Yoga Pilgrimage to Nepal

14TH – 27TH OCTOBER 2018 – With Sarah Cohr Lützen & Sisse Budolfsen

This yoga pilgrimage to Nepal will begin at the Vajra Hotel in the area called Swayambhu, ten minutes walk from the Swayambhu stupa in Kathmandu. In this beautiful oasis, surrounded by trees and with big views overlooking the Kathmandu Valley, is where our sessions of mediation and yoga will take place. After having settled into Kathmandu for the first few days, we continue our yoga pilgrimage into the foothills of the Himalayas. We fly into the town of Phablu, in the lower Everest region, which is our starting point. From here, we begin our hike through the upper valleys of Chiwang and Ringmo until we reach the nunnery of Thubten Choling on a hill, nestled into pine tree forests and prayer flags. Here we spend a full day, taking part in the lives of the nuns, before making a loop back to Phablu during our 5-day hike. If weather permits, we will get a glimpse of the majestic Himalayas from Phablu. The following day, we travel back toward Kathmandu Valley by jeep, and stop by the beautiful Namo Buddha Resort and spend a night here. The yoga and meditation theme will be weaved into our days, both in Kathmandu and in the mountains, as we embark on an inner and outer journey through Nepal.

Itinerary

Vajra Hotel, an oasis in Swayambhu

DAY 1 - ARRIVAL IN KATHMANDU

Arrival and pick up at Tribhuvan International Airport of Kathmandu. We drive straight to Hotel Vajra in Swayambhu, West Kathmandu. There will be time to rest from the journey, go for a walk or enjoy the sunset on the rooftop in the afternoon/evening. After dinner there will be an introduction to the yoga pilgrimage by instructors Alix Northup & Sisse Budolfsen.

The majestic Swayambhu stupa

DAY 2 - SWAYAMBHU

Followed by morning meditation, yoga and breakfast, the first morning session will be on ‘How to deal with Uncertainty and Change’. After lunch, we hike up to the majestic Swayambhu stupa, located in the Western hills of Kathmandu Valley, and watch the sunset with vue over Kathmandu Valley. We finish the day with yoga, and after dinner, evening meditation.

At the Pharping Guru Rinpoche cave

DAY 3 - PHARPING

Followed by morning meditation, yoga and breakfast, we have the first session on ‘Becoming familiar with Groundlessness and Basic Space’. After lunch we visit the sacred place of Pharping, in the South-western corner of the Kathmandu Valley. It is said that Guru Rinpoche attained his ultimate enlightenment in this place. We will visit the cave of the self-arisen Tara; manifesting naturally from inside the cave, and other Guru Rinpoche caves. We finish the day with yoga, and after dinner, evening meditation.

Crossing a bridge over a creek

DAY 4 - WE TRAVEL TO PHABLU IN THE LOWER EVEREST REGION

Early morning we fly from Kathmandu domestic airport to Phablu.

Phablu is located in the lower Everest region, in the foothills of the Himalayas. After arriving in Phablu, we will do a 2-3 hour hike up the hillside outside of Phablu and spend the night at the Chiwang monastery, overlooking the valley below. We finish the day with yoga and meditation.

Solo Khumbu village

DAY 5 - HIKE FROM CHIWANG TO EVEREST VIEW GUESTHOUSE

After breakfast, we continue our hike as pilgrims up through the next village of Ringmo where we have lunch before continuing onto the next village where we spend the night. We finish the day with yoga and meditation.

Pine tree forests of the Himalayan foothills

DAY 6 - HIKE FROM EVEREST VIEW GUESTHOUSE TO THUBTEN CHOLING

After breakfast, we hike from Everest View Guesthouse over the mountain ridge to Thubten Choling, a nunnery located up in the lower Everest region. At Thubten Choling we experience the living tradition of a sacred heritage, passed down from the historical Buddha Shakyamuni, to the present day, in an unbroken lineage of masters whose teachings have been passed on to their students, seeking the qualities and realisation of awakening. We join the nuns in their daily practices in the main gompa (place of meditation), and otherwise there is the chance to go for short hikes in the astounding surroundings of hillsides, dotted with prayer flags and retreat caves. We finish the day with yoga and meditation.

Nun climbing the stairs at Thubten Choling

DAY 7 - THUBTEN CHOLING, NUNNERY IN THE EVEREST REGION

We take a day off hiking and spend the full day at Thubten Choling, where we are able to sit in at the nunnery gompa with the nuns practicing. It is possible to go for short hikes in the area around the nunnery. The day is partly guided, partly free for own adventures.

According to Tibetan terminology, Thubten Choling is seen as a pure realm; a Buddha field. This signifies a place where many prayers and mantras have been whispered throughout the years, of the many nuns living there; mantras and prayers of compassion and loving kindness for the wellbeing of all sentient beings, and very naturally one senses the result of this accumulation of merit. We finish the day with yoga and meditation.

Hiking through lush forests in the Everest region

DAY 8 - WE HIKE FROM THUBTEN CHOLING DOWN TO PHABLU

At noon, we hike down from Thubten Choling through the valley below, and descend to Phablu. We finish the day with yoga and meditation.

View from the Haatiban Hill

DAY 9 - WE TRAVEL BY JEEP TO NAMO BUDDHA RESORT, ON OUR WAY BACK TO KATHMANDU VALLEY

We travel by jeep back toward Kathmandu Valley, and do stops along our way. In the afternoon, we arrive at the peaceful, organic farm resort, Namo Buddha, where we will enjoy delicious meals while unwinding from our travels, have a morning yoga practice, relax and take in the scenic mountain views, and take walks through the surrounding forest.

 

 

Street life in Kathmandu

DAY 10 - RETURN TO KATHMANDU

After a quiet morning of yoga, meditation, and walks around the area, we make our way back to Kathmandu and Vajra Hotel.

The majestic Boudha stupa

DAY 11 - BOUDHA

Followed by morning meditation, yoga and breakfast, we will have a morning session on ‘How can we learn to become intimate with fear’? After lunch, we visit the stupa Boudhanath (Sanskrit name). Here we will learn about the sacredness of the stupa; circumambulate the stupa, and walk up to the first Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Kathmandu, Shechen Monastery, built by the great Buddhist master Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.

Vajrayogini encarved in rock

DAY 12 - SANKHU

Followed by morning meditation, yoga and breakfast, we have the first session on ‘The practice of Tonglen, and How to Extend our Compassion toward Others’. After lunch, we will visit the sacred place of Sankhu, located in the far North-eastern corner of Kathmandu Valley, on the old road to Tibet. Above the village of Sankhu is located the sacred Vajra Yogini temple. According to legend, Guru Rinpoche came to this place, and during his meditation concealed many treasure texts, hidden for future generations of yogis to reveal and benefit from. We finish the day with yoga, and after dinner, quiet sitting practice.

Woman selling vegetables at a local market in Kathmandu

DAY 13 - LAST, FREE DAY

On this last full day of the programme we will have morning meditation practice and yoga, breakfast and the rest of the day will be free to explore Kathmandu, go for a kora around Swayambhu stupa, or lie with a book in the sun in the hammock on the rooftop. We will meet again for a last night dinner in the evening.

Nuns from Thubten Choling

DAY 14 - DAY OF DEPARTURE

Day of departure. We help organize transportation to the airport.

WHERE – NEPAL –  Kathmandu Valley & Thubten Choling in Solo Khumbu, Mt. Everest Region, see Nepal map

WHEN – October 14th – October 27th 2018

PRICE – EARLY BIRD OFFER UP UNTIL 15th MAY 2018  – 3160 USD   

 –  Twin room to share: 3360 USD / Single room supplement: 355 USD

BOOKINGS – As a deposit, 1/3 of the overall price is due upon registration of the Yoga Pilgrimage Journey. For bookings and more information about the pilgrimage journey, please email us at himalayanhermitage108@gmail.com

INCLUSIONS

  • All accommodation, meals and transport in Nepal
  • Experienced guide and instructor – Sarah Cohr Lützen & Sisse Budolfsen
  • Kind and friendly Nepali house staff and driver
  • Return flight / jeep ride from Phablu to Kathmandu

EXCLUSIONS

  • International flight ticket to Nepal
  • Personal insurance during the yoga pilgrimage
  • Any alcoholic beverage during the yoga pilgrimage
  • Tips during the Yoga Pilgrimage

For bookings and more information info@himalayanhermitage.com

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