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Friday, October 3, 2014, Ashwin 18, 1421, Zilhajj 7, 1435 Hijr

Travel & Tour
Nepal, queen of beauty and cultural heritage
Asmaul Husna
Publish Date : 2014-10-03,  Publish Time : 00:00,  View Count : 129
I woke up early from bed; the rain was dripping leisurely, and I packed my baggage to visit Nepal along with my father on 16th July of this year. The night before, I booked a ticket over phone in Biman Bangladesh Airlines though the chances of confirming the tickets were slim, as people had loads of complaints and terrible experiences about Biman Bangladesh for not acting professionally.
My father was quite sure that I wouldn't get the ticket and would return from airport disappointed.
Apparently, I missed collecting the ticket on time as I was stuck for hours in the traffic jam. I failed to appear at the Biman counter by 10 in the morning, the deadline for collecting the ticket.
However, I reached the airport at 11 in the morning and went straight to the counter, and collected the ticket.
On July 16, we boarded the Biman at 1:30 pm which took off and landed on time.
After finishing the official procedures at Tribhuvan International Airport in Nepalese capital Kathmandu, my father and I finally had a sigh of relief.
I found the clouds were playing hide and seek with the Kathmandu hills and the mesmerizing beauty of nature. Most of the buildings were designed in such a way that it gave me a feeling as if I was in an ancient city.
As we drove through the narrow busy roads we could see, amid the misty clouds, the mountain ranges of the Mount Everest - surely a breathtaking view, the highest peak of the world.
In the evening the same day, we went to Patan Durbar Square in the city. It is a palace of the Malla kings that took me almost 300 years back.
It has old houses consisting of temples and stupas and flocks of pigeons. As soon as we reached there, it started to rain lightly. I was pacing steadily through the alleyway. Seeing the walls I was amazed to see the engravings done many centuries ago.
By the road, in a mini food stall, two women were busy frying food, which appeared delicious. We didn't waste any time and found space to order some meals in the tiny makeshift shop which was already crowded.
At the food shop we had ordered for traditional Nepali food. They had served us with Newari food. Newar or Newah are the indigenous people living in Kathmandu valley who are very rich in culture and traditions.
Newari meals are very tasty and famous all over the world, like Choila, which is buffalo meat marinated in spices and grilled on coal flames, Baji, beaten rice, AlooSadeko, boiled potato with various spices, and roasted soya beans.
The food was mouth-watering and very hot and completely different from Bangladeshi food. Next item was Momo, a popular snack of Nepal, boiled buns containing buffalo meat, chicken or pork, which is served with sticky sauce.
After enjoying the popular street food, we went straight to our hotel, located on top of a high ground at Lalitpur in the city centre. This hotel is shaped in traditional Nepali architecture and designed with wooden door, window, floor and veranda.
As it is surrounded by trees, it gives a feeling that you are somewhere in the midst of nature. Most of the buildings are two storied. During the day one can see the Kathmandu hill from Lalitpur, a breathtaking view of course.  At night the ambience of the hotel turns totally into a different environment as the surroundings turns extremely quiet.
Later, on 17th we went to Kathmandu Durbar Square, the palace where the royal family once lived. Established in 1672 AD, known as Basantapur Durbar from 1770 AD, the palace reflected the rich history of Nepal.
On the same day, around 4 in the afternoon we noticed that people were crowding near a small house to meet the Kumarimata, the living goddess of Nepal, a pre-pubescent girl considered as exposition of feminine quality of earthly goddess Taleju or Durga.
Later in the day we had the opportunity of having a look at the goddess which we didn't miss. A beautiful girl, dressed in traditional colourful dress and ornaments, eyes lined with kohl, came in the window of the house. Viewers were enchanted by her amazing beauty and holiness.
One thing is note worthy that the majority of the Nepalese are Hindus and they are very much devoted and religiously follow the rituals and rites of their religion.
There are many temples commonly found by the road, house or traditional places. Pashupatinath Temple is considered as the most sacred temple of Nepal, located beside the Baghmati River and established around 400 AD. When we reached there we were stunned by its architectural beauty which embellished with mainly golden coat and the doors with silver coat.
The next day our destination was at Bhaktapur Durbar Square, the biggest palace of three Durbars of Nepal. It symbolizes the traditional history, culture, architecture of Nepal, which would surely take any visitors to the medieval era. Bhaktapur is known as the city of devotees. The city is famous for woodcarving, handmade papers, pottery, art gallery and woven cloths.
The place around Bhaktapur is mainly a Newari village. We had meals in traditional Newari eatery including Chatamaari, Buff lung fry, Thakali and Chenn which were lip smacking. We also had the famous sweet curds of Bhaktapur.
We went to Nepal in the rainy season. The weather seemed a bit whimsical as it was raining now and then. The weather was cosy which we enjoyed very much.
Thummel, a commercial zone in Kathmandu city centre, is convenient for tourists. Most of the foreigners stay here as there are plenty of bargain guest houses apart from the routine hotels.
Nepal is a very tourist friendly country and the appealing beauty of the nature attracts the tourists very much.

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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