The final leg of our journey was here, we had crossed the border some days ago and after the relaxing atmosphere of Chitwan we were back on the coach to climb the forbidding Himalayas once more. Many of us have heard of Kathmandu (usually for sad reasons – political unrest, child exploitation or natural disasters). I was intrigued by the stories I had seen online and wanted to see whether it was all true.The hotel we stayed at was quite amazing, and having drunk delicious black tea for the previous 2 weeks we fell upon the coffee bar for a refreshing iced coffee. The high altitude is a bizarre feeling, suddenly climbing the stairs is even harder than usual – I am not generally unfit and having done lots of exercise during the holiday I thought it would stand me in good stead but I wasn’t quite as prepared as I could have been.We had a tour of the centre of Kathmandu with our guide, there was opportunity for more shopping, sadly we were again plagued by people insistent on selling us expensive things that we just didnt want. One guy who followed us for quite some time ended up on the wrong end of our guide’s temper (there was much shouting in hindi and he eventually slunk off) unfortunately one of the group was not paying attention and ended up with a $20 pen which was frankly a plain biro with some pretty patterns on.The temples were incredible, and the site of the funeral pyres was what I call car-crash fascinating, I couldnt help but take pictures, it was crazy seeing the sheer number of burning bodies. As you can see they use many colours in their temples and shrines. One of my favourite parts of Nepal was the traditional food, we were blessed with local restaurant just outside the hotel grounds. I fell in love with Momo’s (much similar to wontons) and the curries were also delicious. As there was a laundry service available at the hotel we were staying at for very reasonable prices, we availed ourselves to reduce washing upon return. By the end of it all I had to wash was the clothes I would be travelling home in!Travelling back to Delhi was fairly stressful as the Nepalese are terrified of security issues (having been subject to a horrible attack in the previous years). The endless security checks were annoying but I guess necessary and we finally got to the plane. Once back in Delhi we changed planes and onward home to the UK.The trip taught me a lot about different cultures and the way in which we treat people. Some of the memories are happy some are sad, but either way it was one of the most special journeys I have been on.
Source: An Indian Adventure – Into Kathmandu
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