I always visit those four places in Kathmandu valley during my Nepal trip. If you are also planning to visit Nepal, don’t forget to visit those places. In this article, I am sharing some information about those places. Last year, the massive earthquake destroyed some heritages, temples and ancient places in Nepal. More than 700 monuments in Kathmandu and its environs were damaged in the quake. But that earthquake couldn’t damage natural and ancient beauty of Nepal. Go there and feel this 😀
The Pashupatinath Temple, with its astonishing architectural beauty, stands as a symbol of faith, religion, culture and tradition. Regarded as the most sacred temple of ‘Hindu Lord Shiva’ in the world, Pashupatinath Temple’s existence dates back to 400 A.D. This is located on the banks of the Bagmati River in Kathmandu. Thousands of pilgrims from all over the world come to pay homage to this temple, which is also known as ‘The Temple of Living Beings’. This temple complex is on UNESCO World Heritage Site’s list since 1979. Gold-painted images of guardian deities, Chaturmukha (four-faced statue), Chadeshvar (an inscribed Licchavi linga from the 7th century), Brahma Temple, Dharmashila (a stone where sacred oaths are taken), Arya Ghat, Gauri Ghat (holy bath), Pandra Shivalaya (15 shrines), Gorakhnath and Vishwarup Temples, Guhyeshwari (Guhjeshwari) Temple, Kirateshwar Mahadeva Mandir and Surya Ghat are main attractions in Pashupatinath area. There is no major damage in Pashupatinath because of the earthquake.
Sadhus are especially common at Pashupatinath. In Hinduism, Sadhu is a religious ascetic.
The Buddhist temple of Swayambhunath, situated on the top of a hill, west of Kathmandu, is one of the most popular, holy and instantly recognizable symbols of Nepal. The temple is colloquially known as the ‘monkey temple’ because of the large tribe of roving monkeys who guard the temple. One of the major Attractions is the Stupa. Swayambhunath Stupa is a golden spire crowning a conical wooded hill. It is the most ancient and enigmatic of all the holy shrines in Kathmandu Valley. ‘Area Surrounding The Stupa’ is also another major attraction.
Swayambhunath is also known as the Monkey Temple as there are holy monkeys living in the north-west parts of the temple.
The surroundings of Swyambhunarayan Stupa consists of chaityas, temples, painted images of deities and numerous other religious objects. Another attraction Harati Temple is dedicated to the goddess of smallpox and other epidemics. The presence of the Harati Devi temple signifies the intermingling of the pantheons of Hinduism and Buddhism in Nepal. Atop Syambunath hill is another fascinating, though less visited temple, Shantipur, popularly known as the ‘Palace of Peace’. It is said that inside the secret underground chamber of the temple lives the 8th-century Tantric master, Shankar Acharya. The master, it is believed, has lived through centuries and has full control on the weather and the King of Kathmandu must go to him in times of drought. There is no major damage in Swayambhunath because of the earthquake.
3. Bhaktapur Durbar Square
Bhaktapur Durbar Square is the plaza in front of the royal palace of the old Bhaktapur Kingdom. It is one of three Durbar Squares in the Kathmandu Valley in Nepal, all of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Bhaktapur Durbar Square is an assortment of the pagoda and shikhara-style temples grouped around a fifty-five-window palace of brick and wood. The square is part of a charming valley as it highlights the idols of ancient kings perched on top of stone monoliths, the guardian deities looking out from their sanctuaries, the wood carvings in very place – struts, lintels, tympanums, gateways and windows – all seem to form a well-orchestrated symphony. The Palace of Fifty-five Windows, the world famous Golden gate of Bhaktapur, the magnificent and beautiful lion gate, Mini Pashupatinath Temple, Batsala Temple, Statue of Bhupatindra Malla, Bhairava Nath Temple and Nyatapola Temple are major attractions in Bhaktapur Durbar Square. On April 25th, 2015 a 7.8 magnitude earthquake destroyed so many attractions in Kathmandu Durbar Square including Vatsala Durga Temple and Fasidega temple.
JuJu Dhau (King Curd) is my favorite in Bhaktapur. If you are in Bhaktapur Durbar Square, don’t forget to try it. It’s so so so delicious.
4. Kathmandu Durbar Square
Kathmandu Durbar Square is one of the important historic and tourist destinations in Nepal. This massive complex is home to palaces, temples and courtyards. The original center of Kathmandu is often named as Basantapur, Hanuman Dhoka or Durbar Square all denoting the same location. Kathmandu Durbar square has various historical royal and governmental institutions mixed with temples of different styles and ages. It may seem a little bit crowded with lots of buildings and temples built around on a very small area. Hanuman Dhoka Palace Complex, Kumari House, where the Living Goddess of Nepal resides, Manju Deval are major attractions in Kathmandu Durbar Square. The earthquake destroyed so many attractions in Kathmandu Durbar Square including Kasthamandap, Maju Dega & Narayan Vishnu Temples, Trailokya Mohan, Krishna (Chasin Dega), Kakeshwar Temple, Dharahara (Bhimsen Tower).
The main venue of Indra Jatra is Kathmandu Durbar Square. Indra Jatra is celebration of God Indra’s Day.