Earlier this year, when we met Kaligarh designer Jyoti Upadhyay and had a chance to see her intricate Himalayan-made jewelry line, we knew we had to find out more. Raised in Wales, Upadhyay has since moved to her ancestral country, where she resides in Nepal’s capital. We asked her for a list of essential things to do and see in Kathmandu.
KATHMANDU, Nepal – I’ve been in Kathmandu for seven years; before Nepal, I lived in London, Nairobi, Uganda, and Wales. My Nepali parents migrated to Wales in the ’70s, so that’s where I grew up. Childhood summers were in Eastern Nepal and Northeast India, chasing dragonflies on the roof, climbing guava trees, and inevitably being stuffed with food by relatives under the scorching sun. I moved to Nepal in my 20s, with vague ideas of starting a social enterprise one day far in the future.
Autumn is my absolute favorite time of year in Kathmandu Valley, which is actually a conglomeration of three medieval city-states — Kathmandu, Patan, and Bhaktapur. The monsoon season just ended. The weather is dry and sunny, but mornings and evenings are cool. The season is packed with cultural events like Photo KTM and Jazzmandu, as well as traditional festivals like Dasain, Tihar, and Chhath, so it’s a time to reconnect with extended family. There’s so much happening in the city, but it’s also a perfect time to be out in the mountains, as the views of the Himalayas are crystal clear. This is my list of essentials for anyone planning a visit to Kathmandu.
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