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10 Must Visit Places In Kathmandu 2024

10 Must Visit Places In Kathmandu 2024

Is Kathmandu worth visiting? Yes, Kathmandu is an ancient, beautiful city in central Nepal at an elevation of 1400 meters. Kathmandu Valley refers to the 665 square kilometres of three different districts: Kathmandu, Bhaktapur, and Lalitpur. This blog will discuss the 10 best places to visit in Kathmandu.

The three districts are the three ancient kingdoms popularly known as Kantipur, Bhadgaun, and Patan, respectively. These cities are full of ancient architectural buildings, palaces, and monuments, including seven World Heritage Sites.

10 best places to visit in Kathmandu you should recognize. However, many of them were badly devastated in the 2015 earthquake, and most of them are in the process of renovation. As the country’s largest international airport (TIA) lies here, this valley is a gateway for Himalayan expeditions, including Mount Everest’s highest peak.

Thus, it is the centre for all kinds of tourists around the world. The valley offers dozens of amazing places, historical facts, mysterious cultures, and more. This article will describe things to do in Kathmandu, Nepal, for both national and international visitors.

1. Thamel

Thamel is one of the beauty spots for tourists as it offers everything to its visitors. The bustling narrow alleys, lining up the vendors on both sides trying to catch you up to make you buy their stuff, the constant music from the music stores, colourful lights twinkling in each shop, etc., give the impression that the special function is being celebrated eternally. 

Different ranked hotels, from the luxurious to the lower budget, and restaurants are available in Thamel to cater for the guests. Some of the major hotels have managed separate heated swimming pools, spa areas, fitness areas, barbeques, and many more facilities besides serving Nepalese and international dishes. 

It is also the commercial hub with hundreds of stores selling metal and wooden handicrafts, colourful jewellery, trekking gears, traditional Nepalese clothing, singing bowls, Thangkas, khukuri (a traditional Gurkha Knife), and many other eatables like lapse, chhurpi, titular. Almost all the necessary items for the Nepal trip, including the gear for a mountain expedition, Himalayan trekking, and the souvenirs for your loved ones, are easily found in Thamel. 

What to do in Kathmandu for 5 days? Thamel is an amazing area where you can spend a few hours strolling around, especially in the evenings. The narrow but clean streets, the beautiful stores with colourful lights, and the constant music from the bars and pubs really please you. In recent years, Thamel has become popular for its nightlife. The whole Thamel remains alive till the crack of dawn. More importantly, the Thamel area has been declared vehicle-free since 2017.

2. Swyambhunath (Monkey Temple

Swyambhunath, also popularly known as Monkey Temple, is one of the 10 best places to visit in Kathmandu. Situated in the northwest of the valley, it is a great symbol of religious tolerance and an important holy pilgrimage site for Hindus and Buddhists. Tibetan monasteries, museums, and libraries have recently been added, offering visitors the chance to learn more facts. 

According to mythology, the Kathmandu Valley once had an enormous lake on which a large lotus grew. Manjushree, a Bodhisattva, thought of making the valley suitable for human settlement by cutting the gorge at Chovar and draining it. Later, the giant lotus transformed into the Swayambhu hill, and the flower became the Stupa.

An eternal flame existed naturally on the top of the hill, from which the name “Swyambhu” was fixed, meaning “self-create.” Over the eternal flame, the Stupa was built. Another myth regarding the monkeys is also very interesting. Manjushree was supposed to have short hair, but once he let it grow long, he had lice on his head.

The head refers to the hill, and the long hair to the jungle around the hill, whereas the lice are the monkeys in the jungle. A large pair of eyes has been painted on each of the four sides of the main Stupa, representing wisdom and compassion. Those eyes are also believed to be wisely looking over the valley.

3. Bhaktapur

Bhaktapur is a wonderful ancient city full of awe-inspiring medieval architecture, including unique temples, palaces, and monuments. The entire complex of the Bhaktapur site has been categorized into four sections: Durbar Square, Taumadhi Square, Pottery Square, and Dattatreya Square. The Durbar Square has been enlisted in UNESCO’s World Heritage List.  

This city is the home of countless temples and ancient structural arts, and it looks like a massive display of traditional Newari architecture that was believed to have been constructed in the 17th and 18th centuries. You see, anything here is an amazing piece of art. Sadly, many of the structures were badly damaged by the 2015 earthquake. Some of them are under renovation process. Whether all these monuments will be renovated in the traditional, beautiful state is a major concern today. 

10 best places to visit in Nepal
Bhaktapur Durbar square.

Temples in Bhaktapur

55 Windows Palace, Golden Gate, and Nyatpole Temple are other major attractions of Bhaktapur. 55 Windows Palace (Pachpanna Jhyale Durbar) is an iconic monument of love built by Jitamitra Malla for his fifty-five wives in the 18th century. The Golden Gate (Sun Dhoka) is filled with lavish and important artifacts, and it has a holy pool called Naga Pokhari inside. This mysterious pool encircled by the cobras is believed to be used by the goddess Taleju for her ritual baths. This is also one of the 10 best places to visit in Kathmandu.

Another holy site of Bhaktapur, Nyatpole Temple, was built in 1702 and is well known for its structural strength. It only suffered minor damage in the 2015 earthquake. This temple is considered the most elevated structure in the valley and the tallest temple in Nepal. However, this might not be true in recent days as there are many other tall buildings in the valley. The Nyatpole Temple was built to honour Goddess Siddhi Lakshmi, an incarnation of Goddess Parbati.

4. Pashupatinath Temple

Pashupatinath is the most sacred and oldest Hindu temple of Lord Shiva, one of the most important Hindu gods, on the bank of the holy river Bagmati in Kathmandu. This temple is also one of Asia’s four most important Hindu religious sites. The temple is believed to have been built in the 5th century and mainly attracted devotees of a superpowerful god with a tough character who wore the garland of serpents, put the pest of ashes over the body, and consumed poisonous drugs.

Lord Shiva is also considered the ideal figure and Hindu women and girls pray to find husbands similar to him. Pashupatinath temple is a classic destination for spiritual devotees. It is filled with amazing architectural designs and was enlisted in UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 1979. Since it is the first Hindu pilgrimage site, the non-Hindus are forbidden to enter the main temple but are allowed to enjoy every function on the temple premises.

10 best places to visit in Kathmandu
Sadhu and Baba seen in Pashupatinath Temple.

Pilgrimage in Pashupatinath Temple

Although the temple is open yearly for regular worshipping activities, you can observe special fairs, especially during festivals like Mahashivaratri. The devotees from Nepal, India, and many other countries gather every year on the day of Mahashivaratri. The physical structure of the temple is in traditional pagoda style with silver and gold-coated four sides roof. The beautiful wood carvings can be seen around the temple.

There are many other temples and sub-temples in the Pashupati area for Hindu and Buddhist devotees. This reveals that Nepal is a secular country with a high degree of religious tolerance. It also reflects the unity of diversity, which is the country’s essence. 

Pashupatinath is also a popular cremation site for Hindu people. Having cremation in Pashupati is believed to make it easier to enter the gate of heaven. Many dead bodies from far and wide are brought here. If you want your soul not to be trapped in purgatory, ask your relatives to do the final rites at the Pashupatinath area.

5. Nagarkot

About 30 kilometres east of Kathmandu, Nagarkot is an amazing place. It is probably only the nearest viewpoint. You can experience the stunning views of Mt. Everest, Annapurna, Ganesh Himal, Manaslu, Langtang, and many more. Besides mountain views from Kathmandu, you can also enjoy the panoramic views of Kathmandu Valley and the Shivapuri National Park from Nagarkot. 

Nagarkot also has historical significance. The Nagarkot Hill was an ancient fort in the Kathmandu valley that monitored the external activities of neighbouring kingdoms. Later, the royal family made it a summer retreat centre, as it is one of the cool and beautiful places at an elevation of 2195 meters. 

Nagarkot offers the best paragliding with stunning Everest views. Spring and autumn are the best seasons to visit Nagarkot, especially on clear days. The excellent views from the hotel room give you the impression of paradise. Please contact Himalayan Masters for a life-changing experience with high-quality service at an affordable cost.  

Related Content:- Top 10 Best Adventurous Things To Do In Nepal

6. Boudhanath Stupa

Boudhanath, sometimes also called Bodnath Stupa, is one of the largest stupas in the world. It lies on the old trade route from Tibet to the Kathmandu Valley. History shows that It was built in the 4th century, when many Tibetans were entering Nepal.

The area where Boudhanath Stupa is today was the valley’s entry point. Many refugees, especially Tibetans, started residing around Boudha and practising Tibetan Buddhism. Today, Boudhanath Stupa is considered to be the most important centre for Tibetan culture and Tibetan Buddhism.

7. Kathmandu Durbar Square

Kathmandu Durbar Square, also called Basantapur Durbar Kshyatra, is one of three Durbar Squares in the Kathmandu valley. It has also been enlisted in the UNESCO World Heritage List. These amazing palaces were built in the Lichhavi period in the 3rd and 4th centuries. However, regular and extensive renovations have fully changed the palace’s structural designs. 

Great innovations took place in the Malla period. Many Malla kings ruled Kantipur (Kathmandu) from the same palace for many decades. After the successful victory over the valley in 1769, King Prithivi Narayan Shah also preferred Kathmandu Durbar Square as his palace, the Royal Palace, until 1896. Thereafter, the royal palace was shifted to Narayanhiti Palace. 

Like Bhaktapur Durbar Square, Kathmandu Durbar Square is also an important tourist destination for those who wish to explore ancient art and architecture, especially the exotic and erotic carvings.

8. The Garden of Dreams (Swopna Bagaicha)

The Garden of Dreams is a sophisticated neoclassical garden with many historical facts. It is an oasis of peace and tranquility amidst the city’s hustle and bustle. It is situated at the entrance of the tourist hub, Thamel. 

Late Field Marshal Kaiser Sumsher Rana created this amazing place in 1920, which is also popular as The Garden of Six Seasons. It was particularly made for Kaiser Sumsher as his private garden was very beautiful in Edwardian style. Kishor Narshingh, a famous architect, designed and supervised the construction of this garden and was also the designer of Singh Durbar in 1907. 

The giant six Pavilions erected around symbolize Nepal’s six seasons. These pavilions have added beauty to the garden’s architectural framework and helped arrange flowers, trees, and other vegetation. So it is on the list of the 10 best places to visit in Kathmandu.

The garden remained ignored since the death of Kaiser Sumsher. In 2000, with the initiation of the Austrian government in coordination with the Ministry of Education, Nepal started renovating the garden and finally finished in 2007 in half of this original area. Today, the Garden of Dreams has become one of the attractive tourist landmarks where visitors can enjoy nature along with historical and architectural facts. The Garden of Dream organizes several private and corporate functions, receptions, cultural programs, and concerts.

9. Narayanhiti Palace (Museum)

Narayanhiti Palace, currently the museum, is a new tourist destination in the heart of Kathmandu, located next to Thamel. This palace was the residence and principal workplace of the royal family for a long time. Killings and bloodshed for capturing power are not strange in the royal family of Nepal. But the massacre of 1 June 2001 became a really noteworthy event that led to the end of the Shah Dynasty.  

The dreadful massacre of 2001 took away the lives of King Birendra. His wife, Aishwarya, and all his family members and relatives. Prince Dipendra was charged with killing and suicide, but the facts are yet to be known. The way Gyanendra Shah became the king and the attitude. He displayed that the multiparty system raised a kind of hatred towards him. Finally, the seven-party alliances mixed up in the revolution made by the Maoists and jointly started the revolution.    

As a result, King Gyanendra Shah left the Narayanhiti Palace on 11 June 2008. After the revolution led by Prachanda, the new government declared the Palace a Museum in October 2018. The royal crown, jewellery, important documents, and the materials used by the royal members are on display, as are many other properties.

10. Ason/Indrachowk/Mangal Bazaar

Ason, Indra Chowk, and Mangal Bazaar are famous marketplaces in Kathmandu and Lalitpur districts. The narrow streets full of vendors, shops, small vehicles, and a crowd of people are just common in these places.

Nepali foods, utensils, clothes, fresh vegetables, fruits, children’s toys, electrical equipment, cosmetics, etc., are on the street for sale. The vendors’ constant shouts to advertise their products and customers’ bargains with the shopkeepers. The beeping sound of motorbikes and taxis and some crazy people walking carelessly pushing strangers are common there. 

People reaching the top 10 things to do in Kathmandu, Nepal, for the first time might think there is a great fair going on, but these are the eternal crowd.

These above-listed places are the 10 best places to visit in Kathmandu. These are the places you must see in Kathmandu.

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