Nepal: Monkey Temple in Kathmandu

Final Nepal post, I promise! The last real excursion we did on our remaining couple of days in Kathmandu was to the monkey temple. Even finding it was actually a bit problematic, because we'd only really heard about it and it's not named as such on any map we had! As it turns out, it was on that big hill about twenty minutes walk away (which does actually locate it a fair bit, as Kathmandu is actually quite flat!).

The concept is quite simple: as the name implies, it's a temple, and for whatever reason it is now teeming with monkeys. Teeming almost doesn't do justice to the place; it swarms with unkempt life of all sorts, co-existing in a half-chilled-out, half-suspicious state with each other. The monkeys easily dominate in numbers, but there were also quite a few feral dogs (including several bitches feeding pups just sprawled out in the middle of an open area), pigeons, and of course a mass of visitors.

We had heard rumours that the monkeys could be quite aggressive, steal cameras and food, etc, but in general they just seemed to go about their business ignoring everyone else around them, even when a fight periodically broke out and other monkeys rush over screeching from everywhere and mothers climb to safety while their babies frantically regain their grip from the momentum change.

The views from the top aren't too bad, or wouldn't be if not for the haze.

Mark Hepburn 28 December 2010
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