Festival of Colors, is one of the most popular festivals in Nepal.
Holi is a popular and colourful Hindu festival but has become a common festival in many countries of South Asia and also in the countries where Hindu followers reside. It is a festival of colours, a festival to welcome spring, and also a festival of love and to be loved.
Each year in Spring in various places around the world, people gather in the streets and with great joy, much enthusiasm and smiling faces , throw handfuls of brightly coloured chalks and dyes into the air. It is a time of happiness, love and laughter. Innocent bystanders and passersby do not escape the tradition with everything from chalks to water balloons being used to add to the fun and excitement. So what is it and why is it celebrated?
The festival is traditionally called the Holi Festival and is celebrated throughout Hindu cultures. It is a celebration of the triumph of good over evil and is timed with the arrival of spring. It is a time when people can come together and celebrate their “oneness,” throw away their inhibitions and celebrate life. It is a time of love and joy and forgiveness and is celebrated by covering themselves and each other in a kaleidoscope of bright colours.
Colour itself is highly significant in the Hindu culture, with each colour representative of an aspect of religion.
The legends behind the celebration of” Holi” are as vibrant and divergent as the colours themselves. Some legends relate to abundance and love and others to demonic desires. Some claim it depicts the death of the demoness Holika and the eradication of the god Prahlad by fire, for others, the burning of the Ogress known as Pootana and another, the burning of the Hindu god of human desire Kaamadeva on the day of Holi.
The best time to visit Nepal is between October and December, when the skies are a clear blue and the views spectacular. The weather remains dry until about April, with temperatures varying between regions. January and February can be very cold
The cost of a medical evacuation from the mountain is expensive, which is why adequate travel insurance is required on all climbs booked through us. Adequate, means you must be covered for
1) Trekking or hiking – this may sound strange, but many insurance list that as an exclusion.
2) Altitude up to 6,000 meters. Most travel insurance providers do not include this under their standard cover and often limit it to 3500m or less.
3) Sprains strains and physiotherapy – yes, many insurers exclude this; though ironically, this is what you will most likely need cover for.
4) Personal accident – this is the horrible part of insurance. Yes, you need to be covered in the case of death. We are often told by clients – “if anything happens to me, just leave me there.” It is not that simple.
Day-1: Arrive Kathmandu
Arrival and transfer to Hotel.
Day-2: Guided sightseeing
After breakfast we set out for an extensive guided sightseeing tour of Kathmandu valleys cultural, historical, religious (world heritage) sites. During the day, we visit the famous Pashupatinath temple of Lord Shiva situated at the holy bank of River Bagmati where we will also observe the Hindu cremation ritual. We then proceed to the Boudhanath Stupa, a major pilgrimage centre for the Buddhist faith which also is the largest of its kind in the world. We then have a short break for lunch followed by a visit to Swoyambhunath stupa also known as the Monkey Temple from where we can have a bird’s eye view of the whole of Kathmandu valley.
Following this, we visit Kathmandu Durbar Square, the oldest royal palace of Kathmandu and a UNESCO world heritage site. The area of Kathmandu Durbar Square is home to fascinating Nepalese architectural pieces dating back many centuries. The site is also the home to Nepal’s living Goddess - Kumari. In the evening we will attend the welcome dinner with a live Nepalese culture show.
Day-3: Holi Festival
Free in Kathmandu to experience the Holi Festival
Day-4: Bhaktapur Durbar Square and Nagarkot
Today, we head to Bhaktapur, also known as Bhadgaon, situated at an altitude of 1401m. It is a home to medieval art and architecture and was the site for Burtoluchhis Little Buddha. After lunch, we continue to Patan, also known as Lalitpur, literally the city of fine arts. We then drive to Nagarkot. From Nagarkot you get some of the best views of the Himalaya, with eight ranges visible (Annapurna, Manaslu, Ganesh Himal, Langtang, Jugal, Rolwaling, Everest and Numbur). However, timing is everything, as the mountains are notorious for disappearing behind cloudy skies. The best viewing seasons are October to December and March to April, when clear skies are likely.
After an early wake up we will be off to see panoramas of the eastern Himalaya including 5 of worlds ten highest peaks. We then drive to Pokhara. Pokhara is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Nepal. Many tourists visit Pokhara Valley to see the Himalayan range and lakes.
Day-6: Sarangot and Pokhara
A full day of sightseeing is ahead of us, starting with an early morning drive to Sarangkot to watch the sun rise. We then take in several sights, such as the Vindyavasini Temple, Mahendra Cave, the beautiful Fewa Lake for a peaceful hour of boating, and later, the World Peace Stupa of Lord Buddha. Later, we will visit the Tibetan Refugee Camp and continue to David Falls.
Day-7: Royal Chitwan National Park.
Today we drive to the Royal Chitwan National Park, getting there around 16:00 hrs, We will be transferred by canoes across the River to the waiting elephants which will ferry us to our camp. The Park is home to the great one horned rhinoceros, sloth bear, wild boar, bison, deer, monkeys, crocodiles, leopard, tiger and much more. Overnight stay at a Resort.
Day-8: Royal Chitwan National Park.
Early this morning, we will be mounted on elephant back and then taken for a jungle safari for 2 -3 hours heading through dense 18-20 ft grasslands. After breakfast we will be taken to the elephant stables were we witness the rare scene of the elephants at bath.
Day-9: Royal Chitwan National Park - Kathmandu
This morning some activities take place before breakfast. After breakfast, elephant, land rover and canoes will transfer you to waiting vehicles for the drive to Kathmandu.
Day-10: Free at leisure in Kathmandu.
Day-11: Departure from Kathmandu.
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