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14 Mar 2016

Buying Organic Food in Kathmandu

A review by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine concluded that organic food does not have any significant advantage over normal food. However, this holds no water with millions of health conscious people around the globe, including in Nepal, where interest in organic food is growing stronger every

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Newari Food Platter. Photo: Sudeep Singh
05 May 2015

Must try food when in Nepal

Attending a traditional Newari feast (lapate bhoye) in Kathmandu is one of the best ways to try Newari food. In fact, the Newar cuisine is famed in the country for its range of different dishes. At a lapate bhoye, all the guests sit on long, narrow straw mats (sukuls) facing

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Old Tibetan woman making yarn. Photo: Sudeep Singh
04 May 2015

Experiencing the Tibetan Way of Life

In 1959, when Tibet was invaded by China, many Tibetans fled to neighboring countries like India, Bhutan, Sikkim and Nepal. A sizeable number, about 20,000, took refuge in various parts of Nepal, from Ilam and Taplejung in the east to Jumla and Humla in the far west. Many settled down

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Workers picking tea leaves. Photo: RMT
17 Apr 2015

Tea gardens in Nepal

This first flush fetches the highest prices, not only for its fine flavor, but also as it is produced in much lower quantity. Many people don’t know this, but the tea grown here can be better than that of neighbouring Darjeeling. Though similar to the world famous Darjeeling teas, it

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Swayambhunath "Monkey Temple". Photo: Sudeep Singh
16 Apr 2015

Buddhism in Nepal

In many areas, Hinduism has absorbed Buddhism to a large extent, but the two religions have many shared deities and temples. As every Nepali is proud to tell you, the Lord Buddha was born in Nepal. That is to say, he was born in the Shakya Kingdom of Kapilvastu which

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Photo: Denis Oliver Poulet
15 Apr 2015

Hidden Valley of Happiness – Tsum Valley

One of the less well-know and more recently opened up areas for trekking is the Tsum Valley. It has been only open to visitors in the last five years. This enchanted valley is a beautiful and sacred pilgrimage site located in northern Gorkha, and is often included as part of

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Mt. Manaslu. Photo: Igor Kulishov
15 Apr 2015

Manaslu Trek

In May 2013 my father, Richard Tyler and I, hired a guide and a porter and undertook the Manaslu trek.  We’d already been to Everest Basecamp a few years before and were hungry to get out and see more of the beautiful mountains of Nepal.  However, Everest Basecamp had been

Inside Himalayas 3
Photo: Piet Van Der Poet
14 Apr 2015

Cycling from Lhasa to Kathmandu

Lhasa to Kathmandu is an epic 1,100 kilometer journey, but more so if you power your own way across the high plateau and across even higher passes. It may be a bit easier nowadays with more black-topped roads. We had the advantage of an organized trip with a truck to

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Photo: Piet Van Der Poet
14 Apr 2015

Cycling in Ladakh: ludicrous or lovely?

My friends were on the other side stuck in the snow for four days, while I returned to Kaza to drink coffee, explore the valleys and wait. “You must be totally bonkers!” Every now and then some locals or tourists could not stop themselves from saying this or something similar.

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Photo: Tashi Sherpa
13 Apr 2015

Trekking in Tibet: Some of the basics

The name Tibet conjures up exotic images of mountain passes, traditional villages and a simple, more spiritual way of life. As a region it has attained almost mythical status among travellers, partly due to the difficulties involved in reaching this remote plateau and partly due to the fantastic experiences that

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Photo: Jess tyler
12 Apr 2015

Trekking around Manaslu

A trek through this region takes you on a tough route through some of the wildest and most beautiful scenery you’ll see anywhere. Including the most dramatic Himalayan pass, the Larkya La (5,231m), the 177 kilometer route that generally takes about 20 days to complete, it skirts the Manaslu massif

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Photo; Piet Van Der Poel
11 Apr 2015

Cycling in Bhutan

The first known bicycle in Thimphu was a Hong Kong made Raleigh racing bike, imported around 1971 by Prince Namgyel, then Minister of Trade, Industry and Forests, who wanted to set a good example and cycle to work. Back in 1993 when I first arrived in Bhutan, bicycles were rare

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bhutan travel
10 Apr 2015

Mountaineering in Bhutan: Protected Peaks

Though Bhutan did briefly open up for mountaineering in the early 1980s, by the mid 1990s climbing peaks above 6,000m was prohibited and in 2003 Bhutan mountaineering was banned altogether. This was done primarily to respect the beliefs of the local communities who attached strong spiritual value to the mountains, and wanted

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Takstang Monastery.
10 Apr 2015

How to travel to Bhutan: Reaching the land of the Thunder Dragon

When Bhutan finally came out of isolation in the latter part of the 20th century, it made a very important decision about how its tourism industry was going to operate. Instead of the backpacker-style independent travel offered in nearby Nepal and neighbouring India, Bhutan opted for high-end, small scale tourism

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Chisapani with Himalayas on backdrop. Photo: RMT
08 Apr 2015

Stairway To Heaven – A weekend in Chisapani and the Shivapuri Forest

Late autumn, winter and early spring, as everyone knows, are the perfect times to head to the hills surrounding Kathmandu, to view the mountains and “chill” out, and the favourite spots are Nagarkot and Dhulikhel. But with a little more energy and a smaller budget, why not try Chisapani? Sure,

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Photo: Marianne Heredge
05 Apr 2015

Roads and trails in Solukhumbu

There has been an explosion of road building. Roads are springing up everywhere. Not only are they reaching villages that were only connected by rough and narrow trails, but for the past few years, the  road from China that ended ten years ago at Lo Manthang, in Upper Mustang, now

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Asan kathmandu
13 May 2014

Traditional Shops of Asan Tole

The Shankha Pasal (Conch Shop) at the opposite on the road going towards Indra Chowk. It was the first one to start the spice trade in Nepal in addition to selling conch. Any local of Kathmandu Valley knows where to find a ghyao-tel pasal. In fact, there are half a

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Shamans of Nepal
12 May 2014

Shamans of Nepal

Shamanism exists in different variations worldwide, but shares common beliefs that spirits exist (good or evil) and that they can communicate with the spirits. They can usually also cure sickness caused by evil spirits and induce trance-like states to incite a visionary ecstasy. They can sometimes also tell the future.

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Culture & Tradition

Lo Manthang
23 Apr 2017

Exploring Lo Manthang, the Capital of Upper Mustang

It’s eight o’clock in the morning in Lo Manthang. The monks are still asleep, just like the five Tibetan mastiffs guarding the courtyard of the monastery. We peek inside the temple door, where a young monk looks back at us, rubbing the sleep from his eyes. He jumps up from

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Mustang
16 Apr 2017

9 Reasons to Travel to Lower Mustang this Season

The Mustang region of Nepal was once an isolated and independent Tibetan kingdom. Now part of Nepal, it nevertheless retains a rugged and mystical reputation. Divided into Lower and Upper, these different parts of Mustang are connected yet also quite different. They offer different attractions for the visitor, in terms

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The Mystical Kingdom of Lo
09 Apr 2017

The Mystical Kingdom of Lo

Tucked away behind the Himalayas and bordering Tibet lies one of Nepal’s most remote and special places: Upper Mustang, or the former Kingdom of Lo. For a long time, this Tibetan kingdom was isolated from the rest of Nepal. Until 1992 it was even forbidden for foreigners to enter the

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