Memoirs of My Visit To Kalinchowk | Written by Rhythm Bhetwal

Visit To Kalinchowk

With the beautiful snow-capped mountains in the north, high and low valleys, and the plain, fertile land of Terai, all these have been proved to be a boon of nature for Nepal. Very few places on earth can rival the beauty and rarity of Nepal. With thousands of aesthetic places in its lap, Nepal has become one of the famous tourist destinations in the world. Kalinchowk is one of such winsome places of Nepal situated in the Dolakha district of Bagmati Pradesh of north-eastern Nepal. People visit Kalinchowk due to its religious and pilgrimage significance. 
I too visited Kalinchowk with my family of four (mom, dad, brother, and me). It was an indelible journey. Since I heard of the plan to visit Kalinchowk, I was over the moon. We started our journey at about 4 AM in the morning. It was freezing cold (the month of December) as Christmas was near that’s why we all had our burdensome jackets put on for saving us from chilling cold weather. We left our Baneshwor area and through Dhulikhel, we headed all the way to Charikot which was 4 hours drive passing through heavenly rivers, streams, hills, and mountains. It was dreamy to have a window seat and relish the landscape. We stopped at Kharedhunga and had a refreshing time there. After a light breakfast, we continued our journey towards Kalinchowk Bhagwati Temple. The locals advised us to walk on foot rather than by vehicle as it was snowy and the path was slippery. We admired their suggestion and trekked the snowy hill. The path was way more slippery than I had expected. My brother stumbled numerous times. He took mom’s support while I took dad’s. We had a lovely family time. We could spot some people lying unconscious on the way due to high altitude. Some people had nausea and vomiting too as it was at a very great altitude. I was petrified if my condition would happen the same but by god’s grace nothing happened. There were countless people who were trekking like us.
My legs were exhausted but my eyes were in search of wonderful scenery. I was kind of lost in the magnificent panorama of the hills that’s why I didn’t complain. I can still visualize some glimpse of that beautiful snow which I had seen the very first time. I could feel the cold, soft, and fluffy nature of it. In the fullness of time, we reached the base of another light green hill. The view was mesmerizing. The clustered houses with colorful and designed roofs just took my breath. To reach Kalinchowk, we had to travel another straight hill which looked much more difficult than the first one. I, my brother, and my mom were literally exhausted. That’s why we chose the cable car but my dad traveled the hill on foot. It was 12,095 ft above sea level.
The temple was crowded with people. We worshipped the temple with a lot of admiration and honor. Travelling is not just about enjoyment and fun but also about grabbing knowledge and experience. I think it’s the best way to learn. I got to know that Kalinchowk is named after the goddess Kali which is related to power and destruction. She is believed to be one of the powerful goddesses of Hinduism. People say that Pandavas had also come here for meditation. The water pond in the top of Kalinchowk is believed to be holy and pure after showering and taking water from Kunda. From the religious treatises of Durga Puran, it was said that Kalinchowk is the place where Devi’s right arm was a downfall that’s why people’s desires come true or get fulfilled after worshipping goddess Durga with pure soul. After that, we moved towards the lodge we had booked. We had a lot of leisure time there. We had a campfire, watched the cultural program, and had a gratified night there. 
The next morning we went to see the first light of the day. I can’t explain how alluring, ravishing, heavenly, and glamorous it was to contemplate the view of sunrise. The glimpse of sunrise still sets in my mind. Whenever I close my eyes, I still can feel the fresh view of sunrise. After the view of the sunrise, we went to our cousin’s house and headed towards Dolakha Bhimsen Temple, one of the prominent places in the Dolakha district. The artistic view of the temple overjoyed me. It was about 4 km east of Charikot. The temple was roofless and there was a stone idol of Bhimsen in the center. The idol of Bhimsen resembles three deities: Bhimeshwor in the morning, Mahadeva throughout the day, and Narayana in the evening. According to mythology, the temple is devoted to Bhimsen, the second brother among the Pandavas. 
The Bhimsen statue perspires in the form of fluid-like drops from time to time. Perspiration is considered a bad omen for the country. This has already happened thrice in Nepal. During the change of Rana Regime, the idol is believed to have sweated. The idol sweated in 1934 AD before a devastating earthquake that killed 8500 people. It was also reported that the idol sweated a few days ahead of the royal massacre that killed King Birendra and his family. We couldn’t stay there for long as my dad had some work. Therefore, we returned to our own place, Kathmandu. 
I believe Travelling is a very crucial part of life as it’s the best way to get out of a busy schedule. It is also to experience life in different ways. Traveling is actually a good remedy for stress, anxiety, and depression. We also travel because distance and difference are the secret toxic of learning and creativity which cannot be observed by sitting at home. Traveling in itself has a lot of advantages, as it makes one forget all worries, problems, and fear. This helps broaden your horizon to move in a new direction, unplugging ourselves from the pulls and pushes of daily life.
Contestant of the ‘Nepal Travel Diaries Writing Competition’ organized by Offline Thinker.
Writer: Rhythm Bhetwal



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