Seto(White)Machhendranath Festival

The Seto (or white) Machhendranath image is taken from its shrine in machhendra Bahal,off Asan Tol, and is placed in a towering chariot(rath) to be trundled through the street of old Kathmandu. The festival takes four days to complete, the chariot stopping at specific places each night where the image is worshipped and cared for by the people of that locality. The chariot, which is towed on 1.8 meter(six foot) diameter wheels by the hundreds of young boys, is spectacular, particularly as it dwarfs the buildings on the streets through which it passes. It is usually moved in the carly evening. On the final day, the chariot is dragged around a tree in Lagan Khel, after which the deity is transported back to its temple on a small palanquin.

If Seto Machhendranath is pleased by the music, offerings and attentions paid by his devotees, the people of the Kathmandu Valley can look forward to satisfactory rainfall during the planting season.

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