Bandipur :After having spent 2 nights and 3 days at Machan Wildlife Resort, ‘Sunachuri’, Chitwan our next destination was Bandipur. Bandipur lays midway between the capital Kathmandu and Pokhara. It’s a beautiful town situated on a high ridge above Dumre. From Dumre we took a local bus and after just about half hour ride, we reached Bandipur Bazaar. Bandipur (Once trading route to Tibet and India) is one of the most famous tourist destination villages. This Newar town has maintained its cultural appeal and architectural purity. People seemed charming and hospitable. According to history Bandipur was originally inhabited by the Magars (of Gurkha soldier fame), but today it is a composite of different ethnic groups.Bandipur is also known to be one of the best quiet flying site in Népal for all level Pilot. Paragliding and Rock Climbing is also one of the major activities in Bandipur.
We stayed at Pradhan Guest house, though we were just a visitor, we were treated no less than a family member and as it was Dashain, they offered us tika and food as a blessing from elders in the family. I was overwhelmed with the feeling of joy. Away from home I still felt homely environment. Felt the presence of god, goodwill and humanity all around. Like said in one of the old cliché “Guest is Like God” (True! As long as they act like one and leave soon lol –Pardon me).Pradhan family and their generosity made such beautiful place even more beautiful. If this trend continues around every nook and corner in Nepal, and if we continue treating foreigners like god than our country can advance abruptly (We get what we give). There were many other expensive and luxurious hotels at Bandipur, despite which we chose simple and budgeted guest house and in return got homey treatment.
Tin Dhara : After afternoon snacks, we visited Tin Dhara, where water spouts provide cool water famous among Bandipurians near and far for bathing. Water there was pristine. On our way to Tin Dhara we were swaying on the swing.As it was dashian and we all know that swing and Dashain goes hand in hand. After that short walk around Tin Dhara and little bit of swinging, me and my friend sat for a coffee at a near by café.
Khadga Devi Temple And Sacred Sword:We were just having a normal conversation just than we heard a sound .We perceived the troop; resounding cimbala.One was leading and numerous followed .People gathered instantly, I was bewildered for I was unfamiliar with the activity. We simply followed the crowd, bowed to the ritual and took some pictures. Later we discovered that the unique feature from Khagda Devi Temple was brought before public eyes for a minute.Nowonder the way crowds came and disappeared was within a flash, it happened so quick that it left us wondering, if it really happened. Later we learned that Khagda Devi Temple only opens its doors to devotees and worshipers once a year during Dashain on the day of Phulpat. The shrine does not contain any statues of gods or goddesses, but a sacred sword wrapped in layers of cloth. According to legend, the sword found in Khadga Devi Temple was given to the king of Palpa named Mukunda Sen by Lord Shiva. The Khadga is worshipped as a symbol of the female power, hence the name Khadga Devi, which means goddess of the sword.
Purano Kot (Gurungche Hill):
Next morning Mr Pradhan guided us to Purano Kot. It took about twenty minutes of easy walking over the stones to reach the top. The panoramic view on the way was ecstatically delightful. The spectacular peaks of Dhaulagiri, Machhapuchhre, Langtang, Manaslu ,Ganesh Himal gave me the feel as if I was some Aeronaut viewing this scenario from sky but not too high lol.While viewing Bandipur bazaar from the height ,it looked like a giant sleeping in the bed of mountains. It was so relaxing and as it was early morning we could feel the sound and the waves of fog subtly passing by making its presence felt. The hillocks that surround Bandipur provide an unequalled panoramic view that was simply ineffable to put into words.
Harihar Temple And Thani Mai Temple:Mr Pradhan told us about Harihar temple at the top of the hill. Harihar is another name of Hindu God Bishnu.The local people believe that praying to Mahadev at this spot during a drought will bring rain. Next to it stands a newly built temple of Thani Mai.Thani Mai Temple was quite a unique one as it didn’t have the regular feature of the temple. Its top seemed roofless and I promptly reacted as we reached there.That’s when Mr Pradhan explained about its unique feature. He told us that it’s the only temple with no roof and that is because it’s the goddess of Prakash meaning light. Therefore it spreads light all over through its unclosed roof.
Locals there are really concerned when it comes to promoting their city. They step up to the plate to preserve their city .The slates placed on the way to Gurungche Hill was the initiated by the locals there which no doubt made the hike for all tourist much easier and pleasurable. This reminded me of one stereotyped expression, Aafno Gau Affai Banau.So true.
Major Destination At Bandipur:Tundikhel,Baralthok,Rani Ban,Bindebasini Mandir,Mahalaxmi Mandir,Khadga Devi Mandir,Tin Dhara,Bandipur silk farm,Orchid Trail,Ramkot Village,Siddha Gufa (the largest cave in Nepal),Thani Mai and many more…
Best Seasons: October to February is considered best season for magnificent views, June to August to see beautiful wild flowers. However tourists visit all around the year. Bandipur is also a great place for adventure sports like paragliding, caving, rock climbing, rafting and hiking.You can add Bandipur to your next must make trip.