Bhaktapur – A cultural gem of Nepal

October 2014

Bhaktapur was the capital of Nepal during Malla kingdom. Today it is a small city in Kathmandu valley. But the place has retained its Palaces and Temple in old form thus getting the status of UNESCO world heritage site. A Four lane highway connects Kathmandu with Bhaktapur. The journey from Kathmandu would take an hour.

After our trek to Everest Base Camp, we had a day in Kathmandu which we decided to spend by visiting Bhaktapur. We had two options to reach Bhaktapur. Either we hire a taxi that costs about 2k-3k NPR or take a bus from Ratna park bus stand. The later would just cost 25 NPR one way. Obviously we went for Bus option!! We had to walk for 30 minutes from Thamel to reach the bus stand, not a difficult task considering we were in Nepal for trekking!!

A sculpture at Dattatraya square
The bus promptly dropped us in front of the Bhaktapur gate. The entry to historical place is restricted for tourists. We had to pay NPR 500 per person to enter while non SAARC nationals have to shell out more money. It is free for Nepalis!! We were given a map and a brochure that would help us to find out various places in the area.

Stone bell at Dattatraya square
Dattatraya square
We first visited the oldest part of the city, Dattatraya square. Two important buildings adorn this area. One is the Datttraya Temple.

The peacock window is very famous. It is hard to find it out as it lies in a narrow street away from the square. But ask any local, they will guide you!!

Durbar square
This is the main square of the city containing several historical monuments like National Art gallery, Palace of 55 windows, Golden gate and statue of the king. In the photo below you can see the Lion statues in front of Siddhi Lakshmi stone Temple.

The golden sprout near Durbar square.

Temples are plenty in this area.

Another Temple!!

A statue in front of the Golden gate.

By then we were hungry. The restaurants in the area were few and expensive. The food was also not so great. The ‘curd’ which is famous in Bhaktapur was good!!

Near Golden sprout

Pottery Square
After lunch we headed towards pottery square. For me it looked like the place was run mainly for tourists!!

Taumadhi square
Our final visit was to Taumadhi square famous for multi roofed Temples. We were not disappointed.

Photo taken from Taumadhi Temple. Look at the hills at the end!!

A sculpture in the Temple.

Elephant statue while climbing the Temple.

In general, Bhaktapur is a good place if you are looking at historical monuments. 

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