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The world-famous and well-known Buddhist pilgrimage sites are located in Nepal, the birthplace of the Buddha. For Buddhists, it is one of the holiest places on earth. Numerous temples, stupas, and monasteries exist that are devoted to past, present, and future Buddhas as well as numerous Bodhisattvas. In order to purify our minds and hearts, we might view and visit the ancient stupas that are mentioned in various works, including the Tripataka and Jataka.
Swayambhunath Stupa is the oldest and most enigmatic of all the holy sites in the Kathmandu valley. It is a golden spire perched atop a conical hill covered in forest. From all sides of the valley, its towering white dome and glittering golden spire may be seen for miles. The Swayambhu Purana, a collection of legends about the area written in the 15th century, mentions a miracle lotus that a former Buddha planted and which rose from the water that once covered the Kathmandu Valley. As a result of the lotus' exceptionally brilliant light projection, the area came to be known as Swayambhu, which is Sanskrit for "Self-Created or Self-Existent." The bodhisattva Manjushri was deeply touched by the intensity of the brilliant light and thought that by draining the lake, Swayambhu would be more easily accessible to outsiders. With his two-edged blade, Manjushri honed a canyon in the mountains encircling the lake. The flood receded and leaving the valley where present-day Kathmandu is located. The light then created the Swayabhunath Stupa, and the lotus changed into a hill.
One of the most impressive structures in the city is the Boudhanath stupa, which is 8 kilometers east of the city's center and is clearly visible as soon as you arrive at Tribhuvan International Airport. It is renowned as the center of the Himalayan Buddhist movement and is the largest stupa in the Kathmandu Valley. Many of the Tibetan refugees who came to Nepal in the 1950s settled in Boudhanath. The relics of Kassapa Buddha are reported to be kept in the stupa. Numerous tales, including those associated with King Vikramaditya and the Buddha Kassapa in Tibet, surround the stupa's genesis. You may visit many Tibetan monasteries in the area, as well as eateries that provide delicious Tibetan food.
The Jamchen Viajaya Stupa may be noticed from the route leading to Budanikakantha that it is located close to the Shivapuri National Park. The stupa is perched on a hill, providing a picturesque outlook. You will want to stay and stay as long as you can because of the views from the summit, the clean air, and the peaceful surroundings. Although the journey there is a little challenging, the reward is certainly worth it. The stupa has a beautiful aura. You will be forced to focus for a while in that delightful peace with melodic chanting music. The 108-foot-tall stupa was built in remembrance of Guru Chyogye Trhinchen Rimpoche. There are educational boards there that detail Buddhism's numerous facets. A beautiful Buddha statue, as well as statues of many gurus and Guru Chyogye Trhinchen Rimpoche, can be found inside the monastery. The monastery's walls are exquisitely decorated.
Namo Buddha lies around 40km from Kathmandu city. The Jataka stories describe the Buddha's earlier birth. Our Guru, the perfect Buddha, was practising on the road of learning a very long time ago, many uncountable eons ago. The incident where he was filled with compassion and immediately offered his body to a tigress who was starving is located at Namobuddha. There is also a monastery here established to commemorate the event. Khyabje Thrangu Rinpoche toiled long and hard to build the monastery, knowing the value of this holy site and rejecting all difficulties. The site shows amazing views of the nearby hills and the elaborate temple complex will be a treasure to explore and meditate in.
The village of Temal houses the Harkinaag shrine where as legend goes, when Guru Rinpoche was meditating in the Asura cave in Pharping, he saw a large snake called Herkinaag disturbing and causing havoc in the village of Temal. Using his tantric siddhi powers, he flew across to Temal to chase the Snake and rid the snake of poison and make punish the snake for his acts. His footprint can be found in the village where he is said to have chased the snake. There is a statue of Guru Rinpoche placed here in order to commemorate the act as well as a small ditch where the snake was said to have been thrusted after being disabled by Guru Rinpoche.
Lumbini, is where the Lord Buddha took his final birth before gaining enlightenment. According to an inscription on a pillar built by the Mauryan Emperor Asoka in 249 BC, the Lord Buddha was born there in the sacred region of Lumbini in the Terai plains of southern Nepal in 623 BC. The remnants of Lumbini, one of the holiest sites of one of the great faiths of the world, provide significant information regarding the nature of Buddhist pilgrimage centers dating back to the third century BC. The present temple complex houses the sacred Mayadevi temple which houses the footprint of the infant buddha, as well as an old statue of Queen Mayadevi giving birth amid the ancient temple ruins. There also exist numerous Theravada, Mahayana and Vajrayana monasteries built by various countries and organizations throughout Lumbini. There are around 32 monastaries built by Sri Lanka, China, Thailand, South Korea, Nepal, India and much more. It can take you around 2 days to tour the complex completely. You can stay and meditate also in the many numerous meditation centers nearby and also visit the world peace flame and the peace Pagoda.
Pokhara is a wonderfully scenic city and home to numerous natural and cultural beauties. The world peace pagoda built atop a hill near Pokhara city houses a temple also. The view of the valley, Fewa lake and the Western Himalaya including peaks of Annapurna, Macchapuchhre and others are simply amazing. The white pagoda has two tiers that tourists and pilgrims can walk around. The second floor exhibits four Buddha sculptures that were given as gifts from various nations: the "Dharmacakra Mudra" statue from Japan, the "Bodh Gaya" statue from Sri Lanka, the "Kushinagar" statue from Thailand, and the "Lumbini" statue from Nepal. Each statue was given its name based on the location where it reflects significant Buddha-related events. Pokhara is also the gateway to Mustang.
Muktinath, a revered holy site for both Hindus and Buddhists, is located at a height of 3,710 meters (12,172 feet) at the foot of the Thorong La mountain pass in the Mustang area. Buddhists refer it Muktinath as Chumming Gyatsa, which translates to "Hundred Waters" in Tibetan. Chumig Gyatsa, one of the 24 revered Tantric sites, is a sacred site of the Dakinis deities known as Sky Dancers, according to Tibetan Buddhism. Avalokitesvara, the Bodhisattva of Compassion and Virtue, is also thought to incarnate at the place. The founder of Tibetan Buddhism, Guru Rimpoche, also known as Padmasambhava, is said to have meditated here before traveling to Tibet, according to Tibetan Buddhist tradition.
The town of Pharphing is also especially important for Buddhists. Guru Padmasambhava achieved the status of a Mahamudra vidyadhara in Yangleshö, a sacred location in Pharping, a town south of Kathmandu in Nepal. Because Padmasambhava, the second Buddha Guru, acquired enlightenment in Yangleshö, it is believed by Katok Rigdzin Tsewang Norbu to be just as significant to Vajrayana practitioners as Bodhgaya. The Asura cave and the Yangleshö cave are the two main practice caves in Pharping that have been blessed by Guru Rinpoche. One of the oldest and most significant Vajrayogini temples is the Pharping Vajravarahi temple, which is located at the base of the flight of stairs leading up to the Asura cave. The cave can be reached through additional stairs. At Ralo Rinpoche's monastery at the further end of the village, they begin by a shrine with a self-arisen Tara on the side of a Ganesha statue. On the way to Pharphing lies the Taudaha lake where the sacred Nagas of Kathmandu Valley were sent after Manjushri drained the holy lake of Kathmandu.
Chobhar gorge is another name for the Manjushree gorge. Legend has it that Manjushree, who journeyed to Nepal to pray to the Swayambhu Flame and Goddess Gujeswari, struck this gorge. Manjushree is claimed to have traversed the lake's peaks three times before using his powerful sword to cut a large chasm in the southern hills, draining the suspension bridge that had been designed to span the gorge's two sides. Views from the bridge include the Hanjushree gorge, the neighboring Chobhar cave, and the Jal Binayak shrine. Manjushree Park is located close to Chobhar Gorge. It is named in honor of Manjushree, the wise person who chiseled out Chobhar Gorge to form the Kathmandu Valley.
The Buddhist Pilgrimage Tour to Nepal is accessible at any time of year. The best seasons to visit Nepal are spring (April-May) and fall (September-November), when the weather is neither too hot nor too cold. Significant monsoon rains will make for a muddy adventure during the months of July-August. Flights to Jomsom are also prone to cancellation during the monsoon, and the peak of Muktinath will be quite chilly.
We are easy to work with, versatile, and will meet all of your requirements. In addition, Accessible Adventures owns a hotel in Kathmandu where we can tailor rooms to your specific need.
Professional local guides will accompany you and give personalized recommendations and advice on local "must-sees" and "must-visits" not listed in guidebooks. Our tour guides will educate you on local history, culture, and religion.
We are well-versed in the theological importance of the numerous pilgrimage places and will assist you with all of your prayers and veneration of the divinities.
As soon as you land in Kathmandu, a member of our company will be there to welcome you. We will make sure that your travel requirements are met as soon as you are in our care. We'll assist you in checking into your selected hotel because there are no scheduled activities for the day. You could decide to unwind in each of your chambers or take a stroll about the neighborhood.
We begin the day by grabbing breakfast. You will be escorted from your hotel by an Accessible Adventure representative in a private vehicle where we go first to the Jamchen Vijaya Stupa atop Budanilakantha. The view from the hill is amazing as you can see the entire Kathmandu valley in the morning sunlight. We take in the calmness of the region and revel in the spiritual aura permeated by the stupa and monastery. We can even meditate in the monastery and cleanse our minds and develop mindfulness and awareness.
After having our fill of the wonderful spiritual and natural aura, we move from Budanilakantha to the Largest stupa in Nepal, Bouddhanath. The large complex of Bouddhanath houses numerous monasteries and a small shrine dedicated to the mother of Guru Rinpoche. Circumambulating the large stupa we take in the pureness of the region. We can grab lunch at a local Tibetan restaurant and roam the many gullies and monasteries nearby.
From Bouddhanath we move in the late afternoon to the enormous hilltop complex of Swayambhunath. We move to the entrance of the Swayambhunath and explore the great three statues of Chenrezig, Shakyamuni, and Guru Rinpoche at the entrance. We hike up many stairs amid many shrines, monkeys, and statues to the top of the temple. Circumambulation is done around the main stupa and numerous shrines are visited. From the hilltop of Swayambhunath beautiful sunset views can be seen amid the Kathmandu valley. Taking the stairs from the back, we descend the many steps to find a private vehicle waiting for us as we finish the trip as are taken to our hotel.
After having breakfast, we pick you up from your hotel as we head to the sacred site of Namobuddha located around 40km away from Kathmandu city near the town of Banepa. From here, we snake through muddy and hilly terrain In our vehicle taking in wonderful views of Kathmandu valley. We park near the Namobuddha Monastery which towers atop a hill with frames a wonderful view of the hills. Young student monks can be seen nearby as we make our way to the cave where the tigress was said to have been fed by the Buddha in his previous life with the flesh of his own skin. After paying homage to the site, we move to the monastery proper. The monastery has multiple levels with various figures and shrines dedicated to many buddhas and bodhisattvas. You can explore the entire monastery and even meditate if you so wish.
From Namobuddha we move to the village of Temal atop another hill in the Kavre district. Temal houses the footprint of Guru Padmasambhava and shrines and a statue there are available to explore. The road to Temal is exquisite as we move through green hills and forests that serve as the foreground to a bright blue sky. After paying our respects to the footprint of Guru Rinpoche and visiting the statue and shrines at Temal we return to Kathmandu where you will be dropped off in your hotel.
From Kathmandu, we take a tourist bus to Lumbini the sacred site of the birth of the Buddha. The buses leave early in the morning at 6 AM. Grabbing lunch on the way to Muglin, we take the route towards Lumbini by passing from the city of Chitwan. We cross also the towns of Butwal and Bhairawaha. From Bhairahawa the site of Lumbini is a mere hour away. Bhairahawa is also an border town to India and houses the Bhairahawa border. Numerous statues of the Buddha and stupas can be seen as we approach Lumbini. The Lumbini Historical Site is surrounded by hotels and lodges. We will be staying in one of the hotels nearby. As we reach Lumbini in the evening, you are free to roam around the area and take an evening stroll through the small town.
This whole day is set up to explore the amazing Lumbini Religious site. You will be visiting the ancient and most holy site of the Mayadevi temple. Here you can pay homage to a stone with the footprint of the infant buddha. Nearby is also the famous Ashoka pillar with inscriptions in the ancient writing system of Brahmi. After your homage, nearby you can also visit the pond where Queen Mayadevi is said to have bathed after giving birth and a bodhi tree nearby.
From here, we head towards the Lumbini Monastry complex, passing through the eternal peace flame. You can visit numerous monasteries of all sects of Buddhism and marvel at the amazing artistic and stylistic differences in the construction of the temples and monasteries. Nearby is also the World Peace Pagoda which you will be able to visit. The long journey around the many monasteries is tiring so you might want to use the transport system within Lumbini to get around quicker and easier.
Waking up early, we grab a bus to Pokhara from Butwal. Butwal is reached via a short drive from Lumbini. The journey will take us along the Trishuli and Seti rivers into Pokhara where we will be checked into our hotel near the lakeside. You can take a scenic walk around Fewa lake and enjoy the evening and nightlife in the picturesque city.
Today morning, we move to Sarangkot to witness Sunrise or to view the wonderful vistas of the western Himalayas including Annapurna and Fishtail peaks. We also get an amazing view of the Fewa lake from Sarangkot.
As we return from Sarangkot, after grabbing breakfast there, we visit the Bindabasini temple located atop a small hill. The temple complex houses numerous shrines beside the main shrine considered the oldest in Pokhara.
From here, we move to the World Peace Pagoda which is the second such Pagoda located in Nepal. From the top, we can see exquisite views of the Pokhara valley amid the peaceful calm of the stupa and the small temple located nearby.
The International Mountain Museum located in Pokhara is also amazing to visit where many cultures and mountain climbing expeditions are kept memorialized. The museum also houses a small Buddhist Shrine which you can visit as you explore the museum.
Towards the evening we head towards the center of Pokhara, the Fewa lake. We reach the temple dedicated to Tal Barahi via boat from the edge of the Fewa lake. The temple complex houses numerous other shrines also. We return to Pokhara lakeside via boat also where you can have a free time relaxing.
We leave Pokhara early in the morning and travel to the airport to board a flight to Jomsom, a town surrounded by mountains in the Mustang province. You will experience some beautiful mountain scenery throughout the journey to Jomsom, including the Annapurna, Nilgiri, and other peaks. We pick up a vehicle to transport us to Muktinath as soon as we land in Jomsom. The journey to Muktinath is fairly picturesque as we follow the Kaligandaki river and enjoy breathtaking views of the surrounding sandstone terrain. From Jomsom, Muktinath is about an hour and a half away by car. There is a short climb to the temple complex. Numerous temples, monasteries, two ponds for atonement, and 108 water faucets that are claimed to expiate previous negative karma are all located inside the complex. We pay our respects at the major temple of Vishnu, which is seen as an embodiment of Avalokiteshvara by many Buddhists, and we also visit the countless other shrines devoted to various deities.
Here is also where one of the oldest monasteries with an eternal flame is. We may eat lunch in Muktinath while touring the sculptures of Padmasambhava and Buddha that are located there. We return to Jomsom by jeep after seeing Muktinath to the point where we may comfortably spend the night.
From Jomsom, we take a quick flight back to Pokhara, where we start our trip back to Kathmandu. We go to Kathmandu on the Prithvi highway, which follows the Trishuli river the entire way. On the way, we stop for lunch once again at either Malekhu or Muglin. After a long travel, you will be dropped off at your hotel in Kathmandu in the evening when we arrive.
Waking up early in Kathmandu, we move to the ancient Newar settlement of Pharping. At Pharping, we visit the fables Asura Cave and another cave where Guru Rinpoche is said to have meditated on the way to Tibet from India. There is also a Tara Temple dedicated nearby with an image of Ganesha also. The monastery complex in the area naturally leads to the temple of Vajravarahi, a revered tantric Yidam said to be a Dakini. We explore the many monasteries and temples in and around Pharping including one with a large statue dedicated to Guru Rinpoche.
From Pharping, we slowly move to Taudaha via jeep where we get to see the massive lake where the Nagas were sent after the Bodhisattva Manjusri is said to have drained the Kathmandu lake where they lived.
Nearby Kathmandu, we see the exact location at Chhobhar where Manjushri used his flaming sword to cut the gorge which drained the lake of Kathmandu. There a small park, as well as a shrine, is dedicated to Manjushri.
After paying our homage we finish our trip as you are returned to your hotel for the end of the Buddhist Spiritual Trip.
It's time to say goodbye to Nepal's sacred land after the Buddhist pilgrimage tour of the country has concluded. A driver will transport you to the international airport three hours before to your planned international departure for your trip. We really hope you will always treasure the memories of your time with us visiting temples and other holy places, which cleaned our spirits. If you want to experience everything that magnificent Nepal has to offer, you can prolong your stay. We genuinely hope you enjoyed spending time with us on this spiritual journey.
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Nepal Buddhist Pilgrimage Tour
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