Walking in the streets of Kathmandu you see a lot of streetstalls, tiny hole-in-the-wall shops or vendors just sitting on a square meter on the street. Most of the goods for sale are recognisable like vegetables, woollen shawls and blankets, but sometimes I was very intrigued, because I didn't recognise the stuff. So I don't know what this man was selling. He permitted me to take a picture, but he couldn't explain what he was selling.
First I thought maybe colouring for applying tika at the forehead, but I'm not sure.
Walking in the streets of Kathmandu, I saw a lot of shops, streetvendors, rickshaws, but also these men waiting with their charts for a job.
And also at this picture you see how daily life or the daily struggle for life is mixed with the religious life in Nepal. Temples, shrines, stupas or prayer wheels at nearly every corner.
Walking in the streets of Kathmandu you can see shrines with dieties. In Nepal there are many shrines with Ganesh, easily recognised by his elephant head.
Ganesh is the god of prosperity and wisdom. Ganesh parents are Shiva and Parvati. Ganesh obtained his elephant head by his father's temper, who topped his head, coming home after a long absence. He saw his wife in bed with a young man, not thinking of his own son had grown up. Forced by Parvati to give their son his head back, Shiva could only do this by giving the head of the first passing living being.
So, and this was an ...........
I enjoyed to walk in the streets of Kathmandu. There is so much to see !
At many places in the old city are prayerwheels. In town I didn't see often devotees circumambulating clock-wise and spinning the wheels, carrying the sacred mantras ''om mani padme hum''.
At the base of this tiny stupa with prayerwheels some streetvendors have settled down.
At nearly every square meter there is something to see in Kathmandu, so you can easlily miss something. So I saw this beautifull decorated building not before the third time I passed.
This building is at Indra Chowk and it is called the Akash Bhairab Temple or Bhairab of the Sky Temple, which is actually upstairs. That's why I didn't notice the first times, because there are a lot of shop stalls at the ground floor. To enter the temple you have to climb the steps at the right side, but Hindus may not enter.
Favorite thing: Here you can see the lady spinning the prayer wheels. We are at the Monkey Temple! The local worshipers will walk around the entire temple clockwise and spin the prayer wheels while chanting. It is very interesting for me to watch but I don't really know all that is going on.
Basically, there are three components to Kathmandu Valley. The capital city of Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Patan. Each of them have Durbur square to which ancient activities were centered around. In all three cities, you can find intricate and exquisite examples of Newar architectures.
Fondest memory: Beautiful and well-preserved Newar architectures - window frames, statues and temples.
A definite must-see is the 4000 feet at the Rum Doodle bar. Of course meditating at the Budhist temple is a given as is the "burning ghats". Take time to go to the Tibetan refugee area and watch the best rug-makers in the world.
Fondest memory: we sat on the banks of the sacred river in Kathmandu. In front of us were three funeral pyres, one of a child, whose father was being shaved by a priest - as he will continue to be for his year of mourning. Beside us were the sadhu, yogis who eat nothing but milk their entire life and who pose in all sorts of cortorted positions for donations. They are painted in the ashes of the cremated. They are joined by children and women selling everything from Ghorka knives to garnet necklaces. And off in the distance we see a wedding procession headed toward one of the other temples. I remember thinking that I did not know what to feel anymore - it was all too intense and bizarre.
Favorite thing: When I arrived in Kathmandu from Pokhara I was amazed by the flatness!! I guess I though that Kathmandu was going to be on some mountain peak! There are mountains but they are quite some distance from the city center! So as it is so flat Kathmandu is a great place to rent a bicycle and cruise around the local neighborhoods and even further afield to the suburbs!!
Favorite thing: At many of the Nepali Temples you will see the Prayer Wheels. They are a series of vertical wheels that you spin as you walk clockwise around the temple and I'm sure there is a chant that goes along with it but I don't know what it is. Maybe "om mani padme om"
Along the road and especially near holy places there are people who sell these colorful offerings.
I have seen them in Pashupatinath but also in Bhaktapur. I always like this because of the beautiful clear colors.
When you visit Kathmandu for the first time and you're standing at the foot of the stair which leads to Swayambhunath you don't know what it upstairs.
Then you start climbing the 365 steps, ignoring the saleswomen and the monkeys. You bought your ticket and finally: the top.
In the center of top you see a stupa and the eyes of Buddha staring at you. The stupa is surrounded by souvenir shops, houses, accomodations for pilgrims and a lot more. Too much I think.
Walking around, looking around, taking some pictures and suddenly the sound of a musical instrument. You think 'what is that?', 'where does it come from?' and then you discovered it. A door, a Tibetan monastery.
In a room in this monastery you see munks saying their prayers and some of them are blowing on a trumpet now and then. You can feel there is a special sphere in this room.
This sphere, the prayers, actually everything in this room was impressive. I could sit here for a long time and watch this all.
Peaceful, that's the only word I could think of.
Nepal is a very beautiful country with many nice and interesting things but this ceremony is one of my best memories of this country.
One of my favourite cities in the world and so much to do. Highlights, too many. Here's a quick list.
Swayambhunath Newar Bhuddist Temple - the monkey temple (good place to see monkeys as well as one the highlights of Kathmandu)
Pashupatinath Hindu Temple - Lot's more to see and is the place where the local Hindu's burn their dead. The main complex is closed to non-Hindus, but there's still plenty to see outside. For example, snake charmers, the cells where the Hindu hermits live and the bloke who likes hanging bricks from his p*n*s to earn tourist dollars. Also the site for the local Mother Teresa's Hospital.
Baudnath (Bodnath, Baudanath) - Tibetan Bhuddist Stupa and very photogenic. Believed to be a site of so much power, that any wish ou make will be granted. Remember to walk clockwise around it.
Kathmandu Durbar Square - a bit of a gathering point and the home of the Kumari and the Royal Palace.
Patan Durbar Square - quieter and more scenic than
Kathmandu Durbar Square. Moving away from the square will bring you to other temples and a small Buddhist Monastery (you need a map).
Bhaktaphur - another Durbar Square, but the streets will take you more temples and craft shops. Outside the Nyatapola Temple, a pagoda has been converted into a teashop and it seems to be a good place to relax or chill out.
Changu Narayan - a Hindu temple complex in a more rural setting. But be careful what you step on as you walk up to it. It's a farming area.
Thamel - now the main shopping, food and 'night out' area, replacing 'Freak Street', the former hippy hangout, to the south. When in Thamel, look for Pilgrims Bookshop, with it's excellent selection of reading material.
Beefy at http://www.wkyo.freeserve.co.uk
In downtown Katmandu, was surprised to see this "lake".
The lake is fenced up for royalty but is still relaxing to walk around from the far maddening crowd of the streets of Katmandu.
Favorite thing: Red is the colour which u can see most in the streets of kathmandu..At everyhome,u can see the prayer flags..Army is deployed eveywhere in the main streets on kathmandu