Bungamati, a small but graceful village is situated 10-kilometres south of Kathmandu. The ancient town came into existence as early in the 7th century. If we turn the history pages, we’ll find that the village was known as Bugayumi, an autonomous province in Kathmandu Valley. Regardless of the rapid changes in the lifestyle of the urban population and the global shift in the way of living, the Bungamati locals have remained untouched by new waves and are living the life that they know best– only rural- from the past several centuries.
The local attachment with the cultural festivities is highly noteworthy. The local deity Rato Machhindranath or Aryavalokiteshwor reigns supreme. The settlement based around the temple of Machhindranath, which is located almost at the centre of the village. Machhindranath is at the centre of their creed; the villagers can’t do without this deity whatever the occasion or festival.
Machhindranath boasts of two temples – one in the Bungamati village and the other in Patan City. There is a rich tradition of the deity spending half of a year in each of these two temples. Every year, the deity processioned on a chariot around a selected thoroughfare of the Patan city, and the jatra culminates in the famously known Bhoto Jatra. The goddess gets processioned to Bungamati in a palanquin. In every twelve years, the chariot with the deity is processioned along the path from Bungamati and again back.
Next to the temple of Bunga-dya, stands a temple of imposing Hyagriva Bhairav, a Bodisattava (Buddhist deity), worshipped by the Buddhists and Hindus as well. Another famous temple of Karya Binayak is at the periphery of the village. Karya Binayak enjoys many visitors as the temple is worshipped as the god of good luck, helping people in accomplishing deeds.
The ancient houses along the stone-paved streets are no less stunning. The traditional houses are with mud and brick with tiled roofs. Notably, the doors and the windows are exemplary work of wood carving. It’s Greenfields around the village and up to the banks of the Bagmati River fills the eyes with delight.
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