Kathmandu Guest House
While visiting Kathmandu we will be staying at The Kathmandu Guest House, it is a converted Rana dynasty mansion with fragrant gardens and airy corridors and has provided a peaceful refuge for weary travellers since 1967. Since the days of being the first and only hotel in Thamel, the packed tourist district of Kathmandu, it has become something of an institution. It’s close to everywhere and its gate is the meeting point that nobody can mistake. As a guidebook put it, “Kathmandu Guest House acts as a magnet for mountaineers, pop stars, actors and eccentric characters.” Even the Beatles stayed here in 1968. Kathmandu Guest House prides itself on being affordable to all budgets, from those looking to treat themselves to total comfort in elegantly modern suites, to volunteers and scholars who take the famous no-frills rooms.
While in Kathmandu we will be staying in the heart of Thamel at the Kathmandu Guest House. Thamel is famous for its narrow alleys crowded with various shops and vendors. Commonly sold goods include food, fresh vegetables/fruits, pastries, trekking gear, walking gear, music, DVDs, handicrafts, souvenirs, woollen items and clothes. Travel agencies, small grocery stores, budget hotels, restaurants, pubs and clubs also line the streets. Cars, cycle rickshaws, two-wheelers and taxis ply these narrow streets alongside hundreds of pedestrians. Recently many roads in Thamel have been declared vehicle free zones to avoid crowd and traffic havoc.
During our tour of Kathmandu we will visit the Pashupatinath Temple. It is a temple dedicated to Lord Pashupatinath or known more commonly as Lord Shiva. The temple is located in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal and has been listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
The main temple of the Pashupatinath Temple can only be accessed by Hindus.
Pashupatinath temple is situated on the bank of the Bagmati River and every day open air cremations take place. The eldest son of the deceased shaves his head and completes the rites. Observing the cremation ritual will allow you to have some insight into the Hindu religion particularly in relation to the death rituals.
It is believed that Pashupatinath temple is so blessed that if you are cremated in its premises, you will be born again as a human regardless of the sins you have done in your lifetime. So, a number of elderly people spend the last few weeks of their lives in the Pashupatinath temple premises.
The Garden of Dreams
Visiting the Garden of Dreams is such a contrast to the hustle and bustle of Thamel. Here we sit back and relax and watch the young lovers snatching the chance to spend some time alone together as well as enjoying the beautiful garden.
The Garden of Dreams is situated in the middle of Kathmandu city, Nepal. The Garden was created by the late Field Marshal Kaiser Sumsher Rana (1892-1964) in early 1920. When the garden was completed, it was considered one of the most sophisticated private gardens of the time. It was beautifully designed in the famous Edwardian style by Kishore Narshingh, a prominent architect who Within the Garden walls, Kaiser Sumsher created an exquisite ensemble of pavilions, fountains, decorative garden furniture and European inspired features such as verandas, pergolas, balustrades, urns and birdhouses. He erected six impressive pavilions, each dedicated to one of the six seasons of Nepal. These pavilions provided the Garden’s architectural framework and lent a cosmopolitan flavour to the formal arrangement of flowers, shrubs and trees.