With the entry of new year in Nepal, Rato Macchindranath glorifies the streets of Patan with his presence and blessing to his devotees and farmers with rain water. It is believed that the Jatra (festival ) was first celebrated in 897 A.D. to honor Macchindranath.
Dating back to legendary days, when Guru Gorakhnath – a saint who gave blessing to Prithivi Naryan Shah would be the first king of modern unified Nepal – came to Patan and in ignorance of his identity, farmers and residents of Patan did not offer him meals. In rage he took away those serpents, Naga, who were responsible for the rain in the valley and then he went for meditation. This brought severe drought, 12 years is to be said, in the valley. King Narendra Dev, one of the great kings from Lichhavi dynasty, asked Machhindranath, teacher of Gorakhnath, from Assam – India hoped that he would end the drought. When Gorakhnath heard his teacher is in Patan for the trouble he was responsible, due to enormous respect to his Guru (teacher) – he let those serpents free. After that valley received plenty rain fall, and being grateful to Machhindranath – the local started to worship him for saving them from 12 years of drought and King Narendra Dev started the festival as Rato Machhindranath Jatra.
Hence, in every 12 year the chariot of Rato Macchindranath is pulled from Bungamati itself.