Jours: 9 / Difficulté: 2 of 5 (Modérée)
Trekking to Halesi Mahadev (Maratika Cave) Lodge, 9 Days
Maratika Cave (lit. ‘The Cave of Bringing Death to an End’) and Maratika Monastery are located in the Khotang District of East-Nepal, approximately 185 km south west of Mount Everest, at the hilly region between the holy rivers Dudh Koshi to the right and Sun Koshi to the left. In the local dialect it is also known as ‘Haleshi’. It is a place full of natural beauty, cultural inheritance and is popular among the Hindus, for whom it is associated with Lord Shiva, as well as Buddhists all over the world.
The Legend goes, that Lord Vishnu was the first ever devotee to pay homage to the Haleshi Mahadeva in the Satya Yuga, the ‘Golden Age’. Afterwards, the last 6000 years until now, many kings, sages, devotees, philosophers, thinkers, hermits, abbots and ascetics have been paying homage to this sacred place. It is taken as a place for fulfilling wishes and giving boons to the real devotees, that their wishes will been fulfilled.
For Buddhists his power-place is generally associated with Guru Padmasambhava (Guru Rinpoche), where he and his consort Mandarava were blessed with immortal life by Buddha Amitayus. The caves of Maratika are mentioned in tibetan literature up from the 12th century. The ‘Sanglingma’, a Kathang (biography) of Padmasambhava discovered by Nyang Ral Nyima Öser, describes the original event, which made the Maratika caves a sacred place for Buddhists:
At the request of the Bodhisattva Avaloketesvara, the Buddha Amitayus once taught eighteen tantras of long life. The Dakini Sangwa Yeshe recorded them and hid the teachings afterwards in the Maratika-Cave. While Guru Padmasambhava was in the kingdom of Sahor, he met king Arshadhara’s daughter, a sixteen-year-old maiden called ‘Mandarava-Flower’, who endowed the qualifying marks of a tantric adept. The Guru magnetized her and took her along as his spiritual consort and support in practice. Later on, the Master and his consort went to Maratika, disclosed the mandalas of Buddha Amitayus and practiced the earlier by Sangwa Yeshe hidded long-life-tantras. After three months they had a vision of Amitayus, who appeared in the sky and placed the nectar-filled vase of immortal life upon their heads. So he blessed Master Padma to be the daka Hayagriva and Mandarava to be his consort, the dakini Vajra Varahi. Thus they attained the vidyadhara level of longevity beyond birth and death. While the Guru later went to Tibet to establish Buddhism there, Mandarava stayed in India, where she had a lot of deciples.
Other later written sources narrate this episode in the life of the great saint, for example the ‘Padma Thangyig Sheldrangma’ (14th century) a Terma (treasure-text) of Orgyen Lingpa. Also, the Samten Lingpa alias Tagsham Nuden Dorje, a Tertön (revealer of hidden treasures) from the second half of the 17th century, consecrates six folios to this episode in his biography of Padmasambhava and his consort.
In ‘Guide to the sacred places of Nepal’ also Khamtrul Choki Nyima (1730-1780) had written about Maratika-Cave. Brief introductions by H.H. Dalai Lama, Trulshik Rinpoche, Dudjom Rinpoche, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Chatral Rinpoche, Lama Ngawang Chophel Gyatso and Lopon Karma Wangchuk, can also be found in ‘The Guide to Maratika’.
Itinerary in detail
Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu and meet with SFT representative at the airport and transfer to Hotel. Welcome drink and short briefing about the tour and trekking. Relax.
Day 2: After breakfast a full day sightseeing in the Kathmandu-Valley with tour guide by private car. Overnight in Hotel.
Day 3: Fly from Kathmandu to Lamidanda and trek to Halesi Mahadev,
Wake up in the morning and fly to Lamidanda. We have breakfast and start to trek to Halesi. Overnight in Lodge.
Day 4: Exploring the Halesi Mahadev Temple and Caves,
Exploring the Buddhist Monasteries and Caves, Overnight in Lodge.
Day 5: Exploring the Monasteries and surrounding hills,
Exploring the surrounding hills. Overnight in Lodge.
Day 6: Trek from Halesi Mahadev to Lamidanda,
After breakfast, trek down to Lamidanda. Overnight in Lodge.
Day 7: Fly from Lamidanda to Kathmandu and transfer to Hotel,
Day 8: Full day Sightseeing Tour with Tour Guide by private car, overnight in Hotel.
Day 9: Final Departure to International Airport for your further destination.
Our Tour Package included;
* Airport / Hotel / Airport pick up & transfer by car / Van.
* Sightseeing Tour as per above Itinerary.
* 4 nights accommodation in twin sharing basis at Standard Hotel in Kathmandu.
* Meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) with Tea & coffee and hot water during the trek.
* Lodge to lodge accommodation during the trek.
* 1 experienced helpful and friendly guide, (1 porter for 2 participants), their food & accommodation, salary, equipments & insurance.
* Domestic flight ticket from KTM/Lamidanda/KTM (flight only possible Sunday and Wednesday) and airport tax.
* All necessary permits.
* First Aid Medical Kids.
* All transportation by private car.
* Tourist service charge.
* Office Service charge.
* All Government Tax.
* Any meals in Kathmandu other than breakfast.
* Travel insurance (if you want us to arrange your travel insurance, we would greatly be happy to assist).
* International air fare to and from Nepal.
* Nepal Tourist Visa fee.
* Emergency Evacuation.
* Items and expenses of personal nature.
* Any kind of alcoholic drinks, hot shower, cold drinks, laundry, phone call, internet.
* Personal Trekking Equipments like sleeping bags, jackets (can all be hired in KTM)
* Tips for guide, porters, driver...
Tipping is expected but it is not mandatory.
N.B: The package can be redesigned or redeveloped as per your taste. For more information please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Note: In case of emergency during the trip, Helicopter will be arranged by Swiss Family Treks & Expedition GmbH. The charges must be paid by the clients themselves.