Essential to bring...
Water filter: saw these nifty I think Nalgene makes them, an american friend had one, I had never seen it before, she just put the tap water straight in, supposed to be a very good water filter.
Charcoal: Man, I never knew about this, but how would I when I travel with my family and live with my family in Kathmandu? Bring it...for however long you are staying, and/or traveling in Nepal, it will save your life.
Acidophilous sp?: Yeh, wish I knew so many years before....must have as well.
Qtip brand cotton swabs: You cannot get good cotton swabs in Nepal, just those sorry plastic with no cotton on the end..!
If you do get sick, there are good places to go:
If you have insurance, or don't, but have dough or it's an emergency and you need, good , HYGENIC medical attention: CIWEC clinic in Lazimpat just across from the British Embassy, and a few yards from the Indian Embassy.
Holistic: Kun fen clinic in Chhatrapati or Chhetrapati as it's commonly spelled: Get there early, they have hours before and after lunch...forgot the times, but you will be given a number so it's best to go there 30 minutes before as it is a popular and busy little place.
He is a traditional Tibetan 'doctor' who will read your pulse and look at your tongue (like acupuncturists do), they all speak English. I went there for some stomach issues (after being there for almost a year) and after eating some some tibetan herbs for 15 days, like 4 times or so a day, man, it all came out....and I never had a problem with my stomach after that.
The herbs have no taste, just bitter and dissolve like dirt, in fact, I think it is dirt, and you have to eat it like before breakfast, after lunch, before 5 after 7 pm, things like that, but man, it worked...you eat it with warm water.
Also, for acupuncture there is a chinese muslim doctor, Fatima in Tin chule above Boudha...most ex-pats will know her she used to have her office by the Kumari theatre...
Spinning the Wheel
All the Stupa's have the prayer wheel that are meant to be spun as you are walking the circle.
If anyone has seen the movie The Golden Child, you know of this custom... "I.. I.. I.. I want da knife!"
idyllic village of Sankhu
Just off Boudha, and another twenty minutes on a motorbike....and you reach this village right on the base of the valley hills....Sankhu...iddylic....newari...paved...sometimes I think it is even better than Bhaktapur....
Do not forget to have some Newari "Tho" (beer) and some snacks when you are there..the restaurants looks dirty...but I can assure you that you will have never tasted such good food in your lives.....ok, I admit it is a bit spicy....
Royal Nepal Airlines - Worst Experince
Royal Nepal Airlines is probabily my wors nightmare in all these years of International flight travel.
My flight was an 8:30 AM scheduled flight to Bangkok. Suddenly at 7:00 am the flight was changed to a 1:30 PM flight. Later came to know they just had 3 planes and used this plane to fly to Dubai.
We were promised it will be on time at 1:30. Famous last words. They claimed some technical snag and we sat in the lounge till 5:30 PM when we were finally allowed to board.
They did not have the special meals that I had ordered and reached Bangkok very late at night.
The worst thing in the whole episode was that there was never a single spokes person who informed the passanges of what the hell was going on the whole time.
On the plane I heard man horror stories of fellow passangers who had been stranded there for 2, 3 and 4 days because Royal Nepal cancelled their flight.
NEVER, NEVER FLY ROYAL NEPAL if you want to get anywhere on time.
Limited Vegetarian Selection
Its a nice restaurant on the second floor with retro decor similar to a Hard Rock Cafe. There seems to be tonnes and tonnes of autographs of different Everest Treking Groups that have left their Autograph on the walls.
They also have a plaq that has been signed by a lot of Everest Sumiteers.
The Service is nice but the food selection is poor for vegatarians. Its mostly for Stake lovers, even though a lot of out fellow trekers ordered Pizza and said it was good. Its difficult to say what my favourite dish was because I was there just one night. The only vegatrian dish that I ordered was the Vegatable curry. They alsi had some Indian bread (Nan) which I did not bother to try.
But I should say that the Vegatable curry was fairly good even though it was not out of the world to rave about.