Explore the Wonders and Legends of Chobar Gorge
Situated just southeast of Chobar village in Nepal, where the Bagmati River cuts through a section of the Chobar hill, the picturesque Chobar Gorge is spanned by a narrow suspension bridge, which was imported from a manufacturer in Aberdeen in Scotland in 1903. The bridge was transported to Nepal in pieces across the mountains via India and then put together at the Chobar Gorge. This was seen as a huge technical accomplishment at the time and visitors agree that the view of the Chobar Gorge and surroundings from this historic suspension bridge is breath-taking.
Chobar village is located on a high ridge overlooking the Chobar Gorge and can only be accessed on foot. The rocky cliffs of Chobar Gorge are riddled with caves which are popular as meditation retreats. It is believed by many that an underground passage runs from one of these caves to the Adinath Lokeshwar Temple in the village of Chobar. No-one seems to know where this secret passage begins, however, which adds to the mysterious myths and legends surrounding Chobar Gorge.
Geological studies have shown that the Kathmandu Valley was previously a huge lake that drained southward through the Chobar Gorge, opening up the valley. Buddhist legend asserts that the lake, which was known as Nag Hirat (tank of serpents), contained magical snake-like beings that were guarding treasure lying at the bottom of the lake. Bodhisattva Manjushri sliced through the circle of mountains with a single stroke of his Sword of Wisdom, thereby draining the lake and creating the Kathmandu Valley. Countless snakes were said to have been washed out with the departing waters, but the king of the snakes, Kartotak, is believed to have remained behind at the request of Manjushri and now resides in the Taudaha Lake. The Hindu belief, however, is that Krishna created the Chobar Gorge by throwing a thunderbolt that split the mountain.
The banks of the Bagmati River on the south side of Chobar Gorge has been paved with steps down to the river. These are used for ritual cleansing and cremations in the Bagmati River as well as for the laundering of clothes, and serves as a daily gathering place for the local people.
Visitors will discover that Nepal is a country of great beauty, where legend at times blends with fact, and festivals and celebrations take place throughout the year – which all adds to the appeal of this popular tourist destination.