Sightseeing Places In Nepal

There are several nice places for visiting while you are in Nepal. These places are good for one day to few days sightseeing.These places can be categorized as below:

Inside Kathmandu Valley

Kathmandu Durbar Square, Patan Durbar Square, Bhaktapur Durbar Square, Nagarkot, Dakshinkali Temple, Swayambhunath(Monkey Temple),
Bauddhanath Stupa, Pashupatinath(Biggest Holy Hindu) Temple, Kakani, Sankhu, Godawari etc.

Outside Kathmandu Valley

Bandipur(Village Tour), Chitawan National park(Jungle Safari/wildlife watch), Lumbini(Birthplace of Lord Buddha),
Pokhara(city of Lake and Mountain), Ilam(Tea Garden) etc.

Here is the short description for each of the nice places to visit in Nepal:

Kathmandu Durbar Square


hanuman dhoka or kathmandu durbar square

This is situated at the heart of Kathmandu city at the distance of 15 minutes walk from Thamel or Durbarmarg.We can take any transportation to reach there but a Rickshaw Ride from Thamel is recommended if you are few in numbers as the Human paddled Rickshaw only drive 2 person at a time.
You need to get tickets to enter the Square which is easily available at the entrance, there might be some discount if you want to revisit there within few days.
Kathmandu Durbar Square also known as Hanuman Dhoka is a very busy place with congested traffic and tourists. This once was the Royal Palace for Kathmandu Kingdom and even for whole Nepal until another bigger Narayanhiti Royal Palace, north from here, was constructed in 1896.There is a three storied tall pagoda styled temple at the center of the square known as Taleju Temple which was built during 15th century. Other two European styled buildings are the palaces built by Malla kings who ruled before Shah dynasty. There are smaller but beautifully carved temples on the courtyard of the platform where we can see the beautiful carvings of kama arts along the struts eaves. The statue standing on a wooden pillar is the king Pratap Malla in a praying gesture.
A historical wooden temple named Kasthamandap is located at the south of the square, which is said to be built from a single tree deriving the  name Kathmandu for this city. A tall pagoda styled temple is standing between Kasthamandap and  Shiwa-Parbati Temple above several stone stairs where a lot of local and foreigner tourists seem sitting and enjoying the view around. On the western part of square, there is a giant Kal Bhairab Statute  inside a large carved wooden window. Few yards away on the corner is the statue of Monkey King called Lord Hanuman covered with red/yellow clothes and sweets on  its mouth most of the time.
On the eastern part of the square, it's wider and have rows of handicrafts and souvenir shops surrounded by restaurants and few guest houses. There is a Kumari Temple around the middle of eastern square. It's a three storied building highly carved with stone and wood sculpture, there you can see a wooden  carved window dominating the square shaped courtyard inside the main entrance, please be quiet and see above on the window you may have glimpse of Kumari on the window, she comes out around the window sometimes, you may arrange a special visit with the Kumari, please consult with other staff at Kumari House or with your travel agent. It's a long tradition that Kumari is worshipped as a living goddess in Kathmandu valley, only the girl from ethic Shakya caste family with enough qualities determined by the Kumari assignment Committee can be the Kumari.Once she becomes Kumari, she will not marry according to the tradition but once the Kumari has time for first menstruation, she will be replaced by new Kumari.There are few Kumari Houses in Kathmandu valley including in Bhaktapur, Patan and Kirtipur.
Kathmandu Durbar Square is one of the three old Palaces in Kathmandu valley listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites making one of the must see place  in Nepal. This spot can be included in one day Kathmandu Valley sightseeing itinerary.

Swayambhunath (Monkey) Temple


sightseeing at monkey temple in Kathmandu Nepal



This is a holy Buddhist Stupa equally visited by Hindus at 3 km west from down town on the top of a small hill. This UNESCO World Heritage listed site is also called Monkey Temple as it has  a lot of monkeys living around the site. Monkeys are connected with the Buddhist mythology where a Saint Manjushree from Tibet who saw a great lake in present Kathmandu valley with a blossomed Lotus , drained the lake water from south of Valley named Chobhar now cutting with his divine sword and made the valley suitable for living for all human, they later built a temple where the lotus was blossomed  and the monkeys who came with Manjushree still guard the temple area.
There are two different ways to reach at the temple square at the top of the hill. Entrance tickets are available at the entrance of both ways. The western way has  a motor able road up to the middle of the hill and involves few minutes walk along stone staircases .The eastern way has a uphill of complete 365 stone staircases up to the Stupa providing you the magnificent view of entire Kathmandu valley and Himalayan range in the northern side. There is a huge gold plated Bajra lying at the entrance of the stupa. The main square has a white dome  shaped Stupa in the center standing tallest with thirteen golden tiers mounted on it. Below the tiers  has pair of eyes of Buddha on all four side and above is the Golden Gajur spreading Torans(like prayer flags) on all four sides from its neck.
On the western part of the complex, there is a beautifully carved temple of Goddess Harati, who is the caretaker of children from the diseases, is mostly crowded with Hindu women worshiping. On the northern part of the complex , there is a Monastery with giant statue of Buddha and Manjushree inside. There are several souvenir shops and few restaurants inside the complex.
Few minutes walk along the western ridge leads to the another monastery with colorful prayer flags and troop of monkeys before passing the world peace pond near the parking area. The whole Swayambhunath Temple area is spread in a large area surrounded by forest and external wall with prayer wheels at the bottom of the hill.
 
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