Another thing which may surprise backpackers while travelling in Nepal is to find out about the existence of a living Goddess, the Kumari Devi, a little girl living in the Kumari Bahal in Kathmandu’s Durbar Square.
One legend explains how a paedophile king of the Malla’s dynasty maintained sexual relationships with a girl. As a result she died and the king inaugurated as a penitence the practice to venerate a little girl as a living Goddess. This girl is chosen from a Newar silver or goldsmiths caste and has to fulfil several requirements such as age, eyes colour, voice sound, horoscope… Her reign finishes with her first period and the process to find the new Kumari starts again.
Note that it is not allowed to take pictures of the Kumari without a special permit, so we borrowed this pic from the net.