Friday, July 19, 2019

Sailung


Approximately 132 km northeast of Kathmandu lies Sailung, it is one of the most beautiful place in Nepal but not so popular among tourist. It is situated on the border of dolakha and Ramechhap with an altitude of approximately 3145 meter above sea level. The word Sailung means Sai (hundred) and lung (hills), therefore this is one of the best place with the hundreds of hill locks rolling around.


This is one of the best spot which provides the magnificent view of Himalayan ranges. From the hill top of sailing the mountains like Machhapuchhre, Dhaulagiri, Annapurna, Ganesh Himal, Gaurisankar, langtang etc. can be seen clearly. No matter, it’s a morning sunrise or evening sunset, day or night, this place gives a heavenly view any time and any season. Beside this, there are lot more one can explore in this place. In winter season the hill gets completely cover with snow where as in spring season this place looks magnificent with the blossoming of different colors of rhododendron and the remaining season the greenery of the place gives a heavenly pleasure.


This place is also equally important for the follower of Hindu religion. The temple of Sailungeswore Mahadev is regarded as the guardian deity of this place and Himalayas. Many hindu followers visit this place on the festival of Janai Purnima and Bara Barse Mela (festival celebrated once in twelve years).

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Namo Buddha



Approximately 40 km south east of Kathmandu city lies one of the biggest and important Buddhist pilgrimage site in Kavre district named Namo Buddha. It is considered as one of equally important stupa like of Kathmandu (Swayambhunath Stupa & Boudhanata Stupa). It is regarded as a place where Gautam Buddha was born as a prince in his previous life.

The legend states that Shakyamuni Buddha in his previous life was born as Mahasattva, the third and the youngest son of King Maharatha. One day the three brothers were walking through the jungle, suddenly they encountered a tigress with her five newly born cubs. They found that the tigress was so hungry and weak that she could barely move anywhere and feed their cubs. After seeing this the three princes moved from there sadly, thinking that they cannot do anything. But after a while Mahasattva decided to help her and returned back. Reaching there again he started to cut himself and gave his flesh to tigress. The tigress started eating him and left only the bones which were brought back and buried and made a stupa.
Thousands of year passed after the incident, one day Gautam Buddha came to this place. On reaching there he circumambulated the Stupa three times and announced that he was the Mahasatwo and reincarnated as Gautam Buddha. Then he named the village with Namo Buddha which means Homage or Honor to Buddha.

Once you reach this place and enter through the main gate you can see the stupa where the bones were buried. You can see lot of Buddhist pilgrims worshiping there. Then as you climb a small hill for around 10 minutes you will see the place where Mahasattva feed his body to the hungry tigress. You can also see the carving in the stone of the Mahasattva offering his body to tigress. Once you climb more to the hill top you can also enjoy the beautiful view of village and forests around. And on the east part of the hill lies a beautiful Thrangu Tashi Yangtse Monastery which was established in 1978 by V.V. Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche. More than 250 monks study and live in this Monastery.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Kirtipur



Approximately 5 km southwest of Kathmandu city lies a small city known as Kirtipur. Kirti means glory and pur means city, hence this city can also be said City of Glory. This city is one of the main center of Newari culture, one of the ancient ethnic group. The ancient culture, tradition has still been preserved till this date.
Kirtipur is also well known for its religious sites. This place has various Hindu temples and Buddhist monastery. Bagh Bhairab one of the most popular temple lies at Kirtipur. It is dedicated to the lord Bhairab in the appearance of angry tiger. Local people worship this temple as the guardian of Kirtipur city. Uma Maheswar temple is another popular temple of Kirtipur. It lies on the hill top of Kirtipur from where the beautiful view of Kathmandu can be seen with the best panoramic view of Mountain ranges.

Chilancho Stupa is the next big attraction of Kirtipur. It is one of the oldest stupa of Kirtipur till this date. According to the inscription found in this Stupa it was built around 7 century in Licchavi Dinasty.
The history of Kirtipur is also very much interesting. Before 18th century Nepal was divided in various kingdoms and Kirtipur was part of Lalitpur. King Prithvi Narayan Shah from Gorkha who unified all the small kingdoms in one single Nepal started his unifying campaign where he also conquered Kirtipur in 1767 AD. But conquering Kirtipur became very hard for Prithvi Narayan Shah. He was able to get victory against Kirtipur only at his third attempt. In this war he lost his lots of brave warriors including Commander Kalu Pandey. Due to this Kirtipur is very well known for their bravery.
Beside this, there are various sites worth exploring like Chovar, Taudaha, Shri Kirti Monastery, Tribhuwan University and many more. This is one of the amaizing place in Kathmandu which no one should miss visiting.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Shrawan Sankranti



The fourth month of Nepali calendar is Shrawan and Sankranti means the movement of the sun from one Rashi (Zodiac) to another and the beginning of next month. The day when the sun starts to move towards south and the first day of the month Shrawan is called Shrawan Sankranti. This month is considered as the holy month for the Hindu of Nepal and also it the month from where many festivals begins.

This month is dedicated to Lord Shiva one of the principal deities of Hinduism. Each Monday devotees gathers in the temple of Lord Shiva to worship and fast till sunset. From the first Monday of Shrawan, people also start fasting for the sixteen Monday for the prosperity, wisdom and good health.
                                                             

According to the legend story it is said that goddess Parvati fasted the whole month of Shrawan and worshiped Lord Shiva to get him as her husband, where she was able to please lord Shiva. So many Hindu woman wears yellow and green bangles, decorating their hands with mehndi and do fasting. Married women celebrates this month for the long life and happiness of their husband whereas unmarried girls do it to get good husband in the future.

Friday, June 28, 2019

Ashar 15 Ropai Jatra (Paddy plantation festival in Nepal)

Nepal is well popular in its richness in diversities. And the diversity does not limit only to nature, climate, vegetation and people but also the festivals that Nepalese celebrate. Sunday 30th June 2019 is a popular festival in Nepal which is called "Ashar Pandra" some calls it "Ropai Jatra" meaning 15th day of the third month of Nepalese original calendar and Rice planting festival. This is the day of happiness especially for farmers in Nepal who belong to the majority of the economic groups in Nepal. Joy begins with the long waited paddy plantation actually happens after all the hard work of seedling, irrigation management and field preparation is done.    

Nepal being agricultural country is currently welcoming monsoon at its doorstep. The rain that monsoon brings throughout the country is proved as a boon as well as curse. Due to lack of good irrigation infrastructure and modern irrigation technologies, most of the Nepalese farmers have to rely upon rainwater for farming. Most of the farmers pray for God for gentle monsoon which will be favorable for them in terms of agricultural perspective.
Nepalese celebrate monsoon as a festival on Ashad 15 as a special day which represents the end of plantation of Paddy (Rice) and pray for its good production. Nepal Government has also declared this day as National Paddy Day to encourage farmers for cultivation of rice. In this day, farmers plant paddy and enjoy with each other’s by playing in muddy water and dancing in ‘Ashare Geet’, traditional folk song which is filled with sorrow and joy of farmers. We can get in touch with nature by playing with mud and get refreshed from the smell of soil.
In last few years not only Nepalese are seen celebrating Ashar 15, but most of the foreigners has been attracted to this festival. Programs of ‘ropain’ i.e planting rice for celebrating this muddy festivals is being conducted nowadays in various areas of Kathmandu Valley like Bungmati, Chapagaun, Thimi Machhegaun and so on. After the completion of plantation, the participants are given Chiura(Beaten rice) with Dahi(curd) and Aaloo ko achar(Potato Picle) which is regarded as special item on Ashad 15.
Let’s join our hands together and celebrate Ashad 15 today with full of fun. Pray for good production and happy harvesting. Get in touch with nature with smell of soil from the muddy field. Happy Ashad 15.
If you are first time visitors in Nepal, you should celebrate paddy plantation. 
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