Kathmandu is said to be the city of temple and there are thirty-three crores i.e three hundred and thirty million deities in the Hindu religion. Kathmandu is the capital city of Nepal. The large population of the country and Kathmandu valley, in particular, follows Hinduism and Buddhism. The Hindu religion recognizes an uncountable number of gods and goddesses. Nepal used to be the only Hindu Kingdom in the world before its interim constitution declared it to be a secular republic in 2007.
Since there is only one international airport in Nepal i.e lies in Kathmandu. Kathmandu is the arrival point for most of the visitors in Nepal. Most travelers visit Kathmandu as a quick stopover before moving on to either the Himalayas or lowland jungles. Kathmandu city is the largest in Nepal and is surrounded by green hills all over. Kathmandu is a vibrant city filled with deep spiritually and rich history. While exploring the capital city, the iconic temples of Kathmandu are some of the most remarkable places of worship you’ll encounter on your travel. Scattered around the valley are hundreds of temples and shrines, traditional villages and agriculture scenes of timeless beauty. You can hire a vehicle to go around all the important places in Kathmandu.
Worshiping is an integral ritual of the Hindu daily life usually observed twice a day (in the morning and the evening). As a result, every square and every junction in the older parts of the city has temples and stupas. Besides, building a temple in Kathmandu and in other parts of Nepal as well is not just a way of paying homage to your favorite deity but also an act of service to the community. Since the number of temples is ever growing, I could not find the exact number of temples but you are sure to come across one every mile in Kathmandu. The rulers and inhabitants of Kathmandu tried to do their bit in pleasing the deities which resulted in the creation of architectural masterpieces all over Kathmandu valley.
Hanuman Dhoka (4th to 8th centuries AD)
Hanuman Dhoka is Royal Palace of the Malla kings and also of the Shah dynasty in the Durbar Square of central Kathmandu, Nepal. Hanuman Dhoka is a complex of structures. It is spread over five acres. The Hanuman Dhoka Palace (Hanuman Dhoka Darbar in Nepali) gets its name from the stone image of Hanuman, the Hindu monkey god, that sits near the main entryway. ‘Dhoka’ means door or gate in Nepali.
See the Living Goddess at the Kumari Palace :
Kumari is also called a Living Goddess. Nepal is the tradition of worshipping young pre-pubescent girls as manifestations of the divine female energy or devi in Hindu religious traditions. The word Kumari is derived from the Sanskrit Kaumarya, meaning “princess”.In Nepal, a Kumari is a pre-pubescent girl selected from the Shakya caste or Bajracharya clan of the Nepalese Newari community. A Kumari is believed to be the incarnation of Taleju. When her first menstruation begins, it is believed that the goddess vacates her body. Serious illness or a major loss of blood from an injury also causes for loss of deity.
Itum Bahal is the long rectangular courtyard on the western side of the courtyard is the Kichandra Bahal, one of the oldest bahals in the city, dating from 1381.The long, rectangular courtyard of the Itum Bahal is the largest bahal (Buddhist monastery courtyard) in the old town and remains a haven of tranquillity in the chaotic surroundings.A chaitya in front of the entrance has been completely shattered by a Bodhi tree, which has grown right up through its centre.
Garden of Dreams
The Garden was famous as the garden of Six Seasons which was created by late Field Marshal Kaiser Sumsher Rana (1892-1964) in early 1920.It was a private garden of Kaiser Sumsher, it was beautifully designed inspired by the famous Edwardian style.The Garden of Dreams, a neo classical historical garden, is situated in the midst of Kathmandu city, Nepal. After the completion of this Garden, it was considered as one of the most sophisticated private gardens of that time. Within the Garden walls, Kaiser Sumsher created an exquisite ensemble of pavillions, fountains, decorative garden furniture and European inspired features such as varandas, pergolas, blustrades, urns and birdhouses.
This temple complex was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage Sites’s list in 1979.The Pashupatinath Temple is a famous and sacred Hindu temple complex that is located on the banks of the Bagmati River, approximately 5 kilometers north-east of Kathmandu in the eastern part of Kathmandu Valley,the capital of Nepal. The temple serves as the seat of Nepal’s national deity, Lord Pashupatinath.
For the Buddhist Newars, in whose mythological history and origin myth as well as day-to-day religious practice Swayambhunath occupies a central position, it is probably the most sacred among Buddhist pilgrimage sites. For Tibetans and followers of Tibetan Buddhism, it is second only to Boudha. Swayambhunath is an ancient religious architecture atop a hill in the Kathmandu Valley, west of Kathmandu city. The Tibetan name for the site means ‘Sublime Trees’, for the many varieties of trees found on the hill. However, Shing.kun may be a corruption of the local Nepal Bhasa name for the complex, Singgu, meaning ‘self-sprung’.The complex consists of a stupa, a variety of shrines and temples, some dating back to the Licchavi period. A Tibetan monastery, museum, and library are more recent additions. The stupa has Buddha’s eyes and eyebrows painted on. Between them, the number one (in Devanagari script) is painted in the fashion of a nose. The site has two access points: a long staircase leading directly to the main platform of the temple, which is from the top of the hill to the east; and a car road around the hill from the south leading to the south-west entrance. The first sight on reaching the top of the stairway is the Vajra. Tsultrim Allione describes the experience: