..…for every time I see the sky I’m aware of belonging to the universe than to just one corner of the earth.
This is a guilty post. I should have written this post 2 years back when we visited Nepal and Pokhara Valley and of course the Phewa Lake, but I did not. We toured Nepal on 2014 and at that point of time we were not into blogging. An enthusiast and learner photographer that I was, I wanted to capture as much as possible. I was still reeling under the grief and sorrow of losing out on the pictures of Greece and Turkey tour and this time I carried a laptop and an external HDD to have more than enough back up in place.
What is your methodology of creating a back up while travelling if you are an avid photographer and want to click as many snaps as possible? Please let me know
It’s now well known for all my readers that ‘Pikturenama’ started with a post from Kathmandu and if it was not for this trip, I would have never started a blog. April 25, 2015 is a date which changed the history of this beautiful country forever. The close friend Komal, with whom we stayed and largely due to her, we had such a great trip was also trapped during the earthquake at Bhaktapur and later she, along with her family and the 4 year old son spent few days under the open sky almost as there were aftershocks of the earthquake. My saved pictures started haunting me and although I wrote a post but did not want to write any new travelog on Nepal.
Time is the best healer they say. No one can bring back the century old architecture marvels which were lost, no one can bring back the precious lives and relationships which got buried inside the debris and turned silent forever. Although I plan to come up with the posts on Kathmandu someday; but I guess it will take some time.
We were out to see sunrise on the same day, which meant the day started very early at 4.30 AM. However still reeling under the magnificent spectacle that we have observed in the morning we had a great breakfast with some good company and in the afternoon, we headed around the Phewa lake or Phewa tal as locally known as.
Well that’s the first mistake we made as photography enthusiasts. After a grand lunch when we reached the lake, it was around 2 PM. We had a 2 year old with us and hence that was the best time suited for us to do everything we could and retire to the hotel as early as possible. Charged at Rs 400 per hour then, we asked for a responsible sailor and we were awarded with a less spoken stern old woman. Unexpected things always happen when you are travelling.
Phewa lake is often considered as the pride of Pokhara and the tourism is centred around this. An afternoon leisurely ride around this second largest lake of Nepal can often be rewarded with occasional glimpses of Machepechu or Machhapuchhre and the entire Annapurna range but we were unfortunately not that lucky.
From the moment you step into Pokhara and if you are staying in Baidam, where most of the resorts and restaurants are, then you cannot help but notice the brightly painted boats locally known as Dungas. When not sailing, they are parked together on different points along the banks and form a pretty picture. The splash of bright colours against the serene bluish green Phewa lake with blue sky reflection on water makes you stare at them for eternity. There is an island temple called the Barahi Bhagwati temple which is named after the third incarnation of Lord Vishnu in the form of Wild boar.
The bright coloured life jackets which we were handed over before getting up on the boats were little worn out but the little boy wearing them under constant observation of his parents added an excitement to the atmosphere. After some time of the boat ride and multiple shots, we realised that it was not the day to get a glimpse of Annapurna range. In case you request the boat man in this case the boat woman or the aunty, they will park at a small place on the banks which has provision of some snacks as well as some good coffee.
While cruising along, you can see dense forests on one side called as Rani Ban or the queen’s forest which add up to the green tinge that you see on the lake. Adventure tourists who come to Pokhara for trekking, they start trekking from the base of this lake and go as high as the World Peace pagoda.
This is a leisure activity when one needs to enjoy the silence and the calmness. Strangely Tugga was an angel and at times we tried to show him the fish in the lake which could be seen at some places where the water was clear. We stayed there for 2 hours and came back. Tugga was tired by then and we were already feeling hungry, so we reached the main street and had food.
The photographer in me was unhappy, dissatisfied for not getting enough shots. I went back the next morning too to try and capture the sunrise on the lake – which didn’t happen. Realised later that I was late and bright sunlight did not throw up enough textures of the sky or the hidden mountain ranges.
Since time immemorial rivers and lakes have been bed of civilisation and Phewa lake in Pokhara is just another one. Was wondering how many people earn their livelihood basis this lake?
If the morning was rewarding in watching the magical sunrise between the glorious mountain ranges, the afternoon was not too bad with a leisurely boat ride experiencing the lake and the surrounding forests.
Let me know how you like the pictures as these are the best that I could.
Nepal and Kathmandu in particular has revived well to an extent that tourism has already started, although due to various reasons the relationship between both the countries hasn’t been the same as it was in the past and also post earthquake relief services. I however wish from the bottom of my heart that things go back to as they were and perhaps better, as two neighboring countries can be.
If you are planning a next tour to Nepal then you may check out some of these places although I am not sure how they look like now.
Pin for future reference ?
The unique festival of Rato Machhendranath (click here)
World peace pagoda Pokhara (Link here)
Why you must visit Boudhanath in Kathmandu (Link here)
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