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 shrine surrounded by ponds and statues, tucked beneath a rocky cliff wall and a Tibetan monastery. The main temple was built in the 17th century, but it’s believed that the cave to the right (now dedicated to Padmasambhava, or Guru Rinpoche) has been a place of pilgrimage for far longer.

There are some artfully carved Licchavi-era statues in the courtyard, including lively depictions of Garuda and Hanuman. The surrounding ponds are full of koi carp and the occasional semi-submerged carving, including an image of Aditya, framed by an arch. If you are lucky you might catch devotional religious music being played in the pavilion by the pools. Temple priests might try and bless you – for a donation.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Pharping attractions

2. Vajra Yogini Temple

0.24 MILES

This sacred 17th-century Newari-style temple is devoted to the Tantric goddess Vajrayogini. One of the few female deities in Buddhist mythology,…

3. Sakya Tharig Gompa

0.33 MILES

This monastery features an enormous and brightly painted chörten – step inside to see hundreds of miniature chörten and statues of Guru Rinpoche set into…

4. Guru Rinpoche Cave

0.34 MILES

Climb the steps behind the Drölma Lhakhang, passing a rocky fissure jammed full of tsha tsha (stupa-shaped clay offerings) and cracks stuffed with little…

5. Ralo Gompa

0.38 MILES

The large white Ralo Gompa has a brightly painted chörten. It’s located up the hill, past the line of Tibetan restaurants, towards the Drölma Lhakhang.

6. Rigzu Phodrang Gompa

0.38 MILES

Adjacent to the Drölma Lhakhang is the Rigzu Phodrang Gompa, worth visiting for its impressive frieze of statues, with Guru Rinpoche surrounded by his…

7. Drölma Lhakhang

0.38 MILES

This shrine is sacred to both Hindus and Buddhists, who identify Saraswati as Tara. It’s accessed via a set of steps to the west of Sakya Tharig Gompa.

8. Dakshinkali Temple

0.76 MILES

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…