Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, is not just the center of the country but also the hub for the diverse culture, natural beauty, distinct landscapes, and deep history, which define the identity of the country. Located at 4,600 ft above the sea level, surrounded by huge mountains, the valley provides scenery that is breathtaking and healing for the soul.
Often considered the beginning of their journey to the peak by backpackers all around the globe, Kathmandu offers various places that are worth visiting the tourists in their journey. Affordable and cheap, these places are sure to be a tremendous discovery in your sabbatical. Kathmandu has many beautiful places to explore, In this article, we have explained a few best places to visit in Kathmandu.
Top 10 Best Places to visit in Kathmandu
Swyambhunath is one of the best places to visit inside Kathmandu Valley. In the west of the city above a hill overlooking the entire Kathmandu valley, Swaymbunnath stands as a holy monument, which brings a moment of peace and comfort for every traveler.
Swyambhunath got listed in the UNESCO world heritage site; it is considered a sacred place for Buddhist pilgrims who visit the stupa from all over the world. Dubbed as the monkey temple, one needs to be careful of the monkeys who roam around the area.
Every step you take from the sharp stairs towards the top where you can view the enormous stupa and the valley behind you will help to exhilarate your mood.
As the country where Buddha was born, Nepal is considered a sacred place for Buddhist devotees. Boudhanath Stupa, one of the most revered sites for believers, is located northeast of the valley, and it’s also one of the world’s largest stupas. With a history that dates back to the late 15th century, it is said to enshrine the remains of Kassapa Buddha.
In the shape of a sphere where tourists can enjoy the peace and tranquility walking around the stupa or enjoying a fresh cup of tea in the rooftop cafes and restaurants. This experience is sure to provide you a break from all the problems and tensions of your daily life.
Along the sacred “Bagmati” river in the eastern part of the valley lies the religious destination “Pashupatinath Temple.” Devoted to Lord Shiva, many travelers, especially the Hindu religion, visit this temple to search for spirituality and beliefs. With numerous temples of the gods and goddesses, you can also find images, sculptures, ashrams constructed centuries ago.
UNESCO World Heritage Site listed Pashupatinath in 1979, this temple also holds cremations ceremonies that can be viewed from across the river. Similarly, the “Aarti” carried by priests in the evening as prayer is one of the highlights which visitors need to attend.
4. Hanuman Dhoka Durbar Square
Listed in the UNESCO World Heritage site, Hanuman Dhoka Durbar Square reflects the late Malla and Shah dynasty’s traditional art, culture, and history. The name “Hanuman Dhoka Durbar square” comes from the Hindu deity “Hanuman” statue right in front of the door of the palace. They cover more than 2000 sq.m, and we can see the beautiful architecture and design of the buildings and temples through a walk around the square.
Tourists can visit the living Goddess of Nepal “Kumari” and visit the museum where the weapons, coins, and furniture of the royal family are kept in the display. The square will give the traveler a sense of the history of Nepalese aristocrats.
The downtown of the valley where you can find everything from garbs to clubs. This tourist-friendly narrow street is the city’s nightlife where you can hear the music roaring out of the bars, restaurants serving five-star quality dishes, and people just enjoying their time.
Famous for its market, you can find organic foods, arts, trekking gear, and various other items, whatever you think you can see in this street. So, for decades it has been the center of attraction for tourists. Thamel is very famous for its nightlife. Garden of Dreams is one of the attractions of Thamel, which is a beautifully designed garden.
In the foot of the Shivapuri hill, in the north-west of the valley lies Budhanikantha, well known for the Budhanilkantha or Naryanathan Temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu one of the three deities of the Hindu “Trimurtis.” An equally sacred place for all religions, the statue of Lord Vishnu lies in the middle of the pool while he is leaning around his serpent known as “Shehsa.”
The statue is believed to be chiseled from a single block of black basalt during the seventh century of the Lichhavi period, also known as Nepal’s golden period. It is a magnificent view for all travelers and is a scientific wonder of how the statute continues to float in the pool.
Sundarijal, which can be translated as beautiful water, is a village in the northeast of the valley covering a 5.18 square kilometer area renowned for its rich biodiversity, including waterfalls and rivers. As the place where the holy river “Bagmati” originates, it also has enormous cultural importance.
For travelers who enjoy rafting and other water sports, this place is your destination. Sudarijal also provides the tourists with a small trek to explore the waterfalls, Nepal’s second-oldest hydropower station, and the spiritual temples around the area.
Approximately 7000 ft above the sea level, 32 km east from the city Nagarkot is famous for its all-around view of the Himalayan region and the sunrise viewpoint. Historically it served as the fort for overseeing the activities of other kingdoms.
For outdoor people, this destination offers travelers with hiking opportunities and paragliding along with the awe-inspiring sight of the Himalayan ranges, such as Everest range, Annapurna range, Langtang range, and many more. The mind-blowing scenery of Nagarkot is the major highlight of this place. So, you can count Nuwakot as one of the best places to visit around Kathmandu.
9. Narayanhiti Palace
Narayanhiti Palace is the former residence of the monarch of Nepal constructed in 1963 by King Mahendra. Following the 2006 revolution, the Narayanhiti Palace, located next to Thamel, was converted into a public museum. With the astounding gardens, courtyards, and buildings, the palace showcases the rooms named after various country places that are said to be preserved as when the royal family resided.
The main highlights are the place where King Birendra and his family were assassinated, which is remembered as one of the black days in the history of Nepal and the first throne room named “Gorkha” where the royal crown is put on display.
10. Shivapuri National Park
Established in 2002, this national park covers 159 sq. Km and is home for 318 species of birds and is rich in its fauna diversity. Similarly, 129 species of mushroom and 2,122 floral species are recorded in this park. Located in the northern outskirts in the valley named after the Shivapuri peak, it offers the tourists with trekking services from which one can view the valley’s heart-warming scene and the Himalayan region.
It also includes various Hindu and Buddhist temples visited by pilgrims and travelers in their trekking routes. The quiet environment and Rhododendron forest will make you drop in cherish with this spot.
Kathmandu is one of the best cities in Nepal. So, I highly recommend you to visit these places in Kathmandu and give the city a chance. The city brings you a moment of relaxation and comfort before starting your long trekking journey in the mountains. The local culture and the astounding scenery will be sure to give you a sweet taste of Nepal.
These are only a few best places around Kathmandu Valley still there are more beautiful places which we will cover in our next article. Some of the other best places near Kathmandu Valley are Godawari, The Last Resort (Bhotekoshi), Chandragiri, Markhu, Khulekhani, Kirtipur, White Monastery, and Phulchoki.
Besides all these natural and breath-taking scenery, you can also enjoy the nightlife in awesome clubs and restaurants. Trisara, Club Deja Vu, Purple Haze Rock Bar, Durbar, L.O.D. are some of the famous clubs in Kathmandu.
Which one is your favorite?