11.04.18, Kathmandu, Kopan Monastery
The group arrived on schedule in Kathmandu with no problems except that the luggage handling at Kathmandu airport was chaotic and it took more than an hour to get to our bags.
There were views of the Himalaya just before landing but somewhat spoilt by mist and cloud. On arrival we first had lunch at the restaurant of the family firm which is organising our trek. We were welcomed in the traditional way with garlands of flowers.
Afterwards we walked up the nearby Kopan hill which is the site of a monastery of the same name. The Kopan Monastery, a monastery in the Gelug tradition of Tibetan Mahayana Buddhism, is the home of 360 monks, lamas, teachers and workers. The monks come from all areas of Nepal and Tibetwith ages ranging from seven to sixty years old.They have devoted their lives to the study and practice of the teachings of Buddha Shakyamuni, with special emphasis on the teachings of Lama Tsong Khapa, the founder of the Gelug Lineage.
Visitors from all over the world come here to attend courses and enjoy the spiritual atmosphere of the place for study and practice. The buildings were not spectacular but quite attractive but the view across the valley magical. The schoolboys wore the traditional red Buddhist robes but still had school-bags similar those of western children.
We reached our hotel late afternoon just before it started to rain and the thunder and lightning kept causing the electricity to go off. Otherwise the hotel was quite luxurious and not at all crowded.