Monday 15 October 2018. Nepal Photos
Highlights: Thamel Market, Durbar Square, Sisterhood of Survivors
The entire tour group meet and left the Fuji Hotel to undertake a morning orientation walk of Kathmandu with the focus being the morning fruit and vegetable market in Thamel and visit of Hanuman-dhoka Durban Square.
As Nepal is currently celebrating Hindu Dashain Festival (or Blessing Festival) Kathmandu is flooded with people. The marketplace being a big focus for locals. The fresh food street markets operate until around 9 am in the Thamel area. The sellers close up at 9 am so that the shop owners can operated during the day. The vibrant colours of the various fruits and vegetables jumped out at you adding to the sense of smell from incense and food, and the energy of the crowd. Still seeing some meat and fish in the open air with flies around wouldn’t be a big selling point for visitors.
After Gelu got us to Hanuman-dhoka Durbar Square he left us to hopefully organise our Chinese (Tibet) visas. Entry of 1,000 Nepalese Rupees gets tourist into the area. Durbar Square is home of the former Royal Palace and the sight of many historic buildings and temples. Unfortunately the devastating 2015 earthquake, which killed over 9,000 people, caused extensive damage and are still be fixed to this this day.
The entire tour group separately managed to find our way back to the Fuji Hotel. Personally I was using a new app MAPS.ME which allows you to download maps of the areas you are in and then the mobile signal estimates your location. A great app for when you don’t have roaming data (which I don’t).
At 11 am we headed off to the G Adventure support Sisterhood of Survivors project (part of the SASANE initiative). SASANE train women coming out of human trafficking to be certified paralegals, so that they are the first point of contact for other women coming out of abuse. Where survivors lack a high school diploma, the minimum requirements to be a paralegal, Planeterra and G Adventures have helped catalyze a hospitality program for these women to be reintegrated into a dignified work environment the Sisterhood of Survivors project. The entire program is run by survivors of trafficking.
The survivors of trafficking taught us how to make mo:mos (traditional dumplings) – which I could barely to even with a lot of assistance, as well as providing us with a delicious Nepali lunch.
While I’m aware of a lot of the dark side of the world including human trafficking the presentation we received was still eye opening on how big a problem this is. The women running this initiative are truly inspiring, I wish for a world however were this organisation was needed and children and young girls were not bought and sold and exploited like this. I choose to see the positive in this visit, the power of people to help each other and reach out. Inspiring women, I was glad to help in a small way by my support of G Adventures Planeterra program and on the day of the visit. This is one of the reason I choose G Adventures for my tours some often.
The rest afternoon was spend buying necessary supplies for this tour (lip balm, hand sanitiser, snacks for tomorrow’s hike).