About Nepal

Things to know about Nepal


Nepal’s 20 protected areas cover 23.23 percent of its land. Its 10 national parks, three wildlife reserves, six conservations areas and one hunting reserve cover various geographical locations from the sub-tropical Terai jungles to the arctic Himalayan region. Two of Nepal’s natural areas are listed by UNESCO as Natural World Heritage Sites. They are: Chitwan National Park and Sagarmatha National Park.Comprising only 0.1 percent of the total land area on a global scale, Nepal possesses a disproportionately rich biodiversity. Of the total number of species found globally, Nepal possesses 2.80 percent plants, 3.96 percent mammals, 3.72 percent butterflies and 8.9 percent of birds. Of 6,391 species of flowering plants recorded in Nepal, 399 are endemic. Among the 399 endemic flowering plants in Nepal, 63 percent are from the high mountains, 38 percent from the mid hills, and 5 percent from the Terai and Siwaliks. Similarly, the central region contains 66 percent of the total endemic species followed by western (32 percent) and eastern regions (29 percent).

Of the total number of species found globally, 3.96 percent mammals, 3.72 percent butterflies and 8.9 percent of birds. Wildlife of Nepal is officially classified into two main categories: common and protected. The common category lists such species as common leopard, spotted deer, Himalayan tahr, blue sheep and others. These species are commonly seen in the wild. The protected species include 26 mammals, nine birds and three reptiles. These rare animals are confined to their prime habitats.

Places to Visit

Kathmandu Valley

The Kathmandu Valley is the most developed and populated place in Nepal. The majority of offices and headquarters are located in the valley, making it the economic hub of Nepal. It is popular with tourists for its unique architecture, and rich culture that includes the highest number of jatras in Nepal. The valley itself was referred to as "Nepal Proper" by British historians.

Akash Bhairav

Akash Bhairav is a Hindu deity; one of the different forms of Bhairava.

The head of the Aakash Bhairav was dug up several hundred years ago in Kathmandu. The head sits in a Hindu temple in Indra Chowk Kathmandu not far from Durbar Square. It is taken out once a year on the occasion of Indra Jatra Festival and is blessed by the Kumari — the living goddess who lives in the nearby Kumari Chowk. This ceremony is held in the month of August/September In the period of ceremony large number of prayers come to visit the Aakash bhairav. During the ceremony prayers offers peda(sweets made from milk), flowers, money and several others things.

The traditional Akash Bhairav Puja is accompanied by Upasana and Anusthan. Sacred water, sandalwood, flowers, fruits, incense and naibedya are some of the offerings for this puja. Legend has it that worship of the Bhairav is usually a mark of safety and strength. In the Nepali imagination, the Akash Bhairav symbolizes protection and goodwill for the nation and its people.

Swayambhunath Stupa

Swayambhunath, is among the oldest religious sites in Nepal. According to the Gopālarājavaṃśāvalī Swayambhunath was founded by the great-grandfather of King Mānadeva (464-505 CE), King Vṛsadeva, about the beginning of the 5th century CE. This seems to be confirmed by a damaged stone inscription found at the site, which indicates that King Mānadeva ordered work done in 640 CE.

However, Emperor Ashoka is said to have visited the site in the third century BCE and built a temple on the hill which was later destroyed.

Although the site is considered Buddhist, the place is revered by both Buddhists and Hindus. Numerous Hindu monarch followers are known to have paid their homage to the temple, including Pratap Malla, the powerful king of Kathmandu, who is responsible for the construction of the eastern stairway in the 17th century.

Pashupatinath Temple

The Pashupatinath Temple is a famous, sacred Hindu temple dedicated to Pashupatinath is located on the banks of the Bagmati River 5 kilometres north-east of Kathmandu Valley in the eastern city of Kathmandu,[1] the capital of Nepal. This temple is considered one of the sacred temples of Hindu faith .The temple serves as the seat of the national deity, Lord Pashupatinath.This temple complex is on UNESCO World Heritage Sites's list Since 1979.[2][3] This "extensive Hindu temple precinct" is a "sprawling collection of temples, ashrams, images and inscriptions raised over the centuries along the banks of the sacred Bagmati river" and is included as one of the seven monument groups in UNESCO's designation of Kathmandu Valley as a cultural heritage site.[4] The temple is one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams (Holy Abodes of Shiva) on the continent. Kotirudra Samhita, Chapter 11 on the Shivalingas of the North, in Shiva Purana mentions this Shivalinga as the bestower of all wishes. One of the major Festivals of the temple is Maha Shivaratri on which day over 700,000 devotees visit here.

Boudhanath Stupa

Boudhanath is a stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal. It is known as Khāsti in Nepal Bhasa, Jyarung Khasyor in Tamang language or as Bauddha by speakers of Nepali. Located about 11 km (6.8 mi) from the center and northeastern outskirts of Kathmandu, the stupa's massive mandala makes it one of the largest spherical stupas in Nepal.

The Buddhist stupa of Boudhanath dominates the skyline. The ancient Stupa is one of the largest in the world. The influx of large populations of refugees from Tibet has seen the construction of over 50 Tibetan Gompas (Monasteries) around Boudhanath. As of 1979, Boudhanath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Along with Swayambhunath, it is one of the most popular tourist sites in the Kathmandu area.

The Stupa is on the ancient trade route from Tibet which enters the Kathmandu Valley by the village of Sankhu in the northeast corner, passes by Boudnath Stupa to the ancient and smaller stupa of Cā-bahī (often called 'Little Boudnath'). It then turns directly south, heading over the Bagmati river to Patan - thus bypassing the main city of Kathmandu (which was a later foundation). Tibetan merchants have rested and offered prayers here for many centuries. When refugees entered Nepal from Tibet in the 1950s, many decided to live around Boudhanath. The Stupa is said to entomb the remains of Kassapa Buddha.

Dakshinkali Temple

Dakshinkali Temple or Dakshin Kali Temple, located 22 kilometres (14 mi) outside Kathmandu and about 1 kilometre (0.6 mi) outside the village of Pharping, is one of the main temples of Nepal dedicated to the goddess Kali. Animal sacrifices, particularly of cockerels and uncastrated male goats, are the main way that the goddess is worshipped, and this is especially seen during the Dashain festival.

How to go ?

  • From Siliguri one can drive to Kakarbhitta (Nepal - India border) 32 kilometers by road. Buses to Kathmandu are available from Kakarvitta, Bhadrapur and all the towns of Nepal. Private vehicles and shared vehicles are also available. From kakarbhitta one can drive 25 kilometers to Bhadrapur for availing flight. One can avail the Bus / Coach to Kathmandu or can drive to Kathmandu from Kakarbhitta. Its overnight journey.
  • One can avail flight from airports of India like Kolkata or Bagdogra.
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