Kathmandu is the capital of Nepal. It is often the launching point to the ultimate climb of the tallest mountain in the world, Everest. In 2015 the city was struck by a devastating earthquake killing 9,000 people and injuring many more. Much of the city was damaged. My visit was 4 years later and they had mostly recovered.
The people of Nepal are closely aligned with India. To me, the country looked like an extension of India even though they also border Tibetan, China. The biggest similarity with Tibet that I witnessed was the Tibetan Buddhist worship customs.
Kathmandu is a densely populated city. I stayed at the Hyatt Regency located on the eastern outskirts of the city. I did not rent a car as taxis are inexpensive even for long excursions. Inside the city I could walk or enjoy rickshaw rides similar to other Asian countries' Tuk-Tuks.
The sprawling city of Kathmandu
I'll share with you some photos of my walk through the city:
The people are dressed in mixed fashion. Western style as well as the more traditional garb. I expect the more religious you are the more traditional you dress. At least that's my experience in my travels.
Like most Asian countries, the people avoid the sun. Not only do they use sun umbrellas, they usually cover their arms and legs with clothing. Although that in part is because of conservative dress (not wanting to show body parts), it's also to keep the skin out of the sun.
Sun exposure in Asia is not just to protect from skin cancer. I expect skin cancer from sun exposure is likely lower in Asia because many have darker skin. But sun protection is also done by many to keep a lighter skin. Throughout the world I've seen a prejudice against darker skin. Maintaining a lighter colored skin becomes important to many.
Very typical scene throughout Kathmandu. Similar to India, the foods and spices are wheeled into the city in carts for sale. This is how many make their living.
Buses, bikes, and walking are the normal modes of transportation for most Nepalese in the city. Cars and gas are expensive. Average salary for non-professionals here is around $3,000 per year. A teacher salary is maybe $6,000 - $7,000 per year. Sadly, hard to buy a car on that salary. However, everything is comparative and they are more affluent than their rural occupational counterparts in neighboring India.
Religion is at the heart of much of the city. Not unlike much of the world. The only thing different is the religion itself.
Some of the city is still in recovery years after the earthquake. What a devastating event. Although the earthquake was covered in the USA, not nearly to the extent it should have been. But unfortunately, world events don't sell advertisements here unless that world event directly impacts us. A very centric view we have.
I have more pictures of my rickshaw ride through the city I can share with you soon.