Kathmandu stands high at around 1,400 m above sea level in the bowl-shaped Kathmandu Valley of central Nepal. The colourful capital of Nepal is a sensory experience of sights, sounds, and smells – rickshaw-ridden alleyways, streets bustling with traffic, traditional old homes, the fragrance of marigold, secret temples, backpackers and trekkers, timeless arts and crafts, cosmopolitan mix of people – and brimming with surprises.
Begin your sights tour with these four UNESCO World Heritage Sites: The ancient Kathmandu Durbar Square is in the old city and houses heritage monuments representing four kingdoms. The golden-spired Swayambhunath Stupa, sitting atop a wooded hill is believed to date back to the 4th – 5th century CE, and is the Kathmandu Valley’s most sacred Buddhist shrine, also revered by Hindus. The Boudhanath Stupa is one of Nepal’s most distinctive monuments and one of the country’s most important Buddhist sites; with a diameter of over 100 metres, it is amongst the largest in the world. Lying on the banks of the River Bagmati, the ancient Pashupatinath Temple is Nepal’s most sacred Hindu shrine and one of the subcontinent’s greatest Shiva sites.
For other interesting experiences, you could visit a monastery for an interaction with a Lama followed by a prayer ceremony by Lamas at Boudhanath. Evening, witness the beautiful aarati (a ritual of worship in which light from wicks soaked in ghee (clarified butter) is offered to God) ceremony on the banks of the Bagmati – the hymns, the Tandava (Shiva’s divine dance of passion, anger, joy, and intense energy), classical instruments, chanting of the Vedas, ringing bells, fragrant incense, and radiant oil lamps will hold you mesmerised.
Holxo Tours in Kathmandu