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Sightseeing in Kathmandu Valley

On Sunday March 13th, 6 volunteers took part in the traditional Sightseeing in Kathmandu Valley organised by VIN. Conducted by the devoted driver Akkal and a guide, the volunteers have been able to experience some of the wonders harbored by the Kathmandu valley : Swayambhunath and Patan Durbar Square. Departing from Thamel, the volunteers were driven directly to the fabulous monuments located in the center of Patan. There they discovered a place frozen in time, and very well preserved despite the 2015 earthquake. Patan Durbar Square hosts one of the most spectacular newari architecture in whole Nepal, and if you enter the royal palace you can even escape the crowd and noise to find yourself in a more peaceful courtyard. Being a volunteer at VIN has its advantages : instead of paying the 1000 Rs fee to access Durbar Square, everyone got in for free ! In addition, volunteers even made a new friend in the person of a child who was just chilling close by the Shiva temple, and who was more than happy to show everyone some treasures concealed by the old city.

After this refreshing experience, everybody went for lunch together in a nice and fancy (but still pretty cheap) restaurant, having a burger or some momo. Afterwards, straight to Swayambhunath, also called the Monkey Temple ! This Buddhist sanctuary, located just outside Kathmandu, is a very unique place, dominated by a magnificent stupa with a golden arrow. It also gives a breathtaking view over the city and the valley, and the volunteers had the chance to see eagles circling around. That wasn’t all of course. The sanctuary is filled with monkeys of all sizes, waiting for any opportunity to get some food from the gullible tourists or from the altars where pilgrims put offerings. Volunteers have witnessed some pretty amazing stunts, as the small and bigger temples combined make a perfect playground for the little creatures. Unfortunately, even the best things come to an end and the volunteers had to be driven home, but not without their heart swollen and their camera full of great pictures!

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