For our “last mandatory exit” of the Indian territory, we wanted a change so we went to Nepal, even if it’s not the easiest one when living in Bangalore… We had kept in mind a wonderful memory of Kathmandu when we went there for the first time, 5 years back but we knew this time it would be almost impossible to trek due to the monsoon.
We didn’t have a lot of expectations this time apart from eating more momos (little stuffed dumplings) as possible and have some rest. We finally really loved to re-discove Kathmandu and its Valley. We also knew what to expect and that the time of hippies’ paradise or “little town in the mountain” is now over. Kathmandu is a big city, chaotic and polluted (but when one comes from India it’s not that obvious) but it also has hidden treasures when taking time to walk around.
On a cultural and historic point of view it’s also a very rich city. Wandering in the back alleys, you discover ancient temples very easily, going through a gate, you can end up in very peaceful courtyards, decorated with stupas and which are the center of community life… This time we also took time to discover other cities of the valley, (Bhaktapur, Patan), all as (and even maybe more) beautiful as Kathmadu but less crowded. The architecture is very different from what we can experience in India due to the multiple roofs pagodas which reminds more of China. The biggest surprise is that all these places are finally… Hindu! Because it was and it’s still the main religion in the country… Before leaving, we also checked again the magnificent and impressive Bodhnath Stupa, a Buddhist worship place and the center of a real Tibetan neighbourhood.
Other surprise: we went there just before the soccer World Cup final and Nepalese are completely fond of Football! An impressive number of people were wearing the German or Argentinian jersey (Argentina outnumbered Germany here though), huge flags of every countries were deployed in all the cities and giant screens were waiting for the d-day.
Leaving the country and flying along the mountains (which we were unable to see before due to the clouds) we promised ourselves to come back to trek and come closer to these splendid monsters.