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Colorful Celebration of Rato Machhendranath

Nepal is a beautiful country filled with culture and ancient religious festivals of all sorts. Peculiar to many foreigners, these fuel the imagination and stir a sense of admiration in many visitors. Many of the festivals that take place in Nepal start off as a religious ceremony but end in a massive and enjoyable social event. Such is the case with Rato Machhendranath in Nepal.

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Spiritual Enlightenment at the Kopan Monastery

Nestled in the shadows of the Himalayas in Nepal is the well-known Kopan Monastery. The hill on which this monastery is situated overlooks the striking Kathmandu Valley and its proximity to the capital city not only makes it accessible for visitors but also means it has played a very important spiritual role in the lives of the people of the Kathmandu Valley for centuries.

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Bibah Panchami: A Celebration of Marital Devotion

In Nepal, festivals and celebrations are highlights in everyday life, with the majority of the population joining in with great enthusiasm. Visitors to this beautiful country are very often free to join in whatever festival may be taking place at the time of their visit. In December the festival of Bibah Panchami (also referred to as Bibahah Panchami) is an expression of the devotion of Hindus to Lord Rama and Princess Sita, during which the marriage of these two venerated figures is re-enacted. This much anticipated seven-day festival, which is held in Janakpur, eastern Terai, attracts Hindu pilgrims from far and wide.

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Lumbini International Research Institute

The town of Lumbini is located on the Terai plains of Nepal and is better known as the birth place of the Enlighted One, or Siddhartha Gautam, in 623 BC. Today Lumbini is a popular tourist destination within Nepal that not only offers visitors insight into a distinguished history and fascinating attraction, but is also home to many vital educational centers and establishments, such as the Lumbini International Research Institute.

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Three Sisters Making the World a Better Place

Motivated by stories of frustration from female adventurers who want to explore the beauty of Nepal, but feel restricted because of their gender, three enterprising sisters decided to rise to the challenge of establishing an adventure trekking company that would be run by women, for women. In the early 1990s, when the sisters’ plans started to take shape, it was unheard of for a Nepalese woman to guide a trek, and certainly a female-run trekking company was considered beyond impossible – but not for the Chhetri sisters, Lucky, Dicky and Nicky.

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Himalayan Blues Festival 2008

Between the 15th and the 19th of October 2008, Kathmandu, Nepal, will be coming alive with the sounds of blues bands, which include local and international musicians and groups. Various venues around Kathmandu will be used to host the different evenings of entertainment, music and fun, and it is set to be one of the most vibrant and colorful music events of the year for Nepal. Anyone visiting Nepal during this period is advised to attend the Himalayan Blues Festival, as it is a unique experience and a wonderful festival for all to enjoy.

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Nepal’s Great One-horned Rhinoceros

The Great One-horned Rhinoceros, also known as the Asian One-Horned Rhinoceros, or Indian Rhinoceros, is found only in the forests and tall grasslands of the Himalayan foothills in Nepal, Bhutan and Assam. This huge prehistoric-looking animal is an excellent swimmer, can reach a speed of up to 40 km/h over a short distance and, although having relatively poor eyesight, has excellent senses of smell and hearing. Sadly, a number of factors have contributed to the Great One-horned Rhinoceros being declared endangered and included on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

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Newar Rites of Passage

In the cities of Patan, Bhaktapur and Newar of Nepal, live the largest concentrations Newar, who are indigenous to the Kathmandu Valley. Practicing Buddhism and Hinduism, the Newar are a unique group of people who practice traditional rituals and rites that keep the tradition and culture of the Newar alive. In previous times, the Newar were divided by occupational caste that could be distinguished by surname, but that is no longer of importance. With such a rich culture, there are many rites performed throughout the year by the Newar. Many are related to the stages of life and thus known as the Rites of Passage.

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