15 May 2014

Kathmandu photo tour

I will be writing a more detailed post of my travels in Kathmandu and Nepal but this is a taste for what to expect. 

The city is extremely vast and from the air, it looks like a lego built maze of structures all squared and all with the same look and feel fitting neatly aroound each other. Descend and you will find a maze of lanes and narrow streets that are sure to make you feel lost more than once.

Kathmandu from above
Street food is everywhere but a few snacks stand out. For example, street sellers offer legumes, maize or other cereals which are pan fried/toasted and spiced up with the customer's choice of spices, condiments and chilli sauce. They are colorful and beautiful to look at too!

Street snacks

One of the most famous sites in Kathmandu is Durbar Square with its multitude of temples and monuments. Taleju Temple is an ultra-sacrosanct temple which is only opened once a year for the Dashain fetival when 108 animals are offered to the Gods.

Taleju Temple
Durbar Square is the most obvious place for locals and tourists alike to chill and watch the world go by on any of the stairs that lead to the several temples that dot it.

A scene of life - Durbar Square

If you enter the Square through its ticketing office you are like to exit through the streets flanked by the palace of Kumari, the Living Goddess. Kumari is a little girl only 7 years old who is chosen at the age of 2-3 years old to become a Goddess and remains such until puberty. If you pop in to the Palace where she is and are with a local who speaks the language you can ask the guard to call her and she will sit by the balcony for a couple of minutes so you can see her. Quite intriguing.

The Palace of Kumari, the Living Goddess

The Thamel streets are packed. People of all ages dressed in traditional colorful Nepalese clothes wander, rest under the shade of buildings or walk minding their own business, monks in orange don't stand out as much as in other places, the entire area has the same color as their robes; cows moving slowly or resting by the side or at times even the middle of the road; dogs chasing each other, pigeons flapping around eating all sorts of cereals and snacks that have fallen from street vendors; vegetables tidily stacked up and exotic fruit stalls offering sliced watermelon; bright clothing of all sorts, earthy sandals and very accurate trekking wear replicas of North Face and other high end brands.

The Thamel is an assault to the senses. Strong smells, the rainbow range of colors and a cachophiny of sounds that might get to some

Street vendor

 A scene of life: monks, gurus and locals by a temple

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