Bhaktapur Travel Guide with Pancha Mahalaxmi Mandir

Welcome to Bhaktapur, a charming city nestled in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal. Bhaktapur is known as Khwopa and Bhadgaon. It is one of the three main cities of the Kathmandu Valley with a major Newar settlement. Known for its rich cultural heritage and exquisite architecture, Bhaktapur is a must-visit destination for travelers seeking to immerse themselves in the beauty and history of Nepal. Juju dhau (king curd), Bhadgaule topi, Haku Patasi, handicrafts, etc are popular products of Bhaktapur.

Things to do in Bhaktapur

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  • Explore Nepal’s Historic Gem Bhaktapur Durbar Square
  • Try Juju dhau (King curd)
  • Hiking
  • Visit the Museum

History

Bhaktapur was first established in the 8th century by King Ananda Dev and it existed as an independent state until the 18th century.

Tourist Attractions

Bhaktapur Durbar Square – A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Bhaktapur Durbar Square is the heart of the city and is an open museum of ancient palaces, temples, and courtyards.

55-Window Palace – Built in the 15th century by King Bhupatindra Malla, the 55-Window Palace is a magnificent architectural marvel featuring 55 intricately carved windows.

Pottery Square – Step into the traditional world of pottery-making at Pottery Square, where artisans showcase their craftsmanship by molding clay into beautiful pots, jars, and sculptures. Visitors can even try their hand at pottery under the guidance of skilled local potters.

Dattatreya Square (Tachapal Tole) – It is the oldest square in Bhaktapur near Durbar Square. The square dates back to the 15th century.

Gundu – It is a beautiful place on the southern hills of Bhaktapur.

Adventure activities

Zipline – 1200 meters Yoyo Zipline is located at Ghyampe Danda, Suryabinayak 07, Bhaktapur, Nepal.

Temples

Pancha Mahalaxmi Mandir Bhaktapur

Pancha Mahalaxmi Temple is located in Telkot, Changunarayan Municipality, Bhaktapur. It is a spiritual place on the lap of Nagarkot Forest.

It is a Hindu temple dedicated to Goddess Laxmi, Goddess of Wealth. The interior of the temple is beautiful. One can reach the temple by Sakhu-Nagarkot Road or Bhaktapur-Telkot-Nagarkot Road.

Changu Narayan Temple: It is the oldest temple of Nepal dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu, built during the Lichhavi dynasty around 3000 years ago. The main temple is decorated with ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site Changu Narayan Temple is a two-story pagoda-style temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The temple has four doors in every four directions and each door is guarded by a pair of stone lions. A huge statue of “Garuda”, the vehicle mount of Lord Vishnu kneels at the west facing the temple. The history of Nepal is engraved on the stone at Changu Narayan Temple. It is located on a high hilltop, offering breathtaking views.

Nyatapola Temple – The tallest pagoda-style temple of Nepal, Nyatapola Temple is a stunning example of Newari pagoda-style architecture. Dedicated to the goddess Siddhi Lakshmi, this five-story temple is adorned with intricate carvings.

Doleshwor Mahadev Temple – In the southeastern part of Bhaktapur, you can find the temple of Doleshwor Mahadev. It is believed the Doleshwor Mahadev is the head part of the holy Kedarnath which is located in Uttarakhand, India. There’s an ancient story behind it. Pandavs after winning the Kurukshetra war, sorrowed the loss of innocent lives in the war so, they went to Kedarnath to seek forgiveness but Lord Shiva refused to forgive them. He disguised as a bull to escape from there but the Pandavas realized the bull to be Lord Shiva and pulled the tail of the bull to stop it from running. But suddenly, the head of the bull got separated from its torso and is said to have landed in Bhaktapur. It is believed that the visit to Kedarnath is unfruitful without visiting Doleshwor Mahadev which belongs to one of the ‘Char Dham’.

Bhairavnath Temple – Besides the 55-windowed temple lies the Bhairavnath temple where the idol of the head of the Bhairav is worshipped. According to the historical records, God Bhairav of Kashi, India used to visit Bhaktapur in the disguise of a man to observe the Lingo festival. The then King on learning that commanded his army to seize him. While Bhairav tried to escape, he was beheaded. His torso managed to escape which is worshipped in Kashi, India and the head is worshipped in Bhaktapur. The Lingo festival is still celebrated with full rejoicing by pulling the chariot of Bhairav every year in the month of Chaitra.

Dattatreya Temple – The Dattatreya Temple was built by the Malla King Yakshya Malla in the 15th century. The god Dattatreya is believed to be the merged form of three lords: Brahma, Vishnu, and Maheshwar. This three-storied temple is built in Pagoda style and is believed to be constructed from the wood of a single tree. The peacock-carved window of Dattatreya is a masterpiece and is cited as the ‘Mona Lisa of Nepal’. The Dattatreya Temple is crowded with female devotees on the occasion of the ‘Teej’ festival in the month of Shrawan and Bhadra.

Bhimsen temple – The Bhimsen temple of Bhaktapur is located at Dattatreya Square and it is also known as Bhindyo by the local Newa people.

Suryabinayak Temple – It is located in Suryabinayak Municipality, Bhaktapur, and the temple is dedicated to the Hindu god Ganesh. It is a very important religious and historical site, built in the Shikhar style during the Lichhavi period.

Vihar

Dipankar Mahavihar (Devnani) – Dipankar Mahavihar is located in Kwathandau (क्वाथंदौ) tole in Bhaktapur. There is Dharmakirti Vihar and Bikhu Vihar in the north direction of Dipankar Mahavihar.

Prasannashil Mahavihar – It is one of the oldest Vihar.

Manjubarna Mahavihar – It is also known as Mayurbarna Mahabihar.

Akhandashil Mahavihar (Akha baha)
Baudha sasankrit Vihar
Dharmakirti Vihar
Indrabarna Mahavihar
Jayakirti Vihar (Thathu Bahi)
Jestha barna Mahavihar
Kothe Vihar
Lokeshwor Vihar (Jetbarna Mahavihar)
Mangal Dharmadip Vihar
Mande Vihar
Sukha dwakha Bahi

Culture

The Newari culture in Bhaktapur, Nepal, is really interesting and easy to learn about. Newars are a group of people who have their traditions and way of life. In Bhaktapur, they have special festivals, delicious food, and unique customs. You can see beautiful temples and buildings everywhere, showing the Newari people’s skill in architecture and art. They also have their language and music, which makes their culture even more colorful and exciting to explore.

Feasts and festivals

Biska Jatra (Bisket Jatra) – This 9-day festival begins with a Tantric ritual and the chariots festival begins.

Gai jatra – Gai jatra in Bhaktapur is the most impressive.

Nava Durga Jatra – It is a mask dance of the nine Durgas (goddesses).

Museum

National Art Museum – The National Art Museum showcases traditional sculptures, paintings, manuscripts, etc.

Woodcarving Museum – It is located at the Dattatreya Square. This beautiful Woodcarving museum showcases some of the finest traditional woodcarvings of Bhaktapur.

Brass and Bronze Museum – This museum showcases traditional metalwork.

Hiking Trail

Changunarayan Nagarkot hike – The Changunarayan to Nagarkot hike offers a mix of cultural and natural attractions and can generally be completed in a day. This route offers great views of the ancient city of Bhaktapur, landscapes, and mountains.

Ponds

Kalamasi-Bojini dam site – Kalamasi or Bojini dam is a small man-made beautiful artificial lake, located in Kalamasi village, in the western lap of Nagarkot at Changunarayan municipality.

Siddha Pokhari – It is one of the most beautiful, oldest, and biggest manmade pond in Bhaktapur located near the city gate of Bhaktapur. Siddha Pokhari is a historic pond built by King Yakshya Malla in the 15th century. Siddha Pokhari is also known as “Indra Daha”. On the next day of Indra Jatra, an assemblage of the devotees can be seen. They take the holy dip in the Siddhi Pokhari and offer oil lamps to the goddess Indrayani. Other times, the place is really quiet and peaceful and mountain views are also visible from here. You can feed the fish in the pond too. There are small shops selling fish food.

Kamal Pokhari (Lotus Pond) – It is located near Kamal Binayak temple, on the way to Nagarkot.

Bhajya Pukhu – Bhajya Pukhu is also known as Bhaju Pokhari located opposite Siddha Pokhari in Bhaktapur. In the middle of the pond, there is a Shikhara-style temple.

Rani Pokhari – Rani Pokhari of Bhaktapur is said to have been built before the Rani Pokhari in Kathmandu. It was built by the King of Bhaktapur Jagat Jyoti Malla for his Queen Raj Laxmi. It is near Siddhapokhari and Bhajya Pukhu.

Other

Food – No visit to Bhaktapur is complete without savoring its delectable Newari cuisine. Bhaktapur is famous for “JuJu Dhau”, meaning King Yoghurt.

Shopping – Additionally, don’t forget to explore the bustling streets of Bhaktapur’s bazaars, where you can shop for exquisite handicrafts, pottery, textiles, and souvenirs to take home as mementos of your trip.

Tips for Visitors – Carry sufficient cash as many shops and eateries may not accept credit cards.

Geography

To the east of Bhaktapur is Kavre district, to the northeast is Kathmandu district, and to the south is Lalitpur district. Bhaktapur is 1401 meters above sea level.

Climate

The temperature of this city reaches a maximum of 35 degrees Celsius in summer.

How to reach Bhaktapur?

Bhaktapur is 16 kilometers east of Kathmandu. One can easily reach Bhaktapur by the local bus in Bagbazar bus park, taxi, or private car from Kathmandu.

Conclusion:

Bhaktapur offers a captivating blend of history, culture, and natural beauty that leaves a lasting impression on every visitor. Whether you’re exploring ancient temples, indulging in delicious cuisine, or admiring traditional craftsmanship, Bhaktapur promises an unforgettable travel experience that will linger in your memories for years to come. So pack your bags, embark on a journey to Bhaktapur, and unravel the enchanting treasures of Nepal’s historic gem.

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