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Dhurba Kumar Shrestha, vice-chairman of Panchakanya Group is health-conscious, spiritual and a travelling enthusiast. Shrestha, who is in his late 50s, plays badminton regularly  and hikes every weekend for his physical and mental well-being. He enjoys long drives and goes on the occasional trek and pilgrimage. Tamish Giri of New Business Age caught up with Shrestha to note down his memorable trip to Pathivara Temple in Taplejung.

Reason to Travel  
Shri Shri Ravi Sankar defines health to be our actual partner in life and I agree with him. In addition to this, I also believe that we should live life by forgetting our age because this helps us feel younger and to do what we want without any fear and enjoy life to the fullest even while we are aging. Travelling is one such activity that allows us to live life fearlessly and overcome our anxiety. It gives you mindfulness, energy and contributes towards your health. I try to travel to as many places as I can to keep myself happy, energetic and healthy.

Drive to Jhapa
Four years ago while I was in Bhairahawa visiting our factory, I had a deep desire to go on a long drive. During that time, I decided to visit our home in Jhapa. I made a solo trip, driving to Jhapa from Bhairahawa, taking short breaks in Chitwan, Pathalaiya, and Dharan. On the way, I visited the famous Panchakanya temple in Karpok and also observed the lush countryside.

Joining a Pilgrimage
Upon arriving in Jhapa, I stayed in our ancestral home and also visited the tea estate the next day. While I was there, some of my relatives were planning to go to Pathivara Temple. I had heard a lot about the temple, it is one of the famous Hindu pilgrimage sites of Nepal and lies at an altitude of 3658m above sea level. People of the Kirant and Buddhist communities also regard the temple with high importance to their religion. Popular among Nepali and Indian pilgrims, people believe that the worship of the temple makes dreams come true. I hadn't been to the temple previously, so I joined the trip.

Difficult Yet Mesmerising
The temple lies in the junction of Tapethok, Limkhim and Phawakhola VDC. There are several ways to get there but it takes time. From Jhapa, we drove to the Pathivara mountain town of Phedi and walked until Thulo Phedi and spent the night in a resort. The next morning, we started our walk to the temple. There is a long set of stone stairs going up to the top and it took us around 4-5 hours from Phedi. All of us struggled walking up the narrow stairs along the small and dangerous pathway.

It was different from any other religious place I had travelled to. The beautiful view of the Kumbhakarna Mountain and Mt. Kanchenjunga from the top was mesmerising. Even though it was cold and the hike was tiring but the view up there was worth bearing the pain and cold. Mt. Kanchenjunga shines with the sunrise reflecting the shades of yellow, orange and red. It's magical and majestic. The statue of the goddess on top is lovely but the ancient stone hidden under the mantle is where the real goddess resides.

My only suggestion to people is that they should strive to travel at least once a year. Travelling and exploring new places can help us gain information and knowledge. It is also crucial for generating innovative ideas. Travelling also contributes to our mental and physical well-being.

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