THE KATHMANDU VALLEY
The Kathmandu valley, the political, commercial
& cultural hub of Nepal is the first stop
for majority of visitors to the country. Once
separate kingdom in itself, contains three important
cities:- Kathmandu / Patan / Bhadgaon, each
is an artistic exposition of graceful temples,
elegant palaces, brick paved courtyards and
quaint streets. There are seven UNESCO world
heritage sites in the valley.
Hanuman Dhoka (Durbar Square)
Durbar Square with its old temples and palaces,
epitomizes the religious and the social life
of the people. It is here the kings of Nepal
are crowned and the coronations solemnized.
Interesting things to see are : Taleju temple,
Gigantic figure of Kalabhairab, Nautale Durbar,
Nasal Chowk, the hall of public audience (Gaddhi
Baithak), the statue of King Pratap malla, the
big bell, the big drum, Jagannath temple. Temple
of "Kumari" the living Goddess.
Swayambhu Stupa :
stupa watches over the valley from the top of
a hillock on its western side. This huge stupa
is one of the holiest Buddhist sites in Nepal
and its establishment is linked to the creation
of the Kathmandu valley out of a primordial
lake. Swayambhu is also known the Monkey temple
because of the multitude of the monkeys there.
This is 2000 years old stupa.
Boudhnath Stupa :
This lies about 6 kms to the east of downtown
Kathmandu and is the largest stupa in the valley.
It looms 36 meters high and presents one of
the most fascinating specimens of stupa design.
There are more than 25 monasteries in the area.
One of the most sacred Hindu shrines in the
world. Pashupatinath lies 5 Kms east of the
city center. The richly ornamented pagoda houses
the sacred Linga or phallic symbol of lord Shiva.
Chronicles indicate the temple’s existance
prior to 400 A.D. Near to the temple in the
Bank of Bagmati river where human cremations
take place .
This is situated below the Shivapuri hill at
the northern end of the valley. It is about
9 kms. from the city center. The hub of the
temple complex is a pond in which lies a great
figure of the Hindu god Vishnu reclining on
the coils of a cosmic serpent.
Durbar Square :
It is an enchanting row of palace buildings,
artistic courtyards and graceful pagoda temples.
Listed as a World heritage site, the former
royal palace complex is the center of Patan’s
religious and social life, and houses a museum
containing an array of bronze statue and religious
objects. One remarkable monument here is a 17th
century temple dedicated to the Hindu god Krishna,
built entirely of stone.
Kwa Bahal :
It is also known as the Golden Temple, a Bhuddhist
temple dates back to 12th century. This building
is embellished with exceptionally fine wood
carvings and repose work. Artistic images are
scattered around the courtyard and devotees
can be seen offering worship at many shrines
This Buddhist monument is an excellent example
of terracotta art form which points to the skill
of Patan’s ancient craftsmen with a variety
of building styles. The 14th century monument
is built in Shikhar style which is unusual in
a city of pagoda roofs. This is the monument
also known as "The Temple of 9000 Buddhas".
Tibetan R. camp :
It was set up in 1960 under the initiative
of the International Red Cross and the Swiss
Development Corporation, in co-operation with
his Majesty’s Government of Nepal. It
is aimed to help the Tibetans to support themselves.
For those looking to bring home fine Tibetan
carpets. This is the best place to shop.
Once you enter the big gate you find
the unique art and architecture and the special
layout here. The 15th century Palace of 55 windows,
situated to the left as you enter through the
city gate, inspires admiration. The national
art gallery is also housed inside. The palace
entrance, the Golden gate, is a masterpiece.
This is the square full of various designed
The towering five roofed Nyatapola temple presides
over the square .The monument gracefully soars
into the sky a top a five story plinth. The
stairway leading up to the temple is flanked
by stone figure of deities and mythical beasts,
each 10 times more powerful than the one immediately
It takes its name from the Dattatreya templ
dedicated to a three-headed combination of the
Hindu deities Brahma, Vishnu & Shiva. The
national woodcarving and bronze museums are
also housed here.
It has a display of fresh pottery left out
to dry in the open square. The elephant headed
lord Ganesh is the patron of poters, thus the
Jeth Ganesh temple in the square.
It is situated on a ridge overlooking the valley,
about 12 kms to the east of the city. It is
dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu. One of the
finest and oldest specimens of pagoda architecture
the sacred complex is world heritage site.
HILL STATIONS BEYOND THE VALLEY
Nagarkot is a popular tourist resort, situated
34 kilometers east of Kathmandu at an altitude
of 2,250 meters from the mean sea level. The
panorama of the major peaks of the eastern Nepal
himalayas including Sagarmatha (Mt.Everest)
can be seen from here . Peaks like Manaslu,Ganesh
himal, Langtang,Choba Bhamre,Gauri Shankar and
Numbur are also clearly seen from here.
It is situated at an altitude of 5,500 feet
above sea level,30 kms east of Kathmandu on
the Kodari / Tibet highway, a scenic and ancient
town. From here one can have a panoramic view
of the Himalayan ranges from the west to the
east and very good for sunset views. This area
also offers you the hiking opportunity in the
This is a place which is situated a top a hill
three hours walk to the south of Panauti, is
popular as the meditation ground of Nama Buddha.
This is an historical important place where
a prince sacrificed himself for the sake of
sick and hungry tigress and her cubs.
This consists of a sprawling garden of stone
water spouts, religious shrines, fish ponds
and a replica of the statue of Budhanilakantha
. Balaju is known for its bank of 22 stone water
spouts (hiti) carved in the shape of
sea – dragons. Peaceful settings of the
garden is able to attract people in here.
It is named after a famous sage. There is a
stupa at the top and the Nagarjun Reserve is
well known for its wildlife including Leopard,
deer, birds, squirrel and other species are
seen. The hill tracks are also good for mountain
It is situated on a ridge 6 Kms southwest of
Kathmandu. The ancient township is a natural
fortress and has a proud and courageous history.
Kirtipur offers quaint streets lined with artistic
houses and temple squares. The Chilamchu stupa
and the Bagh Bhairab temple are the important
sights here. The historic 16th Century town
has many things to offer.
Literally meaning the Kali of south, this temple
is dedicated to Goddess Kali, the Hindu goddess
of power and victory. It is located 20 Kms.
southwest of Kathmandu and is famous of its
natural surroundings. Every Tuesdays and Saturdays,
animals are ritually sacrificed at this temple.
On the way to this destination there are a lot
of scenic things such a river gorge, fishpond,
cave and temple, etc.
This lovely royal game Sanctuary, also known
as Gokarna Safari Park, lies about 10 kilometers
northeast of Kathmandu. Now this site offers
18 holes GOLF course.
Sankhu is a sleepy town beneath the Gum Bihar
religious complex. Within the complex is the
temple of Bajra Yogini built in the 17th century.
The area has been an important religious site
since 4th century and has excellent woods and
bird life. This is also an old Newari town having
typical Newari architecture (intricately carved
wooden + brick temple and houses) with the traditional
living style of the people.
Shivapuri provides most of the water to the
Kathmandu valley and among the hills. It is
closest to the Himalayas. A trekking can be
organized in this hill. The wildlife sightseeing
here is also excellent as the parks has access
to wider lands and areas behind Kathmandu valley.
A visit to the Buddhist Monastery and a nunnery
set high on the hill, are the added advantages.
It is about 2700 meters from sea level, Phulchowki
is the tallest hilltop surrounding the Kathmandu
valley. This place is described as the bird
watcher’s paradise where there are more
than 250 species of birds been sight. During
the February – March – April this
hill looks like a beautiful bride because of
the colorful, rhododendron, the national flower
To view of the breathtaking grandeur of some
of the world’s highest peaks, from far
west of Dhaulagiri to east of Mount Everest,
there is no better place than Daman. It lies
80 Kilometers southwest of Kathmandu on the
old mountain highway, the Tribhuvan Rajpath.
Gorkha is the birth place of king Prithivi
Narayan Shah, the great founder of modern Nepal
and is also the ancestral home of the Shah Kings
of Nepal. Gorkha can be reached in about 5 hours
Manakamana Temple and cable
This is the temple which is dedicated to on
e of the Hindu goddess situated 125 kms west
of kathmandu has the picturesque view of mountains
and this place is now accessible by exciting
cable car (this cable car ride is one of the
best in the whole world) This can be visited
on the way to Chitwan or Pokhara.
It is a small Newari town of approximately
20000 people located 4300 meters above the sea
level which is on the way from Pokhara to Lumbini
(the birth place of Lord Buddha). The great
attraction of Tansen are Srinagar Hill, ancient
culture of people, friendly people, excellent
mountain views and its serene atmosphere. It
is charming because it is unspoiled by modernity,
pollution and urban bustle. Good hotels available.
Lumbini is the birth place of Lord Buddha,
apostle of peace. It is situated 250 Kilometers
southwest of Kathmandu. Ashokan pillar, remains
of an old monastery, images of Buddhas mother’s
"Mayadevi", etc are still preserved
in Lumbini. World peace stupa, Chinese monasteries,
Thai Monasteries, Shrilankan Monasteries and
Japanese monasteries are the other important
landmarks of Lumbini. The international standards
of Hotels are available.
Tilaurakot is 27 km to the west of Lumbini
is the ancient capital of Kapilbastu, the kingdom
of Shakya dynasty in which family Lord Buddha
was Born. Chinese traveler who visited this
place 2500 years ago reported seeing numerous
stupas , monasteries and the palaces here
Royal Chitwan National Park
Royal Chitwan National Park is situated 120
Kilometers southwest of Kathmandu in Chitwan
district. The rear great one horned rhinoceros,
several species of deer, bear, leopard, dolphin,
crocodile, birds and tigers, etc. Live in this
park in their natural habitat.
One of the most scenic and exciting valley
in Nepal, is the Pokhara valley. This entire
area is famous for trekking and lies 200 kilometers
west of Kathmandu six hours by car and 30 minutes
by flight. It is an enormous sunlit playground
of green hills, lakes, forests, rivers, waterfalls,
terraced fields. For the mountain lover the
Annapurna range and the Fishtail peak, appeared
to be just standing in front of you with overwhelming
Amidst the high Himalayan settlement of Tibetan-
speaking people is a serene village called Jomsom.
It among the very few places in Nepal from where
the Himalayan peaks can be admired at such a
close range and yet from a safe altitude of
only 8000 feet. Giant peaks like Nilgiri, Dhaulagiri
and the Annapurna Range seem almost at touching
distance. Jomsom is not only the most popular
trekking destination in Nepal but also the gateway
to Upper Mustang "Kingdom" with in
the Hindu Kingdom of Nepal. Jomsom is also the
gateway to the Muktinath temple that holds great
religious significance to both Buddhists and
The name of Namche Bazaar is generally associated
with that of Sagarmatha or Mt. Everest. It is
the entrance to the Everest region. It is 241
kms from Kathmandu and the distance is generally
covered with 15 days by trekking. Nowhere else
can you immerse yourself so totally among the
highest mountains on earth and travel among
the legendry Sherpas. One can fly from Kathamndu
to Lukla or Syangaboche in the Everest region.
Tyangboche monastery and
Everest view hotel:
Tyangaboche monastery is the biggest monastery
in Khumbu or Everest region. This is the monastery
which is situated in the highest altitude. There
are a lot of people fly to this monastery by
helicopter and fly back to Kathmandu since this
is the beautiful site from scenic point of view
and strong and spiritually powerful temple for
Buddhists. Everest View hotel is equipped with
all modern amenities and situated at the highest
altitude in the world.
Janakpur is a great place, famous as the birth
place of Sita, the consort of lord Ram. There
is an artistic marble temple of Sita (Janaki).
This is the area to witness the typical living
of the people of Terai.
Baraha is the temple of Lord Baraha, the boar
incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Barahachhetra is
the holy place of Hindu pilgrimage and lies
on the bank of Koshi river in the east.