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Yak and Yeti, an Old Rana Palace

Tiger for Breakfast by Michel Peissel reveals how one man, a Russian ballet performer named Boris, birthed Kathmandu and formed Nepal into a tourist nation.  It is an incredible story with unbelievable details brought to life.  And Boris’ living legacy is the Yak and Yeti Hotel.

Read more about the history of the Yak and Yeti by clicking here!

A friend and I were walking to lunch when we stumbled on to the remnant of the original Newari wood framed gateway.  We wandered into the grand hotel and began asking questions about our friend, Boris.  We were pointed here and there and getting no where, until a Nepali man poked his head from over a balcony and asked us if we wanted to come up and see the original building of the Yak and Yeti.  Yes!

The historical rooms were being cleaned and polished for an upcoming wedding  (the grand-daughter of the current owner’s wedding, expecting 2,000 guests!). We had a personal tour of the maze of rooms-including the Queen’s Sitting Room, the Ballrooms, the balconies and  the gorgeous original Newari wood carvings.  We also saw an antique chandelier, secured behind glass, and several paintings of the Rana kings.

Our guide told us that this was only a tiny palace compared to the King’s palace and others around Kathmandu.  He also said:

  • The original palace was 140 years old and belonged to the Rana kings.
  • Each king had 10-15 wives and countless children.
  • The marble and mirrors was all imported from Italy.

Stepping back into a bit of Kathmandu, Nepal history was the cherry on top of our Kathmandu scramble to renew visas and other errands.  Long live Boris! And we are very glad that he helped open the doors to Nepal– he is a providential person in Nepal’s history.

Terracota Army in Xian

When in Xian, rich with history and culture…Go see the 8th Wonder of the World, the Terracota Army!

My husband went with some friends and a local guide. He loved it. Here’s why the buried warriors are so important:

Emperor Qin was the first emperor to unite the seven warring “states” of China. A huge feat in itself.  He then builds the traditional mausoleum, a place where everything and everyone he may need for the after-life (including his army and servants) will be buried with him, traditionally. BUT Qin somehow had a revelation about the value of people. Instead of killing thousands of his army and court to protect and entertain him, he had master craftsmen create 8,000 clay soldiers and who-not that could attend to his needs of the after-life.

Thankfully Emperor Qin’s idea caught on around the nation and thousands of lives were spared from then on out! The scale of his buried warriors is immense, and it is still being unearthed to this day. This is truly an amazing turn in history.

Dates and Details:

The figures, dating from around the late third century BC,[1] were discovered in 1974 by local farmers inLintong DistrictXi’an, Shaanxi province. The figures vary in height according to their roles, with the tallest being the generals. The figures include warriors, chariots and horses. Current estimates are that in the three pits containing the Terracotta Army there were over 8,000 soldiers, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 150 cavalry horses, the majority of which are still buried in the pits near by Qin Shi Huang’s mausoleum.[2] Other terracotta non-military figures were also found in other pits and they include officials, acrobats, strongmen and musicians.

8,000 soldiers! (I wonder what he felt he needed to defend himself from in the after-life? Hmm.)

Read more about the Terracota Warriors here:

Rich history indeed!

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