icons/avalancheicons/bootscompassfacebookicons/gloveshandsicons/hearticons/helmeticons/ice axeinstagramminusmountainicons/pathsMap Pinplusicons/questionicons/guideicons/ropeicons/gogglesicons/stafftenttwitteryoutube

Artisans of Kathmandu

Patan palace square with tem­ples from the 16th-18th cen­tu­ry. Deana Zabal­do photo

Our trip to Mus­tang begins with a deli­cious tra­di­tion­al Newari din­ner. Newari peo­ple are the cen­turies-old artists of the Kath­man­du Val­ley, and our tour the fol­low­ing day includes an inside look at the old king­dom of Patan and some of its world-famous arti­sans. The pago­da tem­ples of the palace square pay trib­ute to the crafts­man­ship that goes back hun­dreds of years, and we get to meet today’s artists who fol­low in their father’s and grand­fa­ther’s footsteps. 

Deana Zabal­do photo

Moira watch­es the mas­ter paint a Tantric Ganesh. Deana Zabal­do photo

A mas­ter painter shows off works that take any­where from 5 to 12 years to com­plete. He paints vibrant and ornate tantric deities, begin­ning by pound­ing the can­vas with stones to soft­en and smooth it, and years lat­er com­plet­ing the final details with a paint­brush that has only 2 hairs. A fil­i­gree mas­ter opens his work­shop to us and shows us how they carve lapis lazuli and turquoise into gods and set stones with mil­lime­ter-thin sil­ver wire. 

Alma inspects sil­ver fil­i­gree for Bud­dhist stat­ues. Deana Zabal­do photo

Tomor­row we fly to Pokhara, en route to the For­bid­den King­dom of Mustang! 

~ MM Guide Deana Zabaldo