Godavari Botanical Gardens

Godavari Botanical Gardens

Inside, the grounds are partly wooded, and not particularly well-tended, with algae-choked lakes and overgrown streams. But it is peaceful. The cactus house seems to be closed, and I can’t find the orchid or fern houses that the Rough Guide recommends. I sit down in a peaceful spot by a fountain and begin eating my sandwich, only to be invaded by a noisy and excited Nepalese extended family. I finish my sandwich and hurry away to a more secluded spot in the woods to continue my lunch.

The park does not detain me much longer. The glass-houses are all closed on account of Diwali. I ride back to the crossroads just a short way from the gardens, and turn right onto a track that circles a side-valley, passing through several small villages. The track soon becomes quite rough, with some steep ups and downs. I’m aiming for Bishanku Narayan, a sacred cave in the hill-side where it is said that anyone who can descend through a narrow fissure will be absolved of all past sins. I’ve no idea how I will recognise it when I get there, but at least it is fairly easy to track my progress around the valley, and when I reach what seems to be a likely spot, I ask an old man sitting on the wall by the side of the road. I don’t fully understand his answer, but get the impression it is not far from here. I continue a short distance, and then, leaving my bicycle, ascend a flight of stone steps past a couple of houses. I have almost given up when I meet a small group of young people, one of whom speaks a little English. I discover that I am less than a minute away, and sure enough, there it is around the next bend.

Godavari is situated 10 kilometers southeast of Patan at the base of forested hills of Phulchowki, which holds a relevant altitude of 9,050 feet above the sea level. This is one of the most delightful settings of extreme natural beauty within easy reach of Kathmandu. Godavari offers an excellent insight of the rural scene, filled with open fields and Botanical Garden attractively lay out with imputed exotics and local plant verities. The fern, Orchid house, Japanese garden are particularly popular. Godavari includes subtropical or warm temperature climate, 529 species of plants are to be found including pink morning glories, yellow corydalis and many more. Forested hill of Phulchowki, that rises above   the inhabitant sections. This lush region is the home of many plants, including four varieties of oak trees, In addition, dark chestnuts, wild walnuts, red rhododendrons and Himalayan maples are but in few species.

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