Nothing like getting home... and tackling the photo edits right off. Since everyone expects a show at Xmas, I can't procrastinate. That means I can start sharing photos here. I've finished edits on the Kathmandu section of the trip, and managed to select almost a reasonable number of pictures to share here. There's no coherent narrative here--I'm just trying to capture some of the feel of the city. Many thanks to Kim Bannister and Kamzang Journeys for enabling all of this!

 Approaching Kathmandu by air. Not the mountains, but definitely the hills.

We arrived at the start of Tihar, the Nepali celebration of Diwali. Hanging garlands of bright orange marigolds on everything is an important part of the celebration (we even saw them on the necks of street dogs).

Another part of the celebration is lights--everywhere, for a night or two.

Climbing the stairs to the Swayambunath stupa.

... Also known as the Monkey Temple.

The stupa is on a hill, so offers some sense of the city. One part of the city.
The cable car ride to the top of Chandragiri hill gives bigger views, reminding us why we are there.
A lengthy hike took us along the ridge and eventually back to the city, past the biggest collection of prayer flags we saw anywhere, I think.
Only a small part of the extensive prayer-flag complex.
Durbar Square is the heart of the old city, a complex of temples and the old palace.
A lot of the buildings were extensively damaged in the 2015 earthquake.
The Boudha Stupa as seen from the Cafe Caravan, which served good food and some really nice local art and crafts.
Reservoir on a calm December morning.

The streets are dominated by motorcycles. Thousands of them. Sometimes all in one intersection at once, or so it can feel.

In the old city we found the manikin district.

Around the corner we found the street where they are needed.

In the middle of the very busy and noisy city, the substantial grounds and garden of the Kathmandu Guest House provided a sanity-saving oasis.

Up next: actual photos of the mountains and trekking we went there to see and do! Kathmandu was a bonus, one that might have driven me around the bend if I'd stayed much longer but still a place I'm glad to have experienced, even a little.

Read the whole story:

Part I: Lukla to Namche
Part II: Namche to Khunde
Part III: Khunde to Pangboche
Part IV: Ama Dablam Basecamp to Dingboche
Part V: Chukkhung
Part VI: Kongma La
Part VII: Everest Base Camp
Part VIII: Cho La
Part IX: Gokyo
Part X: Renjo La
Part XI: Thame Valley to Home

 ©Rebecca M. Douglass, 2021
 As always, please ask permission to use any photos or text. Link-backs appreciated.