Nepal, a tiny Himalayan Country situated between two large countries China and India is the land of the birthplace of Lord Buddha “The light of Asia” & famed Gorkha warriors. Nepal is also known as the land of Himalayas as it consists eight of the highest ten mountains over 8000 meters, including the highest mountain Mt. Everest, the top of the world.
Nepal is well known as one of the best destinations in the world for enjoying the real combination of nature and the culture. The centuries old cities, panoramic views of the Himalayas, green forest with different types of wild animals and more than 800 species of birds and above all warm greeting from smiling and friendly people makes Nepal popular destination.
The capital city Kathmandu is famous for its cultural heritage which is surrounded by the beautiful landscapes and the views of the mighty Himalayas. Within 30 Km of surrounding, there are seven heritage sites including old cities, temples and Monasteries under the preservation of UNESCO.
Main Sites of Touristic Attraction in Nepal
Kathmandu Durbar square
Old Royal Palace and its vicinity is one of the major attractions in the central area of old part of Kathmandu city where ancient monuments , Temples dedicated to lord Shiva, Vishnu and Kali, are among many of the Pagodas towering and dominating the skyline. Historic buoldings like Kastamandap lending its name to the capital city and the residence of the Living Goddess Kumari are the other important sites to be visited.
Patan Durbar Square
Patan or Lalitpur is another sister city situated only a few kilometer away from Kathmandu. It has, like others, the Durbar Square (Palace Complex) with the concentration of ancient Pagodas and north Indian Mogul types of Shikhara temples in a small area. Patan is the most ancient city pre-dominated by Buddhist residents. Most of the Bronze and Cupper sculpture are being manufactured here, thus called a city of fine arts.
Bhaktpur Durbar Square
Another major attraction within the valley is the medieval city of Bhaktpur (City of devoties), established in 9th century, with its unique outlook. Like in the other two cities here too, one can visit the old palace of Malla Kings and other beautiful architecture.The glorious five storied ‘Nyatapola’ Temple and the ‘Fiftyfive window Palace’ are among many attractions here. Bhaktpur is equally famous for its woodcarving , clay works and typical Nepali cap.Bhaktpur today sets an example to its other sister cities as to how one can preserve an ancient city and its outlook for future generation.
Holiest among the sites of Pilgrimage for entire Hindus,the temple of Pashupatinath, dedicate to Lord Shiva,was built originally arround 5th century and at the bank of holly river bagimati.Lord Pashupatinath is not only the God of Destruction of the ignorance but also the liberator of the human suffering by giving them a new life. Cremation of the hindu dead bodies together with many other rites and rituals take place here at temple area attracting thousends of devoties and hollymen to come here to Pashupatinath,the guardian deity of nepalese, who try to be here at least once in their life time.
Swyambhunath is the oldest Stupa of Nepal. It is situated on top of a mound about 5 km west of kathmandu city. This is one of the main holly destinations for buddhists. This 2500 years old heritage site offers a maginificient view of Kathmandu valley. Due to a large nummer of rhesus monkeies arround here, tourist often call this as ‘ Monkey Temple’.
Believed to be built arround the Lichhavi era ,this monument hauses relics of Kashyapa Buddha and is the focal point of religious activities of the Buddhists of tibiten origion. This uniquely constructed stupa in Mandala form,is sorrounded by numerous tibetan buddhist Monastries. One has plenty of opportunity to have an insight into tibetan religion and way of life.
Due to its significant strategic location, Kirtipur was attacked a nummer of times by the Gurkhas under Prithvi Narayan Shah, the founder of modern Nepal, in course of unification till it came under his controll in the year 1767. It is one of the cities within Kathmandu-Valley, having typical newari architecture and old 18th century atmosphere even today to see and feel. Chilandeo Stupa, Bagbhairab and Umamaheshor Temple are the main attractions in Kirtipur.
Situated in a deep a gorge like location at the southern end of kathmandu valley,this open temple of Dakshinkali is one of the most popular hindu temples in Nepal. Here the Goddess Durga will be worshiped in the frightening form of Kali, twice a week Saturday and Tuesday together with the animal sacrifice. At weekend, there are many people going picnic arround this temple by making this place a popular spot for spending a day for Kathmanduits.
The Changu Narayan, a Vishnu temple, is situated 18km northeast of Kathmandu city in a ridge. It is probably oldest temple in the entire Kathmandu valley because main temple was built arround 4th centuary AD. It was destroyed, however, several times by fires and earthquakes. The present Pagode was rebuilt in the year 1702. It belongs to old heritage site enlisted by UNESCO.
Pokhara,situated 200 km west of Kathmandu, is the most important tourist destination after Kathmandu. This is the entry point for famous Trekking routes to Dhaulagiri, Annapurna and Mustang region. It is a meeting point for nature and culture.Trails for different excursions and hiking are available to suit individual interest and needs. When the weather permits one can enjoy the panoramic view of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri range hardly 25km away from Pokhara. One can enjoy the tranquility and peace while doing boating at Fewa Lake in one hand and see the grand view of the snow clad mountains on the other.
Lumbini, the birth place of historical Buddha Sakyamuni, is located about 280km southwest of Kathmandu in the Terai belt. It is the site of pilgrimage for entire Buddhists from all over the world. There are a large nummer of monasteries, temples and Stupas within the Lumbini Garden as objects of religious importance.
Tansen is a beautiful hill station situated about 290 km west of Kathmandu at an altitude of 1450m. There are many similarities when we compare with old part of Kathmandu city. One can have nice view of himalaya from here, and the valley below Tansen.A drive leading to and from Tansen offers a view of changing landscape in the middle mountains, the Mahabharata range.
Nagarkot is situated 32 km northeast of Kathmandu in an altitude of 2164 m. It is one of the ideal places for viewing sunrise and sunset reflacting the changing colours on the Himalaya.
Dhulikhel lies 30km est of Kathmandu enroute to Tibetan boarder in an altitude of 1480m. This is one another famous point to see the himalaya and the reflexion of sunrise and sunset on them. This is also vantage point to start excursion to Namobuddha or Panauti.
Daman is a small village located approximatly 80 km south of Kathmandu in an altitude of 2400 m. From here one can have a fascinating view of the entire Himalaya range biginning from Dhaulagiri in the west and Mt. Everest in the east.
Bandipur is a small newari settlement that lies approx. 140 km from Kathmandu between Kathmandu and Pokhara. It used to be a transit and commercial point between the southern Terai and Tibet. A good view of the western mountains can be enjoy.
The small town of Gorkha , which lies 24 km north of the main highway(Anbukhaireni) between Kathmandu and Pokhara in an altitude of 1150 m. Gorkha is the ancient kingdom of Shah dynasty and the home of the Gurkha soldiers, before the unification process was started.Old Royal Palace and a few Temples are among the objects of the interest in Gorkha