What first was mad soon became pretty off putting. My first experience of an Asian city did not leave me with much hope. The monsoon had created a depressing feel to the place. Worst of all however was arriving at the end of a two week garbage strike. It quite literally was everywhere. The smell was horrendous and at times you had no choice but to walk straight through it. The thought of heading to the mountains had never felt so good.
“Is this the same city?” I exclaimed on my return. The pavements were now relatively clear, dust had replaced water and there was no longer a need to hold your nose in fear of vomiting. Instead there stood a vibrant and hectic city which proved to be very hard to leave.
In terms of traditional sightseeing I feel that it lacks maybe the highlights of similar sized cities. This may however have been due to the superb guest house I stayed at, where once sat in the garden it was nearly impossible to leave due to the amount of people to talk to. I did however manage to get out and about a fair bit, whether it was fighting off the monkeys at Swayambhunath, getting blessed by Buddhist monks at Boudha, enjoying the well hidden ex-pats farmers market, or watching an hour long cremation service at Pashupatinath. My favourite place however was sat on numerous times inthe sunshine chatting and watching the world go by in Dubar Square. Bliss.
In the end it was hard leaving Kathmandu but with the guys and girls I had met over the week departing for various treks and my India visa running down, it seemed the right time to strike off on my own and head to Delhi.