Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Kumari : The Living Goddess


Seated royally on her throne, she's possessed, chosen and worshipped, The Kumari. At a tender age, she holds responsibilities of granting the wishes of thousands praying to her, of protecting all those around her and trading her own childhood for the fulfilment of her duties, she is The Living Goddess.

 The Kumari is believed to be the living incarnation of the Goddess Taleju, also know as the Durga. Among many stories of The Kumari's existence today, the one most told as legend has it is that of the time during the rule of the late King Jayaprakash Mallla. It is believed that the Goddess Taleju would pay a visit to the King every night and would discuss the affairs of the country over a game of dice, Tripasa, under the condition that their meetings would remain a secret between the two.

Witnessing the King's strange and constant errands every night was his wife whose curiosity drove her to finally follow him only to be noticed by the Goddess who was highly offended and angered by her presence.
After tremendous efforts of apologies made by the King, Goddess Taleju eventually decided to grant him forgiveness under the condition that he would have to search for her in a pre-pubescent girl among the Shakya community and worship her in order to make up for the offence he caused her and since then the tradition of worship carries on till today and holds an auspicious value which also adds to the rich culture of Nepal.

There are several rituals and procedures that are required to be fulfilled in order to recognise the Kumari, the Goddess is said to dwell in her body only as long as she does not suffer serious illness or a major loss from an injury,
Many Kumaris are chosen around the country but the one most worshipped and known is The Royal Kumari of Kathmandu. She lives in the Kumari Ghar, a palace in the center of the city. The Kumari Jatra is a festival dedicated to her where she appears before the public and blesses the crowd with her presence. She also publicly appears during sacred ceremonies and events. In the present time she appears almost everyday around 4:00pm at the Hanuman Dhoka for everyone to receive her blessing.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Happy New Year...again and again

Although 2014 is just a few months young, people in Nepal are getting ready to celebrate another New Year - the Nepali one. 2070 is about to end to make way for 2071…to guarantee a little bit of "Back To The Future” feeling for everyone.
Time is relative and so are calendars. Asking different people in Nepal for the current year you would probably hear 1134 as well as 2014, 2070, 2141 and 2848. And none of these answers is wrong. Nepal is a country with a huge diversity of cultures and ethnic groups, with many of them having their own calendars. Of course the importance of those calendars has decreased drastically in the past years - peoples are mixing and respecting each calendar would simply lead to a lot of confusion. Nowadays most Nepalese only use the English calendar and the Nepali one, called Bikram Sambat and according to which 2071 starts from Monday, 14th April 2014 (or Baisakh 1st according to Nepali calendar). But other New Years are still celebrated as national holidays, which makes Nepal probably the only country with 6 different New Years. New Years to be celebrated in the coming months are:
2014-04-14 Bikram Sambat 2071 (Nepali New Year)
2014-10-24 Nepal Sambat 1135 (Old Nepali New Year, now mostly celebrated by Newars)
2014-12-30 Tamu Losar (Gurung New Year)
2015-01-21 Sonam Losar 2849 (Tamang New Year)
2015-02-19 Gyalpo Losar 2142 (Tibetan New Year)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Trekking season

Trekking in the Himalayas
Trekking is possible at anytime of the year depending on where you are going. The most popular seasons are spring (February-May) and autumn (September-December). Winter is very cold above 4000m and high mountain passes may be snowbound, but it is good for trekking at lower altitudes. During the monsoon season (June-August), you can trek in the rain-shadow areas north of the Himalayan like Mustang, upper Manang and Dolpo.

Monsoon season (June – August) is considered to be the most unattractive time for tourist activities due to the heavy rains. Many people decide not to visit Nepal during this period of time, especially after reading some disappointing information regarding the monsoon definition. Even though the amounts of rains are considerably higher compared to the peak season, there are still plenty of activities and opportunities for adventure. Many first time trekkers who trek during the monsoon are still very satisfied with their first experience. Also what makes the trek more unique and personal is the extremely small amount of tourist on the trek compared to peak season. You can avoid monsoon by trekking in the rain-shadow areas north of the Himalayas (Mustang, Upper Manang and Dolpo). Rain clouds simply reach these areas because of the high mountains, therefore they are unaffected by the monsoon.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Shivaratri: The Night of Lord Shiva

Yesterday was a major holiday in Nepal and India. Shivaratri is a holiday in the name of Lord Shiva. This is a very sacred holiday, as Lord Shiva is a very highly reveered God, or Mahadev, in the Hindu religion.

Shiva is highly celebrated because it is said that he, upon request of the Gods, drank a poison which came from the ocean as the Goddess' and Demons were searching for the Nectar of Immortality. This poison could not be discarded, and someone had to drink it before it destroyed the entire universe. Thus, when called upon, Shiva came up calmly and drank the poison to ensure the safety or his family, the universe, and so they could continue to search for the Nectar of Immortality. When he drank it, the Goddess Paravati strangled his neck to keep the poison from going to his stomach, where the Universe was said to be. The terrible poison stayed in his throat and turned it blue, hence his name, Neelkanth-- or Blue Neck.

Shiva is a hero, a protector of the Universe, and the epitomy of a decent human being in the eyes of Hindus everywhere.

The day is usually celebrated by fasting until nighttime, and then keeping an all night vigil in his honor. The babas, or spiritual vagabonds, you may see throughout Nepal and India--often wearing orange and having long dreds, can be seen in the thousands in Pashupati

Nepal: The Land of Adventure Sports

 Sure, you know that Nepal is famous for being home to 8 of the world's highest peaks. Sure, you know Nepal is home to Everest and brings in thousands of climbing enthusiasts a year. Sure, you know many people come here to trek the downtrodden paths through the world's finest high mountain scenery. SURE, you know many others flock to Nepal for cultural, architectural, and artistic reasons..


Did you know that Nepal is also home to a number of thrilling adventure sports? Most people don't, as they tend to only focus on the obvious.

Canyoning in Nepal
Nepal is home to a number of raging rapids for white water rafting, a fantastic gorge for bunging jumping, and rocky terrain for rock climbing and extreme cycling. If you're looking for adventure-- Look no further than Nepal. From the outside, it seems a quaint and simple place--but dig deeper and you'll find the true Nepal-- rugged and thrilling in every aspect.

Relax after a hard day at The Last Resort
We have worked with a company called Adventure X, based out of the UK. They are a very reputable company--offering fully supported white water rafting and kayaking trips, and adventurous mountain biking excursions. Check out their website at .

Bungy Jumping in Nepal
Another company we continually support is The Last Resort. They are a foreign run company with top of the line safety standards--specializing in bungy jumping, canyon swings, canyoning, and high ropes courses. The Canyon Swing is the highest in the world at 160m, with a free fall of 100m. They say you'll travel at 150km/hr! If the drop doesn't stun you, the view of the massive gorge and river below will! For more information on The Last Resort, check out

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Spring Group Departures

Spring is upon us once again and that means trekking in the Himalayas will be prime once more. If you're traveling in a small group or alone, remember-- you can join any of our groups that are leaving. We try to keep our groups under 8 people to ensure a more personal experience. We will take a solo group or group of 2, but it is always fun to make new friends and enjoy the mountains together.

Our Spring Dates are;

1. Poon Hill
Date: 23rd Feb
No. of Pax: 1 pax
2. Everest Base Camp and Gokyo Lakes
Date: 8th March
No. of Pax: 2 pax
3. EBC
Date: 23rd March
No. of Pax: 4 pax
4. Poon Hill
Date: 8th April
No. of Pax: 1 pax
5. EBC & Gokyo
Date: 7th May
No. of Pax: 3 pax
6. ABC
Date: 20th May
No. of Pax: 2 pax
Please contact any of our staff at    to join these groups! Happy Trekking!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Tamangs--The oldest ethnic group in Nepal?

In Nepal, there are many different ethnic groups that still hold tightly to their traditional culture and customs--distinguishing themselves from other Nepali groups. The Tamang people are amongst the most well known ethnic groups in Nepal--mainly for their exuberant dress and the fact that they are found in numerous regions throughout the country. Tamangs make up around 5.6% of the Nepali population. They are ranked 5th in Nepal in reference to population and 3rd largest amongst the ethnic groups.

Tamang people can be found in the Sindhupalchowk, Rasuwa, Kathmandu, Bhaktapur, Lalitpur, Dhading, Makwanpur, Nuwakot, Ramechhap, Dolakha, Chitwan and Kavreplanchowk districts of Nepal, as well as India, Bhutan, and Burma. 

The Tamang people trace their heritage back to Tibet and are part of the major Tibeto-Burmese ethnic group. Tamangs are usually darker in color and have  more Mongolian features. It is said that Tamangs are a direct lineage to Mongolians--and are therefore the oldest tribe to have inhabited Nepal--and specifically Kathmandu Valley, which was then called Yambu.
Tamang, in Tibetan, means ‘horse traders’. It said that during the Nepal/Tibet War--That Tamangs were horse riding soldiers. In modern day, this group has mostly settled in the hills surrounding the Kathmandu valley. Their main practicing religion is Buddhism and they are generally farmers, labourers, and porters. They also have their own language, Tamang, of which, as of 2001, 92% of Tamangs speak fluently. They also have their own form of tribal government. In this ethnic group there are different people appointed to different tasks such as death, cultural celebrations, marriages, holy days/ceremonies, & history preservation.

Tamangs are known for their hospitality and love of music. One of the favorite instruments used by Tamangs in the Damphu Drum (Tamborine). They are also renowned for their skills in weaving incredibly warm sheep wool jackets for harsh winters, and their beautiful basket weaving--generally used for grain/vegetable storage.