Kathmandu, Nepal Week 149 February 2nd - 7th 2014
We are retracing our footsteps (well, perhaps wheel marks really) to Kathmandu.

The brickworks is wood fired.

Almost caught the glitter.
Alas there's usually no way to get our truck down to all those nice looking campsites.
More mountains.

They weren't visible last time.

Kathmandu valley.

And pollution.

We had organised the Hotel Moonlight car park.

In Thamel, within walking distance of Durbar Square.

We needed a bit of help to negotiate the lane. About 50mm each side of our 2.1m.

Mirrors folded back.

And at times one of the hotel staff on the roof moving low wires out of the way. I removed the exhaust for the exit.

Our main purpose for being in Kathmandu is to obtain Myanmar and Thailand visas.

All went smoothly. Apply in the morning one day. Return in the afternoon two days later.

We made use of having two passports each.

Just that Myanmar Consulate is in one direction and Thailand in the other and we weren't organised enough to do both in one morning.

And we walked about 1km to Durbar Square.

The narrow streets are just as I remember them from 1978.

With the addition of motorcycles, and cars.

There's a mixture of Buddhist and Hindu temples in the Hanuman-dhoka Durbar.

Predominantly Buddhist.

Built between 12th and 18th centuries though mostly 17th - 18th.

Similar bricks throughout and similar wood carving.

Pagoda style.

There's the outer area with temples and the inner area with palace.
And round the corner is the Kumari-ghar.

The home of the "living goddess".

Built in 1757.

There's a quadrangle inside.

The current goddess appears at the third floor window. On demand for tour parties.

No photos.

The carvings are quite intricate.

This very European building was built in 1908 as part of the palace.

The Nepalese Kings passed through several dynasties and maintained their power until very recently.

Nepal's move to democracy has been a somewhat shaky affair. We hear complaints about the government quite frequently from Nepalese.


And cars.

Somehow they prompt inane thoughts of our modern worship of the car.

Somewhere below that big pole there are some smaller poles.

And below those Nepal's largest stone turtle.

We really must do some research on the significance instead of the copout memory of Terry Prachett.

And more pigeons.

We are a bit mystified. Having superimposed our mental image of "temple" we can't really find the "altar".

Each of the temples is dedicated to a different god.

Though Vishnu figures fairly highly.

Having been spotted as we entered the square we paid our entry fee.

So then we had to visit the palace.

Circles as well as squares.
The leaned out windows and carving are quite distinctive.
There are nine "chowks" (rectangles) within the palace.
And a nine storied pagoda which warranted a climb to the top.

A bit uncomfortable looking through one of those angled outwards window places.

There's a long walk through the Mahendra Gallery. A museum dedicated to recent king.

No photos.

For a while I entertained myself watching the Chinese tourists give it a miss when told "no photos".

We did a quick walk through and emerged unscathed after countless photographs (of the king hung on the walls). 

We haven't really studied how worship occurs at the temples.

At this Hindu looking shrine the bells were being rung.

We've seen a few nice carpets on our travels. This and another one in shop window caught our eye.

Silk and cotton. From Kashmir.

Perhaps the finest detail we've seen in a carpet.

Singing bowls seem to be a thing for Kathmandu.

This is an extra large bowl resonating through Ali's back.

We've discovered that massage makes my neck (and arms and hands and sleep) worse.

Tributhvan and Mahendra Highways, Nepal Week 150 February 8th - 11th 2014

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