The Women Drummers of Bhaktapur, Nepal

Allison Sodha

Bhaktapur, also known as Bhadgaon, is an ancient Newari town located in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the district houses the famed Durbar Square, Nyatapola Temple, and Kailashnath Mahadev Statue.

Kailashnath Mahadev, the world's largest statue of Lord Shiva

Bhaktapur also gives travelers the opportunity to explore musical spaces and gain insight into the world of women drummers. Traditionally, drumming was exclusively a male occupation in the Nepali culture. However, one woman named Indira Machimasyus set out to change the structure. She learned the art of drumming from a German musician and ethnomusicologist and has since performed in Europe, India, and Australia. Indira plays different drums, made of wood and goat skin, and has encouraged many women to follow their dream and passion for music.

Sodha Travel is proud to offer custom Nepal tours that include Bhaktapur and an exclusive performance from Indira Machimasyus. Nepalese instruments are generally played during ceremonies and festivals, including weddings, welcoming occasions, and Bratabandha, a rite for Nepali Hindu boys. In addition to the energetic recital, learn more about the traditional drums and why the art was solely a male domain in the local community. This private and sacred exploration of musical spaces is available all year round. Contact a Sodha Travel Destination Specialist to reserve this and other private Nepal tours.

Topics: Culture, Nepal, Festivals and Holidays

Allison Sodha

Written by Allison Sodha

As the President of Sodha Travel and author of Go! Girl Guides India, Allison has spent almost two decades exploring South Asia. She has a passion for creating experiences fueled by a deeper understanding of local communities.