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Hiking from Changu Narayan to Bhaktapur

Theme: Revisiting the History – Part III ‘Historic City of Bhaktapur’
Hiking Route: Changu Narayan – Bhaktapur Durbar
Day: July 20, 2008, Sunday
Hike Coordinator: Rajiv Shrestha
Participants: Vishnu Kshettri, Hitesh Karki, Sanjeet Baidya, Manish Shakya, Sarjan Gautam, Santosh Pradhan, Babins Shrestha, Sunny Shakya, Prajwal Shrestha, Shristi Rawal, Cindy(Shristi’s friend), Dinesh Bajracharya, Sumit K. Singh, Saroj Dahal, Rajiv Shrestha
Caption: PrajwalS/RajivS
Camera: ManishS, SarojD, HiteshK, SanjeetB, SantoshP, ShristiR and SumitS
Report: DineshB/SumitS/SarojD
Creative Support: Dijup/Pallavi

We set out in our time machine-the office vehicle towards the one of the ancient temples of the valley, ChanguNarayan. A pleasant morning with a drizzle it seemed a perfect day for the hike.All of us hoped that the drizzle would not turn into a downpour. It was around 8.30 when the van engine stopped rumbling. We started the way up to ChanguNarayan temple. It was about a 10 minutes’ walk from where we had stopped.

Changu Narayan is one of the most ancient pilgrimage site of Kathmandu Valley. It depicts preservation of the history, art and culture of different periods. The monument is significant from artistic, religious, cultural, historical and archaeological viewpoint. The Lord Vishnu residing in the place is worshipped by the Hindus as Narayan and Buddhists as Hari Vahan Lokeshwor. ChanguNarayan covers sixteen hundred years of Nepalese historyas it temple was built around 3rd Century by King Mandev. The temple is decorated with some of the finest wooden and metallic works. The intricacies of the wooden carvings is amazing- Devas staring you from the wall, fire gusting dragons of the bell, elephants and Garudas at each door.

Art work of the temple was so good we could not help but take out all of our cameras and capture the shot. There were a lot of interesting things to note. One was the “Half Grain of Rice” embedded in the wall of the temple. Legend has it that this grain was enough to make meal for a whole family. Another was a sculpture that is also present in the Nepali currency notes. There was a museum on the way to the temple maintained by a family. The house itself (as told to us by the owner) was more than 180 years old. It had a lot of information about Changu to offer and an excellent collection of ancient, historical, artistic, religious, archaeological, cultural objects and other artifacts dating back to the Lichhavi period.

The actual hike began at about 10 am. It was somehow an unusual hike. Normally, a hike starts from bottom to top and down again and from the urban area to the rural area. But our hike was just the opposite. We started from the top from the rural area towards the urban Bhaktapur area. We descended the hill with a breathtaking view of the Manohara basin. All through the hike there were temporary showers. Our raincoats and umbrella were folded and unfolded countless number of times!!

On our way from Changu Narayan to Bhaktapur Durbar Square we visited the Paropakar Orphanage. Then we moved to ‘Shree Changu Narayan Madhyamik Vidhyalaya’ where children of the orphanage were studying where the hiking team distributed notebooks and pencils to the children.It was really good to see those children smiling. We also visited Siddha Pokhari, which is the largest pond in Bhaktapur. The major feature of this pond is that one finds fishes of different varieties and that too in abundant number.The pond was so big that we could not capture it complete in a single frame.
Finally we reached Bhaktapur which is renowned for art, culture, colorful festivals, traditional dances and the typical Newari lifestyle. Painting, carving, masonry, bronze-casting, jewellery, pottery, etc. are other traditional enterprises still exist at Bhaktapur.Three main squares of the city namely the Pachpanna Jhyaale Durbar Square, the Nyatapola temple square and the Dattatraya Durbar square are remarkably attractive in their artistic exposition of elegant temples, dignified palace, graceful monasteries and Bihars standing around these open public places and connected to one another with quaint streets. Bhaktapur Durbar Square, that houses 55-window Palace was constructed by King Bhupatindra Malla and it is now a National Art Gallery. The Golden Gate, the Big Bell, the stone temple, statue of Bhupatindra Malla paying homage to the God and the palace itself with 55 windows are specially noticeable in the vicinity of Durbar Square.

Few minutes’ walk towards south lay the Taumadhi tole where the PaanchTalle Temple stands so tall that it is visible from any open place in Bhaktapur. The enigma of the temple and the surrounding cannot be explained. Nearby is another temple housing Lord Bhairab, which is huge in itself; its hugeness overshadowed by the gigantic PaanchTalle. The streets, Pottery Square, Dattatraya square and the ancient houses; all reflect the history of ancient art, culture and lifestyle.It was amazing how everything had been preserved so well till this day.

Before wrapping the trip, we took time to enjoy the taste of the representative recipe of Bhaktapur “Ju-Ju dhau – the King of Curds”. A perfect way to end the day!! And none of us could “have just one”.

All in all, the trip helped us re-live the history of art and culture of ancient medieval period.

First Glimpse of Changu Narayan
01 First Glimpse of Changu Narayan
Naturally Green
02 Naturally Green
Duwakot   at foothill of Changu
03 Duwakot at foothill of Changu
Two sides of Airport
04 Two sides of Airport
Changu Narayan
05 Changu Narayan
The idol in your Ten rupees note
06 The idol in your Ten rupees note
Lord Vishnu`s gadget
07 Lord Vishnu`s gadget
Garuda
08 Garuda
HawkEyes!!
09 HawkEyes!!
Goddess Chhinnamasta
10 Goddess Chhinnamasta
Look into my eyes; you will see.....
11 Look into my eyes; you will see…..
Eager to Attack but Bound to Support
12 Eager to Attack but Bound to Support
A group photo please!
13 A group photo please!
Half Grain of Rice  Legends has it that its enough for a whole family
14 Half Grain of Rice Legends has it that its enough for a whole family
Renovated Beautiful or Ugly
15 Renovated Beautiful or Ugly
who got a better picture
16 who got a better picture
Sanjeet n his bodyguards
17 Sanjeet n his bodyguards
Cindy rella
18 Cindy rella
History well preserved
19 History well preserved
Coins of different era I
20 Coins of different era I
Coins of different era II
21 Coins of different era II
Coins of different era III
22 Coins of different era III
What Matters is Patience and Hard Work
23 What Matters is Patience and Hard Work
The Mask
24 The Mask
`Cuttin Edge Technologies` of their time
25 `Cuttin Edge Technologies` of their time
Centuries old potteries in display
26 Centuries old potteries in display
High tech weapons of its time
27 High tech weapons of its time
Bhote Talcha(Ancient lock)
28 Bhote Talcha(Ancient lock)
Wooden Loom
29 Wooden Loom
The ladder to Heaven`s Door
30 The ladder to Heaven`s Door
Descending from Changu
31 Descending from Changu
`Leaning Tree of Changu`
32 `Leaning Tree of Changu`
Manohara basin
33 Manohara basin
Age doesn`t matter here
34 Age doesn`t matter here
Jumping Jack
35 Jumping Jack
a brief pitstop
36 a brief pitstop
Ravaging through the Jungle
37 Ravaging through the Jungle
OK! just one... no more pics please
38 OK! just one… no more pics please
Camera(s) at work
39 Camera(s) at work
Dragon Fly taking a rest
40 Dragon Fly taking a rest
Somebody define Huge
41 Somebody define Huge
Veteran Vishnu
42 Veteran Vishnu
Agriculture   Its still the main occupation of Nepal
43 Agriculture Its still the main occupation of Nepal
Why dont u take a picture while I take a  little break
44 Why dont u take a picture while I take a little break
A walk to remember
45 A walk to remember
Brick Business
46 Brick Business
Stride on the Blacktop
47 Stride on the Blacktop
No politics intended, just a praise for the slogan
48 No politics intended, just a praise for the slogan
Something to write with and Something to write on
49 Something to write with and Something to write on
Webmaster doing the Camoflauge
50 Webmaster doing the Camoflauge
Simply breath takingi
51 Simply breath takingi
where the fish at
52 where the fish at
Here they are
53 Here they are
Feeding the fish!!
54 Feeding the fish!!
Who bothers feeding the fish
55 Who bothers feeding the fish
Mesmerizing Siddhapokhari
56 Mesmerizing Siddhapokhari
In front of Durbar Square museum
57 In front of Durbar Square museum
Durbar Square   at a glance
58 Durbar Square at a glance
Inside of Bhaktapur Museum
59 Inside of Bhaktapur Museum
Well Documentated!!
60 Well Documentated!!
Medieval Era dedicated to art n culture
61 Medieval Era dedicated to art n culture
Bhadgaun is surely Rich in these
62 Bhadgaun is surely Rich in these
Like one of those Post Cards
63 Like one of those Post Cards
Just another example
64 Just another example
Everything is Art in this artistic City
65 Everything is Art in this artistic City
All made of Stone
66 All made of Stone
Bars n Windows
67 Bars n Windows
Golden Gate
68 Golden Gate
Palace with 55 windows
69 Palace with 55 windows
Typical (rainy) day in the Core of the City
70 Typical (rainy) day in the Core of the City
An old woman making a living and she is quite content with it
71 An old woman making a living and she is quite content with it
A Brilliant piece of Art in the making
72 A Brilliant piece of Art in the making
Nyatapola   The five storeyed temple
73 Nyatapola The five storeyed temple
Cant stop clicking
74 Cant stop clicking
Hitesh loves it on the edge
75 Hitesh loves it on the edge
It`s tall, isn`t it
76 It`s tall, isn`t it
Guard of the Giant Temple; gotta be Giant
77 Guard of the Giant Temple; gotta be Giant
Bhairab beside PaanchTalle
78 Bhairab beside PaanchTalle
Guard of Bhairab; got to be Fierce
79 Guard of Bhairab; got to be Fierce
Narasingha in Action
80 Narasingha in Action
Well Groomed Lion
81 Well Groomed Lion
No sound of water but Indeed Alarming
82 No sound of water but Indeed Alarming
Great Worshipper King Bhupatindra Malla
83 Great Worshipper King Bhupatindra Malla
Different Flavours of Window
84 Different Flavours of Window
Temple of  Dattatraya  built by sinlge trunk of a tree
85 Temple of Dattatraya built by sinlge trunk of a tree
Artifact from Medieval period
86 Artifact from Medieval period
Bhaktapur Hike Team
87 Bhaktapur Hike Team
Regular Hiker  and its not Sanjeet
88 Regular Hiker and its not Sanjeet
Thank you for visiting...
89 Thank you for visiting…