KATHMANDU

Sights & Landmarks

Sights & Landmarks in Kathmandu

  • Asa Archives (located in Kulambhulu). They specialize in medieval history and religious traditions of the Kathmandu Valley. The archives have a collection of some 6,000 loose-leaf handwritten books and 1,000 palm-leaf manuscripts (mostly in Sanskrit or Nepal Bhasa) and a manuscript dated to 1464.
  • Bijeshwori TempleSwayambhu Marg Eastern end.
  • Boudha Stupa (Boudhanath) (बौद्ध, Bouddhanath, Bodhnath, Baudhanath or the Khāsa Chaitya), Boudha (Bauddha Bus Stand. It is located to the north-east of Dwarikas' Hotel and just to the north of the airport area.), +977 1-4256909.One of the most sacred sites for Tibetan Buddhism. This huge stupa is one of the largest in the world. This is another World Heritage Site. - Located about 11 km from the center and northeastern outskirts of Kathmandu. - The base of the stupa has 108 small depictions of the Dhyani Buddha Amitabha. It is surrounded with a brick wall with 147 niches, each with four or five prayer wheels engraved with the mantra, om mani padme hum. At the northern entrance where visitors must pass is a shrine dedicated to Ajima, the goddess of smallpox.
  • Bethshalom Putalisadak ChurchPutalisadak (Near to New Plaza Bus Stop).
  • Bhimsen TempleParopakar Marg (Wada Marg corner, S-Sw of Durbar Sq.).
  • Thamel Chowk. A tourist neighborhood with many restaurants and shops.
  • Freak Street (south of Kathmandu's Durbar Square). Historic street where western hippies seeking enlightenment would stay. Now just a few restaurants and hotels.
  • Garden of Dreams (Kaiser Mahal). Relax in this beautiful and peaceful walled garden close to Thamel and the former Royal Palace. Beautifully renovated in partnership with Austrian Govt. Currently has two pavilions depicting two of the six annual seasons in the Hindu calendar. It has several expensive cafes and a bar. Nice toilets. NPR200.
  • Ganesh MandirThamel Dabali Marg
  • Budda Neelkantha TempleBudhanilkantha (5-6km from Main Bus Park, Kathmandu.). An idol of Bhagwan Vishnu in a sleeping position surrounded by water is an extraordinary cool and calm experience.
  • City Museum KathmanduParyatak Marg.
  • Evangelical Ashish ChurchSamakhushi - Ranibari Rd
  • Dhansā Degah (धन्सा देग, alternative name: Dhunsar), Maru Square (On the eastern side of Maru Square (close to DorbarSq.)). This is a 17th-century pagoda-shaped building. Its carved wood windows provide a specimen of the art of woodworking which has been highly developed in the Kathmandu Valley since ancient times. The upper part was destroyed in the Great Earthquake of 1934, and its height was shortened when it was repaired. It was originally a courthouse. A shrine to Nāsa Dya, the god of music, exists on the ground floor.
  • Dharma Chakra ViharDharma Chakra Marga.
  • Gakuti (गकुति) (on the western side of Maru Sq). This building is a three-sided courtyard. There is a temple dedicated to Mahadev at the center.
  • Gompa and Huge Prayer Wheel (North to Siddhicharan Marg and Siddhicharan Marg). 
  • Ichangu Narayan TempleIchangu VDC (NW one km from Gairi Gaun Bus Stop, two and half km from Swayambhunath).
  • Indrani TempleIndrani Path (Northeast to Bishnumati Dhalko Bhagawoti Bridge). 
  • J Art Gallery (near the Royal Palace in Durbarmarg). Displays the artwork of eminent, established Nepalese painters.
  • Jame MosqueDurbar Marg
  • Junga Bahadur StatuePrithvi Path
  • Kaiser Library
  • Kashmiri MasjidDurbar Marg.
  • Kuleshor Mahadev TempleKuleshwor Marg (Near to Riverbank). 
  • BP Koirala Memorial Planetorium Observatory and Science Museum, Kirtipur Rd,
  • Lakhu Phalechā (लखु फलेचा), Maru Square (at the corner of an alley at the southwest of Maru). a roadside shelter is linked with the founding of Nepal Sambat. This is where the porters from Bhaktapur are said to have rested with their loads of sand. The procession of the goddess Dāgin, which is held during the Yenya festival, starts from this house.
  • Machali Mandir, Teku (Nava Durga Temple), Kalopul Road (50 m before Tripura(shwar) Marg). A small two storey pagoda
  • Mahendra MuseumGanga Path (SW half km from centre). This Museum is dedicated to king Mahendra of Nepal (1920–1972). It includes his personal belongings such as decorations, stamps, coins and personal notes and manuscripts, but it also has structural reconstructions of his cabinet room and office chamber.
  • The temple of Maru Ganedya (मरु गनेद्य), Maru Square (on the northern side of Maru Sata). is one of the more important Ganesh shrines in Kathmandu. A notable feature of this temple is the absence of the usual pinnacle.
  • Maruhiti (मरुहिति) (on an alley at the northwest of Maru). is a celebrated stone water spout. The alley was once famed by its nickname Pie Alley for the many pie shops here during the hippie days of the 1960s and 1970s
  • Matrikeshwor MahadevKanti Path. Middle of Rani Pokhari Pond
  • Military MuseumChhauni Rd (Right North to the National Museum).
  • Moti Azima Gallery (in Bhimsenthan). Located in a three storied building which contains an impressive collection of traditional utensils and handmade dolls and items typical of a medieval Newar house, giving an important insight into Nepalese history.
  • Narayanhiti Palace Museum (in the north-central part of Kathmandu).Narayanhity" comes from Narayana, a form of the Hindu god Lord Vishnu, and Hiti, meaning "water spout" (Vishnu's temple is located opposite the palace, and the water spout is located east of the main entrance to the precinct). Narayanhity was a new palace, in front of the old palace built in 1915, and was built in 1970 in the form of a contemporary Pagoda. It was built on the occasion of the marriage of King Birenda Bir Bikram Shah, then heir apparent to the throne. The palace area covers (30 hectares) and is fully secured with gates on all sides. This is the former Royal palace which was turned partly into a Museum and partly into the Foreign Ministry in 2009 after the abolition of the monarchy. Now you can visit the splendid Halls of the main building of the palace. Giant fruit bats hanging from the tall trees and 20 foot-tall bamboo around the otherwise modern (and still well secured) former palace are a sight, especially around sunset when the bats depart en masse. Foreigners: NPR500.
  • National Museum (Chhauni Museum), Chhauni Road or Museum Marg(Located in the western part of Kathmandu, near the Swoyambhunath stupa).Closed on Tuesdays. This in an historical building. This building was constructed in the early 19th century by General Bhimsen Thapa. It is the most important museum in the country, housing an extensive collection of weapons, art and antiquities of historic and cultural importance. The museum was established in 1928 as a collection house of war trophies and weapons, and the initial name of this museum was Chhauni Silkhana, meaning "the stone house of arms and ammunition". Given its focus, the museum contains an extensive quantity of weapons, including locally made firearms used in wars, leather cannons from the 18th–19th century, and medieval and modern works in wood, bronze, stone and paintings.
  • The Natural History Museum (Natural Science Museum of Tribhuvan University), Manjushree Marg (मञ्जुश्री मार्ग) (located in the southern foothills of Swoyambhunath hill). Mo-Fr. This museum has a sizeable collection of different species of animals, butterflies, and plants. The museum is noted for its display of species, from prehistoric shells to stuffed animals
  • National Art Gallery.
  • NAFA Gallery. This is housed in Sita Bhavan, a neo-classical old Rana palace.
  • Nepal Art Council Gallery (in the Babar Mahal, on the way to Tribhuvan International Airport). This gallery contains artwork of both national and international artists and extensive halls regularly used for art exhibitions
  • Nepal Stock ExchangePrithvi Path (Behind to the Nepal Telecom Central Office), +977 1-4250758
  • Nepal Television HQTanka Prasad Ghumti Sadak (Near to Parliament). 
  • Parliament BuildingTanka Prasad Ghumti Sadak (टंक प्रसाद घुम्ती सडक).
  • Office of the Prime Minister & Council of MinistersTanka Prasad Ghumti Sadak (Singha Durbar bus stand). 
  • Pachali BhairabSahid Shukra Marg (North 100m from Bagmati River). A huge pipal tree formed a sanctuary here. There is an image of Pachali
  • Pashupatinath (5 kilometres north-east of Kathmandu Valley, or 20 minute walk past several temples from Boudhanath). An important Hindu temple to Shiva in the form of Lord of the Beasts. It's the location of cremation ghats (steps) on the banks of the Bagmati River. You will also see sadhus, a busy market for religious items and a holy cave. Morning is a great time to go. While entrance to the temple is allowed for Hindus only, the surrounding forest area provides much to explore. NPR1,000. Non-hindu's are not allowed inside this temple.
  • Raj GhatGusingal, Lalitpur. Here can be find a small group of shrines
  • Ram Mandir. A Historical Temple, made by Prime Minister Shree Teen Jang Bahadur Rana Kunwar in late 1870s.
  • Rastriya Sabha GrihaAdwait Marg (West 200m to Thapathali Bus Stop).
  • Royal botanical garden. -the only botanical garden in the country
  • Saraswati MandirThamel Amrit Marg.
  • Sankateswori Bagwati MandirThamel Marg
  • Saraswati TempleManjushree Marg (मञ्जुश्री मार्ग) (Western Part of Swayambhunath Complex).
  • Shahid Gate Memorial (Shahid Gate Bus Stand).
  • Shiva Temple on Bagmati MargBagmati Marg. Ruined Shiva Temple
  • Shoba Bagwahati Temple (Opposite to the Shova Bhagawati Bridge). 
  • Shikhara Style Temple at the confluence of Bagmati and Vishnumati RiversBagmati Marg (West end of Bagmati Marg). 
  • Silyan Sata (सिँल्यं सत , alternative name Singha Satah) (On the southern side of the Maru Square). dates from the 17th century. It contains shops on the ground floor and a hymn singing hall on the upper floor.
  • Srijana Contemporary Art Gallery (inside the Bhrikutimandap Exhibition grounds). hosts the work of contemporary painters and sculptors, and regularly organizes exhibitions. It also runs morning and evening classes in the schools of art.
  • Swayambhunath ((स्वयम्भू) / Monkey Temple, Swayambhu Buddhist Museum,), Manjushree Marg (2,6km W). A site on a hill overlooking the city with a large stupa and other Buddhist and Hindu iconography. One of the most sacred Buddhist sites in the country. There are 350 steps to the top - the back route is less steep but the views on the way up are not as nice. Aside from the views over the city and the ancient carvings in every available space, it's crowded with monkeys mingling with the visitors. The base of the hill is a 30 minute walk from Thamel (make sure you have a map as there are several confusing intersections along the way), or take a taxi or rickshaw. As with the Boudha Stupa, are plenty of Buddhist and Tibetan-inspired trinkets for sale. There are also drinks for sale at the top, and at least one small restaurant selling momos. For those that have their own transport or have difficulty climbing stairs there is a parking lot at the back entrance that significantly reduces the number of stairs that need to be climbed to gain access to the main compound. This is one of seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Kathmandu Valley. Foreigners: NPR750 for a multiple entry pass;.
    • Shantipura Building (60m North of Swayambhunath Stupa). Part of the Swayambhunath Complex
  • Taragaon MuseumBoudhnath, Tridevi Sadak (In the compound of the Hyatt Regency Kathmandu stands the former Taragaon Hotel,), +977 4497505, +977 14481786, e-mail: . M-Sa 10:00-17:00, Su 10:00-17:00. turn it into a Documentation Centre – documenting what artists, photographers, architects, anthropologists and Samskritists from abroad had contributed in the second half of the 20th century to identify, highlight and preserve the cultural heritage of the Kathmandu Valley.
  • Tarani Devi TempleMakha Galli (Durbar Square Northeast corner, enter from south or west).
  • Tindeval TempleSahid Shukra Marg and Gitagriha Galli corner (Near to Bagmati River). Shikhara style building.
  • Tribhuvan Museum. contains artifacts related to the King Tribhuvan (1906–1955). It has a variety of pieces including his personal belongings, letters and papers, memorabilia related to events he was involved in and a rare collection of photos and paintings of Royal family members.
  • Tridevi TempleTridevi Sadak.
  • Tipureshwor Mahadev Temple (Tipureshwor /Shiva Temple), Bagmati Marg and Tripura Marg corner (South 300m from Dasharath Rangasala Stadium).

Kathmandu Durbar Square

This ancient square is crowded with palaces and temples, including the current incarnation of the Kasthamandap or "Wooden house" that gives the city its name. The square has been occupied since the construction of a palace around 1000AD. This site is the most popular UNESCO World Heritage Site in Nepal.

The Square is particularly fascinating in the very early morning as all the various merchants set up their wares and when many devotees make their offerings at the various shrines and temples. There will be a number of young men who will offer to be "guides." Be firm with saying "no" if you are not interested. The entrance fee for foreigners is NPR1000. If you plan to be in the area for more than one day, it's worth being directed to the Site Office where you can exchange your single-entry ticket with a multiple-entry pass allowing you to wander in and out as you wish. You will need your passport and one passport photo. The whole process takes only a few minutes. Your entry pass gives you access to all open parts of Durbar Square as well as the Hanuman Dhoka. In Nepali, Durbar means "palace" and this is where the monarch was crowned and from where he ruled.

It is possible to climb the steps of many of the temples for a better look and to join others seated near the top watching the activity below. There are more than a dozen buildings and statues of note in this small area. They include:

  • Ashok Binayak
  • Bhagwati Temple
  • Indrapur Temple
  • Jagannath TempleHanuman Dhoka Road (A bit North of Durbar Square).
  • Kumari Palace (Kumari Ghar) (South side of Durbar square,). - home of "the Kumari", or living goddess, a young girl.
  • Kathesimbu StupaNaghal, Nagha Kwado Galli (Near to Ikhapokhari Pond).
  • Kastha Mandap (Sanskrit: काष्ठमन्डप, Nepal Bhasa:मरु सत्तल Maru Sattal; literally "Wood-Covered Shelter") (Southwest side of the Square, actually this is the Maru Square). This is a three-storeyed temple enshrining an image of Gorakhnath. It was built in the 16th century in pagoda style. The name of Kathmandu is a derivative of the word Kasthamandap. It was built under the reign of King Laxmi Narsingha Malla. It was originally built as a rest house for travelers.
  • Kageshwori MandirHanuman Dhoka Road (Next to Jagannath Temple).
  • Kakeshwar TempleHanuman Dhoka Road (Next to Kageshwori Mandir).
  • Kotilingeshwor Mahadev TempleHanuman Dhoka Road (Opposite to Kakeshwar Temple).
  • Krishna Temple
  • Kal Bhairab - the "Black" Bhairab, a fearsome visage of Shiva with some ancient legends about its power.
  • Lakshmi Narayan Temple
  • Mahendreswar Temple
  • Maju Deval (Maju Temple) (Next to Narayan Temple).
  • Narayan Temple (Right South from Maju Deval).
  • Nasal Chowk. Statues, temples and the Rana museum. Located in the Hanuman Dhoka former palace complex, the courtyard was used for royal coronations as recently as 2001.
  • Panch Mukhti Hanuman TempleKhadga Chuk? (East of Durbar Square).
  • Royal Mahendra MuseumDurbar Square (Next to Panch Mukhti Hanuman Temple).
  • Saraswati Temple The Goddess of Knowledge and Learning
  • Shiva Temple
  • Shiva-Parvati Temple
  • Sweta Bhairab - the "White" Bhairab, a large mask shown only during the Indra Jatra festival.
  • Vishnu temple
  • Taleju Temple. One of the oldest temples in the square, this three-roofed temple with its pyramid shaped bases, is an example of the typical Newari architectural style.

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