Brisbane2Bristol

On our great adventure

Goodbye Nepal and Hello India…..

Like all our previous long journeys we left Pokhara early, for the ride to Tansen, which is located in the hills of southern Nepal,

The ride was spectacular, winding around gorges that had fast flowing rivers down at the long drop to the bottom.

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We stopped of for a cup of tea in a shady spot.

Getting off the main highway to go into the town area of Tansen you are greeted by a maze of steep, narrow, winding alleys which proved a struggle with a bike as heavy and loaded up as the ‘Strom’.
While riding on the outskirts of the town we came across some huge vultures picking over some rubbish at a local tip….
We found a small guest house for the night located at the bottom of the town, there we had a tasty meal, then off to bed early…

Early the next morning we again set off for the birth place of Buddha… Lumbini…

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Lumbini was also going to be a ‘one night town’…at about lunch time we arrived and again quickly found a hotel…
With the afternoon spare we went to visit Buddha’s Birth place…
This is where Queen Mayadevi gave birth to Siddhartha Gautama 623BC who as the Buddha Gautama founded the Buddhist tradition.

Getting to the ‘Birth’ area proved to be quite hard and we got lost, something we seem to do quite often!
we went down one way streets and rode down a set of stairs, but no one seems to mind as the ‘odd’ is the ‘norm’ here…
which is great for us.

Eventually we found the correct entrance, paid for our tickets…but before you can enter the sacred area you have to remove your shoes…the stone ground was burning hot so I had to run in order to stop my feet from getting burnt!
We entered a large white building that housed the remains of the Palace where Buddha was born…NO PHOTOS ALLOWED IN HERE ☹
Buddha lived in Lumbini until the age of 29 and then left for his travels to preach.

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As you leave the white building you enter into a beautiful garden and where the Puskarini or Holy Pond where the Buddha’s mother took the ritual dip prior to Buddha’s birth and where he, also had his first bath!

In the garden also house some beautiful large Sal trees with hundreds if not thousands of ‘prayer flags’ hang from tree to tree, all gently blowing in the warm breeze…
what an amazing place…
We took some time out to soak up the amazing atmosphere of this special place by sitting under a tree, only to be approached by a monk who went on to tell us that in the ‘Lonely Planet’ book we had, there was a picture of him…he grabbed the book and showed us the picture of him that was taken 17 years earlier sitting under a tree!

Next back to the huge hotel that only had us and another guest in residence!
After dinner we needed to be ready for the next stage of our trip, crossing the border into India……

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Weird shaped omelete for breakfast…

Leaving Lumbini it took us about 30 minutes of riding through a dirty dusty town before arriving at the Nepalese border…

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So with the bike parked, Clive went off with our passports and Carnet while I stood ‘guard’ over the bike…it didn’t take longer before there was a crowd around the bike taking photos and pointing to this and that….

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A few moments later Clive appeared with BOTH passports stamped out…. hang on I wasn’t with him how can they do that? Lol.

Next was carnet to be stamped, we moved us and the bike to the customs office, got the bike stamped out of Nepal…WOW…this was so easy and quick….

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Next getting into India Clive went off into the Indian border town got his passport stamped…then I had to do my own…
Next we had to go to the customs office to get the Carnet stamped in…
whooo all done, now lets get out of this dirty, congested little town….

Fighting our way out of this town took longer than going through customs….

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Finally we were free…. there was no traffic and the roads were great….

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For about 20 minutes, then the surface became bloody awful giant potholes appeared everywhere and so did the traffic…
Welcome to Incredible India…lol

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We wanted to get as much distance we could today…. but it was going to be tough going…and we knew it.

Going through so many small town packed with people, buses, cars, tuk tuk’s and carts pulled by either donkeys or buffalo…. It was tough going, as it was so hot that we had stop (every 1/2 hour) to buy water, then ride down the road, find a shady spot to relax for a few minutes and have drink in peace!!!

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This guy started to do a crazy dance for us….

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This did not happen once , getting somewhere for a peaceful rest, on our journey to Gorkaphur…. towards the end of the day it was all we could do was have a drink then get out of there, as we were too hot and tired to be civil…

We arrived at Gorakhpur in the late afternoon…
We went to one hotel ‘The Grand Palace’, well there was nothing grand at all about it, plus it made me feel uneasy when the security guard was walking around with a massive rifle…
We had seen a hotel over the road but there was a barrier in the way so we had to go down the street and do an illegal u-turn then got caught in a traffic jam…. While we were waiting in the traffic I noticed a little donkey with a heavy load on his back, a few people started blowing their horns for the traffic to hurry up and move so not to be out done Clive did the same , but he has a loud air horn…
Well the poor donkey nearly ‘shit his pants’ the donkey ended up sitting on his bottom with his front legs in front of him, he looked like ‘Eyore’ I couldn’t help sniggering, but also felt bad for the donkey, I hope he was ok…

Traffic jam cleared we found a hotel and it was clean and had hot ‘running’ water, but there was no car park…the manager assured us the bike would be quite safe parked on the road as they have a night watch man….so after checking in, we needed to get some more Indian Rupees but first a hot shower to wash the hot day away….

What no hot water….so I rang reception and asked when the hot water would start to heat up in our room…’How many buckets would you like’ was the reply I got…’no I don’t want buckets of hot water I want a shower’….’we don’t have hot water from the taps…how many buckets would you like? Welcome to India…lol
Oh well cold shower it is!

We managed to get a cheap Rickshaw with the help of the local police, got some money out at the ATM, got a few supplies, and walked back to the hotel and stopping at a bakery for a cuppa and a cake…
When we had paid the waiter brought us over a small dish with what looked like parsley flakes and granulated sugar….

What a surprise the ‘parsley’ I reckon was aniseed and the ‘Sugar’ was tiny sweets!

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As the hotel didn’t have a garage to store the bike, we put the bike cover over the bike, so it didn’t stand out so much, we felt very nervous about the bike being out in the main road all night, but the night guard assured us it would be safe!

As we had stuffed our selves with cake earlier we didn’t feel like any dinner…not just because we had eaten cake, but we were tired…so off to bed for an early night so we could get an early start in the morning…. neither of us had a really good sleep as we were a bit concerned about the bike.

First thing in the morning Clive checked to see if we still had some transport…yes we still have a bike…
All packed up we then head off to get some breakfast, before checking out.
It was only 7am, and a huge crowd surrounded us while we packed the bike…. Either just staring at us or asking many questions about the bike and where in India were we going…

Next stop Varanasi…

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2 thoughts on “Goodbye Nepal and Hello India…..

  1. Can see you are really enjoying yourselves, sick of riding the bike yet? There was a 3 or 4 part series on tv about India, I also saw on it where Budda was born. A wonderful show. When are you both back home? STAY SAFE. Love Roz xx

  2. Deb & Al Willis on said:

    India living upto it’s reputation lol!

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