Yesterday there was another earthquake in Nepal (7.3 on the Moment Magnitude Scale). When i saw the headlines, I burst in tears.
I cannot comprehend what has happened and why it is happening again.
So, I want to show you the Kathmandu I saw before all of this happened. The beautiful people I met and places I visited. I am sure those people need our help. To rebuild will take years and an incredible amount of money. Money that Nepal and its people don’t have.
I spent 5 full days exploring and shooting around Kathmandu during the workshop with Maciej Dakowicz. It was a first time visit to Nepal for all of us. I loved the idea of scouting Kathmandu and then returning with Husband for trekking. I had a list of places I wanted to go back to and spend more time during my three free days after the workshop. Today I want to introduce you to Swayambhunath, the place where in the first few minutes I felt that this was the Nepal I had expected/imagined for long time before visiting.
We spent our first afternoon around Swayambhunath known as Monkey Temple. It is one of the oldest religious sites in Nepal and dates back to the 5th century. It lies on the hill overlooking Kathmandu Valley.
We climbed the hill in hot temperatures and were rewarded with a great view of the valley and the smell of burning incense and butter lamps.
There were lots of Buddhists and Hindu devotees climbing to the top. Many young people socialise there, spending their time watching others (and it its a great place for people watching). There are entire families spending their afternoon there. Some people have their fortune read. Saw several very fit men running up and down the 365 steps. Local people go up there every day to pay homage. On top of the hill there is impressive Swayambhunath Stupa and many smaller religious structures and temples. Monkeys are everywhere. Jumping up and down the stupa and buildings and playing around with prayer flags.
Swayambhunath is open to visitors again. Most of the Monkey Temple stood strong during the quakes and sustained only minimal damage.