I’ve ascended 365 steps and am standing at the largest Buddhist stupa in this small country. I am surrounded by monkeys, monks, and soldiers. It is an odd combination at one of the oldest holy sites in this area. From its high spot overlooking the valley – large eyes painted on all four walls peer out symbolizing Buddha watching over you. This stupa, near the capital city, was built over 2,000 years ago. Pilgrims climb its steps daily before dawn and circle its golden spire.
The country boasts astonishing natural beauty: glorious snow-capped peaks, lush valleys, and raging rivers fueled by the height of its mountains. It offers tourists rafting, temples, and incredible multi-weeks treks popular with hikers. It is also a country in the midst of political turmoil with violent clashes and hostage taking replacing some of the peaceful nature of its temples.
Do you know where I am?
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