Halesi Mahadev is a very famous scared temple also known as Eastern Pahupatinath of Nepal. This place is also known as Halesi Maratika which is one of the most ancient holy place of Nepal famous among Hindus & Buddhists devotees.It lies at 3,100 ft. – 4,734 ft.above sea level in Khotang district, roughly 185 km southwest of Mount Everest.Khotang district lies in the eastern hill of Nepal which nowadays is popular for the religious site Halesi.Halesi is mostly known as Maratika Cave or Maratika Monastery among Buddhists.
Halesi is rich in its natural beauty and has its own religious & cultural importance.It is said that the Halesi Cave has been used as a residence for 6000 years inside the temple.The Halesi Cave lies in between the holy rivers of Dudh Kosi & Sun Kosi above the hill.The temple of lord Shiva is inside the Halesi cave.
It is a honoured site of both Hindu & Buddhist pilgrimage connected with Mandarava, Padmasambhava and longevity. Hindus and Buddhists all over the world, both have their different beliefs about this place. It is said that the Buddhists Guru Padmasambhava also known as the second Buddha & his sacred consort Mandarava attended various forms of hidden teachings of Buddha Amitabha in this beautiful natural cave which are the keys to Vajrayana or Tibetan Buddhist and Bon religious traditions. Some also says that Buddha Amitabha and Dakinis wrote down the eighteen tantras of Long Life, concealed them in a box made of precious jewels, and hid them in Maratika Cave.
Whereas Hindus have their own beleifs . Halesi Mahadev is one of the main temple of Lord Shiva for Hindu people. They also named it as Eastern Pashupatinath of Nepal.There are three mysterious caves in Halesi which are believed to be the three eyes of lord Shiva. An image of lord Shiva can be seen in the first cave that is famous with name Haleshwar Mahadev where as an image of Nandi can be seen in the second cave. It is said that Halesi Cave was the home of Lord Shiva while hidding from the demon Bhasmasur.This place is visited by many devotees during Shivaratri, Ram Nawami & Ganesh Chaturthi. People come here to worship lord Shiva with great religious beliefs of begging their wish to come true & get a boon from Lord Shiva. It is also belived that the place is blessed by the three family Lords - Manjushree, Vajrapani, Awaloketesvara.
There are five different doors of Halesi cave namely- Ghopte Dwar, Janma Dwar, Pap Dwar, Dharma Dwar and Swarga Dwar. These doors are the major attractions of Halesi Mahadev tour. It is a belief that if we can get in & out through this gates (Dwar) easily then we can earn preservation/life line. Also there is a myth that those people who are religious, faithful towards god can only easily enter the Dwars but those who are not & do not have trust & belief in god can not enter the gates.Each Dwars(Gates of Halesi Cave) has its own significance & explanations.
1) GHOPTE DWAR : It is in the North- West of the Halesi cave. The whole path of the dwar is around 9 feet long.
2) JANMA DWAR : It has a little bit distance from GHOPTAY DWAR to east after walking 6 feet sliding way one can get another door where we entre one leg first and then entre the head carefully.
3) PAP DWAR : After crossing JANMA DWAR to the south east of the cave we can find there a next door that is PAP DWAR.
4) DHARMA DWAR : Moving forward from the PAP DWAR there is another DWAR called DHARMA DWAR which is situated in west-north part of the cave. There we can see a 9/9 square feet shape stone having small gap between them, in ancient time people were curious about the myth so they try to cross that stone to check whether they are religious or not.
5) SWARGA DWAR: SWARGA DWAR also known as Heaven door in English can be seen from YAGYA SHALA near to pap DWAR .It is still a belief among the people there that only religious people who have full faith in god can see the way to go SWARGA(Heaven) .
The cave is full of stunning creation of nature & god, beautiful mysterious natural images looks like being carved taking years by an artists, differently shaped natural stones, bats & pigeons inside the cave.
The Halesi Mahadev cave (Maratika) nowadays is becoming a major tourist destination for travelers seeking meditations (Padmasambhava practice) and peace of mind and also for those who want to have some refreshment far from the city to enjoy the natural beauty of Halesi, tradition and cultural inheritance of Maratika.
Though this temple is situated in rural Hilly region of Nepal with narrow & difficult road to travel, the religious, historical & cultural importance of Halesi Mahadev Cave has gifted in making this place open the door for the visitors with quality lodges, restaurants & hotels for lodging & fooding.Reaching to Halesi has been easy today.There are bus services, private vehicles, helicopters, & flights services through which people can go Halesi & return back in a day.By road way it takes 6-7 hrs of drive, if you prefer to go by Helicopter you can complete your visit to Halesi Mahadev temple within 2 hrs. Even flight service is available from Lamindada but the flights are not sure & regular so we recommend our visitors either road way or Heli tour to Halesi Mahadev as there is Heli pad near Halesi Mahadev temple. The road way tour to Halesi takes you from Kathmandu to Khurkot following the unpaved way from Kotari to Ghurmi, and then Jayaram Ghat to Halesi bazar.
The trip to Halesi Mahadev temple/Halesi Maratika tour designed by Regulus Nepal provides you two different options for religious tour to Halesi/Maratika Pilgrimage tour