Must-see attractions in Around the Kathmandu Valley

  • Hiranya Varna Mahavihar (The Golden Temple) buildings exterior in a sunny day in Lalitpur city, Nepal.

    Golden Temple (Kwa Bahal)


    This unique Buddhist monastery is just north of Durbar Sq. It was allegedly founded in the 12th century, and it has existed in its current form since 1409…

  • Golden gate at Durbar Square in Bhaktapur, Kathmandu Valley, Nepal.

    Golden Gate


    The magnificent Golden Gate is a visual highlight of Durbar Sq. Set into a bright red gatehouse surrounded by white palace walls, the fabulous golden…

  • Nyatapola Temple, the tallest monument within the city and the tallest temple of Nepal.

    Nyatapola Temple


    You should be able to see the sky-high rooftop of the Nyatapola Temple long before you reach Taumadhi Tole. With five storeys towering 30m above the…

  • Courtyard of Mul Chowk, in the Patan Royal Palace Complex in Patan Durbar Square.

    Mul Chowk


    South of the Patan Museum, a gateway opens onto the stately Mul Chowk, the largest and oldest of the Royal Palace’s three main chowk (squares). The…

  • Group of bronze Buddha and Hindu Gods figurines in a showcase of the Patan Museum.

    Patan Museum


    Formerly the residence of the Malla kings, the section of the Royal Palace surrounding Keshav Narayan Chowk now houses one of the finest collections of…

  • Krishna Mandir Temple.

    Krishna Mandir


    Heading into Durbar Sq, you can’t miss the splendid Krishna Mandir built by King Siddhinarsingh Malla in 1637. Constructed from carved stone – in…

  • Tusha Hiti sunken water tank in Sundari Chowk.

    Sundari Chowk


    South of Mul Chowk is the smaller Sundari Chowk, arranged around a superbly carved sunken water tank known as the Tusha Hiti. The chowk was restored in…


    Durbar Square (Patan)


    The ancient royal palace of Patan faces on to magnificent Durbar Sq. This concentrated mass of temples is perhaps the most visually stunning display of…

  • Royal Patan palace complex in Patan Surbar Square.

    Royal Palace


    Forming the entire eastern side of Durbar Sq, the Royal Palace of Patan was originally built in the 14th century, and expanded during the 17th and 18th…

  • The Budhanilkantha statue of the Hindu god Vishnu, lies in a reclining position inside a recessed tank of water.

    Reclining Statue of Vishnu

    Around the Kathmandu Valley

    Budhanilkantha's focal point for devotions is a large reclining statue of Vishnu as Narayan, the creator of all life. From his navel grew a lotus and from…

  • The Nuwakot Palace.

    Saat Tale Durbar

    Around the Kathmandu Valley

    The centrepiece of the village is the Saat Tale Durbar, a seven-storey fortress built in 1762 by Prithvi Narayan Shah as his family palace after taking…

  • Golden Gate, Patan, Nepal.

    Golden Gate


    The entry to Patan Museum is through the Royal Palace's superb Golden Gate. Installed in 1734, this finely engraved and gilded gateway is topped by a…

  • The Thrangu Tashi Yangtse Monastery in Nepal.

    Thrangu Tashi Yangtse Monastery

    Around the Kathmandu Valley

    At the top of Namobuddha hill, the magnificent Thrangu Tashi Yangtse Monastery is a sprawling Tibetan Buddhist monastic complex with gleaming golden…

  • People admiring the panorama of the himalayas from Nagarkot View Tower.

    Lookout Tower


    A popular spot to soak in the Himalayan splendour is this tower, perched at 2164m on a ridge, although the rising vegetation can obscure the vista. It’s…

  • Gold-plated metal door of Temple in Nepal

    Changu Narayan Temple

    Around the Kathmandu Valley

    This temple is said to be the oldest Hindu temple still in use in the Kathmandu Valley. Built in the two-tiered pagoda style, the main shrine here is…

  • Rato Machhendranath Temple


    Almost directly across the road from the Minnath Temple, down an alley, a white-columned gateway leads to the wide, open square containing the revered…

  • Potters' Square, Bhaktapur, UNESCO World Heritage Site, Kathmandu Valley, Nepal, Asia

    Potters’ Square


    Hidden down shop-lined alleyways leading south from the curving road to Taumadhi Tole, Potters’ Sq is exactly what you would expect – a public square full…

  • Gokarna Mahadev Temple

    Around the Kathmandu Valley

    Dedicated to Shiva as Mahadeva (Great God), this handsome three-tiered temple is a fine example of Newari pagoda style. The main reason to come is to see…

  • Bhairabnath Temple


    The broad-fronted, triple-roofed Bhairabnath Temple is dedicated to Bhairab, the fearsome incarnation of Shiva, whose consort occupies the Nyatapola…

  • Dakshinkali Temple

    Around the Kathmandu Valley

    The blood-soaked temple of Dakshinkali, a favourite Hindu pilgrimage destination, is set at the confluence of two sacred streams in a rocky cleft in the…

  • Vajrayogini Temple

    Around the Kathmandu Valley

    The main reason for visiting the Vajrayogini Temple is not for the temple itself but rather the off-the-beaten-track hike up through Sankhu. The stately…

  • Mahabouddha Temple


    As you step through the entryway of this hard-to-find courtyard in the southeast of Patan, the temple suddenly looms above you, crammed in like a plant…

  • Kumbeshwar Temple


    Due north of Durbar Sq is the eye-catching Kumbeshwar Temple, one of the valley’s three five-storey temples. This tall, thin mandir (temple) features some…

  • National Art Gallery


    The western end of Bhaktapur's Royal Palace contains the best of the three museums in Bhaktapur. Inside, you can view an extensive collection of Tantric…

  • Nagarjun Hill

    Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park

    Now formally part of Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park, Nagarjun Hill, also known as the Rani Ban (Queen’s Forest), is west of the main park, beside the…

  • King Yoganarendra Malla’s Statue


    South of the Jagannarayan Temple is a tall column topped by a striking brass statue of King Yoganarendra Malla (r 1684–1705) and his queens. Installed in…

  • Char Dham Temples


    Standing at the western end of Durbar Sq, the four Char Dham temples were constructed to provide spiritual merit for pilgrims who were unable to make the…

  • Peace Gallery


    Nepal's decade-long civil war has been marked by a photo exhibition that brings the conflict poignantly to life. Based on the book A People War by Nepali…

  • Dattatreya Temple


    At the east end of Tachupal Tole, the eye-catching Dattatreya Temple was originally built in 1427, supposedly using the timber from a single tree. The…

  • Taleju Bell


    In front of what once was the Vatsala Durga Temple is a large bell, which was erected by King Jaya Ranjit Malla in 1737 to mark morning and evening…

  • Ugrachandi & Bhairab Statues


    As you enter Durbar Sq through the western gate, look left to a gateway flanked by two stocky stone lions, erected by King Bhupatindra Malla in 1701. On…

  • Shesh Narayan Temple


    About 600m downhill from the main junction at Pharping, in the direction of Kathmandu, the Shesh (or Sekh) Narayan Temple is a highly revered Vishnu…

  • Khalna Tole


    Southeast of Potters' Sq and above the river is the wide open square of Khalna Tole, the setting for the spectacular Bisket Jatra festival. Many flanking…

  • Til Mahadev Narayan Temple


    This interesting temple at Taumadhi Tole is hidden away behind the buildings at the south end of the square. The Til Mahadev Narayan Temple is set in an…

  • Bhimsen Temple


    At the northern end of Durbar Sq, the Bhimsen Temple is dedicated to the god of trade and business, which may explain its prosperous appearance. One of…

  • Rato Machhendranath Temple

    Around the Kathmandu Valley

    Bungamati is the birthplace of Rato Machhendranath, the patron god of Patan, and for six months of the year the deity resides in the main village square …

  • Pujari Math


    Tachupal Tole is flanked by a series of ornate brick-and-timber buildings that were originally used as math (Hindu priests’ houses). The best known is the…

  • Uku Bahal


    South of the Mahabouddha Temple, this ancient Buddhist monastery is one of the best known in Patan. The main courtyard is jam-packed with statuary and…

  • Minnath Temple


    Just 200m south of I Baha Bahi, a large water tank marks the entrance to a courtyard strewn with wooden beams. In the centre is the brightly painted, two…

  • Suriya Binayak Temple


    South of Bhaktapur, on the south side of the Arniko Hwy, Suriya Binayak is an important Ganesh temple dating back to the 17th century. The white shikhara…