(The sacred Night of Lord Shiva)
Shiva Ratri, virtually meaning ‘the night dedicated to Shiva’ falls on the fourteenth day of the waning moon in late February and early March. On this occasion, Hindu devotees crowd at all the Shiva shrines of the country. Flowers offered are marrgosa leaves. They take bath in holy rivers, perform penance and keep vigil throughout the right singing ancient hymns and praying Shiva with his 1008 names. The temple of Pashupatipati in Kathmandu is visited by millions of devotees from different parts of Nepal and pilgrims of India. They camp around the temple and all the lodges and guesthouse is filled with the pilgrims. The religious fervour intensifies as the might falls. Oil-fed lamps and electric bulbs illuminate the whole area. The sweet smell of incense rhythm of hymns and chaotic dinon the crowd all together give the impression of a different age, remove from ours. Behind all there is the strong belief that such rituals will secure oneself a place is Kailash for the devotees. In the afternoon an official programme is organized to celebrate the festival. The official function is held at Tudikhel where Nepalese Army organizes a show.
Source: Nepal Tourism Board