10 Delightful Things To Do In Bhaktapur Nepal

Bhaktapur, also known as Bhadgaon, is a city rich in culture, art, and history. Located in the Kathmandu Valley, Bhaktapur is a living museum with its medieval architecture, vibrant festivals, and intricate wood carvings. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it offers visitors a chance to step back in time and experience the grandeur of the Malla dynasty. Here are the top things to do in Bhaktapur:

1. Visit Bhaktapur Durbar Square

Bhaktapur Durbar Square is the heart of the city and a marvel of Newar architecture. This historic square is home to numerous temples, palaces, and statues, including the magnificent 55-Window Palace, Vatsala Temple, and the Golden Gate. Stroll through the square to admire the intricate wood and stone carvings that adorn these structures.

2. Explore Taumadhi Square

Taumadhi Square is famous for the towering Nyatapola Temple, the tallest pagoda-style temple in Nepal. Built in 1702, this five-story temple dedicated to Siddhi Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of prosperity, stands as a testament to the craftsmanship of the Newar artisans. Nearby, you can also visit the Bhairabnath Temple, dedicated to the god Bhairava.

3. Wander Through Dattatreya Square

Dattatreya Square is another gem in Bhaktapur, known for its ancient monasteries and traditional homes. The Dattatreya Temple, built in 1427, is unique as it is the only temple in Nepal dedicated to the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. The square also features the Pujari Math, which houses the famous Peacock Window, a masterpiece of wood carving.

4. Visit the National Art Gallery

Located in Bhaktapur Durbar Square, the National Art Gallery showcases a vast collection of traditional paubha paintings, manuscripts, and sculptures. The museum is housed in the former palace and offers insights into the rich artistic heritage of Nepal. It’s a must-visit for art enthusiasts and history buffs.

5. Experience Pottery Square

Pottery Square, or Bolachhen, is a lively area where you can witness the traditional craft of pottery-making. Watch as skilled artisans shape clay into beautiful pots, vases, and other items using traditional techniques. You can even try your hand at the potter’s wheel and create your own piece of pottery as a souvenir.

6. Explore the Siddha Pokhari

Siddha Pokhari, also known as Ta Pukhu, is a large rectangular pond located near the main entrance of Bhaktapur. Built during the reign of King Yaksha Malla in the 15th century, this serene pond is a popular spot for locals and visitors to relax and enjoy the tranquil environment. The reflection of nearby temples in the water creates a picturesque scene.

7. Taste Local Delicacies

Bhaktapur is known for its unique culinary delights. Don’t miss trying the famous Juju Dhau, a creamy and delicious yogurt made from buffalo milk. Other local specialties include Bara (lentil patties), Chatamari (Nepali pizza), and Samay Baji (a traditional Newari feast). Wander through the local markets and street stalls to savor these delicious treats.

8. Visit the Changu Narayan Temple

A short drive from Bhaktapur, the Changu Narayan Temple is one of the oldest temples in Nepal, dating back to the 4th century. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, this temple is a masterpiece of stone and wood carving. The temple complex also offers stunning views of the surrounding valley and is a peaceful retreat from the city.

9. Attend Local Festivals

Bhaktapur is renowned for its vibrant festivals, which are celebrated with great fervor and enthusiasm. The Bisket Jatra, held in April, marks the Nepali New Year and features a dramatic chariot procession and various traditional rituals. Other important festivals include Dashain, Tihar, and the lively Gai Jatra, each offering a unique glimpse into the local culture and traditions.

10. Shop for Handicrafts

Bhaktapur is a great place to shop for traditional Nepali handicrafts. From intricately carved wooden items to beautiful paubha paintings and handmade pottery, there is a wide range of unique souvenirs to choose from. Visit the local markets and artisan shops to find high-quality, locally-made products that reflect the rich cultural heritage of the city.

Conclusion

Bhaktapur is a city that captivates visitors with its timeless beauty and rich cultural heritage. From exploring ancient temples and squares to experiencing traditional crafts and festivals, there is so much to see and do in this historic city. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a culture lover, or simply looking for a peaceful escape, Bhaktapur promises an unforgettable journey through Nepal’s living history.

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