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Saturday, January 11, 2014

Lumbini-The birth place of the lord buddha


Siddhartha Gautama, the Lord Buddha, was born in 623 B.C. in the famous garden of Lumbini, which soon became a place of pilgrimage. Among the pilgrims was the Indian Emperor Ashoka, who erected one of his commemorative pillars there. The site is now being developed as a Buddhist pilgrimage centre where the archaeological remains with the birth of the Lord Buddha form a centre feature.




Lumbini a small town in the Terai region is situated south of the foothills of the Churia Range. Terai is the granary of Nepal and also the home to Royal Chitwan Park. Lumbini is only a few kilometers across the Indian border in Nepal.

Lumbini is a Buddhist pilgrimage site in the Repandehi distrct of Nepal. It is place where Queen Mayadevi gave birth to Sidhartha Gautam. Sidhartha Gautam lived roughly between 623 and 543 B.C. and he founded Buddhism as Gautam Buddha. Lumbini is one of four magnets for pilgrimage that sprang up in place pivotal to the life of the Buddha. It is one of the greatest pilgrimage sites for Buddhist. More than 400,000 Buddhist and non-Buddhist visit Lumbini every year. It is also UNESCO World Heritage Site (culture) and holds immense archaeological and religious importance

Lumbini is situated at the foothills of the Himalayas in modern Nepal. In the Buddha's time, Lumbini was a beautiful garden full of green and shady sal trees (shorea robusta) , The garden and its tranquil environs were owned by both the shakyas and the clans. King Suddhodana, father of Gautama Buddha, was of the shakya dynasty and belonged to the kshatriya (warrior cast).

In 249 B/C., when the Indian emperor Ashoka visited Lumbini, it was flourishing village. Ashoka constructed four stupas and a stone pillar with a figure of a horse on top.

Attraction: The place itself is interesting as a whole, the landscape and the green forestry. However, Maya Devi Temple and the Stupas and the pillar built by Ashoka are really worth a visit.. Recently, several beautiful shrines have been constructed by devotee from all over the world.

Tibetan Monastery Lumbini
The Ashoka Pillar: The Ashokan Pillar, essentially erected by Ashoka (249 B.C.) visited Lumbini and inscribed Ashokan Pillar on the spot of Buddha's birth. The inscription of the pillar (the oldest in Nepal) declares the Ashoka's granted Lumbini tax free status in honor of Buddha's birth. It is 6 m high and half of its beneath the ground. It is behind the Maya Devi Temple, to the west of the temple.

The Tibetan Monastery: was built in 1975. This monastery has the old murals, interesting paintings on its walls and a large bronze image of the Buddha. The another Buddhist monastery is modern and contain a large thangka image carved wooden gate. This monastery has a white Buddha image donated by the Burmese.

Maya Devi Temple Lumbini
Maya Devi Temple: Lumbini remains neglected for centuries. In 1895, Feuhrer, a famous German archaeologist, discovered the great pillar, further exploration and excavation of the surrounding area revealed the existence of a brick temple and a sandstones sculpture within the temple itself which represents the scene of Buddha's birth. On the south of the Maya Devi Temple there is the famous sacred bathing pool known as Pushkarni. It is believed that Maya Devi tool a bath in this pool before the delivery.

Bodhitree and the pond Mayadevi (Buddha's moth...
Pushkarani: The Pushkarani is the secred pool where the Maya Devi, the Lord Buddha's mother take a bath before giving birth to the Lord Buddha. It is also the Place where the Gautama was given his ritual purification.

The Buddhist Monastery: It is built in the way of the modern Buddhist temple of Nepal but is quite important in the preview of architecture of the walls. The middle hall contains some exquisite murals resembling the medieval periods.


Excursion:

Kapilvastu: A holy destination related deeply with the life of a legend, Lord Buddha, eventually Kapilvastu is the place where Lord Buddha, had lived the childhood and the days of teenage, in complete luxury. The capital of king Shuddhodhan, Kapilvastu still carries with it the mystic charms. It houses many sculptures of Buddhism, which present a landscape before that visitors that makes them feel calm., content. Kapilvastu carries the visitors away to the ancient days when Buddha was a small child, a prince. The place is situated 27 km south of Lumbini.

 Respect:
  • Wear clothing that expresses respect for the sacred nature of the site.
  •  Circumnavigate the stupas and other sacred objects in a clock wise direction.
  • Preserve the peace and tranquility.
  • Do not climb onto stupas or other sacred objects.

Photo Gallerias: Lumbini- Nepal

Access and Accommodation:

Lumbini is a 10 hour drive from Kathmandu and a 45 minutes drive from Bhairahawa. The closest airport is Gautam Buddha Airport at Bhairahawa, with flights to and fro from Kathmandu.

For Detail Information Please Visit:  Lumbinibuddhagarden.com

Where to Stay: Some of the hotel in Bhairahwa are quite useful, but it is recommended to stay in the nearby Dae Sun Sukh Gu Sa monastery in the village.

For Better Information Please Visit or Do Compare with Yourself:  Lonelyplanet.com


Friday, January 10, 2014

Royal Chitwan National Park




Royal Chit-wan National Park (UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site)


The southern belt of Nepal is known as the Terai. It is low land area covered with dense subtropical forest. Here you will find some of the most exciting safari destinations in the world. The jungle safari activity includes canoeing, nature walks bird watching, excursions, and visit to an ethnic Tharu village in the jungle safari park.

Thanks to Nepal's extensive and effective Parks and Reserve systems, the country has managed to preserve more endangered species of flora and fauna than any other country in Asia. Now, the protected areas is Nepal include 14 National Parks, 3 Wild Life Reserves, one Hunting Reserves and 6 Conservation areas 11 Buffer Zones. Covering an area of 34,186.62 sq km, that is 23.23 percent of the total area of the country. Royal Chitwan National Park (932 sq.km.) Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserves (175 sq.km.) and Bardiya National Park (968 sq.km.) are most famous and popular.

Way To Royal Chitwan National Park




Chitwan National Park is the first National Park in Nepal. Formerly called Royal Chitwan National Park. It was established in 1973 and granted the status of a World Heritage Site in 1998.

Chitwan National Park has been one the country's treasures of natural wonders. The park is situated in south central Nepal, covering 932 sq.km in the subtropical lowlands of the of the inner TERAI. The area comprising the Tikauli forest-from Rapti river to the foot hills of Mahabharat-extending over an area of 175 sq.km.

The park consists of a diversity of ecosystems, including the Churia Hills, Ox-bow lakes and the flood plains of the Rapti River and Narayani Rivers. The western portion of the park is comprised of the lower but more rugged. "Someswar Hills". The park shares its western boundary with the "Parsa Widlife Reserves"

The Chitwan Valley consists tropical and subtropical forests. Sal forest cover 70 percent of the park.

The Park has a range of climatic seasons, each offering a unique experience. October through February with an average temp.. of 25*C offer an enjoyable climates. From March to June temperatures can reach as high as 43*C.

The Park offers interesting sites and activities. The display at the "Visitors Centre at Sauraha" provides fascinating information on wildlife and conservation programs. The women's user group's souvenir shop offers a variety of handicrafts and other local products for gifts and souvenirs.

Elephant Safari provides opportunity to get a closer view of endangered one-horned rhinoceros. One may also get a glimpse of the elusive Bengal Tiger. "The Elephant Breeding Centre" at "Khorsor". Inside the park there are seven resorts, run by Park Concessionaries that can provide lodging, fooding and access to wildlife activities providing many facilities.

Best Time To Visit Chitwan: 

October to May- Bird Watching.
December to March- Maximum temp. can reach up to 95 Fahrenheit (35*C) in April through September.
November through February are cooler months with average temp. around 67 Fahrenheit.

Get On:

  • Bharatpur Airport- Bharatpur, Nepal is about 10km.
  • By Bus: Take the Tourist Bus from Kathmandu or Pokhra. Stop in at one of the many Tour Agencies (in either city) at least 1-2 days before your journey. From Kathmandu, Chitwan is about 4 hours ( cost is approx NPR 350 for standard tourist bus, no A/C) From Pokhra, it maybe 6 hours, when you arrive in Chitwan ( the village) you will need to take a horse cart or bicycle rickshaw, the 7 km into the tiny village that sauraha. The nearest bus-stand is Narayanghat which has guest houses around it. NPR 400 per way to Kathmandu for 3 persons in Tyota.
Fees/Permit

For all activities inside and outside, visitors must pay NPR 500 for a park permit, update: 24/06/2012, the fees have increased for SAARC Nationals and Foreign Tourists the fees have been raised from Rs 200 and Rs 500 to Rs 750 and Rs 1,500 per person respectively.

See:
  • Gharial Breeding Centre, Kasara 1 km. A Crocodile Breeding Centre.
  • Lake Lamital
  • Lake Devital
  • Bikram Baba- a religious site.
  • Chitwan Hatisar Elephant Breeding Centre
  • Bishajari Tal (20000 lakes)
  • World Elephant Polo Competetion
  • Local Native Dances
  • Kailaspuri.
Brief Introduction:

Activities: Jungle Safari on elephant back, Jungle Walk, Canoe Ride, Jeep Drive, Experience of Tharu Culture.
Accommodation: Resort Hotels and Lodges.
Access: The Park Headquaters at Kasara is a 21-km from Bharatpur which is 20 minutes by air or 146 km by road from Kathmandu.
Wildlife: 56 species of mammals that include, one-horned Rhinoceros, Royal Bengal Tiger, Rhesus Monkey, Languor, Geer Leopard, Gaur, Wild Boar, Wild Dog and Wild Cat. 49 species of amphibians and reptiles that include the endangered Long shouted Gharial, Marsh Mugger Crocodile and Python.
Birds: 539 species of birds that include Summer migrants, Birds like Paradis Flycatcher, Indian Pitta and Parakeets etc, during, while Winter Birds include Water Fowl, Brahminyducks, Pintails, Bar-Headed Geese, Cosmo rants and migratory Birds from Siberia.
Vegetation: Deciduous forest with 600 Plant Species.
Best Season: October-March (average temperature 25 degree Celsius); April-June (hot, up to 43 degrees Celsius), July-September (rainy).
Park Headquarters: Kasara.
Added Attraction: Devighat, Padavnagar, Balmiki Ashram, Kabilaspur, Chepang Hills Trails.
Entrance Fees: Nepali-Rs 100 per day per entry, SAARC Nationals- Rs 750 per person per day, Foreigners-Rs 1,500 per person per day.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Adventure Holidays in Nepal

NEPAL    Land of the Himalayas

Nepal is a country of great beauty and visual varieties with the attitude of 70m above the sea level in the south and about 8848m height of Mt. Everest in the north. Nepal has, therefore, diversify in altitude that has reflected unique culture.

Nepal is famous in the world for its natural beauty, shining mountains, green valley and beautiful green places with terraced farmlands and hilly foot trails and the forests full of rare wild lives including the lordly tiger, one-horned rhinoceros.  The religious homogeneity is next unique feature for Nepal. The exquisite art and architecture of Nepal reflect the artistic ingenuity and the religious tradition of people as well. The beautiful lakes and springs is considered as the main remarkable point of the country and plants like orchids and rhododendrons is as scenic you can imagine.

About Nepal: Nepal is the youngest republic in the world. The people movement in June 2006 overthrew centuries old shah Dynasty and declared Nepal as a Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal on May 28, 2008

Location: Nepal is a landlocked country nestled in the laps mighty Himalayan Range, situated in Southern Asia, the Tibetan Autonomous, Region of People's Republic of China boarders Nepal in the north while Nepal shares its eastern, western and southern borders with India.

Language: Nepali is the national language of Nepal. However, people in urban areas speak and understand English quite well. People in the Tourism Industry also speak and understand selected International Languages like Chinese, Indian, French, Japanese, German, Spanish and others. Apart from these, there are hundreds of local dialects spoken by people from various ethnic groups.

Climate: Nestled in the laps of mighty Himalayan Range, Nepal has moderate climatic condition throughout the year. Nepal has four major season, namely:





Nepal can be visited all the year around.

People and Religion: Nepal is a secular state and it respect the practice and existence of different religion within its Territory. Nepalese people are mainly divided into two distinct groups:

1. The Indo- Aryans and
2. The Mongoloids (the kirants). The Hindu Temples and Buddhist shrines are scattered all over the country. Nepal is the birthplace of Lord Buddha, the Herald of Peace. Hindus, Buddhist, Muslims, Christians are people of other religion live together here in perfect harmony.

Currency and foreign exchange:  Nepal bank notes comes in rupees 1,2, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, 500, 1000. Denominations. coins come in rupees 1, 2, 5 and 10 denomination foreign currencies must be exchange only through banks or authorized money exchange, The receipt of such traction are to be obtained and retained. Visitors can exchange foreign currency at the foreign exchange counter at the airport upon arrival too. Visitors other than the Indian national have to make the payment in foreign currency (non-Indian currency) in hotel, trekking agencies or travel agencies and for air tickets.

NEPAL The Democratic Republic of Nepal is a landlocked country located in Southern Asia, bordered by Tibet in the north and India in the South. The landscape is made up of the Terai or flat river plain of the Ganges in South, the central hill region and the rugged Himalayas in north. Nepal's population is estimated to be 27,676,547 (July 2005). The Nepalese people mainly follow the Hindu religion (80.6%) followed by Buddhism (10.7%) and then Muslim (4.2%) the remaining population follows minority religion. Nepal is best known for the world's greatest mountain range-the Himalaya's, which consumes most of the land that falls within its border. Nepal boasts eight of world's 10-highest peaks, including Mount Everest- the world's tallest peak.

Sight Seeing: It is one of the major attractions of Nepal. In Nepal, one can visit the places of historical, cultural religious importance and enjoy the scenic beauty at the same time. Famous destinations for sight seeing are Kathmandu valley, Pokhra (with scenic beauty), Lumbini (birthplace of lord Buddha), Nagarkot and Dhulikhal (Hill Resorts), Gorkha, Janakpuri etc!


Winter    (December-February)
Spring     (March-May)
Summer  (June-August)
Autumn   (September-November)



Adventure in Himalayas

Trekking: Nepal's mountainous and hilly regions offer some of the most spectacular trekking sites in the world. The immense contrasts in altitude and climate found in the different parts of the country support and equally spectacular mix of life styles, vegetation types and wild life. The most popular trekking destination in Nepal is the Annapurna region. Other destinations include Everest region, Langtang region and other remote areas.

Mountaineering:
Mountaineering in Nepal is another prime tourism activity proving Nepal the cradle for mountaineers for ages. The great Himalayan range in Nepal has eight out of fourteen of the world's 8000 meter peak with total number of 1310 snow peaks over 6000 meter and offers the best choices for Himalayan expedition and mountaineering in Nepal. Whether the interest is simply climbing a peak or an expedition on 7000 or 8000 meter peak, climbing Himalayas in Nepal has become a dream for most of the adventure enthusiasts and mountaineers in the world. Expedition on Pomori, Amadablam, Baruntse are considered the popular among 6000 and 7000 meter peaks whereas Dhulagiri, Makalu, Manaslu, Lhotse, Everest are the 8000 meter peak for the challenging climbing in Nepal. Nepal is well known for its Himalayan mountains. Among the ten highest peaks in the world, eight are Nepal, including the highest peak Mount Everest. Nepal is famous destination for mountaineers and every year more than 100 expeditions trudge up the Himalayas.

There are four seasons for mountaineering in Nepal.

@ Spring    (March-May)
@ Summer (June- August)
@ Autumn  ( September- November) and
@ Winter    ( November- December)


Jungle Safari in Himalayas: A trip to Nepal is incomplete if you have not been on a jungle safari. While the mountains of the north have some of the highest and most magnificent peaks in the world, the tropical jungles of the Terai preserve some of the best wildlife habitat in the subcontinent. Some of these rich wildlife habitats are now protected, and can be tours on elephant. Back, 4WD Vehicles, and Dugout Canoes or on Foot accompanied a licensed guide. Nepal has 16 national parks, wildlife reserves and conservation areas, occupying 16% of its total geographical area. Jungle safari on elephant back or jeep rides are offered at the Parsa Wildlife Reserve, Royal Bardia National Park, Royal Chitwan Park and Royal Sukhlaphanta Wildlif Reserve all located in the Terai.

Among them, there are two famous National Park. Royal Chitwan National Park and Bardia National Park where you can explore the wild life getting yourself deep into the heart of the forest, while the others serve as the natural habitat to thousands of animals including snow-leopard, Gharials, Crocodiles, Ram, Bob cats, endangered red panda, Elks, Anteplores, Kasturi, Monkeys, hundred of birds (infact Arun Valley has the largest population of birds (650+) and butterflies (800+) in the entire world). Himalayas has such varied topography that it showcases different types of flora and fauna. It has some unique wild life activities. Different regions of the Himalayas have some unique features. So to explore the wilds of the Himalayas jungle safari in the best option. It will give you a chance to come close to nature. Jungle safari can be of different types like riding on an elephant's back or traveling on a jeep.
Jungle safari is exploring the forest through a jeep instead of trekking, hiking and biking. It is a very different experience. The jungle safari tours involve not just exploring the jungles of any particular region but it also involves various wildlife sanctuaries and national parks and even protective reserve.

You can also opt for wildlife camping and nature walk along with your jungle safari. The safari tour also includes lodging, which are provided by various forest departments within the sanctuary area and national parks. It gives you a chance to walk around the jungle and just relax and feel the wildness. The best time to go for a  jungle safari is between April to June and September to November.

Major Places for Jungle Safaris are:
  • The Great Himalayan National Park
  • Jim Corbett National Park
  • Royal Chitwan National Park
  • Namdapha National Park
  • Royal Bardia National Park

River Rafting in Nepal: In fact, Nepal is known to contain the world's best rivers for white-water experiences. After mountain expedition river rafting is the most exciting and adventurous sport in Nepal. It is a journey on the torrential river on an inflatable rubber boat.
Few countries in the world offer the thrill of white water in such an impressive setting or rushing rivers flowing through tropical jungles with snow-capped peaks in the distance. The combination of spectacular rivers, mountain scenery and a rich cultural heritage makes Nepal an obvious river runner's destination. No other country has such a choice of trips on wild rivers with warm water, a subtropical climate and big white-sand beaches that are ideal for  camping. A full day trip is about 5 hrs.

The River of Rafting
  • Trisuli River          Trip Duration: 1 day(s)    Grading: Moderate                     (Rafting)
  • Sun Koshi            Trip Duration: 10 day(s)  Grading: Moderate to strenuous  (Rafting)
  • Karnali                 Trip Duration: 10 day(s)  Grading: Moderate to strenuous  (Rafting)
  • Seti River             Trip Duration: 3 day(s)    Grading: Moderate to strenuous  (Rafting)
  • Manshyandi River Trip Duration: 5 day(s)    Grading: Moderate to strenuous  (Rafting)
  • Kali Gandalli         Trip Duration: 5 day(s)    Grading: Moderate to strenuous  (Rafting)
  • Bhote Koshi         Trip Duration: 2 day(s)    Grading:  Moderate to strenuous (Rafting)


Paragliding in Pokhra: Paraglidin is a relatively new adventure sport in Nepal. Paragliding in this Himalayan country can be atruly wonderful and fulfilling experience for the adventure seekers. You can experience unparalled scenic grandeur as your share airspace with Himalayan griffin vultures, eagles, kites, while floating over villages, monasteries, temples, lakes, and jungles, with a fantastic views of the majestic Himalayan.

The main area for flying in Nepal is the Anuparna region, more specifically the Pokhra valley. This lakeside town is Nepal's second "city" nestled at the foot of the Anapurna  Himal, the views commanded from here, of 3 of the world's 8000m peaks, are unsurpassed. At an altitude of 8000m ASL the subtropical climate means that, year around. The micro climate of the valley makes, it an ideal area for flying, with more constant conditions than the Kathmandu valley 150km east.

There are abundance of other sites around the valley but all need to be walked up. With names such as Dikie Danda, Devi falls, Poomdi and Matepani, all can be connected by air from Sarangkot.

Best Season: Gliding is a weather dependent sport and the flying season in Nepal commences from November through February. Whereas, best month is November and December.

To take off point for these flights is Sarangkot (1592m), which offers prime views of Phawa Tal and the mountains of sunrise and sunset, the landing is by the lake. No previous experience is required as qualified pilot provide a short briefing before launching.

Paragliding Sites in Nepal

1. Mount Everest- Altitude 7458m.
2. Killumn- small take off... little bit technical, not for beginners!!! Altitude 1473m.
3. Sarangkot- side of the road,from Pokhra to Sarangkot follow the Paragliders and Birds. Altitude-1438m.
4. Sirkot- easy Altitude 1551m.
5. Pokalde- Altitude 4767m.
6. Sati Dada- Altitude  2027m.
7. Galem- Altitude 976m.
8. Besisahar- Altitude 1490m.
9. Meem Gurung- Altitude 1713m.
10. Green Wall East- Altitude 1647m.
11. Dicki Danda- Altitude 16431m.
12. Krachlspitze- Altitude 3323m.
13. Galem- Altitude 1739m.
14. Korchong- Altitude 2939m.
15. Argakhachi- Altitude 1750m.





Mountain Biking In Nepal: The best way to explore the Kathmandu  valley and around is on a mountain bike, Nepal's diverse terrain is a mountain biker's dream adventure come true.. Mountain biking offers an environmentally sound way of exploring this magnificent country, it's landscape and living heritage. If you are here in Nepal for short time and want to have a taste of short ride around Kathmandu valley, try Nepal Mountain Biking day tour, go mostly down hill seeing the Himalayan vista.





Sand witched between the two most popular countries of the world, China and India, Nepal has one of the most mountainous areas of the world..There are plenty of drifts roads and trials in Nepal to meet every mountain biker's wildest fantasy..

Mountain is a fascinating way to travel the by ways of the valley, visiting little known villages, several groves and out of the way temples and monuments. Tours may go out for just the day a may spend two or three days, staging at the scenic view spots of Dhulikhel, Nagarkot or Daman. Longer tours go from Kathmandu all the way to the southern Terai region, Pokhra, Ganesh Himal region or Chitwan National Park. Groups will experienced bikes go to Lanatang valley or Thorong-La or even fly up to Lhasa, Tibet and mountain bike all the way back to Kathmandu.

Itinerary: Here are few options for Kathmandu valley day biking tour starting from USD 87 per person per day, if more then 3 pax it will be USD 67 per person per day.