An amazing trip – just in time

This April I went on a trip that I will not forget: It took me to Nepal and events should tell that I went exactly at the right time.

I arrived in Kathmandu to stay there for three nights exploring the city and its surroundings. It did not take long for the city, the country and the people to really make me enjoy my journey. Staying close to the Boudhanath Stupa I naturally started my trip to go exploring there and was not disappointed. Just a five minute walk and I was standing right in front of it:

Boudhanath Stupa
Right behind my hotel in Kathmandu was the Boudhanath Stupa. A buddhist place of worship it is visited by locals and tourists alike. Walking around it clockwise you can go with the flow and enjoy this remarkable structure, which is surrounded by coffee shops and small shops selling singing bowls, praying drums and other more or less usefull goods to those who are interested. I preferred watching the sunset from one of the numerous rooftop bars and restaurants and that is where I took this beautiful photo with the sun setting behind the stupa.

It is just an amazing structure and once you see it during sunrise or sunset with the buddhist devotees praying and walking around it you are already captivated and drawn into the spiritual feel of this place.

Having always focused on taking city- and landscape photos during my trips around the world, I specifically wanted to take more photos of the people in Nepal, especially after buying the Sony 70-200mm F4 lens during my last trip to New York. Armed with my new toy mounted on my Sony A7r I made my way to the old town of Thamal and when walking into a shop selling cashmere I could not resist to take a photograph of this gentlemen:

Cashmere Dealer
In the heart of Thamel, the old town of Kathamndu I walked into a small shop to buy some cashmere scarfs as gifts for friends and family and stumbled upon this gentleman who owned the store. With the business done and more than enough new pocessions in my bags i asked him if I could take his photo and he gladly agreed.

After exploring Kathmandu i went to Nargarkot, which is approximately four hours east of Kathmandu as you are supposedly have amazing views of the sunrise behind the Himalayas. Unfortunately I was not that lucky and the clouds were blocking the view and it was rainy. I used the time however to explore the ancient town of Bhaktapur, which, similar to its counterpart in Kathmandu was just mind-blowing and is definitely worth visiting.

From Nargarkot I went back to Kathmandu only to take a plane to the lakeside town of Pokhara and start hiking in the Annapurna region.

Blue Hour at Pokhara Lake
Enjoying a stroll along the shoreline of the Phewa lake, which is the large lake on which’s border the laid back backpacker city of Pokhara is situated. With the majestic mountains of the Annapurna region in the background it is a great starting point for your hiking, trekking and/or climbing adventures in the surrounding mountains.

And what can i say? Even though it was only a short three nights/four days hike it was absolutely fantastic. Staying at beautiful guesthouses and being able to finally witness the sunrise behind mountains higher than 8000 meters. Mindblowing.

This is a panorama I took standing on the roof of one of the guesthouses I visited and I could just not stop taking photos until my memory card was full.

Himalaya Sunrise
Waking up ealy only to find that finally the clouds have cleared and to have an awesome view on the sun slowly climbing up behind the 8000m high mountains is truly majestic. This photo is actually a panorama created from more than 6 photos taken in portrait orientation and then stitched together in Photoshop. Might be a nice background for the living room walls…

After stretching my legs trekking I took a car back to Kathmandu to continue exploring the buzzing city and take even more photos. This is a photo of a monk I took from a rooftop bar and I just love how the monk together with his colourful umbrella are in contrast with the negative space around him.

Under my Umbrella
Enjoying a cold drink on one of the beautiful rooftop bars surrounding the Boudhanath Stupa I saw this monk in his red clothing and his colourful umbrella walking around the stupa in the inner circle. With a little bit of patience, luck and – admittably – the help of Photoshop, I was able to capture him with a lot of negative space surrounding him to create a really strong image.

Before leaving Nepal again I had to do one more thing though: See Mount Everest up close!

So I took a scenic flight in the morning and thanks to Buddha Air I was able to come Eye to Eye with the worlds highest mountain.

On Top of the World
Ok, I did not climb it (yet). But I was eye to eye with its peak from the window of my scenic flight: Mount Everest! The peak to the right is Mount Lhotse, which is 8516 m high, second to Mount Everest only with its 8848m.

 

Following the scenic flight in the morning I enjoyed one last day in Kathmandu and flew out back to Germany in the evening. Three days later the terrible news of the earthquake in Nepal reached me and I was and at time of writing this post still am devastated by it. Having been able to stand on the Durhbar Squares of Kathmandu and Bhaktapur taking photos just days before they were badly damaged or possibly destroyed, having been able to walk through the buzzing roads of Thamal and meeting so many awesome people on the way that I was and partly still am worried about is an experience I really would be happy not having to make.

After the first shock and being relieved having been able to contact the guide who took me around while hiking I already contributed to the immediate relief efforts with his support but still would like to do more. So, I have decided that all income I am able to generate with photos of my Nepal gallery in 2015 will be donated to the German Red Cross and/or other reputable international aid organisations supporting the relief and reconstruction efforts in Nepal.

Please contact me if you have any questions.

You can see all photos I took during the trip here. Kindly note, that I will add more and more over the next couple of weeks due to the amount I took, so come back from time to time to explore what is new.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *