Guys, as you know, i’m not idle even when i’m not ‘working’. :D Therefore, i’d like to take you on a cultural tour of Bhaktapur. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Bhaktapur used to be called Bhadgaon in the past – a nation in itself. The Newari Civilization is still alive and thriving in Bhaktapur. The beauty of the Newari Civilization is that it’s one the very few living civilizations in the world which excels in art, architecture and culture. That’s precisely why the Gorkhalis readily adopted the Newari Civilization as their own after unifying Nepal.
In fact, the Kathmandu Valley Civilizations had learned long ago what Nepal as a country is still trying to learn: that the region lies in both the geographical & cultural fault lines. But, i find the caste-system n intricate family structure a bit cumbersome for the changing times. Btw, remember that i took the pics below in several days of wandering through the Bhaktapur streets, so don’t expect to find them all in one or half day’s tour.
On the outskirts of Bhaktapur met two kids. They were happy to pose for me. After taking their pic, I told them: when you’ll grow up, you’ll see your pic on the net. N they replied: we already surf the net. Oh my, the new generation is really ahead of me. Then they asked me 5 rupees each… hahaha… Just yesterday, Biplav Man Singh, who writes on economic issues, reflected on Facebook: we used to be happy with small things when we were kids, why can’t we be happy like that now?
Bhaktapur Durbar Square: a well-known site for the tourists n locals alike
Last Saturday, this friendly looking German guy approached me. Works as an educational consultant cum tour guide. After more than a year of living, he’s now a ‘local’ in Bhaktapur – from his dress-up and hairstyle to his smile and the red Teeka on his forehead. He also familiarized me with a few temples n buildings there.
The heart of the Durbar Square, on the right is a typical Pagoda style temple
This temple in front of Nyatpol is also a Pagoda style with a little modification. People say that you’ll see the influence of this type of architecture even in China. After all, Arniko had taken the Newari architecture to China long ago.
However, this beautiful stone temple is very different in its architecture from other surrounding temples n buildings. I’ve seen this type temple mostly in South & West India. Also in Varanasi.
The Durbar Square Area is full of tourists almost everyday. Some tourists from Europe. The German guy said they’re from Italy.
Hippie guys. i liked the way they were sitting on the Chidi of a narrow alley..
The Pottery Square: she’s grinding spices manually as she inherited the art from her mom..
Another example of the combination of art n work: an old man revolving his pottery wheel manually..
Lemme show you my art of making pots, kid!
Gandhi’s Inspiration: Making threads from a spinning wheel manually…
A man enjoying his hookah: i’m my own King
Tourist kids enjoying themselves…
Feeling Hungry? Why not try the Newari Bara Wo? Like the French, the Newars are also proud of their culinary varieties.
N this place does not even look like an eatery or a restaurant. It looks like the kitchen of a home.
there you see, mom’s giving yummy Bara-Wo with gram soup to me. Besides being nourishing n tasty, they’re really cheap here in comparison to other places..
The next day, a hippie guy sneaked in n sat beside me. i’ve found that generally people who live n travel alone are friendly, happy n open. This guy is from Chile, South America. Kids, do you remember your GK class ? Which country has a shape like an elephant tusk? Yes, Chile. n we started comparing our beards. :D
However, if you think that tourists in Nepal come only from Europe and America, you’re mistaken. The gal with gogs on her head is from India. ;)
n they’re from China.. ;)
NO PHOTOS: hahaha :D
Mind your Head: A notice on the door of a Thangka Shop. The doors in Bhaktapur houses are generally low in height..
A Granda Pa playing with his granchild: btw, who do you think is a kid?
I’d seen this man some 10 years ago…he’s still on the same place selling the same Sandheko or spiced fruits with the same enthusiasm
Like a human being, every tree is an individual.. this one is thinner on the lower side..
Last but not least: no one should forget that Nepal is a Multi-Cultural country.