Boudha -or Boudhanath – situated 10 kilometers NV from the center of Kathmandu – and today almost merged into Kathmandu.
It is probably the holiest Buddhist site in Nepal and one of the most important places of pilgrimage for the Himalayan Buddhist people.
The great Stupa stands in the center of the village and surrounded by mountains it is the centre of a natural mandala, and viewed from above it has the shape of a mandala.
In the past when the trade routes were still open to Tibet pilgrims and traders went to the Stupa before a journey to seek blessing for a safe journey over the mountain passes and likewise to say thank you upon arrival back in Kathmandu.
Almost every time when I visited the place some religious activity took place: A puja, munks playing their horns, chanting, making small offerings, burning incense etc. and during the bigger festivals the area is crowded with devotees.
Visiting Boudha in the early morning or at dusk is a must. There is a very special atmosphere when all the buddhists circumambulate the stupa turning the prayer wheels and saying their “Om Mani Padme Um”s.
Almost all evenings candles are lit around the stupa and especially during one of the many festivals or at full moon the atmosphere is very special.