Swayambhunath, Kathmandu, Nepal – Monkey Temple

A trip to the Buddhist temple, Swayambhunath, was on the agenda for day two. The temple is also known as the Monkey Temple and is located atop a hill west of Kathmandu. We took a stroll there early in the morning.  As soon as we reached the temples, we saw a monkey hanging off a Buddha statue. The climb up to the massive white stupa was tiring, but we were entertained by the monkeys and store vendors along the way.  Although strikes were still on, tickets were still required to be purchased. The top offered wonderful views of Kathmandu valley. The highlight is the stupa, surrounded by prayer wheels, a religious symbol which we requires to be walked around in a clockwise direction. Also atop the hill is a Hariti Temple, a gompa (monastery) plus small statues and stupas.

Smaller stupas at the base of the hill leading up to the temple
The east entrance gate at the base of the hill with stairs leading up to the temple
A monkey foraging at the base of a Buddha statue
A monkey mask painting on a stone leading to the temple
Buddha statues flanking the entrance to the Monkey Temple
The stairs leading to the large stupa visible at the top
The gold gilding of the stupa seen from the lower stairs
View of Kathmandu from the hill
At the base of the Swayambhunath stupa with the Buddhist Vajra thunderbolt visible
Monkey sitting on the Buddhist Vajra thunderbolt
Various monkey and other animal masks for sale
A monkey sitting on the tip of a temple roof with the main stupa visible in the background
A monkey jumping from a smaller red stupa
A monkey sitting at the base of a stupa watching below
A monkey eating a square of ice-cream with a Buddha statue visible in the background
Stone statue of Dipanker Buddha
Stone Buddhas with the large stupa visible in the background
Six metre high figure of Sakyamuni, the past Buddha
The prayer wheels and oil candles surrounding the large stupa
Travis feeding some eager monkeys bits of banana
Three sitting monkeys
Travis feeding a smaller monkey some banana
Look of disappointment, the banana is all gone
A standing Buddha statue at the base of the hill
A Buddhist monastery at the base of the hill