Nepal Buddhist Cultural Tour
Any Buddhist tour would be incomplete without a visit to Nepal.This Buddhist Cultural Tour takes you to some of the most important Buddhist sites in the world, including the birthplace of Buddha – Lumbini in the South of Nepal. The tour combines both the natural and cultural aspects of touring in Nepal. The tours bewgins in Kathmandu: the cultural, historical and political center of Nepal. Kathmandu has its own brand of cultural life which is based on a unique mixture of different religions and faiths.Whilst in Kathmandu, we visit Boudhanath, Swayambhunath, and many other important Buddhist monasteries before heading to Pokhara – the adventure capital of Nepal.Pokhara is a lovely place, situated around a beautiful lake with some absolutely stunning close up views of the mighty Annapurna Range towering above the town. We pay a visit to the World Peace Stupa and the Tibetan Refugee Camp to get a first hand experience of Tibetan Buddhism. Then we drive southwest to the birthplace of Buddha, Lumbini. After paying homage to the Buddha’s birthplace and discovering the cultural and spiritual sites, we return back to Kathmandu.
This Nepal Buddhist Cultural Tour exposes you to a combination of natural and cultural sites, especially designed for those interested in Buddism or Buddhist monuments.
|DAY 01: Arrival in Kathmandu
Upon arrival / welcome and pick up from airport / transfer to Hotel / Introductory program and briefing.
|DAY 02: Visit Boudhanath, Some Monasteries at Boudha & Kapan Monastery
Today we pay a visit to Boudhanath Stupa, one of the largest Buddhist stupas in the world and an important Buddhist pilgrimage since time immemorial. The unique octagonal Mandala design with hundreds of prayer wheels and the 108 images of the Buddha are set into the niches around the huge structure. The area around Boudhnath has over 50 Tibetan Gompas or monasteries surrounding it.,also being known as the ‘Little Tibet’. The Kapan Monastery at Kapan Hill, a few kilometers north from Boudhanath is also known as Nepal Bouddhist Mahayan Centre and a good place for meditation.
|DAY 03: Visit Swoyambhunath & Drive to Pokhara
Pay a visit to Swoyambhu Stupa in the morning, which is one of the oldest Buddhist monuments in the world with more than 2000 years of history and also a major Buddhist pilgrimage site. According to legend, the civilization of Kathmandu Vallley itself begins with Swoyambhu, which literally means “the self-existent.” It is said that Bodhisattva Manjusri came across a beautiful lake while traveling and saw a lotus in the middle of the hill. After visiting Swayambhunath, we make a 6-hour drive to Pokhara in the afternoon to pay our visit to some Buddhist sites there. Overnight at Pokhara.
|DAY 04: Pokhara: World Peace Pagoda, Malepatan Gumba, Hyangja Tibetan Refugee Camp
Today we visit some Buddhist landmarks in Pokhara and also enjoy the nature’s majesty. The massive Buddhist stupa of World Peace Pagoda was constructed by Buddhist monks from the Japanese Nipponzan Myohji organisation on a narrow ridge high above Phewa Tal. Besides being a cultural monument, the site is also famous for the panoramic view it offers of the Pokhara Valley, lake and mountains to the north. We cross the Phewa Lake on a boat and then hike to the Stupa. Then we will visit the Malepatan Gomba. Then drive to Hyangja, the site for Tibetan refugee camp who fled Tibet after the Cultural Revolution in China. You may try the Tibetan variety of foods, bargain for curios, and at the same time acquaint yourself with the Tibetan culture. There is the Tashi Palkhiel monastery in the tradition of Karma Kagyu tradition. Overnight at Pokhara.
|DAY 05: Drive to Lumbini and Exploration
We drive to Lumbini today – about 290 kilometers south-west from Pokhara which takes for about 6-7 hours. After we leave Pokhara we head to Lumbini and drive through the hilly regions of Lamjung, Palpa which are also some of the beautiful places of the region. We finally reach Terai which is generally flat with warmer temperature. Perhaps, Lumbini is the most important Buddhist pilgrimage site – the place where Buddha was born. After we get to Lumbini we explore the local village, their life style and more.
|DAY 06: Full Day Exploration day in Lumbini
Lumbini is one of world’s major religious, architectural, and historical places. We devote today’s time in visiting as many places and sites in Lumbini as possible. The place is really a big area with monuments, temples, and ancients sites making it a UNESCO World Heritage Site. First we visit the Mayadevi temple which is built at the exact place where Buddha was born. Observe the ruins of the past, Buddha’s birthplace, the puskarni pond, the Ashokan pillar etc. We also visit the museum and peace pagoda and some other great monasteries which have been built over the years representing cultural and architectural tradition of different countries such as China, Germany, Austria, Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand etc. Overnight at Lumbini.
|DAY 07: Drive back to Kathmandu
We come to the closer to the end of the Buddhist cultural tour. Get ready for a scenic drive of around 8 hours along the winding Himalayan roads. Upon arrival in Kathmandu, you will be transferred to Hotel. Relaxation and shopping gifts, souvenir etc. Overnight in Kathmandu.
|DAY 08: You are saying good bye to the mountains and the land of Buddha’s birth as your journey in Nepal comes to an end today! Transfer to airport and fly back home with beautiful memories of your Nepal trip and also with determination to be back again|
(The cost varies with the number of trekkers in the group. Please contact us with the number of trekkers for the exact quote)