Bhaktapur Nepal

 

Bhaktapur

Bhaktapur भक्तपुर also known as Bhadgaon or Khwopa. Which is an ancient Newar town in the east corner of the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal. It is located in Bhaktapur District in the Bagmati Zone. It is the third largest city in Kathmandu valley and was once the capital of Nepal during the great Malla Kingdom until the second half of the 15th century.

Bhaktapur has more temples per square foot than Patan or Kathmandu and is far enough out of town to keep the crowds away. As a World Heritage site listed by the UNESCO, Bhaktapur has been heavily restored since a 1934 earthquake severely damaged the city. To further restoration and preservation there is an entrance fee for visitors. In October 2009 this was either 750 NRS or USD $10 for foreigners. If you planned to visit several days, you can ask the counter to add a note to have access to the city with the same ticket (at most one week). Visitors from SAARC member countries (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) pay 50 NRS.

Get into Bhaktapur

If you are not arriving as part of a tour group, you may take mini bus (bound for Kamal Binayak stop in Bhaktapur) or big bus (bound for Chyamasingha stop in Bhaktapur) from Bus Stop near Bhadrakali. You can save time by taking Express Bus (this does not stop in between except in Maitighar and Sallaghari) from Bagbazar in Kathmandu. Recently, micro buses also started service of suttling between Kathmandu and Bhaktapur, which are pretty fast.

For those who haven't experienced a public bus in South Asia, it will be a way to (literally!) rub shoulders with locals. In either case the ride takes about 40-60 minutes and drops you off just outside of town. The cost of the fare from Kathmandu to Bhaktapur is approximately 50 NRS  by bus for local people. Average taxi fee from Thamel to Bhaktapur (one way) costs about 800-1000 NRS for the 16 km drive. Always negotiate the price before get into Taxi.

Get around, sightseeing and place to see in Bhaktapur

Once in Bhaktapur, walking is really the only way to experience the quiet, dusty lanes squares. There are no rickshaws, tuk-tuks, or taxis allowed inside the city-- an inconvenience more than made up for by the quiet and clean air.

Siddha Pokhari: For a small city, Bhaktapur has the largest number of public water tanks built within the city limits. Siddha Pokhu (Pokhari) is one of the largest tanks meant to supply drinking water to the people of Bhaktapur. Built in the 15th Century by King Yakshya Malla, this large rectangular tank is teeming with fish and is occasionally open to the public for fishing and boating.


Nyatapola: The unique temple of Bhaktapur, the Nyatapola literally means ‘Five storied’ and rises above the city as a remarkable landmark. It also has the distinction of having withstood the devastating earthquake of 1933. Dedicated to a tantric goddess, the steps leading up to the temple, is flanked by stone sculptures. At the base are two statues of Malla era wrestlers representing humans and in ascending order of power and strength, there are creatures each ten times more powerful than the preceding statue.


Batsala Temple: One of temples built out of stone is the Batsala Devi of Bhaktapur which has many intricate carvings. Beside it is the famous bronze bell, locally known as 'the bell of barking dogs' as its ringing was invariably accompanied by the howling of dogs in the vicinity. This large bell was put up by King Ranjit Malla in A. D. 1737 and its sounding announced the beginning and end of a daily curfew. Today, it is rung every morning when the priests worship Goddess Taleju.


Bhairavnath Temple: Dedicated to Kasi Bhairav, the three storied temple of Bhairavnath has only the head of Bhairav in the inner sanctum. Legend has it that Kasi Bhairav’s head was cut off by a tantric expert in order to keep him in Bhaktapur. Built in the pagoda style, it stands adjacent to the more famous five storied Nyatapola temple. Bhairav is the dangerous aspect of Shiva. Originally built by King Jagat Jyoti Malla, the temple was improved by King Bhupatindra Malla, a zealous lover of the arts.


Thimi: 10 km east of Kathmandu close to Bhaktapur, is the potter’s town of Thimi. Besides farming, most households here are engaged in pottery. This laid back town not only supplies Kathmandu its pottery but also its vegetables. The most important deity here is Goddess Balkumari. The charming medieval lifestyle of these farmers is a major tourist attraction.

What to buy

Bhaktapur is all about pottery. You will see it everywhere, drying in the sun, displayed on tables and shelves in front of shops and homes alike. The town is equally famous for artistic mask made up of black clay and colorful painting on it. The masks portray various gods and deities and carry special significance in festivals.

Thanka, a traditional painting is also found in the town. Metalwork and jewelry can also be found, but there's more selection on Patan's backstreets.

Going out from Bhaktapur

 * Changu Narayan, Changu (4 Km to the north of Bhaktapur and 22 Km east of Kathmandu.), ☎ 6614788. It is the oldest temple in the Kathmandu Valley. Listed in the World Cultural Heritage, it is also a scenic spot situated at the altitude of about 1700m. The most authentic inscription located in the precinct of Changu Narayan is dated 464 AD and is accredited to the Lichhavi King Mandeva. Changu Narayan Temple , located high in the hill just to the north of Bhaktapur, is the oldest existing pagoda temple in Nepal . The temple was dedicated to lord Vishnu by the Lichhavi King in the Fifth Century. It is said to be the oldest temple in the Valley. It was listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Monument List in 1979. edit

* Surya Vinayak is situated at the walking distance fo about 2 KM to the south of the city and is the holy shrine of god Ganesh (God of well beginning and successful completion of work). The temple of Ganesh is placed in a sylvan setting to catch the first rays of the rising sun. It is a good picnic spot flanked by many attractive landscapes.

* Thimi town is well known for its pottery work. In addition to pottery, Thimi has made a name for itself in the age-old art of making colorful masks of various deities, demons and animals. Thimi also produces much of the fresh vegetables for the Kathmandu valley.

* Nagarkot is nestled on hill at altitude of 2195 meter to the north east corner of Bhaktapur at distance of 18 kilometers. It is famous for its panoramic view of mountains, sun rise and sun set. Nagarkot has availability of different types of accommodations of Five star hotels to small cottage lodges. Its one of the most scenic spots in Bhaktapur district and is renowned for its spectacular sunrise view of the Himalaya when the sky is clear. It also offers an excellent view of the Indrawati river valley to the east.

 

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