himal, Manaslu and the Ganesh Himal. Tourists reach there early in the morning to view the rolling sunrise and the dazzling mighty snow peaks in the morning tender sun.
FEWA LAKE: – Fewa Lake is the finest lake of Nepal. It is 41/2km long and 200m. to 2 km width. Boating on the lake is an exciting and most interesting moment. In the middle there is an island where Barahi temple is located. Every day thousands of visitors visit the temple. Surrounded by the green forest and lakeside city, Fewa lake reflects the beautiful images of Machhachapuchre.
SETI GEORGE: – SETI RIVER is originated from the beautiful mountain the Machhapuchre Himal.The water is milky white and cool. The river before entering into the POKHARA city has been disappeared into a narrow natural tunnel and has appeared in some places. It is another natural wonder of POKHARA. Its width is hardly 2 meters and the depth is more than 20 meters but you can not see the bottom of the river. Mahendra Pool (bridge) is the right place to view the dreadful rush of the river through a narrow george.
WORLD PEACE STUPA: – It is one of finest place of sight seeing destination in POKHARA. Located on a small hilltop, world peace stupa is the best place to view the Himalaya range just in front of your eye. Overlooking the FEWA Lake the stupa site is well managed. The access is easy and both options trekking for one hour and driving are available to reach the stupa.
INTERNATIONAL MOUNTAIN MUSEUM (IMO): – Among of the entire sight seeing destinations in POKHARA. IMO is the newly opened destination. Located on the south east of POKHARA city, IMO is only one mountain museum in the world of its kind where mountaineering history including the climbing information and climbers’ details are preserved and displayed. For the interested one an artificial wall of Mount Manaslu has also been constructed. The museum has preserved the climbing records and equipments of all the famous climber of the world.
TIBETAN REFUGE CAMP: – In the fiftth decade many TIBETAN refuge had inflexed into NEPAL. They are settled in different part of the country. In POKHARA there are four TIBETAN refuge camps. All these camps today are like the TIBETAN villages where they have maintain the Tibetan culture, tradition and lifestyle. To experience the Tibetan culture at least one center is worth visiting.