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Peru with Mountain Madness

Gokyo Trek Tours Kathmandu

Boud­dhanath. Jere­my Allyn photo

Our fall Gokyo and Ever­est Base Camp Trek is under­way! The team arrived yes­ter­day and enjoyed a wel­come din­ner at the Tukuche Thakali Kitchen while they met their trekking part­ners for the next three weeks. The group enjoyed a deli­cious authen­tic meal from the Mus­tang region of Nepal. 

Leela nad Leonie shop­ping for some beau­ti­ful pash­mi­na. Jere­my Allyn photo

Today, they got to explore Kath­man­du with their tour guide, Deep. The day’s adven­tures start­ed off with a vis­it to Swayamb­hu­nath, or the famous Mon­key Tem­ple. After dri­ving to the top, they walked around a bit, doging the hun­dreds of mon­keys run­ning around. In the front of the tem­ple, the team observed a puja tak­ing place. Rather than dri­ving back down, they walked the impres­sive 365 steps down to the bot­tom! Just a minor warm up before they reach the Khum­bu Valley.

In the court­yard of the Kumari palace. Jere­my Allyn photo

The group con­tin­ued on to Dur­bar Square, where Deep­’s knowl­edge of the Hin­du cul­ture brought to life the archi­tec­ture, his­to­ry and spir­i­tu­al­i­ty of the square. While the team vis­it­ed the spir­i­tu­al palace of the Kumari, they were for­tu­nate to wit­ness a rare occa­sion. The Kumari, a pre-pubes­cent young girl, select­ed by the Newari com­mu­ni­ty as the liv­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the god­dess Tale­ju, rarely leaves her palace, most­ly for spe­cial occa­sions. How­ev­er, the group wit­ness a rare occa­sion, where she came to a win­dow in the court­yard and blessed them on their jour­ney. What a spec­tac­u­lar experience!

Boud­dhanath. Jere­my Allyn photo

Lunchtime brought the group across town to Boud­dhanath, where they had a beau­ti­ful rooftop lunch above the main stu­pa, a sacred place for Bud­dhism, drink­ing some clas­sic Ever­est Beer. They then walked around Boud­dhanath, the largest stu­pa in Nepal. Deep then took the group to meet his friend Lama Tson­amgel, the man­ag­er of a Thang­ka paint­ing school. He sat down with the group and intro­duced them to the Bud­dhist sym­bols in these beau­ti­ful paint­ings. Some of the trekkers even went home with their own hand-paint­ed Thangkas. 

Lama Tson­amgel teach­ing about Thang­ka art. Jere­my Allyn photo

The weath­er is look­ing good for an on-sched­ule depar­ture tomor­row morn­ing for Luk­la. Stay tuned for more updates from the team as they make their way up to Ever­est Base Camp and on to the Gokyo region!