Living with Nature – I

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Swallow Nest
Swallow Nest

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living-with-nature-9

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Indian Grey Mongoose
Indian Grey Mongoose

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Ruddy Marsh Skimmer (F)
Ruddy Marsh Skimmer (F)

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Ruddy Marsh Skimmer (M)
Ruddy Marsh Skimmer (M)
Ruddy Marsh Skimmer (F)
Ruddy Marsh Skimmer (F)

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Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) and Railway Heritage Gallery Tour

Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (CST) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Mumbai, India. This historic railway station is one of the busiest in India. Built in 1887 this gothic structure is the most photographed monument in India after the Taj Mahal. Originally it was called Victoria Terminus and was intended to house the main station and the administrative offices of the Great Indian Peninsular Railway the predecessor of Indian Railway. In March 1996 its name was changed to Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus and known simply as CST. The CST has 18 platforms out of which 7 are reserved for local suburban trains and 11 are for long distance out-station trains.

Very few people are aware of the the existence of a Railway Heritage Gallery in the CST building which has a nice collection of old engines and other artefacts used by the Great Indian Peninsular Railway. This gallery is functional since December 2012 and is open to the public along with a guided tour of the heritage CST building. The areas covered in the tour are:

a) Heritage Gallery at Ground Floor
b) Dining Hall at Ground Floor
c) Central Dome View from Ground Floor
d) Star Chamber view from Ground Floor
e) Heritage Lounge at Second Floor
f) Four-Court at Ground Floor

The tour also includes tea and biscuits in the Heritage Lounge at second floor.

Heritage Tour Timings: 3PM to 5PM on Week days only.
Price: Rs. 200/- per Person & Rs. 100/- per Student

Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) - Front view
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) – Front view
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) - Front view
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) – Front view
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) - Front view
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) – Front view
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) - View of the central dome
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) – View of the central dome
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) - View of the central dome
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) – View of the central dome
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) - View of the central dome
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) – View of the central dome
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) - The Heritage Gallery
Chhatrapti Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus) – The Heritage Gallery
Exhibits in the corridor
Exhibits in the corridor
The corridor
The corridor
Exhibits in the corridor
Exhibits in the corridor
One of the doors
One of the doors
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery

cst-victoria-terminus-17

Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery - a model of the CST building
Exhibits from the heritage gallery – a model of the CST building
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
Exhibits from the heritage gallery
The stained glass door
The stained glass door
The main door of the building
The main door of the building
At the entrance
At the entrance
The central dome from inside
The central dome from inside
The staircase
The staircase
One of the doors
One of the doors
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view
The staircase
The staircase
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view of the central dome
Interior view of the central dome
Interior view of the central dome
Interior view of the central dome
Interior view
Interior view
View from the second floor corridor
View from the second floor corridor
The spiral staircase which leads to the top floor which is not opened for visitors
The spiral staircase which leads to the top floor which is not opened for visitors
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view
Interior view
View of the second floor corridor
View of the second floor corridor
Interior view
Interior view
Second floor corridor
Second floor corridor
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
The heritage lounge at second floor, where visitors are served tea
The heritage lounge at second floor, where visitors are served tea
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
View of the star chamber from first floor
View of the star chamber from first floor
View of the star chamber from first floor
View of the star chamber from first floor
View of the star chamber from first floor
View of the star chamber from first floor
View of the star chamber from first floor
View of the star chamber from first floor
Closer view of the central dome from the first floor balcony
Closer view of the central dome from the first floor balcony
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
View of the BMC building (another heritage structure) from the first floor balcony
View of the BMC building (another heritage structure) from the first floor balcony
An ornamental window
An ornamental window
Closer view of the structure
Closer view of the structure
Details
Details
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The dining hall at ground floor
The main entrance
The main entrance
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
The main entrance view
The main entrance view
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court
View from the fore-court

Just below the clock was a statue of Queen Victoria which was damaged by a lightning many decades ago and was never replaced.

The visitors pass
The visitors pass
From the forecourt
From the forecourt

Feathered Friends – I

Observing them is bliss…

Purple Sunbird (female) - From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple Sunbird (female) – From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple Sunbird (female) - From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple Sunbird (female) – From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple Sunbird (female) - From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple Sunbird (female) – From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple Sunbird (female) - From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple Sunbird (female) – From Seawoods, April 2016
Common Myna - From Seawoods, April 2016
Common Myna – From Seawoods, April 2016
Common Myna - From Seawoods, April 2016
Common Myna – From Seawoods, April 2016
Egret in flight - From Seawoods, April 2016
Egret in flight – From Seawoods, April 2016
Pond Heron - From Seawoods, April 2016
Pond Heron – From Seawoods, April 2016
Black-winged stilt - From Seawoods, April 2016
Black-winged stilt – From Seawoods, April 2016
Little Cormorant - From Seawoods, April 2016
Little Cormorant – From Seawoods, April 2016
Black-winged stilt - From Seawoods, April 2016
Black-winged stilt – From Seawoods, April 2016
Black-winged stilt - From Seawoods, April 2016
Black-winged stilt – From Seawoods, April 2016
Ashy Prinia - From Seawoods, April 2016
Ashy Prinia – From Seawoods, April 2016
Black-winged stilt - From Seawoods, April 2016
Black-winged stilt – From Seawoods, April 2016
Green bee-eater  - From Seawoods, April 2016
Green bee-eater – From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple sunbird (male) - From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple sunbird (male) – From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple sunbird (male) - From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple sunbird (male) – From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple sunbird (female) - From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple sunbird (female) – From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple sunbird (female) - From Seawoods, April 2016
Purple sunbird (female) – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos in flight - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos in flight – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos in flight - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos in flight – From Seawoods, April 2016
Terns - From Seawoods, April 2016
Terns – From Seawoods, April 2016
Egret - From Seawoods, April 2016
Egret – From Seawoods, April 2016
Brown headed tern in flight - From Seawoods, April 2016
Brown headed tern in flight – From Seawoods, April 2016
Brown headed tern - From Seawoods, April 2016
Brown headed tern – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos in flight - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos in flight – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos in flight - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos in flight – From Seawoods, April 2016
Heron - From Seawoods, April 2016
Heron – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos – From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos - From Seawoods, April 2016
Flamingos – From Seawoods, April 2016
Plovers - From Seawoods, April 2016
Plovers – From Seawoods, April 2016
Egret - From Seawoods, April 2016
Egret – From Seawoods, April 2016
Egret - From Seawoods, April 2016
Egret – From Seawoods, April 2016

London – Fish n’ Chips and a walk along the River Thames

Never miss to try a Fish n’ Chips while in London. This traditional dish consists of fried battered fish and hot chips. It is a common take-away food. In London fish and chips shops traditionally use a simple water and flour batter, adding a little baking soda and vinegar to create lightness as they create bubble in the batter. Other recipes may use beer or milk batter, where these liquids are often substitutes for water. This one is a must try while in London.

River Thames intersects the city of London into two. One can enjoy a walk along its banks and can have the nice view of the Tower of London and the Tower Bridge. Tower of London is a historic castle located on the north bank of the River Thames in central London. The white tower which gives the entire castle its name was built by William the Conqueror in 1078 and was a resented symbol of oppression, inflicted upon London by the new ruling elite.

Tower Bridge, the iconic symbol of London is a combined bascule and suspension bridge built in 1886-1894. The bridge crosses the River Thames close to the Tower of London. The bridge consists of two bridge towers tied together at the upper level by two horizontal walkways.

An outlet near the Tower of London which sells Fish n' Chips
An outlet near the Tower of London which sells Fish n’ Chips
Fish n' Chips
Fish n’ Chips
The Tower of London
The Tower of London
Entrance to the Tower of London
Entrance to the Tower of London
A closer view of the entrance
A closer view of the entrance
The Souvenir shop near the Tower of London
The Souvenir shop near the Tower of London
Around the Tower of London
Around the Tower of London
Around the Tower of London
Around the Tower of London
Around the Tower of London
Around the Tower of London
The Tower Bridge across the River Thames
The Tower Bridge across the River Thames
The Tower Bridge, a closer look
The Tower Bridge, a closer look

Buckingham Palace is the London residence and administrative headquarters of the reigning monarch of the United Kingdom. Located in the city of Westminister, it has been a focal point for the British People at times of national rejoicing and mourning. The palace chapel was destroyed by a German bomb during World War II and in 1962 the Queen’s Gallery was built on the site and opened to the public to exhibit works of art from the Royal Collection.

The Victoria Memorial was created by sculptor Sir Thomas Brock in 1911 and erected front of the main gates of the Buckingham Palace.

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The Buckingham Palace, another view
The Buckingham Palace, another view
The Buckingham Palace, another view
The Buckingham Palace, another view
The Buckingham Palace gate the details of the Royal Coat of Arms
The Buckingham Palace gate the details of the Royal Coat of Arms
The Buckingham Palace Gates, light
The Buckingham Palace Gates, light
The Queen's Palace, near the palace
The Queen’s Palace, near the palace
The Victoria Memorial in front of the Buckingham Palace
The Victoria Memorial in front of the Buckingham Palace
The Victoria Memorial - Details
The Victoria Memorial – Details
The Victoria Memorial - Details
The Victoria Memorial – Details
The Victoria Memorial - Details
The Victoria Memorial – Details
The Victoria Memorial - Details
The Victoria Memorial – Details
The Victoria Memorial - Details
The Victoria Memorial – Details
The Victoria Memorial - Details
The Victoria Memorial – Details
The Victoria Memorial - the roan in the front
The Victoria Memorial – the roan in the front

St Paul’s Cathedral is the seat of the Bishop of London and the mother church of the Diocese of London. The present church, dating from the late 17th century was designed in the English Baroque style by Sir Christopher Wren. This Anglican cathedral is one of the most famous and most recognizable sights in London.

St Paul’s Cathedral
St Paul’s Cathedral
St Paul’s Cathedral  - a closer look of the dome
St Paul’s Cathedral – a closer look of the dome
St Paul’s Cathedral - a closer look of the dome
St Paul’s Cathedral – a closer look of the dome

The London Eye the giant Ferris wheel, is located on the south bank of the River Thames. Also known as the Millennium Wheel this 135 meter tall wheel has diameter of 120 meter. The wheel’s 32 sealed and air-conditioned ovoidal passenger capsules are attached to the external circumference of the wheel and rotated by electric motors. Each capsule can hold up to 25 people, who are free to walk around inside the capsule, though seating is provided.

The London Eye
The London Eye
The London Eye, another view
The London Eye, another view

Big Ben the Great Bell of the clock at the north end of the Palace of Westminister is officially known as the Elizabeth Tower. The tower holds the second largest four-faced chiming clock in the world and is often referred as the most prominent symbols of the United Kingdom.

Palace of Westminister and the Big Ben
Palace of Westminister and the Big Ben
Cruise boats on River Thames
Cruise boats on River Thames
The red double decker bus is an iconic symbol of London
The red double decker bus is an iconic symbol of London
London - Street View
London – Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View
London Street View

Patan Durbar Square – The oldest durbar square in Kathmandu valley

Patan Durbar Square is situated at the centre of the city of Lalitpur in Nepal. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Patan is the oldest of all the three cities of Kathmandu valley. It is best known for its artistic heritage. The city is situated on a plateau across Bagamti River. The city is surrounded by 4 stupas at 4 corners of Patan, one at each corner of its cardinal points and is believed to be built by the Emperor Ashoka. The former royal palace complex is the center of Patan’s religious and social life and houses a museum containing an array of bronze statues and religious objects. There are three main courtyards or chowks in Patan Darbar Square – central Mul Chowk, Sundari Chowk and Keshav Narayan Chowk. The Sundari Chowk holds in its center a masterpiece of stone architecture, the royal bath called Tushahity.

Patan Durbar Square - The big Taleju Bell
Patan Durbar Square – The big Taleju Bell
Patan Durbar Square - Garuda Statue in front of the Krishna Temple
Patan Durbar Square – Garuda Statue in front of the Krishna Temple
Patan Durbar Square - Close up of Garuda
Patan Durbar Square – Close up of Garuda
Around Patan Durbar Square
Around Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square - The Krishna Temple
Patan Durbar Square – The Krishna Temple
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square - One of the exhibits in the museum
Patan Durbar Square – One of the exhibits in the museum
Patan Durbar Square - One of the exhibits in the museum
Patan Durbar Square – One of the exhibits in the museum
Patan Durbar Square - One of the exhibits in the museum
Patan Durbar Square – One of the exhibits in the museum
Patan Durbar Square - The bath
Patan Durbar Square – The bath
Around Patan Durbar Square
Around Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Around Patan Durbar Square
Around Patan Durbar Square
Around Patan Durbar Square
Around Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square - Architecture
Patan Durbar Square – Architecture
Patan Durbar Square - Architecture
Patan Durbar Square – Architecture
Patan Durbar Square - Architecture
Patan Durbar Square – Architecture
Patan Durbar Square - another view
Patan Durbar Square – another view
Patan Durbar Square - Another view
Patan Durbar Square – Another view
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square

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Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Around Patan Durbar Square
Around Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square

The square was heavily damaged in the earthquake of 25 April, 2015.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Newa architecture at its best

Bhaktapur Durbar Square is the plaza in front of the royal palace of the old Bhaktapur Kingdom, 1400 m above sea level. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is located in the current town of Bhaktapur also known as Bhadgaon which is 13 km east of Kathmandu. The complex consists of four distinct squares – Durbar Square, Taumadhi Square, Dattatreya Square and Pottery Square. The whole area is informally known as bhaktapur Durbar Square.

The Durbar square is surrounded by spectacular architecture that vividly showcases the skills of the Newari artists and craftsmen, over several centuries. The royal palace was originally situated at Dattatraya square and was only later moved to the Durbar Square location.

The Mini Pashupatinath Temple in Bhaktapur Durbar square is a replica of the original one in Kathmandu. Also known as the Yaksheswara Mahadev Temple, it was built by King Yaksha Malla in either 1475 or 1482. The legend is that Lord Shiva asked the king to build the Pashupatinath Temple and so he did. The temple contains several graphic erotic carvings in the pillars and roof struts.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Vatsala Devi Temple and the Yaksheshwara Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Vatsala Devi Temple and the Yaksheshwara Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple, wood carved decorations
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple, wood carved decorations
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple, wood carved decorations
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple, wood carved decorations
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Yeaksheshwara Temple Details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Yeaksheshwara Temple Details

The Durbar Square houses the 55 window palace which was constructed by King Jitamitra Malla and was home to the royalty until 1769. It is now a national gallery. The main attraction is the golden door, the most beautiful and richly molded specimen of its kind in the entire world. Close by is the golden gate which leads into Mulchok Court which is home to the Taleju Temple. This temple like other in the main towns of Kathmandu valley is dedicated to the goddess Taleju Bhawani and includes shrines to both the Taleju Bhawani and Kumari.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square - The Golden Gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – The Golden Gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - The National Art Gallery
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – The National Art Gallery
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - The guardian figure at the entrance of the 55 window palace
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – The guardian figure at the entrance of the 55 window palace
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Statue of King Bhupatindra Malla, worshiping the Goddess Taleju on a column in front of the Golden Gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Statue of King Bhupatindra Malla, worshiping the Goddess Taleju on a column in front of the Golden Gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Statue of King Bhupatindra Malla, worshiping the Goddess Taleju on a column in front of the Golden Gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Statue of King Bhupatindra Malla, worshiping the Goddess Taleju on a column in front of the Golden Gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Statue of King Bhupatindra Malla, worshiping the Goddess Taleju on a column in front of the Golden Gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Statue of King Bhupatindra Malla, worshiping the Goddess Taleju on a column in front of the Golden Gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Narasimha in front of the 55 window palace
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Narasimha in front of the 55 window palace
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Another stone carving
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Another stone carving
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - An ornamental door
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – An ornamental door
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Naga Pokhari, the royal water pool
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Naga Pokhari, the royal water pool
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - The 55 window palace details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – The 55 window palace details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - The 55 window palace details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – The 55 window palace details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - The Golden Gate seen from inside
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – The Golden Gate seen from inside
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - The 55 window palace details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – The 55 window palace details

Nyatapola Temple is a five storey pagoda, built by King Phupatindra Malla in 1702 and dedicated to the Goddess Siddhi Lakshmi. To make the brick and wood temple strong and powerful, King Bhupatindra Malla ordered guardians be placed in pairs on each level of the base leading up to the Nyatapola Temple. On the first level is a pair of likenesses of Bhaktapur’s strongest men, Jaya Malla and Phatta Malla. On the next tier are two elephants, followed by two lions, two griffins, and finally ‘Baghini’ and ‘Singhini’, the tiger and lion Goddesses. The entities in each level are supposed to be 10 times as strong as the one on the next lower level. The temple is the tallest temple in the Kathmandu Valley and stands 100 feet high. It was so well designed that it withstood a powerful 8.3 earthquake in 1934.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Nyatapola Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Nyatapola Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Stairs to the Nyatapola Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Stairs to the Nyatapola Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Nyatapola Temple details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Nyatapola Temple details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Nyatapola Temple, Bhagini Goddess
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Nyatapola Temple, Bhagini Goddess
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Nyatapola Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Nyatapola Temple, details

The Dattatraya Temple is as old as the 55 windows palace. Consecrated by King Jayayakshya Malla in 1427, this temple, according to popular belief, was built out of the trunk of a single tree. It was subsequently repaired and renovated by King Vishva Malla in the mid 16th century. The temple is dedicated to Vishnu and Shiva and shows symbols of both gods.

Bhaktapur Durbar Squar - The Dattatraya Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar – The Dattatraya Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar - The Dattatraya Temple, close up of the conch shell the symbol of Vishnu
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar – The Dattatraya Temple, close up of the conch shell the symbol of Vishnu
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar - The Dattatraya Temple, close up of Chakra, the symbol of Vishun
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar – The Dattatraya Temple, close up of Chakra, the symbol of Vishun
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar - Garuda on a column in front of Dattatraya Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar – Garuda on a column in front of Dattatraya Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar - Guardian statues in front of Dattatraya Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Squar – Guardian statues in front of Dattatraya Temple

The Siddhi Lakshmi Temple is a Sikhara style temple next to 55 Window Palace. The steps up to the temple are flanked by male and female attendants.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square - The Siddhi Lakshmi Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – The Siddhi Lakshmi Temple

Next to the Vatsala Devi Temple, in front of the 55 Windows Palace is the Chayslin Dega. This octagonal temple was originally a viewing point for noble writers, observing festivals and rituals. It was built during the 17th century by King Jitamitra Malla and was used as a rest house by the pilgrims.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Chayslin Dega
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Chayslin Dega
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Chayslin Dega with the bronze lions in front of it
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Chayslin Dega with the bronze lions in front of it
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Chayslin Dega, the details of the bronze lion
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Chayslin Dega, the details of the bronze lion

The Vatsala Devi Temple is a small temple in right in front of the Golden Gate. This Sikhara style temple completely constructed in sandstone and is built on three stage plinth. It is dedicated to Batsala Devi, a form of Goddess Durga. The stone temple shows many intricate carvings. It is most famous for its bells.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Vatsala Devi Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Vatsala Devi Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Close up of Vatsala Devi Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Close up of Vatsala Devi Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Taleju Bell near Vatsala Devi Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Taleju Bell near Vatsala Devi Temple

The Bhairabnath Temple is dedicated to the dreadful aspect of Lord Shiva. It stands a short distance away from the Nyatapola Temple. This three storied temple was originally constructed by King Jagaj Jyoti Malla and remodelled by King Bhupatindra Malla.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Bhairabnath Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Bhairabnath Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Bhairabnath Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Bhairabnath Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Bhairabnath Temple, details
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Bhairabnath Temple, details

More views from the Bhaktapur Durbar Square…

Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Badrinatha Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Badrinatha Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Fasi Dega Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Fasi Dega Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Kedarnatha Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Kedarnatha Temple
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Lion Figures at the gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Lion Figures at the gate
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Detail of the lion figure
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Detail of the lion figure
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Potters Area
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Potters Area
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Potters area
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Potters area
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Potters area
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Potters area
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Potters area
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Potters area
Bhaktapur Durbar Square - Peacock Window
Bhaktapur Durbar Square – Peacock Window
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Around the Bhaktapur Durbar Square

A major earthquake on 25 April 2015 had badly damaged many buildings in the Bhaktapur Durbar square. The mini Pashupatinath temple lost its roof, while the Vatsala Devi Temple was demolished by the earthquake.

Sarangkot – The best place for a panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks…

Sarangkot is a village just above Pokhara, famous for its spectacular views of one of the largest mountain ranges in the world, the Annapurna range including the Annapurna I which is the 10th highest mountain in the world. At dawn, the sun transforms the peaks from pink to celestial gold. Never miss a visit to Sarangkot while in Pokhara, which also offers a nice glimpse into the peaceful, slow village life and more.

The distance to Sarangkot from Pokhara is around 12 km. You can hire a taxi in the early morning to make a visit to the view point at the time of sunrise. The main village is just below the ridge, but a set of steps leads uphill to a dramatic viewpoint, the site of an ancient kot or fort.

Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot
Panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise from Sarangkot

On our way back we paid a visit to the Radhakrishna Temple, Bindhyabasini, Pokhara. Atop a hill this temple complex with amazing views around is worth a visit.

The Radhakrishna Temple
The Radhakrishna Temple
The Radhakrishna Temple
The Radhakrishna Temple

We saw this small shrine…

A wayside shrine
A wayside shrine