The Mystical City of Kathmandu



In the foothills of the Himalayas, sandwiched between snow-capped peaks stretches the incredible and mystical city of Kathmandu, the capital of the small country of Nepal. Here poverty borders on luxury and cultural values on the low level of education of the population. Welcome to the diverse Kathmandu!

Location and Climatic Conditions of Kathmandu

You will find the city of Kathmandu on the world map in the central part of Nepal. The altitude of Kathmandu is 1,330 m and its coordinates are 27.720796 and 85.319607. Here, despite the high humidity (up to 80%), fairly comfortable temperature – not below +18 ° C in winter and +25 ° C in summer. The level of annual precipitation is 1400 mm, and most of it falls in the rainy season, which falls in May-September. The main waterway of the country, the sacred Bagmati River, runs through the valley.

Kathmandu on the World Map

The monsoon winds blow here in Kathmandu valley, so the tropical heat of this latitude is not felt at all. The temperate climate is helped by the proximity of the mountains that protect Kathmandu. Despite its fairly benign location and mild climate, Kathmandu is frequently affected by earthquakes – the most recent, on April 25, 2015, killed more than 8,000 people and destroyed many shrines.

Kathmandu earthquake on April 25, 2015

Because Kathmandu is the capital of mountain Nepal, its population is large, just over 1 million people. They are people of different nationalities, but the advantage is still for the indigenous Nepalese. More than half of the population of Kathmandu speaks Nepali, the local language. Slightly less is spoken in Nepali, as well as other dialects.

Population of the city

Where to go in Kathmandu?

Kathmandu, Nepal has so many things to do and see that it takes more than a week to explore this ant colony of millions of people thoroughly. The city never stops bustling with life, and tourism plays a big part in that. You can visit Kathmandu on your own or as part of a tour group – the second option is more reliable, safer and suitable for those who do not know languages. Let’s find out what to do in Kathmandu and where best to go for an experience for a visitor:

  1. The Bodnath Stupa of Kathmandu in Nepal is perhaps the main UNESCO-protected shrine of Buddhism in the Kathmandu Valley. This iconic structure is located in the northeastern part of the city and is the center of an entire Buddhist complex of temples, monasteries and schools. The stupa is among the so-called places of strength in Kathmandu. During the last earthquake the upper part collapsed, which is now being actively rebuilt.
  2. Durbar Square in Kathmandu, or royal square, is interesting because of the Temple of Goddess Kumari. Here, a little goddess practically lives in confinement until she is 12 or 13 years old, and then her place is taken by another little girl to continue the age-old tradition. There are other ancient buildings here as well.
  3. The sacred stupa of Swayambhunath is on the west side of Kathmandu. There is a small grove near it where monkeys live and come to the stupa for lunch. The place is loved by tourists for its beauty and the opportunity to interact with the sacred macaques.
  4. The Kali temple in Kathmandu (Dakshinkali) can only be seen by tourists from the side, but it is enough to understand its essence. On Saturday and Tuesday there is a ritual of sacrifice to the bloody goddess.
  5. Frick Street in Kathmandu was once a popular street among tourists, named so by hippies who were passing through town. It is now a fairly quiet neighborhood near King’s Square with small souvenir shops and restaurants and residents.
  6. The Asan Market in Kathmandu is the largest and most popular marketplace not only for locals but also for tourists. There are temples, sacred stupas and stalls with goods in a large area. Here you can feed pigeons, drink coffee and buy the freshest fruits.
  7. Tamel in Kathmandu is an area associated with the concept of tourism. Narrow streets filled with rushing traffic and passersby, inexpensive and wealthy hotels, bars and clubs. For those who are going from Kathmandu to the Himalayas to conquer Mount Everest, this place is a real staging post. Here you can buy skiing equipment, find a guide, and check out the route.
  8. The Pashupatinath Temple in Kathmandu is a rather sad place, an open-air crematorium. Here on the Bagmati River, which flows into the famous Ganges, the famous and ordinary people of the city go to the other world. During the cremation there is always a large gathering of people, despite the very peculiar smell. Among the temples of Kathmandu it is the most sinister and mystical.
  9. Temple of the Kamasutra ordinary people simply do not notice, but for our tourists, it is a real revelation. When booking tours in Nepal and its capital, Kathmandu, don’t forget to visit this place in Durbar Square.
Macedonia is a country that was part of Yugoslavia, but became independent

Many people associate a trip to Kathmandu with trekking – a hike up a mountain. But it is always preceded by two or three days of sightseeing in the city. In addition to the many Buddhist and Hindu temples, there is more than just aesthetic pleasure. Numerous spas, aromatherapy and steam baths at the end of a hard day is just what you need.

Trekking in Kathmandu

Holidays in hotels in Kathmandu

Despite the fact that the state of Nepal is one of the poorest in the world, in Kathmandu tourists are waiting for the best hotels, which are not inferior to the European. Looking at the photos of the city of Kathmandu, it is impossible not to pay attention to the modern multi-storey buildings, which are located and apartments. Consider their benefits:

  1. Baber Mahal Vilas. Here visitors are waiting for high-speed Internet, free parking, swimming pool and chic rooms.
  2. Hyatt Regency Kathmandu is in close proximity to the Palace Square. There’s a gym, in-room ordering of food and drinks, and a beautiful park for strolling.
  3. The Dwarika’s Hotel. This chic hotel offers free airport transfers, banqueting and conference facilities, non-smoking rooms and all kinds of services for the convenience of residents.
  4. Radisson Hotel Kathmandu. The hotel complex provides its gambling guests with a casino, an outdoor swimming pool, a gym and in-room dining delivery.
  5. The Radisson Hotel Kathmandu is a truly royal suite near Thamel. Clean and comfortable rooms beckon one to relax. Here you will be told how to get to Kathmandu cheaply, and provide shuttle service to and from the airport.

Where to eat well in Kathmandu?

Interesting facts about Kathmandu certainly attract many tourists here. But in between trips to the temples you need to remember to eat not only for the mind, but also for the body. You can satisfy your hunger in all areas of the city, but still choose your restaurant with caution, as Nepal is notoriously unsanitary and the food service is notoriously unhealthy. Kathmandu can boast both European and Oriental cuisine, here everyone will find a dish to his taste:

  1. Western Kitchen among the dusty and buzzing city is a quiet corner. It offers Thai, European and local cuisines to satisfy the most demanding of diners.
  2. The Ship Restaurant Bar and Lounge. Traditional Indian and Nepalese dishes can be sampled here, but other food is also available.
  3. Grill Oregano Restaurant. You can choose between an American grill and Indian rice. The service is good and the food is tasty.
  4. Nina’s is a traditional American burger and hot dog stand, perfect for eating on the go.
  5. Hotel Dalai-La. Turns out you can also get authentic Italian pizza in Nepal at this hotel restaurant.
The Finns are a fascinating people

Shopping in Kathmandu

For those who love shopping, Kathmandu is heaven. There are small private shops, bustling bazaars, and modern tourist-oriented malls. Brings back from Nepal:

  • cashmere products;
  • natural pashmina;
  • paintings in the Mathila technique;
  • imperishable paper made from the bark of Himalayan trees;
  • pottery;
  • figurines decorated with wood carvings;
  • jackets, purses, and shoes made from the skin of local buffalo;
  • kukuri knives;
  • tea and spices;
  • precious stones and costume jewelry;
  • woolen carpets.

Roads in Kathmandu

To get to the mountainous state for our countrymen the most convenient way is by air. Nepal’s Tribhuvan Airport is located near Kathmandu, and you can get to the city by cab. The cost of the trip is about $0.9 to $1.8. It takes 24 minutes on Sinamangal Rd. The visa is issued on arrival in Kathmandu directly at the airport, which is very fast and convenient for Russians.

Roads in Kathmandu

There are numerous minibuses plying around the city. To travel with comfort, you can rent a car with a driver (the price of $ 100 per trip) or turn the wheel yourself (but the latter option is not easy). To travel to the trekking is better to hire a private driver with a car. There is a streetcar service in Kathmandu: if you want maximum flavor – this is your place.


“God, before creating the Earth, first made a model. It was Nepal. The country is so diverse that it reflects the whole world. This is the legend told by Nepali guides. In turn, the model of Nepal is the capital city of Kathmandu. Exotic, mystical, colorful – all these epithets reflect the character of the city. It is filled to the brim with life. Kathmandu is the gateway to the birthplace of Buddha and the gateway to the Himalayas, dominated by the mighty Everest.


Between India and China.

Nepal is located in Asia. It is sandwiched between the most populous countries in the world, India and China. The country is a narrow strip of 800 km long and 250 km wide. It stretches from northwest to southeast. Kathmandu is almost in the center of the country. The city fills the mountain valley of the same name. Since the metropolis is surrounded by mountains, it is not well ventilated. Smog always hangs over the valley.

The altitude is 1,350 meters above sea level. Eight rivers flow through the city. The largest are the Bagmati, the Biskhnumati, and the Manohara. Numerous suburbs have merged with the capital to form a large agglomeration. Its population exceeds 1,000,000 people. It is almost impossible to tell where the capital ends and the suburbs begin. The historic center is a real maze.

Monastery in the Old Town

The monastery in the old town

The peculiarities of the local climate are determined by the high altitude and the proximity of large mountain systems. By Russian standards, summer reigns in Nepal all year round. During the winter, daytime temperatures rarely fall below +10 ° C. At night, the temperature can drop to +5 ° C. In summer, the temperature is comfortable at around +24 °C. From this point of view, any time of the year is suitable for a trip to Nepal. You should only keep in mind that the greatest amount of rainfall occurs from June to September.

World Heritage

Lake Nagdaha once splashed in the place of Kathmandu. Manjushriya, a companion of Gautama Buddha, took a fancy to this beautiful place. With a sword he cut through the mountains, dried up the lake and founded the city of Manjushrhipattan. Dharmakar became its ruler. Of course, this is only a legend.

7 best ski resorts in Austria

Alas, the ancient chronicles, if they existed, have not survived. Therefore the distant past of the Nepalese capital is covered with the gloom of obscurity. A valuable artifact is the brick with the inscription found by archaeologists. Its age has been estimated at 2000 years. It is the earliest authentic evidence that people lived in the place of Kathmandu at this time.

The city is believed to have been founded by the ruler of the Likchav dynasty in 723. It was built in the shape of Chandrahrasa, the sword of Manjushri, an associate of Buddha. This sword is depicted on the official flag of the city. The site was chosen for a reason, as the trade route from India to Tibet passed here. The original inhabitants of the Kathmandu valley at the time were the Nevars, who were famous as artists.

Severe Earthquakes Destroyed the City Many Times

The city has been repeatedly destroyed by violent earthquakes

In the 12th century there was a major earthquake that destroyed the city. One-third of Kathmandu’s population was killed. Art and architectural monuments created by the Nevarians were lost. However, the favorable location of the city facilitated its quick recovery. It revived like the legendary Phoenix bird. Alas, the disaster was not the first nor the last.

The year 1768 was a turning point in the fate of Kathmandu because it became the capital of the Gorkha Empire, which included the whole of Nepal. Then buildings of typical Nepalese architecture began to be built. Nowadays, Kathmandu is the largest city of the country. It is home to such outstanding historical and cultural monuments that it is listed as one of the “Kathmandu Valley World Heritage Sites” by UNESCO.

In the heart of the capital

Every capital city in any country has a few iconic landmarks that are a must-see. Kathmandu has five. One of them is Durbar Square. It’s hard to imagine a tourist who’s been to Moscow and hasn’t visited Red Square. In Nepal, it is just as unacceptable not to see the main square with the Old Royal Palace and several ancient temples.

Durbar Square

Alas, many of the buildings were damaged and destroyed in 2015 during the great earthquake. For example, nothing remains of the world’s oldest wooden building, built in the 12th century. But the medieval spirit of Nepal’s capital can be felt here in its entirety. There are a total of 43 landmarks on the square. They are marked on the map which is given together with the entrance ticket. The cost of the ticket is 1000 rupees (600 rubles).

The dominant feature of the square is the Hanuman Dhoka Palace where all the Nepalese kings were crowned. Alas, as a result of a tragic event, the royal dynasty ceased to exist. Among the tourists enjoys great popularity Palace Kumari Bahal. It is home to the world’s only living goddess Kumari Devi! She is considered the embodiment of the goddess Taleju. And the temple of Shiva Maju Deval, built in 1690, attracts attention with rich wood carvings depicting erotic scenes.

Total immersion

Only in Thamel can you fully appreciate how much life is buzzing in Nepal’s capital. This historic district in the center of the city is considered the most popular tourist attraction. It can be considered a huge open-air ethnographic museum. The labyrinthine streets are filled with cafes, restaurants, stores and souvenir stalls.

Tamel is a huge bazaar. Tibetan singing bowls, strange masks, minerals, blankets made of yak wool – all this is presented in unprecedented abundance. There’s momo cooking, oil-fried exotic sweets, lychees and mangoes for sale everywhere. It’s easy to get lost without a specific goal.

Shanghai Tower - China's tallest tower

Potters' Square in the district of Thamel

Potter’s Square in the Tamel district

There are many attractions in the area. There are several colorful Buddhist temples. Some are nestled in secluded courtyards that aren’t easily accessible. It is a parallel world. The Katesimbhu Stupa, a complex of ancient structures dating back to the 17th century, deserves attention. Very picturesque Square potters, where there are piles of pots, pots and saucers. Next to the square is the temple of White Mahendranath. It has a mystical atmosphere. And, of course, you should check out the famous bead market. It is very beautiful!

Dedicated to Shiva

There are many temples in Kathmandu, but the main one is Pashupatinath . It is dedicated to Shiva. On the Night of Shiva here gathers tens of thousands of pilgrims from all over the world. The territory of the monastery crosses the river Bagmati. On its banks can be seen fortune tellers, astrologers and chiromancers. Wanting to know the fate of destiny can not be abandoned. The ashes of the cremated dead are thrown into the river and burnt on the funeral pyres right on the waterfront.

Pashupatinath Monastery

At Pashupatinath Monastery

The monastery has a park that is home to many monkeys. A large number of stone phalluses are installed in the park. They are called lingamas. The attraction is considered to be the temple Gukhyeshwari (Vaginas). Only men can enter it. In the monastery lives the legendary Nepalese yogi Milkhee Baba. He became famous for the fact that all his life he ate only milk.

It is impossible to miss the large market located near the entrance to the monastery. The brightly colored rosaries, by which the bowing and mantras are counted, delight the eye. Beautiful garlands of fresh flowers that protect against evil demons. Foreigners necessarily pay attention to the khosa. It is a stick with a long bundle of yak wool. Monks use the hossu to drive away flies. Their religion does not allow them to kill living creatures.

Planet of the Apes

The Buddhist complex of Swayambhunath is like being on the Planet of the Apes. The nimble monkeys can be found everywhere. It is not for nothing that Swayambunath is also called the Monkey Temple. The monastery is situated on the top of a hill, at the foot of which there are golden figures of Shakyamuni, Chenrezig and Guru Rinpoche. They are surrounded by a ring of prayer drums. The entrance fee is 200 rupees (120 rubles).

Monkey Temple

The stupa, as the Buddhists call the temple, can be reached by climbing the stone stairs with 365 steps, or by road. The second route is easier but longer, as it is a serpentine walk. The first option is usually chosen by pilgrims. The stairs lead to the “Fountain of Peace”. To make a wish come true, you throw a coin into it.

The stupa Swayambhunath itself is beautiful on the very top. The first temple was built here in the IV century. It became the most important Tibetan Buddhist center. As is customary in Nepal, the stupa bears the all-seeing “Eye of the Buddha”. Tourists are bound to have questions about an object called a vajra. It is so unusual that it seems to have been forgotten here by aliens. In fact, the vajra in Buddhism is a mythological weapon and symbolizes the firmness of the spirit.

There are barred niches on the outside walls of the stupa, behind which you can see female sculptures. These are kumari, the incarnated Hindu deities. Pilgrims make offerings to them by spreading sweets on plates, but they are immediately stolen by the ubiquitous monkeys. The top of the hill is also worth climbing to get a bird’s eye view of Kathmandu. You can see the city as if in the palm of your hand.

Romania's most beautiful places

Om Mani Padme Hum

An introduction to Kathmandu’s iconic Buddhist sites would not be complete without the Bodnakht Stupa. It stands in the capital’s suburbs, which are named after the stupa. The temple was erected in the 6th century at the burial place of the Buddha Kassap. He is considered the predecessor of Shakyamuni Buddha. Bodnakht became known to Europeans after the iconic director Bernardo Bertolucci shot the feature film “The Little Buddha” in the monastery.

As is customary, prayer drums are placed around the stupa. They must be circled an odd number of times in a clockwise direction. One must rotate the drums clockwise and chant the mantra “Om Mani Padme Hum”. The ritual promotes purification and enlightenment. There is an observation deck on the roof of the neighboring temple that offers the best view of the temple complex.

Bodnakht Stupa Lookout

Viewpoint at Bodnakht Stupa

The oval-shaped square on which the temple complex stands is of interest. It is built up with a variety of houses of unusual architecture. Involuntarily gives the impression that it is theatrical scenery. On the first floors of houses housed numerous cafes and stores, where you can find a lot of interesting things related to Buddhism. On the square prevails a calm and peaceful atmosphere.

The Kingdom of Momo

The world can be explored in many different ways. Including gastronomic. Every cuisine is a reflection of the historical traditions and mentality of the inhabitants of the country. Kathmandu in this regard is no exception. It is a true Babylon, where a mixture of nations and cultures reigns, and the cuisine fully reflects this diversity. The nice thing is the accessibility of food. It costs 340-500 rupees (200-300 rubles) to dine in a café or restaurant in the city center.


In all the city’s catering establishments, from street eateries to upscale restaurants, Nepali cuisine is a must. Momo, Nepali manti, is considered the most popular. You can get a great variety at the Thamel Momo Hut, a specialty restaurant in the touristy district of Thamel. There are at least thirty kinds of momos – steamed, fried, and boiled. The filling can be very diverse – beef, chicken, yak meat, vegetables, cheese, and bananas. A dozen of momo will cost an average of 100-250 rupees (60-150 rubles).

Kathmandu Kitchen, a restaurant near the New Royal Palace, specializes in local cuisine. In addition to the traditional dishes such as Momo here you can try rakshi – Nepalese moonshine with a strength of 45 degrees. The drink is poured from a kettle with a very long spout. The “shot glass” is a ceramic saucer. It is not very comfortable to drink, but it is the tradition.

This is how the rakshas are poured.

The Himalai Kitchen restaurant also deserves attention. It is also located in the bowels of the tourist district of Thamel. The place serves Himalayan dishes. The most popular is thali – boiled rice with lentils. The rice is piled in the center of the dish and small bowls of lentil puree and appetizers are placed around it. It is customary to eat with the hands.

How to Get There

It is possible to reach Nepal on foot, by car or by bicycle. However, these ways are too exotic and time-consuming. The best option is to fly. Flights from Moscow to the capital of Nepal are operated by several companies. The most economical offers Air Arabia. In this case, the connection is made in Sharjah. Air India offers a flight through Delhi.

( No ratings yet )
Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: