Kathmandu is the bustling capital of Nepal and the country’s largest city. Away from the modern parts of the city is an intricate maze of narrow streets, great for exploring and observing the traditional culture and Nepalese way of life with hidden temples, local markets and old workshops. Actually formed of three ancient cities, Kathmandu has always been a melting pot for the different ethnic groups of Nepal, and therefore boasts an unbelievably rich cultural heritage that has remained largely unchanged since the Middle Age.
Our sample tours which include a visit to Kathmandu
In the heart of the old town you will find the ancient Durbar Square. It is replete with ancient temples, palaces, courtyards and streets dating back to the 12th centuries. A must-see for any visitor to Kathmandu.
Pashupatinath, in the northeast of Kathmandu, is one of the most important Hindu temples in the world. Dedicated to Lord Shiva It draws wandering Sadhus from all over the subcontinent. With its astonishing architectural beauty it stands as a symbol of faith, religion, culture and tradition. Its existence dates back to 400 AD.
Only a short walk away from the heart of modern Kathmandu, you can find Boudhanath, one of the largest Buddhist Stupas in the world. Around here you will experience vibrant and unfettered Tibetan culture from the large community of Tibetan exiles.
Kumari Bahal is home to the Kumari, the young girl who is selected to be the town’s living goddess until she reaches puberty and reverts to being a normal mortal. The building was built in 1757 by Jaya Prakash Malla. Inside the building the three-storey courtyard is enclosed by magnificently carved wooden balconies and windows.
Seto Machhendranath Temple
Southwest of Asan Tole, this important temple attracts both Buddhists and Hindus. The temple’s age is not known but it was restored during the 17th century. In the courtyard there are numerous small shrines, chaityas and statues. Inside the temple you can see the white-faced image of the god covered in flowers. The image is taken out of the temple during the Seto Machhendranath festival in March/April each year and paraded around the city in a chariot.
Swayambhunath (sometimes known as The Monkey Temple) is a stunning complex of temples in the North West of the city that is lit up at night. Visit Patan’s famous Durbar Square, famous for its cast metal figures.