Lord Krishna Janmasthami “श्रीकृष्ण जन्माष्टमी”

Lord Krishna Janmasthami “श्रीकृष्ण जन्माष्टमी”

Sree Krishna Janmastami

Lord Krishna is regarded as the 8th avatar or ‘incarnation’ of Lord Vishnu. Krishna belonged to the Vrishni clan (yadu vansa) of Yadavas from Mathura. He was the eighth son of King Vasudev and Queen Devaki of Mathura. He was born exactly at midnight. His incarnation took place to end the ill doings of his wicked maternal uncle Kansa. He was biological child of Vasudev and Devaki, but he was brought up by Nanda and Yasoda Maiya. Krishna’s childhood is full of fun and love. His youth is romantic and example of love and friendship with Gopis and Gopinies. He was married to Rukmani. His beloved Gopini was Radha. Krishna has very important role in Holy Battle of Mahabharata. He was the Chariot Rider of Arjun. He was the main character who supported Pandavs against Kauravs to win the holy war. His holy advices are known as Bhagwat Gita, where he teaches Arjun about Dharma and Paap (Sin). He did not physically take part in the battle, but he was the heart and soul of Pandavs. The pandavs had never won the war without his help.


He is worshiped with so many names: Krishna, Murari, Hari, Gopal, Shyam, Nanda Lala, Makhan Chor and hundreds of other names. In fact, Krishna said “you just remember me, whatever name; I will be with you, if I know you are calling me”. He is named Krishna because he is Dark. Krishna in Sanskrit is Dark (Black). He is regarded as inventor of Basuri/Murali (flute). He was fond of playing flute. He always had flute in his hand. He played his flute in Brindhaban and Mathura. It is said, the vibration of his music is still floating in the environment of those places.

Why do we celebrate Krishna Jansathami

In Bhagavad Gita Krishna says, “Whenever there is predominance of evil and decline of good doings (religion), I will reincarnate again and again to end the evil and to save the Dharma (good)”. Krishna Jayanti is cel ebration of victory of good and Dharma over devil and bad power. We celebrate this day to to remember that when the pot of sin is filled, there is an end to the devil, God will come to rescue. Krishna Janmasthami reminds us those stories of battle between good and evil and tells us that the good always wins.

A glimpse of celebration of Krishna Janmasthami in Nepal

Krishna Janmashtami is celebrated all around the world by all Hindu; There is tradition to observe a fasting till midnight. They enchant Slokas from the “Bhagwat Gita” and sing religious songs (Bhajans). The temples of Lord Krishna are decorated and bhajans and kirtan are sung or played. The Krishna Mandir in Patan Durbar Square, Narayanhiti Krishnamandir and other temples of lord Krishna are the centers for festivities in Krishna Janmaasthimi. On Krishna Janmashtami numerous devotees flock to the ancient Krishna temple in old Patan Durbar Square to keep vigil through the glorious night of his birth. As they sit huddled together their bodies rocking in humble obeisance, the women chant the many names of the Lord,’Narayan, Narayan’ and Gopal, Gopal’. Some sing ancient hymns, others clap their hands, while some pray. Crowds of men and women edge their way slowly up narrow steps through the seated devotees to the temple’s dark interior to where the main idol stands. There they offer flowers, coins and food and wait for a glimpse of Krishna Janmastami festival at Krishna Mandir the idol. After the temple priest gives them ‘prasad’ they make their way home.

Patan Krishna Temple

Beautiful cribs holding a small idol of the “Balgopal” (baby Krishna), the makhan chor, are installed in all Krishna temples. Krishna lila (drama) is performed during this festival.

Happy Krishna Janmasthami ……!!!

God Bless We All.

Latvian couples passion for trekking: We will come back again

Latvian couples passion for trekking: We will come back again

Nepals high altitude trekking routes are one of the most adventurous attractions for backpackers promising an encounter with the pristine natural beauty.

Latvian couples

The tourists from all over the world who visit Nepal have always made it a point of taking a tour through the trekking and hiking routes that wind through high altitude mountains and hills.

Latvian couple Ints Murnieks and Natalia Krastina headed straight to the trans Himalayan Upper Mustang trek route opened for tourists since 1992 after their arrival in Kathmandu. The couple who are in Nepal for the ninth time trekked for a week from Jomsom and traversing Kagbeni, Chete, Ekle Bhati, Dhami, Upper Mustang, Lomanthang and Muktinath lying 3,800 meters above sea level before returning to Kathmandu.

Their thirst for more trekking could not be quenched after starting their trek from Kaligandaki river bank surrounded by more than 35 mountains above 6,000 meters and the majestic Dhaulagiri peak (8,000 meters). The altitude of the trails they journeyed through ranged from 2000 meters to more than 3,700 meters.

We visited some famous, historic and culturally important places in Kathmandu and Patan for some days and we headed towards Dolpa after participating in the relief programme for quake victims in Timang of Kavre, Ints said.

Tired but not satisfied, the Latvian couple then took the upper Dolpa trek route. In course of their journey during which the couple passed through two mountain passes at an altitude of 5,200 meters, they came across the untouched Himalayan lifestyle, culture and religion accompanied by splendid beauty of the alpine landscape.

We were sipping coffee with a good chat at Dunai area of Dolpa and we felt that even after travelling through upper Dolpa for three weeks and our visit to Mustang our journey has not ended, so we decided to head to Kanchenjunga trek route immediately, Natalia said. They completed a three week trekking of Kanchenjunga which took three weeks.

Latvian couples trekking

When this scribe met them at Hotel Himalaya in Thamel, the couple was readying to head to Bhutan another mountainous country. After we return from Bhutan we will go on a visit to the Buddhist places and exercise meditation, and we will once again go on a trek route of Mardi mountain in the Annapurna area before returning to Latvia in December, Natalia shared.

The massive earthquake measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale which struck on April 25 has killed more than 9,000 people while injuring around 23,000. More than 800,000 houses suffered partial or complete damages including the heritage sites. The tourism sector suffered a great setback in the earthquake despite which tourists continue to visit Nepal in an expression of solidarity with Nepals eagerness to bounce back.

We have found that the earthquake has not inflicted so much damage as reported in the media, the couple said adding, hotels and restaurants, trek routes and other places are still safe. The couple has already toured Mustang, Dolpa and Kanchenjunga.

The Latvian couple has lent support worth around 10,000 Euros by providing food and constructing temporary shelters for the victims of the earthquake through the Himalaya Peace Education Foundation, Rajendra Bahadur Lama, who works with the Foundation, told the National News Agency (RSS).

The Latvian couple had spent a few days in Kathmandu during a transit to Tibet in 2005. Since then their journey to Nepal has continued incessantly.

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Source: MyRepublica

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Popular Ghorepani-Poonhil trek route upgraded

Popular Ghorepani-Poonhil trek route upgraded

Hotel and tourism entrepreneurs of Ghorepani have come together to upgrade the popular trekking route of Ghorepani-Poonhil.

In the past three years, more than Rs. 7 million has been spent in improving the condition of the trekking route, according to Ghorepani Hotel Management Committee. Last year, the committee had received Rs. 500,000 from the District Development Committee, and the remaining was contributed by the entrepreneurs.
The upgrading work was carried out in the 700 meters of Ghorepani-Poonhil route, 400 meters of Ghorepani-Shikha route and 200 meters of Ghorepani-Tikhedhunga route, said chairperson of the Committee Junu Pun. Work is still underway in the three kilometer Ghorepani-Ghandruk route.
The committee has been collecting funds including annual tax raised by the hotel, tourist tax and donations.

The Ghorepani region receives some 30,000 tourists every year. There are 22 well-equipped hotels in Ghorepani with an investment of more than Rs. 5 million. Ghorepani was opened to tourists in 1970. RSS

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Is it time to go back to Nepal?

Is it time to go back to Nepal?

On 25 April and 12 May 2015, deadly earthquakes struck central Nepal, causing catastrophic damage to Kathmandu and the surrounding valleys. Harrowing pictures of magnificent temples turned to rubble and concrete hotels collapsed on their foundations were beamed around the world. Five months on from the disaster, Nepal has declared itself open for tourism, but is now the right time to come back to Nepal, and what exactly will you find when you get here?

ADB photo

Image by Asian Development Bank

Assessing the damage
Media images at the time of the earthquakes made it look as though Nepal was completely destroyed, with its astonishing cultural heritage in ruins. The truth makes for less sensational headlines: while 130 historic temples collapsed across the country, only 14 of Nepal’s 75 districts suffered damage, and many of Nepal’s most famous sights escaped completely unscathed.

Even at the height of the disaster, travellers were relaxing in the resort town of Pokhara, unaware of the destruction to towns just 50km away. In Kathmandu, the vast majority of hotels reopened within days of the earthquakes, with just a handful of historic heritage hotels remaining closed for repairs.

This is not the first time Nepal has faced an earthquake of this scale, and as in 1934, Nepalis have stepped in to save what can be saved, and are now rebuilding for the future. How quickly this can happen will depend to a large degree on how quickly tourists return to the country and invest in the local economy.

Here is an overview of how different parts of Nepal are recovering after the disaster.

Kathmandu suffered the full force of the earthquakes, and damage was extensive, but localised to specific parts of the city. Four of the iconic temples in the UNESCO-listed Durbar Square collapsed completely including the multi-tiered Maju Deval Temple, one of Kathmandu’s most famous landmarks but the majority of temples still stand and the square is once again open to sightseers.

The royal palace of Hanuman Dhoka remains closed due to structural damage to the southern courtyards, but work is underway to reopen the museum and palace chambers. Perhaps the most photographed casualty of the earthquake was the Bhimsen Tower, which collapsed completely for the second time in its history (it was also destroyed in the 1934 earthquake). Today, it stands as a ruined plinth, but developers have pledged to rebuild it.

Other major World Heritage Sites such as the magnificent Buddhist stupas at Swayambhunath and Bodhnath were only mildly affected; restoration work has repaired the most obvious damage and the most tangible evidence for the disaster is some lingering scaffolding. The sacred Hindu pilgrimage site of Pashupatinath saw a terrible tide of funeral cremations following the earthquake but the site itself was mostly undamaged.

Patan krishna Mandir

Image by Rene C. Nielsen

Patan, Bhaktapur & the Kathmandu Valley

Despite the loss of some landmark monuments, including the famous Char Narayan and Hari Shankar temples, Patan’s Durbar Square and its stunning Patan Museum are open as normal. The quakes took a heavy toll on the traditional brick buildings of Bhaktapur, but here too, most of the medieval temples are still standing, including Nepal’s tallest, the five-storey Nyatapola Temple.

Elsewhere in the Kathmandu Valley, the damage was patchy. Some places escaped with minor cracks, while towns like Sankhu and Bungamati saw temple after temple crumble to rubble. While the valley is definitely open to travellers, it’s worth checking with locals before heading off from Kathmandu to be clear on which areas are still off-limits due to reconstruction following the disaster.


Image by Mike Behnken

Across the country

Looking beyond the Kathmandu Valley, the historic towns of Nuwakot and Gorkha and their fortress-palaces were particularly badly affected due to their proximity to the epicenters of the two tremors, and the quakes caused extensive damage to the road to the Tibetan border and the Langtang Valley. However, away from the center of the country, there are few signs that the earthquake ever happened.

The east and west of the country were not seriously affected by the disaster, and most damage is restricted to trekking routes in remote areas. The tourist and trekking hub of Pokhara was effectively untouched and the trekking routes around it have been surveyed and declared safe. Despite damage to some villages along the trails, trekking in the Everest region has also been declared safe.

In the lowlands, the towns and national parks of the Terai were almost entirely unaffected. Wildlife safaris in Chitwan National Park and Bardia National Park continue as normal and the number of tigers in Nepal is actually on the rise, bucking the regional trend. The birthplace of the Buddha at Lumbini – an increasingly popular stop on the overland route between India and Nepal – also escaped unharmed.


Image by Chris Marquardt

Travelling to Nepal after the earthquake

The key thing to note is that infrastructure for tourists was remarkably unaffected by the disaster. Airports are operating as normal and almost all of Kathmandu’s tourist hotels and restaurants remain open, or will reopen for the winter tourist season, though business is currently slim. Kathmandu’s traveller district of Thamel is much as it was before the disaster, and transportation around the city, the Kathmandu Valley and the country continues as normal.

The main roads across Nepal are open to traffic (or as open as they ever were!), and the Arniko Hwy/Friendship Hwy to Tibet and Everest’s North Base Camp (in Tibet) is due to reopen for the 2015 winter season. However, roads are still cut off in some rural areas, where earthquake damage has been worsened by monsoon landslides. This situation is likely to persist for some time, so it pays to confirm that roads are clear and that accommodation will be available before leaving Kathmandu.


Image by Wonderlane

So should I go ?
In August, the US and UK lifted their country-wide travel advisories against travel to Nepal, meaning that travellers and companies can once again get travel insurance for upcoming trips. Most western travel companies plan to run trekking trips as normal for the 2015/16 winter and spring seasons and some companies are even offering special reconstruction treks, though it’s now more important than ever to do some research and partner with a reliable NGO that has long-established links with the country.

Of course, Nepal still has its problems – including a fuel shortage caused by a political stand-off with India over the new Nepali constitution – but these kinds of issues are part of the landscape when travelling in the subcontinent. Despite these problems, in many ways now is a great time to visit Nepal.

The infrastructure that travellers need is in place, but tourism is down by over 50%, which means fewer crowds on the popular trekking routes and discounts for hotels and airfares. More importantly, the money you spend when hiring a guide or porter, staying in a lodge or hotel, or eating in a restaurant will directly help local people. Given that 500,000 Nepalis work directly in tourism, the country needs travellers more than ever to rebuild its economy and bounce back stronger for the future.

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Source: www.lonelyplanet.com

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Individual Everest permits also extended for 5 years

The government has made amendment to Mountaineering Regulations, allowing mountaineers, who took individual permits to climb Mt Everest in spring last year, to use the permit over the next five years.

Earlier, the government had extended validity of only group permits. But the decision had draw flak from mountaineers who said it was not possible for all members in the team to gather at the same time for the expedition. Minister of General Administration Lal Babu Pandit said that the cabinet has decided to allow individual climbers to use their climbing permits over the next five years.


A total of 334 climbers of 32 expedition teams, including a Nepali team, had received permits to climb Mt Everest last year. The climbers, however, are required to pay US$ 1,000 to the Department of Tourism (DoT) based on the new royalty structure. The government reduced royalty fee for foreigners climbing Mt Everest from normal route, also known as the South East Ridge, to $11,000 per person from $25,000 per person with effect from January1, 2015.

All expedition teams called off their expedition after a deadly avalanche near Camp II of Mt Everest killed 16 Sherpa guides in April last year. “With the amendment in Mountaineering Regulations, we are hopeful that the number of mountaineers on Mt Everest will increase this year. We will see new climbers as well as those who had cancelled their trip last year,” Pushpa Raj Katuwal, chief of Mountaineering Section at DoT, told Republica.

According to Katuwal, the government has issued climbing permits to five teams so far. Meanwhile, DoT will send two liaison officers who will man the government’s contact office at the Everest Base Camp for the entire climbing season. The government has already prepared Terms of Reference (ToR) for the liaison officers.

“With this arrangement, we believe climbers will feel much safer. Also, they can get the required information in time,” he added. The liaison officers will provide weather updates, coordinate rescue operations in case of emergencies and settle disputes arising among climbing parties.

The government has changed climbing route slightly this year to avoid the where avalanche hit mountaineering workers last year. According to the department, climbers will have to deviate around 40 meters right of the regular trail which will extend the trip to Camp I by around two hours.

“In case the government reduces climbing permit fee in the next five years, we will refund the climbers accordingly,” Tulsi Prasad Gautam, director general of DoT, said.

Source: Republica

Nepal to improve and speed up Mount Everest rescues, have more doctors at base camp


Nepalese officials say they’re adding more medical staff at Mount Everest’s base camp and will speed up rescue efforts during the current climbing season.

The moves come after 16 local guides were killed by an avalanche last year in the deadliest disaster ever on the world’s highest peak.

Devi Bahadur Koirala of the Himalayan Rescue Association Nepal said Tuesday that four doctors would be stationed in the base camp’s emergency room tent, which will be equipped to handle almost any medical need.

Koirala said plans have been made to enable sick or injured climbers to be airlifted from the mountain by rescue helicopters within 90 minutes.

Nepal’s popular spring climbing season, when hundreds of foreigners and their local guides attempt to scale Everest, runs from March 1 to May 31.

Source: Foxnews