Khotang district is located in eastern part of Nepal. It borders Solukhumbu, Okhaldunga and Bhojpur districts. The district is rich in terms of natural beauty as terraced land, high hills and green forests are found in abundance here. It is rich in terms of bio diversity as well as it is home to different species of flora and fauna.
Kirant Rais are the dominant inhabitants of this district. However, people of different ethnicities live here. Around 75 percent of the population is involved in farming. Potato, wheat, barley, rice, millet and maize etc are the major crops of the district. Local people are also into livestock farming. They rear animals like cow, buffalo, goat, sheep, horse etc for household use. People following Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity live in perfect harmony here.
Halesi is the most popular tourist destination in the country. Situated at an altitude of 1,355 meters above sea level, Halesi lies 185 kilometers south east of Mount Everest. The main shrine lies in the cave 67 feet below the land surface. It is revered as a religious place by both Hindus and Buddhist. The half-moon shaped entrance faces toward the east. The cave is round shape with a diameter of around 193 feet. There is a separate cave beneath the main cave. People believe that the Halesi Cave has been used for dwelling for more than 6000 years.
Lord Shiva is believed to have hidden in this cave fearing demon Bhasmasur who had got a blessing to burn to death anyone who he touches. Danda Kharka (2500 meters), which sits on the boundary of Khotang and Solukhumbu, is the other attraction of the district. One can enjoy magnificent view of views of Mount Everest (8848 meters), Lhotse (8516 meters), Cho Oyu (8201 meters) and Mount Makalu (8485 meters) from this place. Similarly, the place also offers spectacular view of other smaller peaks like Mera Peak (6476 meters), Numbur Himal (6959 meters), and Kyasar (6770 meters). Likewise, one can enjoy view of green hills like Dharma Danda (4446 meters), Ghyangkharka (3612 meters), Runa Danda (3605 meters) offer breathtaking view of the Himalayas of Nepal.
Salpa Pokhari (3414 meters), which lies on the boundary of Solukhumbu, Khotang and Bhojpur districts, is a popular pilgrimage site. Similarly, Panch Pokhari (4200 meters), which lies on the lap of Mera Peak, is another important pilgrimage for people in nearby districts. These lakes wear festive look during Janai Purnima, which falls in the full moon day of August, drawing visitors from nearby districts. During this festival, one can enjoy typical culture and tradition of Rai, Tamang and Sherpa people.
Khotang district is rich in terms of natural beauty, culture, tradition, custom and lifestyle of locals. It has potential to welcome tourists from all over the world. One can enjoy pure wilderness trekking while in Khotang. The trail passes through temples, monasteries, dense forest, green hills, mighty rivers, and beautiful settlements. The trek can be completed in three weeks.The trek begins from a flight to Lamidanda or a drive to Halesi, Kathmandu and ends in Phaplu airstrip. Or you can continue to the popular classic Everest trekking route toward Jiri and Shivalaya.
Text Courtesy: Himal Tamang | Image Nepal Magazine |
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