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Swayambunath Stupa, Kathmandu, Nepal

012 Swayambunath Stupa, Kathmandu

Swayambunath Temple, in Kathmandu, Nepal, is one of the most important sites in this ancient city.  It is known as the “Monkey Temple” because of the large number of (mean spirited) monkeys that have all but taken over this complex (and are said to be “holy monkeys”).

Swayambhunath is an ancient complex atop a hill in the Kathmandu Valley.  Most approach it via a long uphill climb of 365 steps (one for each day of the year), past thousands of Buddhist prayer flags that set the atmosphere for the complex ahead.  Each morning before dawn hundreds of Buddhist and Hindu pilgrims ascend these steps and begin a clockwise walk around the stupa at the center of this ancient site.

The Swayambhunath complex dates to …

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“Pic of the Week”, June 27, 2014: Wat Pho, Bangkok, Thailand

001 WITW 38 Bangkok Wat Po

Today’s highlighted photo is one I took at Wat Pho about 10 years ago, an image I’ve always liked.  The photo was of three young Buddhist monks — just a group of pals but in brilliantly colored robes — chatting and walking into one of the buildings in the complex.

Wat Pho (the Temple of the Reclining Buddha), also known as Wat Phra Chetuphon, is located beside the Grand Palace and its Temple of the Emerald Buddha.   It’s very easy to visit both the Grand Palace complex and Wat Pho in one day as it’s just a 10 minute walk between the two entrances.  I’d recommend first visiting the Grand Palace before coming here because Wat Pho is a more relaxed environment …

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