Two men on a mission stop in Israel as they cross the world on bicycles

"The climate is very nice, and we think that Israel is the most beautiful, peaceful, and developed country on the Asian continent."

bike feat 88  (photo credit: )
bike feat 88
(photo credit: )
Lok Bandhu Karki and Janardan Khanal have made Israel their 25th stop on a worldwide tour to promote peace and universal brotherhood. The Nepalese duo, dressed in the traditional clothing of their Himalayan homeland, have been bicycling their way around the globe for three years. Beginning in December 2004, they've ridden from Nepal through China, Bhutan, India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Brunei, the Philippines, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Sri Lanka, the Maldives, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, Cyprus, Syria and Lebanon, before arriving in Tel Aviv on Monday. "Now we are in Israel and we're very happy to be here," Karki said when he and Khanal stopped by The Jerusalem Post's offices in the capital's Romema neighborhood on Wednesday. "The climate is very nice, and we think that Israel is the most beautiful, peaceful, and developed country on the Asian continent." Karki said that many Israelis visited Nepal, and he had gotten a "good feeling" from them back home. "There are also 14,000 Nepalese people working in Israel," he continued. "Many of them are doing agricultural work or acting as care-givers to the elderly. We are feeling as if we are in our own country. It's very safe." Safety has been a concern as they rode through some of the world's most dangerous places - countries torn both by war and severe poverty. While Afghanistan was a frightening place, Karki and Khanal experienced actual trouble in Thailand and Malaysia. "In Thailand we were robbed at knife point," Karki said. "Some men came out in front of our bicycles and demanded money from us. When we told them we didn't have the money they wanted, they took our camera and mobile phone. They were ready to kill us." But the experience did not sway the two cyclists. The message of peace and humanism they bring is simple and easy to understand, and Karki and Khanal say that almost everyone has received them well. "What we want is peace," Karki said. "Peace is the most necessary, important and greatest thing in the world. If we can plant the seeds of permanent peace among the people of the Earth, every human as well as all living things will surely get freedom, happiness, success, and meaningful and holy lives." This cause keeps these men going, and their message will take Karki and Khanal through Israel into Jordan. From there, the two plan to ride into Africa, and eventually make it to the United States, a leg of their journey that will partially be accomplished by airplane. Karki and Khanal plan on continuing this adventure for the foreseeable future. "Our plan is to do 113 countries in nine years," Karki said. "We want to spread our message to the world. We are all humans and the relationship of humanity is the highest value of all."