Hiking from Swayambhu to Amitabha Monastery

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Title Hike to Seto Gumba
Location IchanguNarayan, Ramkot
Date 14 January, 2012
Total Time 5 Hours
Coordinator Arjun Adhikari
Participants Arjun Adhikari, Aawart Adhikari, Niraj Thapa, Prativa Shrestha, Rajendra Prasad Gyawali, Sangita Maharjan
Photos By Aawart Adhikari, Niraj Thapa and Prativa Shrestha
Report By Sangita Maharjan
Captions Prativa Shrestha
Creative Support Shukra Shrestha

five Buddhas in Seto Gumba

It was cold outside but the climate was very pleasant. All of us, fresh and enthusiastic, gathered at the Deerwalk premises at around 8 am in the morning. The van left the premises at around 8:30 am. After picking Rajendra from Sorhakhutte, we finally reached Swayambhu chakrapath at around 9 am. The van stopped at Hungry House Restaurant where we had our morning breakfast. After having few talks with tea, bread and eggs, we finally headed off for the hike at 10 am. Our destination is Seto Gumba.

On the way through Ichangu vdc, we saw some cyclists heading towards the way we were going. They were looking great, wish I had a cycle too. After walking for about 15 mins along the road, we chose the short cut. It was a narrow muddy road which leads up to the hill. We went up and up until we met the road again. Ahh, a sigh of relief, we finally reached there. But it wasn’t enough. We kept on walking until the road led us to a large Buddhist Monastery. It was the Rato Gumba, still under construction. But wow, it was very beautiful. The eye catching paintings on the walls of the Gumba, they were simply marvelous. We couldn’t take our eyes off from them. Niraj, Prativa and Aawart were busy turning the canvases into the pictures using their cameras. After spending some time over there, we headed towards the Seto Gumba who could be seen at a nearby distance. On the way, we bought some snacks and of course mineral water bottles to quench our thirst.

We reached in the Seto Gumba, also known as Druk Amitabh Monastery. Arjun dai got the passes for all of us.The monastery area was very big and it was so relaxing and pleasant that it can’t be described in words. It was a different world. The moods changed suddenly. Buddha, well known as Shanti ko Dut and his statues all around. Really, like his only mantra ‘PEACE’, there was peace of minds everywhere. The cool breeze on the top, it was so refreshing. We went inside the Gumba, but unfortunately, no cameras were allowed inside. Unlucky, we could not capture the moment. It is the place where we could really see the different avatars of the Buddha. His big statues and hundreds of small statues were arranged in such an artistic way that no one could remove their eyes from them. It is such a great place to be, simply is the best. After coming out from the Gumba, we just wandered here and there to get information about the Gumba. From the top, the view of Swayoumbhu Nath and Kathmandu city area could be clearly seen. The city with thousands of houses was looking like a pile of bricks, some scattered here and there. Really, Kathmandu has become so crowed. The weather was clear but still, the Himalaya ranges were hiding behind the faded clouds.

After exploring the Seto Gumba, it was lunch time. Hmm what do we have in the menus? 1. Toast 2. Roti 3. Chowmein 4. Waiwai Soup. After few discussions, we finally ended up in having wai wai soup and Slice. Prativa had maggi instant noodles. One thing we realized there was the patience of the monks living there. They were playing the roles of gatekeepers, story tellers, shopkeepers and cooks but they were doing it very peacefully, they had patience and they looked very humbled. After saying goodbye to the Seto Gumba, our next destination was Ramkot VDC. Just walking by, we did rock climbing as well, certainly, not the big ones. It was a village but modern houses were also built and some new houses were under construction. Moreover, it could be said that urbanization is slowly taking over there as well like in other vdcs of Kathmandu. People were busy in their own works, women bringing grasses on their dokos, men carrying wooden logs on the way. Hens and goats on most of the houses, a real picture of a village could be seen. There were stairs on the way. Climbing up the stairs, we finally reached the end point of our hike. It was the top of the Ramkot vdc hill. It was so cool over there. We sat there for few minutes to relax. Just didn’t want to go back but we had to. So after resting for about 15 mins, we finally started to head off back. Climbing down the stairs and walking the road side, we crossed the Seto Gumba, Rato Gumba and finally reached the point where we had to walk down the hill through the narrow ways. The muddy road was slippery. But it was fun. We reached the road and then moved onwards looking for the van. Finally, we saw the van. We moved inside and finally drove off to the Thakali restaurant. We were feeling little tired and exhausted. It was around 3 pm at that time. We had the meal and headed towards the home in the van.

This hike was a life full experience because we had a chance to visit such a place which is very beautiful and remarkable on its own. Once you reach there, you’ll surely forget all the tensions and frustrations that you are carrying on your heads. It brings you to another world where there is only ‘PEACE AND LOVE’.

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