Located 40 kilometers away from the city of Kathmandu, Namo Buddha is a quiet, peaceful, and clean place that is perfect for contemplation and meditation. With breathtaking sunrise and sunset views, it is truly enchanting.
Buddhists consider the place as one of the most significant places of worship in Nepal. It is the location of three major Buddhist pilgrimage sites: Swayambhunath Stupa and Boudha Stupa. It is also the place where you can find the very sacred Namo Buddha, also called Takmo Lujin, which is visited by lots of pilgrims. According to legend, in this place, Buddha saw a hungry tigress that was about to attack a boy. Moved with pity for the boy, Buddha gave himself to the tigress in order to spare the boy.
The story about the tigress has caused the people to fear the place. This is the reason why they never mention its real name, Takmo Lujin, and when you go there, it would be wise to do the same. According to belief, when the name of Buddha is spoken, it releases a person from fear. Thus, they named the place Namo Buddha to drive away their fear of it.
Stories say that the Stupa used to be buried underground for hundreds of years. A hermit named Bhagavan came upon the area and saw a bulge on the ground. The hermit clapped his hands, and immediately the Stupa materialized.
If you plan to go to Namo Buddha, the least expensive way would be to take a local bus. The travel time is about 3 to 4 hours counting all the stopovers and changing of buses. You should book the trip first. Go to Ratna Park bus station and buy a ticket for Banepa. The trip will stop at Koteshow and Bhaktapur before reaching Banepa. When you get there, buy a bus ticket going to Namo Buddha.
You can also take a taxi. From Kathmandu, the travel time would be around 2 hours, but it is quite expensive. A one-way trip ranges from Rs 1,700 to 2,000. If you ask the driver to wait for you and bring you back to Kathmandu, the fare will range from Rs 2,500 to 3,000. If you are more adventurous, you can hike from Banupa to Namo Buddha. The route goes through Panauti and Sangkhu.
There are a couple of basic guesthouses in Thrangu Tashi Yangtse Monastery where you can stay should you decide to spend the night in the place. The first guesthouse offers single rooms and double rooms at Rs 400 per person. Guests may eat their meals with the monks. The second guesthouse was built more recently than the first one. It has eight rooms with two single beds at Rs 800 per person. Guests may eat their meals with the monks as well, or they can eat in the manager’s building.
Namo Buddha is not just a beautiful, enthralling place. It is also a place with so many stories to tell. Visiting it allows you to connect with the interesting history of the place and its people.