Travel guide to flights & holidays in Kathmandu.
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Kathmandu Holidays Overview
Kathmandu is the capital and the largest city of Nepal and a major tourist draw since decades. An important religious site for Buddhists and Hindus, the religious sites in the city like Budhanilkantha, Baudhanath, Swayambhunath and Pashupatinath attract thousands of pilgrims.
Thamel is the principle traveller's district and is packed with bookstores, shops, restaurants and guest houses. Jhamel is another neighbourhood that is quickly becoming popular. Freak Street or Jhochhen Tol was made popular during the 60s and 70s by the hippies and is still quite popular. For a more traditional neighbourhood, explore Asan. This old Ceremonial Square and bazaar is located on the ancient road to Tibet.
Located in Kathmandu's old city is the beautiful Durbar Square with heritage buildings of four kingdoms. The complex is home to 50 temples distributed in the Durbar Square. Another major attraction in the city is the Pashupatinath Temple dating back to the 5th century. The temple is located along the Bagmati River and is the oldest Hindu temple in the city. One of the most important Buddhist sites in the country is Boudhanath along with Swayambhu.
Kathmandu is a treasure house of sculptures and art usually made from terracotta, metal, stone and wood. These can be found in large numbers in palaces, chaityasm, gompas, stupas, shrines and temples, in courtyards and street corners.
Scattered throughout Kathmandu are a number of art galleries and museums, the most popular among these are the Natural History Museum of Nepal and the National Museum of Nepal.
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holidays - Top Places To Go
|1. Durbar Square
||What is it? Protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site,
Durbar Square is the religious and social heart of Kathmandu's old
city and is a complex of palaces, temples, shrines, statues and
courtyards built between the 12th and 18th centuries by the ancient
kings of Nepal. The square is a queer assortment of the old and the
new - elaborately carved architectural features and curving roofs
provide shelter for cows, beggars and weary tourists; Brahman
priests and painted Sadhus perform rituals and pose for photos,
while souvenir sellers and rickshaw drivers compete for attention
among the crowds. Stone lions guard the gates to the Old Royal
Palace that contains a number of courtyards and several museums.
Set into the palace wall is a 17th-century stone inscription
written in 15 languages; it is believed that milk will flow from
the spout below if anyone deciphers the entire inscription. On the
other side of the square, the Kasthamandap temple is an open
pavilion topped by a pyramidal tower, said to be created from the
wood of a single tree. It is purportedly the Valley's oldest
building, and the city of Kathmandu derives its name from this
Hours of Operation: Durbar Square: daily 8am to 5pm. Old Royal Palace:
Tuesday to Saturday 9.30am to 3/4pm
|2. Swayambhunath Stupa
||What is it? The golden spire of the 5th-century Swayambhu
stupa is adorned with a colourful fluttering of prayer flags; it
crowns a hill overlooking the Kathmandu Valley and offers fantastic
views over the city of Kathmandu. Swayambhunath is one of the most
recognisable symbols in Nepal and the painted eyes of Buddha watch
all who ascend the worn stone steps. It is a World Heritage Site
and one of the holiest Buddhist sites in Nepal, and is at the
source of the Valley's mythical beginning. Legend has it that the
history of the Valley began with the draining of an ancient lake by
an Enlightened Being to reveal the Valley and a lotus flower was
transformed into the hill and the shining light became the stupa
itself. Swarms of pilgrims and red-clad monks circle the complex,
spinning the prayer wheels, while the scores of monkeys that give
the temple its nickname, Monkey Temple, prance about in irreverent
groups. Interestingly the temple complex is scattered with shrines
and statues of Buddhist and Hindu deities and the assortment of
pilgrims from both faiths characterises the country's unique
Hours of Operation:
|3. Royal Chitwan National Park
||What is it? Of the 14 national parks and reserves in
Nepal, the Royal Chitwan National Park is the oldest and the most
popular safari destination for visitors. Situated in the
sub-tropical Tarai lowlands, the jungle is home to endangered
animals such as the one-horned rhinoceros and the Royal Bengal
tiger. Other animals include leopards, wild elephants, Indian
bison, sloth bears, crocodiles, pythons, monitor lizards,
pangolins, and over 400 species of birds. There are different ways
to explore the park, but elephant-back safaris are the most
popular. Jeep safaris, guided walks, overnight jungle expeditions
and canoe trips are also available. There is a wide choice of
accommodation ranging from luxury camps or hotels within the park,
to budget options on the outskirts.
Hours of Operation:
holidays - Top Events
|What is it? This ancient Hindu festival is a festival of
colours. Towards the end of the week-long merry-making and
celebrating comes plenty of paint; everyone coats everyone else
with vibrant colours.
Where is it? Various throughout the country