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3 Amazing Chariot Festivals In Nepal That Makes Your Trip The Reward

  • 13-Sep-2016
  • 0

Nepal is full of festivals and celebrations celebrated wholeheartedly keeping traditions, cultures, and rituals intact. And it is a known fact that Chariot Festivals in Nepal remains the most amused, happening, and exciting events for both locals and foreigners.

So, if you are planning to visit Nepal for trekking, tours, or other activities, then you are advised to plan according to one of the following festival dates. All of these below-mentioned chariot festivals are celebrated in Kathmandu valley at a different time of the year annually.

1. Jana Baha Dyah Jatra (Seto Machhindranath Jatra):


Festival Date: During April

In Chariot: Janabaha Dyah(God) also known as Aryavalokitesvara and Karunamaya

Festival celebrated for 3 days

Chariot Route:

  • First day: Jamal, Ratna Park, Bhotahity, and Ason.
  • Second day: Ason to Hanuman Dhoka in Kathmandu Durbar Square
  • Third/Final day: Maru, Chikamugal, Jaisidewal, and Lagantole.

 Worshipped by: Both Hindus and Buddhists

Chariot Height: 40 ft approximately

Festival Attractions for Visitors:

  • It is an excellent opportunity to witness exciting chariot pulling occasions through the narrow streets of central Kathmandu.
  • Priests and Musical Bands from Nepal Army, Local teenagers from Guthi playing cultural music
  • Gurju ko Paltan, armed guard of honor
  • It is a great chance to explore cultural/ religious history and stories.
  • Chance to blend with local communities.
  • Will be an evening well spent at Kathmandu.

Tips for Visitors:

  • Visit the chariot pulling routes during the late afternoon, usually after 3/4 pm.
  • Take care of your valuables in-crowd.
  • Don’t go too close to the chariot. Keep a safe distance.

2. Bunga Dya Jatra (Raato Machhindranath Jatra):

Festival Date: During April

In Chariot:

  • Main chariot: Bunga Dyah (God) also known as Raktalokitesvara Karunamaya
  • Accompanied by the smaller chariot of Chakuwa Dyah also known as Minnath

Festival Celebrated for: Usually a month or two, and taken to Bungmati every 12 years

Chariot Height: 60 ft approximately

Started by: Narendra Deva during (640-683 AD)

Worshipped by: Both Hindus and Buddhist

Festival Attractions for Visitors:

  • Chance to witness the longest chariot festival in Nepal
  • Local cultural and traditional exploration of Patan, Lalitpur
  • Priests and pujaris along with local musical bands performing cultural music
  • On one day of the festival, only women from It and Thaiti will pull the chariot
  • The coconut is thrown from the top of the chariot and the guy who catches gets good luck
  • Chance to blend with local communities
  • See the traditional Nepali vest on Bhote Jatra
  • It will be an evening well spent at Lalitpur, Patan

Tips for Visitors:

  • Visit the chariot pulling site during the late afternoon
  • Take care of yourself and valuables like DSLRs in the crowded atmosphere
  • Don’t go too close to the chariot. Keep a safe distance.

3. Indra Jatra (Yenya Festival) / Kumari Jatra:


Festival Date: Durig August

Started by: Gunakamadeva in the 10th century

Festival Celebrated for Eight Days

Chariot Route:

  • First Day: Basantapur, Maru, Chikanmugal, Jaisidewal, Lagan, Hyumata, Bhimsensthan, Maru, Basantapur.
  • Second Day: Basantapur, Pyaphal, Yatkha, Nyata, Tengal, Nhyokha, Nhaikan Tol, Asan, Kel Tol, Indra Chok, Makhan, Basantapur.
  • Third Day: Basantapur, Pyaphal, Yatkha, Nyata, Kilagal, Bhedasing, Indra Chok, Makhan, Basantapur.

In Chariot:

  • Ganesh Chariot
  • Kumari Chariot
  • Bhairav Chariot

Festival Attractions for Travelers:

  • Spectacle a wooden log is erection ceremony at Hanuman Dhoka on the first day of Jatra
  • Chance to see Kumari, the living goddess, and visit the Kumari House
  • Witness three chariots being pulled along the streets of central Kathmandu
  • Watch cultural deity and demon dances at various spots
  • Witness the Lakhey, Pulukishi street dances, chases around the route
  • Cultural music performances by local cultural groups
  • Similarly various other attractions like Dasavatar, Dagin, Matya, and others rituals and processions
  • Most happening and late-night programs around Kathmandu Durbar Square area(central Kathmandu) for a week-long.
  • Try Newari Food (SamayBaji) at local Newari Restaurant

Tips for Visitors:

  • Visit the chariot pulling site during the late afternoon
  • Take care of yourself and valuables like DSLRs in the crowded atmosphere
  • Don’t go too close to the chariot. Keep a safe distance.

Therefore, Seto Machhindranath and Rato Machhindranath Jatra usually fall in April month and Indra Jatra in September which is also the best time for trekking adventures in Nepal. So, regardless of your visit during spring or autumn, we recommend you plan your stay in Kathmandu during these festival dates.  Make your trip a rewarding experience witnessing these amazing chariot festivals in Nepal.

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