Patan – The City of Arts

WC_DSC03028

Patan is one of the major cities found in the Kathmandu Valley. It is also known as Lalitpur which means the city of arts. It is one of the numerous UNESCO World Heritage Sites found in Nepal. Before exploring Patan, my tour guide Dinesh and I went to have lunch. The restaurant has a wonderful panoramic view of Patan Durbar Square as shown in the photo above.

After having a hearty meal of chicken biryani, we were ready to explore Patan. The first thing I noticed is the picturesque Chyasing Deval a temple dedicated to Krishna. The colour and the shape is very unique compared to the other structures in the area.

We went inside the Mul Chowk otherwise known as the Royal Courtyard. The beams of the building are decorated intricately with different carvings.

We went out the courtyard and continued to walk further and saw the Vishnu Temple. It’s not as huge as the other temples but it also has a unique design.

In front of the Vishnu Temple is the statue of King Malla facing the Royal palace worshipping the goddess Taleju.

Then I saw the Krishna Temple (click to see another view of this temple on a previous post) with a kneeling statue of Garuda in front of it. This is the first temple built in Shikhara style and is made entirely of stone and is the only temple in Nepal with 21 golden pinnacles and scenes from the Ramayana and Mahabharata are engraved in its interior.

It’s such a beautiful place with a lot of history! It is one of the must visit places in Nepal as this is considered as the oldest of all three cities of Kathmandu valley.

_____

I booked my tour with Alpine Club of Himalaya. Thanks to Sujan for all the help and for allowing me to personalise my tour.

Advertisements

Photo of the Day: Preservation

20140319-173102.jpg

Preservation is to keep something in its original state or condition. It is important to preserve ones culture in order to understand what we are today. This photo was taken at Patan, Nepal a well preserved place full of history.

Swayambhunath

This is an ancient temple found on top of a little hill built in the 5th century AD. It is one of the UNESCO World Heritage site in Nepal with temples scattered around the complex as well as a monastery. Holy monkeys also live in the area that’s why it is also known as Monkey Temple.

There are two ways to get to the temple. You can climb up the 360 steps to the top OR drive towards the parking lot and enter at the other side. I opted for option number 2. 🙂 The driver dropped us off the entry way and after paying the entrance fee, Dinesh (my tour guide) and I went in the complex.

WC_Buddha w bowl

There’s a pond with the statue of the Buddha and a golden bowl at it’s feet. Some people would throw coins for good luck and they try to shoot it in the bowl for better luck i presume. The monkeys also do get to enjoy the pond, not for swimming but for drinking the water.

I saw some stupas with the eyes painted on all 4 sides and I said to myself, “Is this it?!” We continued to walk and I listened to Dinesh while he explained the history of the place then we went up a flight of stairs. I saw shops and cafes and I thought we are just going to look at the view of Kathmandu. I was in for a surprise!

There it was! The huge Swayambhunath stupa and a huge grin spread across my face. I must have looked funny so I told Dinesh that I thought it was the stupa by the entrance gate and he laughed.

We went around the stupa and I saw the most breathtaking view. It’s the panoramic view of Kathmandu Valley. I heard that sunset is really beautiful here, now that’s something that can make me come back and visit again. 🙂

_______

I booked my tour with Alpine Club of Himalaya. Thanks to Sujan for all the help and for allowing me to personalise my tour.

Kathmandu Durbar Square

The plane landed late in the afternoon and I was excited to explore. After going through all the hustle and bustle, I finally arrived at the guesthouse and left my stuff so I can roam the streets of Kathmandu. I did a bit of research before coming to Nepal. This is my first time ever to visit the country so rely so much on the internet and google maps to help me with my itinerary. I decided to stay at Freak Street. It is less famous than Thamel but I chose to stay here because of its close proximity to Kathmandu Durbar Square.

phonto (3)

It was already sun down when I reached the durbar. A lot of locals hangout by the square –  old people watching the world go by, teenagers hanging out with their friends and people whizzing by on their motorbikes. The brick laden road around the durbar is pretty cool and it brings you back to its glorious time.

WC Nepal_3

This place is also known as Basantapur Durbar Square or Hanumandhoka Durbar Square.  Locals know this place as Hanumandhoka and is the ancient place where the Nepalese royalty lived. It is also called Basantapur because it’s the old name of the original centre in Kathmandu. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and was built during the 14th century.

I pretty much walked on just one side of the square and got stuck trying to take a photo of the square. Cars and motorbikes zoom by so fast on the brick road and it was pretty interesting to observe that despite the craziness there are no accidents.

I noticed two lions guarding the entry way to beautiful building but cars might hit me if I try to take the picture, lol. So, I decided to take the shot of the lion and the temple beside it. As I turned around, I noticed a piece of wood with an interesting painting. Cool, eh?

I decided to go back to Freak Street and check out the place. I saw lots of different stores selling souvenirs, quaint little coffee shops and restaurants scattered around with cute lights and decorations.

Freak Street

I continued walking and I noticed a lad ringing a bell of some sort of little temple. I decided to stay by the little temple and I noticed that they would open the tap, touch the water and then ring the bell.

I decided to continue walking and settled for a quaint little sandwich shop. After spending a few minutes having my dinner and reading a bit of Nepal history, I decided to go back to the guesthouse and retire for the nice.

Til the next adventure. 🙂

Photo of the Day – Love Day

Lake Sebu Feet

Today is Valentine’s Day and people all over the world are celebrating this special day with flowers, chocolates and greeting cards. I’m lucky to get loads of hugs and loving from kids where I work at. Love is not just for boyfriends and girlfriends. The photo above is a picture of buddies who love to travel and explore the world. Love is for everybody who appreciate the people in their lives for all the things and sacrifices they do because they care. Don’t forget to tell your family and friends how much you love them. Happy V Day!