Thursday, September 19, 2013

Wandering Wednesday - Swayambhunath: Kathmandu, Nepal

Swayambhunath is a temple high up on a hill in Kathmandu, Nepal. It's one of the key sights of this fun Nepali city - we took a taxi to the base of the temple and spent a few hours wandering around this ancient site.

As is always our luck, the temple stupa was undergoing construction so we couldn't see all of it clearly. Although it's a bit of a hike up the stairs to the site - with it's many shrines, prayer wheels and flags, it's probably the most well known site in Kathmandu and something not to be missed.

Although one could never really consider Kathmandu a pretty city from afar - it's one of those places where the beauty lies in random, unsuspecting places -  the temple site does offer a great view over the city.

Swayambhunath is also known as the monkey temple, and rightly so - this place feels like it's run by the critters. They are entertaining to watch, but will also steal food out of your pockets if you're not careful!

My favourite memory from this site would have to be the colourful prayer flags. They were strung anywhere and everywhere; quite a sight to behold.

Kathmandu is a city that I didn't instantly fall in love with. To be honest, our first afternoon there was a little overwhelming; I was experiencing my first case of true culture shock. I wondered what had compelled us to book such a long trip to such a smelly destination and found all the sounds, sights & smells a little too much for my jetlagged senses. Once we found our feet in a fabulous cafe (OR2K you will forever have a place in my heart!) and I had time to gather my thoughts, I found my embracing the cultural differences. I loved what this city has to offer and a trip to Kathmandu certainly wouldn't be complete without visiting Swayambhunath temple.

Have you ever found yourself feeling overwhelmed in a new destination?

Happy wanderings :-)

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  1. Ahh Kathmandu, you're awesome! Thanks for the memories! :-)

    We got a bit of culture-shock upon arrival in Kathmandu as well. Mainly because we arrived late on New Year's Eve in the rain, and had to walk several kilometres to our hostel in the dark because the streets were too packed with people for our taxi to get through!

  2. i had crazy culture shock going to nepal and i was living in indonesia at the time! i think it was because nepal felt the most disconnected from western civilization than any place i'd ever visited. i remember thinking... they don't even have a mcdonalds here?! haha. after that initial shock though it's one of my favorite parts about nepal!

  3. Man I hope we can take a trip like this some day!

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