Since neither of us wants to stay in downtown KTM again, we taxi to the Bodhnath area and check in to the superb Hotel Shambaling. We even get a room upgrade to the garden side of the hotel, thus escaping some construction noise on a neighboring Buddhist monastery.
The giant stupa in Bodhnath is a World Heritage site and has been a magnet for Buddhists in south-central Asia since the 5th century CE. In particular, Bodhnath has become a refuge and home for many Tibetans, and a variety of Vajrayana monasteries from several denominations appear to be flourishing. More on that later.
Our room was on the first floor, closest to the camera. What a relief to land here and have some peace and quiet in the midst of busy and oftentimes frenetic urban neighborhoods.