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Old 7th December 2013, 23:20   #46
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Default Re: Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun

Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun-patan-durbar-square-1.24.jpg

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Patan Durbar Square is situated at the centre of Lalitpur city. It is one of the three Durbar Squares in the Kathmandu Valley, all of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. One of its attraction is The Ancient Royal Palace where Malla Kings of Lalitpur resided.

The Durbar Square is a marvel of Newa architecture. The Square floor is tiled with red bricks. There are many temples and idols in the area. The main temples are aligned opposite of the western face of the palace. The entrance of the temples faces east, towards the palace. There is also a bell situated in the alignment beside the main temples. The Square also holds old Newari residential houses. There are various other temples and structures in and around Patan Durbar Square build by the Newa People.

The history of the Durbar Square is not clear. Although the Malla Kings of Lalitpur are given credit for establishing the royal square, it is known that the site is an ancient crossroad. The Pradhanas who settled around the site before the Mallas have connections with the Durbar Square. Some chronicles hint that the Thakuri Dynasty built a palace and made reforms to the locality but the evidence is minute. Scholars are certain that Patan was a prosperous city since ancient times.

The Malla Kings did make important changes to the square. Most of the current architecture is from the 1600s, constructed during the reign of King Siddhinarasimha Malla and his son Srinivasa. Some of the notable Mallas Kings who improved the square include Purandarasimha, Sivasimha Malla and Yoganarendra Malla.
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And this is our next destination for the day.

Narrow roads lined by old buildings, and a crowd that leaves our driver honking away madly, greet us as we approach this Durbar Square.

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Tourists crowd rooftops to get a bird's eye view of the Durbar Square
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Now to get those entry tickets
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Old 9th December 2013, 20:33   #47
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Default Re: Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun

There is a lot to take in at the Patan Durbar Square. There is an abundance of temples, the palace, the museum, and lots and lots of exquisite and interesting carvings. We end up taking a quick trip around, and then breaking for lunch.

Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun-patan-durbar-square-35.jpg

To make it a little easier for me, I have captioned the photos directly instead of describing them individually. I've been running short on time and the travelogue wasn't progressing at the rate I'd like, and I hope you will excuse the shortcut.

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Old 9th December 2013, 23:54   #48
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Default Re: Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun

Amazing, Brilliantly written travelogue, makes one feel almost there through the pictures. Thank you, I will probably give Nepal a miss.
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Old 10th December 2013, 00:49   #49
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Default Re: Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun

I just now went through the whole travelogue in one go. Its really very informative. The amount of pictures you have shared over here are more than enough for some one to get a clear picture of Nepal who haven't visited. I visited Nepal with my parents when i was a kid. My memories of Nepal got faded away with time but this thread has refreshed my good old memories. Thanks a lot for sharing this awesome and detailed travelogue.
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Old 10th December 2013, 12:11   #50
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Default Re: Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun

Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun-boudhanath-2.jpg

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Our next destination is the Bodhnath - or Boudhanath - Stupa, Asia's largest Stupa. This is one of the few places in the world where Tibetan Buddhist culture is easily accessible, where Western students of Buddhism attired in maroon robes can be seen to freely mingle with tourists.

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Historically, the Stupa was an important staging post on the trade route between Kathmandu and Lhasa, and Tibetan Buddhist traders would pray here for a safe journey across the high Himalayan passes. Today, most of the Tibetans residing in the lanes surrounding the stupa are refugees who fled Tibet after 1959.

The current stupa was built around the 14th century AD, after Mughal invaders destroyed the original c. 600 AD stupa. The current stupa is said to house a piece of bone from the skeleton of Siddhartha Gautama.

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Around the base of the stupa are 108 small images of the Dhyani Buddha Amitabha, and a ring of prayer wheels set in groups of 4 or 5, in a total of 147 niches. Devotees can be seen prostrating themselves full-length on the ground, on their way to the stupa.

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Some more sights from around the Bodhnath Stupa...

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Old 10th December 2013, 12:29   #51
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Default Re: Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun

And finally, our trip is over. We head for the airport, where the driver struggles for a long while to undo the rope tying down the bootlid. We decide that he does not deserve a tip.

Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun-boudhanath-36.jpg

It's a small and dingy airport, and duty-free is very expensive, with hardly any stock. To make matters a little worse, our flight is delayed by an hour.

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Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun-boudhanath-43.jpg

And thus ended our first trip to Nepal. Thank you for reading through.
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Old 15th February 2016, 12:44   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Of currencies, cars, cops and coughs
Completely agree to the anticlimax at the airport,I am an Indian work based 50 km south of Kathmandu in Hetauda from May 2011.
Though I had many times taken my family out to Kathmandu & Pokhra I do not get that feel I get in the Indian Himalayas or its foothills i.e. the petrol pumps,the roadside eateries,the hotels etc,.they have a somewhat gloomy dark feel.
So these days I travel to Siliguri & Dooars from Nepal & enjoy more.
In fact as soon as I cross the Kankarbhitta border to Panitanki & then on to Bagdogra the black top Indian Highways & the Malls of Siliguri give a delightful welcome.

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 15th February 2016 at 12:58. Reason: quote fixed
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Old 15th February 2016, 13:08   #53
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Default Re: Nepal (Kathmandu and Pokhara) : Dashain, Religion, Phailin and Fun

[left]Interesting facts gleaned from the taxi driver:
The Manza costs about 29L NPR. The particular car had done about 1.28L km, and already has had an engine overhaul done at 1.1L km. No one bothers going to the ASCs since they are mind-bogglingly expensive, so he got the engine rebuild done from an FNG for a whopping sum of 1.25L NPR.


Yes very true I had particularly bargained hard with my company an Indian MNC about my perks,I had specifically asked for a company given car,as I very very well knew(had researched earlier) the cost of a car here in Nepal.Since Nepal has no car manufacturer they have to pay 300 % tax on imported cars,so a Wagon R costs here 4.0 lakhs times 3 ie 12 lakhs INR & then times 1.6 i.e. almost 21 lakhs NPR when it hits the road.
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