Sunday, May 31, 2015

Kathmandu Valley- A Place To Visit

Situated amid the green hills, Kathmandu valley is fabled to have been originated from a lake. When the Buddhist saint Manjushree created the valley by draining the lake and made it habitable. Today, Kathmandu is evolving as the biggest city in the country.

Whether it is the narrow streets of Thamel or the Giant statues of Buddha in Swyambhunath, you will find every place in Kathmandu alluring. There are a lot of sights to see in Kathmandu and all of them are worth your time.

From temples to coffee houses, Kathmandu valley houses the best. The durbar squares or the courtyards of ancient palaces are sights to feast your eyes on. The Patan durbar square lights look absolutely stunning in the night and the place is a celebrated landmark for domestic as well as international tourists.

If you are not the one for museums and landmarks, there are plenty of hiking trails around the hills of the valley. Places like Nagarkot, Chisapani, Kakani, Champadevi, Phulchoki and Bhaktapur have hiking trails that are relatively easy and you can treat your eyes to the panoramic hills around the valley.

The night life is another attraction of Kathmandu city. From live music to cultural offerings, this city has it all! If you want a night out after all the exhaustion of the travel, you can choose from a large number of restaurants and pubs.

Apart from the extraordinary sights and the sounds, Kathmandu is a great place to shop.  You can find a lot of shops that specialize in handicrafts. Places like Thamel and Bhaktapur are haven for art collectors because one can find an array of art collections.  You can buy anything from decorative pieces to Pashmina sweaters.

You have heard songs about Kathmandu and read books on it. Visit Nepal and experience your own Kathmandu; it won’t disappoint you. If you are travelling to this country only for trekking, most of the travel agents in Nepal can arrange the visits before or after you go for your adventure in the Himalayas.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Mountain Flights In Nepal

The mountains of Nepal attract a large number of international tourists. But not everyone is fit for these expeditions because most of the trekking routes in Nepal are strenuous and they require a lot of determination and effort. While a lot of people can get turned down by the outfitters in Nepal due to their age, health or lack of prior experience, they don’t have to miss the mountains that allure them.

The mountain flight of Nepal is a popular tourist activity in Nepal. As its name suggests, one can see the enticing mountain range of Nepal on an hour long plane ride. Several domestic airlines offer this service in the morning and the customers are not charged exorbitantly.

Beginning at Tribhuwan International airport, this ride gives you a bird’s eye view of the mountain range on Nepal. Some of the mountains that you’ll see in this ride are Dorje Lhakpa, Phurbi Chyachu, Choba Bhamare, Gaurishanker, Melungtse, Chugimago, Numbur, Karyolung, Cho-Oyu, Gyachungkang, Pumori, Nuptse  and the tallest of all mountains; Mount Everest.

The planes involved in this ride are fairly small and you can opt to go with or without your guides. This is because the airlines provide a member of the cabin crew to provide you with the information in the mountains. Some airlines even publish mountain books and travel guides that are useful in increasing your understanding of mountains.

The mountain flights have been extolled widely by both domestic and international tourists. The advantage of this flight is that you can view the mountains even if your health doesn’t permit you to climb them. Similarly, it takes only an hour for this adventure and you can arrange this activity in between your sightseeing schedules. You can also take such flight from Pokhara to get a closer view of the Annapurna Range.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Kathmandu-A Medieval City On The Brink Of Complete Urbanization

Kathmandu is a medieval city on the brink of complete urbanization. The three cities of Kathmandu valley were once ruled by three different kings. Their palaces stand in the Kathmandu valley to this day, deemed world heritage sites by the UNESCO. Tourists are advised to visit these places even if they are only planning for trekking in Nepal. The period of their regime has also been considered as the golden period for the evolution of art and architecture.

The durbar (palace) squares of the three ancient kingdoms are situated in the center of all three cities; Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur. With the craftsmanship and the intricate woodwork, the temples and other medieval buildings are really attractive.

Ancient cities of Kathmandu comprised of rectangular brick houses and brick-paved roads that ran along and between the houses. The houses had porches with a row of carved wooden pillars and courtyards in between them.  The courtyards of the kings had columns with the statues of the kings facing the palaces and the palaces had a lot of temples surrounding them.

The major attraction in durbar square of Bhaktapur is Nyatapola; the five-storey temple built by King Bhupatindra Malla in pagoda style. Then there is the Krishna Temple in Patan durbar square which is believed to have been carved with a single stone. Built in the Indian Shikharini style of architecture, the temple looks auspicious with its detailed stone carvings of gods.

Apart from that, the collection of artifacts from King Tribhuwan’s life in Hanuman Dhoka museum at Basantapur gives us an insight on the Shah regime.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Home Stay In Nepal

Most of the tourists visit Nepal with the sole purpose of going to the Everest base camp or trekking around the Himalayas. Popular landmarks and adventure sports also invite a majority of the tourists. But there is an activity that most people are unaware of.

About 80% of Nepalese live in rural settlements and it is an interesting lifestyle for those who don’t live here. Every place offers a unique experience in cultures and traditions. A facility for tourists known as the home stay facility has been introduced all over rural Nepal in order to encourage them to learn about Nepal’s culture.

The Home stay facility is a wonderful way of promoting the friendship between tourists and locals. The tourists also get an insight in the life of rural Nepal as they experience it first hand. This is also a great way of letting the world know about rich customs and traditions of the country. Home stay is also a form of Eco-tourism since locals are profited from this experience.

The tourists stay in villages of Nepal with its inhabitants. They are offered every service that the villagers can provide in exchange for a small amount of money. They live inside the houses and eat with the families they are staying with; some even go to work in the fields like the villagers. There are even separate residences for tourists that resemble guest houses in some villages like Paltekhet.

The home-stay program is a great for tourists to have an adventure with unique cultures. Nepal’s custom is to treat guests like one would treat god. Despite the difference in cultural or ethnic background, that principle is followed by everyone.  The home owners go through an elaborate screening process so you can be confident that you will be placed with good and amiable families. You can experience new cultures with various ethnic groups as they celebrate their festivals with you.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Muktinath - The Sacred Hindu Pilgrimage For Liberation

Situated at the foot of the Thorung la Mountain pass at an altitude of 3,710 meters, Muktinath is one of the most sacred of Hindu pilgrimages. Its name refers to “liberation” and it is widely believed that visiting this temple redeems a person from their sins. There are 108 water taps in this temple and they are considered to be holy. Devotees can be found taking baths in these taps despite the freezing temperature.

The river flowing from Muktinath to the Kali Gandaki River is the source for the Shaligramas; black ammonoid fossils considered holy and are required to establish a temple for the creator of Hindu belief, Vishnu. Because of the religious importance, this temple receives a lot of domestic as well as international tourists every year.

The trek to Muktinath is found to be fairly easy by most of the trekkers as opposed to other difficult routes of the Himalayas. Because of the low altitude, it is almost impossible to experience altitude sickness and hence it can provide you with a good adventure of trekking in Nepal. This trek provides you some of the most spectacular views on the planet in their untainted form. Annapurna, Dhaulagiri and Macchapuchre mountains peek at the trekkers all along the route. You can see villages inhabited by ethnic groups in regular intervals. Trekkers will be subjected to a trail that goes from low land forests to the dreary wastelands of upper Kali Gandaki.

It is astonishing to many tourists that people still live in such remote areas only approachable by foot. On the route, trekkers will meet many locals hauling food, water or other necessities back to their small villages. The people, however, are exceptionally well-mannered and treat the people passing by with respect. The tea houses and lodges placed in villages are a good place to rest and get accustomed to the culture of the Himalayas. The walk downhill is arduous but once you reach Muktinath, you will find yourself in a tranquil state.