Thursday, February 12, 2015

Durbar Square, Kathmandu

This is definitely a famous tourist site in Kathmandu as it is within the city center. It's a wide plaza not far from the old Royal Palace. One can  just walk to  it from the public market, the tourist area, other famous landmarks in the city center.

Now I do not  know the names of each of these structures. I just took photos that afternoon of January 13, 2015, where my good friend in  Kathmandu, Charu Chadha, toured me by foot. There was a "banda" or strike that day in the city anyway, so no taxi to ride.

Being unfamiliar with the Buddhist culture, history and religion, I found some of those structures to be "eerie" looking. Like this one. Forgive me, my Nepalese and Buddhist friends for this impression.

This one looks like an abandoned palace, eerie looking exterior.  But it may be interesting iside?

The plaza.

Nepal flag being waived by some locals. Maybe  it was related to the strike that day?

Thanks again Charu for that interesting tour.

See also:

Kathmandu, Random Pics, January 08, 2015

Kathmandu from the Air, February 11, 2015

Swayambhu Temple, Kathmandu, February 12, 2015

Swayambhu Temple, Kathmandu

Swayambhu Temple/Complex is among the famous sites for tourists in Kathmandu.  It's on top of a big hill that offers almost 360 deg view of the city. This is the main entrance. Somehow steep stairs going up. I went there last January 14, 2015, my last day in Nepal.

My tour guides, Media 9' Sanchit and Sushi, just brought me there, we did not go up. We walked at one  side of  the temple as there are  many interesting sights there. Like this big red circular thing.

And these wall paintings and sculptures.

Our service car then picked us up, it went at the back, went uphill a bit and parked. Very few people go there, nice route. Then we started the climb. I bought a few souvenir items from this shop at the top.

A big image of the Buddha at one temple on the top.

The main, big structure at the top.

This complex is also mildly called the "Monkey Temple." There are just too many monkeys there, roaming freely. It's good they are not violent that can harass people, like some wild monkeys in the Philippines.

Luckily I brought a banana in my bag, I threw it at one monkey, the others saw it, they approached me, I walked away.

Thanks again for that tour, Sanchit, Sushi, Charu.

See also:

Kathmandu, Random Pics, January 08, 2015

Nepal Tribhuvan Airport and Immigration, January 08, 2015

Kathmandu from the Air, February 11, 2015

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Kathmandu from the Air

Continuing my photo-essays about Nepal. This photo I got from Razan Bhattarai, on our trip to Pokhara last January 11, 2015. He was seated on the left side of the plane, this was around 9:15am that day. Kathmandu is expanding fast.

The next three photos I took on our flight back to Kathmandu from Pokhara, January 12, Monday, around 4pm. The plane was descending. Smog and smoke blurs the view of the mountains. There are very few buildings that are 10 storeys or higher.

Dust and smog blurs the view of the city.

The roads between those houses and structures are generally narrow, they are not visible from this elevation.

The next four photos, I took last January 14 morning from Swayambhu temple, a huge temple on top of a hill and has almost 360 deg view of Kathmandu city proper.

Roads and trees between those structures are not too visible too from the hill.

There are few straight and wide roads and streets in Kathmandu, most roads are narrow and winding. Hence, they are not easily seen even from this position.

Big trees are seen on the foot of this hill. A smaller temple on a lower hill, right side.

Thanks again to my friend, Charu Chadha, Editor of Media 9, for that guided tour. Two staff of the publishing house, Sanchit and Sushi toured me in this temple.

See also:

Kathmandu, Random Pics, January 08, 2015

Nepal Tribhuvan Airport and Immigration, January 08, 2015

Kathmandu to Pokhara by Plane, January 21, 2015

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Farm and Treehouse, Bugallon

My treehouse is now 11 years old. Two-storey, all wood except the roof, perched on a big and live  mahogany tree. The trunk on the ground  and 2nd floor gets bigger and fatter while the roof is rising, every year.

The trees around the treehouse are getting bigger and taller too, some have been harvested already and younger trees beside them grow bigger and taller. Photos taken last January 24, 2015, by my sis in law, Baby.

Our youngest visitor from Manila, few months old Yoshi, a cousin of  Elle and Bien.

With Ate Elle and his Mama Jonjee.

They walked at a nearby creek, still within the farm.
And the mahogany area.

Yoshi seems to be enjoying his small, wild discoveries in the water.


See also:
Trees in our Farm, Bugallon, Pangasinan, September 07, 2012

Trees in Our Farm, Part 2, February 16, 2013

Terraces in the Farm, December 08, 2014

Mt. Zion Chapel and Retreat House

Mt. Zion has a chapel and spiritual retreat house. It is on a big hill but not so high. The resident priest and brothers hold a weekly mass there on Sunday morning, and on certain occasions. Bien and Elle posing near the altar.

Behind the chapel is a wide sala that also functions as a big meeting room. It is surrounded by various paintings and sculptures.

Among the paintings on the wall.

The various sculptures, most are made of wood, some of marble or other materials.

I presume most of these were donated by various supporters of the church. Or were collected from other churches.

The resident priest there is Fr. Albert, he is a fellow Ilongo. He comes from Cabatuan, Iloilo. This was taken after the mass, and we said ba-bye. We stayed at the dorm or retreat house the night before because we were 7 and we could not fit at the farm caretaker's house.

We occupied two rooms. Elle visiting her Tita Baby's room. The hallway with Fr. Albert. He does not charge per room fee, so we only gave a donation to the church, which he hesitantly accepted. There were no other guests that night. But on certain occasions like at least once a monthly retreat recollections, Holy Week, Christmas season, the facility is full of guests and visitors.

The long chairs in the chapel are made of thick and old wood, "antiq"(?) materials.
Thanks again, Fr. Albert for accommodating us that night. We will come back, with other friends and guests.

* See also Mt. Zion, Bugallon Pangasinan

Lingayen Beach, Pangasinan

After our visit at Mt. Zion, Bugallon, we rested, had lunch at Danny's house, then we headed to Lingayen, the provincial capital of Pangasinan. Elle Marie  and Bien Mary wanted to see a beach, so we were heading to Lingayen Beach.

No cottages, no resort-hotels, no fishing village, only an open area for visitors and promenaders to enjoy.

I like this shot. The wind is blowing dry sand towards the sea. Btway, all photos here are from my sister in law, Baby.

Elle Marie and  Bien Mary, enjoying the beach.

I was chasing Elle. She can run fast though.

Elle and Bien doing their favorite activity on  the beach -- building a sand castle. I have to help them gather the sand, they design.

Bien and her cousin, Yoshi, Baby's first child.

 Miscellaneous photos. I like the sight of  white waves going to the beach. That day, 3rd weekend of January 2015, the wind was very cold, it was blowing  towards the sea  while the waves were moving  towards the land. Nice view.

The pick up served as our small wind breaker. Dry sand were blowing fast, dangerous for the eyes.

Ran-ran, Danny's eldest, and Bien. We left the beach around 6pm. Nice view of the sunset.

* See also:

North Phils., Feb. 2002 (part 2), November 20, 2005

Lingayen, Pangasinan, June 13, 2006