Experience Kathmandu like a local on this small-group cultural walking tour. Visit the oldest Buddhist stupa in Nepal, Swayambhunath, and explore one of the oldest parts of the city, Durbar Square, where you’ll browse local markets and centuries-old temples and courtyards. Purchase your own choice of vegetables (own expense) and head to a local family’s home to prepare a traditional Nepalese lunch. You'll learn all about local life in Kathmandu as you chat with the family with the help of your knowledgeable guide.
Begin your Kathmandu cultural experience in Thamel, where you’ll meet your knowledgeable local guide and walk to Swayambhunath. Follow in the footsteps of Hindu and Buddhist devotees as you approach this holy stupa, the oldest in Nepal.You’ll learn how this place is affectionately called ‘Monkey Temple’ by the locals, as there is a large troupe of monkeys guarding the hills and amusing visitors with tricks, such as sliding down the banisters of the main stairway to the temple. From the hilltop setting, enjoy a beautiful bird’s-eye view of Kathmandu and the valley below before entering this mound-like structure. Containing Buddhist and Hindu relics, typically the ashes of deceased, this temple is used as a place of meditation. As you explore the interior, you’ll be mesmerized by the wafts of incense, hypnotic chants of prayers and surreal sounds of ringing bells. After being spiritually awakened, follow your guide on a stroll through the maze of backstreets to Durbar Square, where you’ll find numerous centuries-old temples, courtyards and markets selling crafts and fresh produce. With some assistance from your guide, purchase your choice of vegetables, aromatic spices and any other ingredients you like (own expense), which you’ll use as ingredients for your home-cooked lunch. Once you’ve gathered everything, you’ll head to a local family’s home. Your host family will reveal the secrets of Nepalese cooking as you enjoy a hands-on culinary experience in their kitchen. Then, relax and enjoy your meal while conversing with the locals with the help of your guide. After your meal, you’ll say goodbye and head back to your original departure point to conclude your tour.