Full day sightseeing tour of Pashupatinath Temple, Boudhanath Stupa, Patan Durbar Square and Swoyambu Stupa.
Meet our representative upon arrival in Kathmandu- an exotic and fascinating showcase of a very rich culture, art and tradition. The valley, roughly an oval bowl, is encircled by a range of green terraced hills and dotted by compact clusters of red tiled-roofed houses. After reaching, check-in at the hotel and spend rest of the evening at leisure. Overnight stay in Kathmandu.
After breakfast, we start an interesting tour around Kathmandu. Escorting by an English speaking guide (can provide any language speaking guide on request) the tour will give you a taste of our vivid Nepali culture and history. On our sightseeing tour, we go to Monkey Temple Swayambhunath, Pashupatinath, Bouddhanath, and Kathmandu Durbar Square.
Bouddhanath: Bouddhanath is a Buddhist religious complex with a history dating back over 500 years. Located on the eastern edge of Kathmandu it is now a site of great pilgrimage for Buddhist followers who circle its massive stupa, spin its many prayer wheels and visit its beautiful monastery. The main feature of Boudhanath is its huge hemispherical white stupa with a central golden tower and the all-seeing eyes of the Buddha. Visitors should circle the stupa in a clockwise direction and spin prayer wheels for good fortune and a good life. Visitors may also enjoy visiting the thangka painting school within the complex to see highly skilled artists at work on religious mandala paintings.
Pashupatinath: This Hindu Temple is a very large complex and focal point for the Hindu religion in Nepal. This old and very revered complex of buildings and shrines is dedicated to Lord Shiva, one of the main deities of Hinduism. While Lord Shiva has multiple forms he is often seen as the destroyer. This has great significance for the Pashupatinath temple as it is the site of many Hindi ritual cremations each day. Pashupatinath is considered by Hindus to be an auspicious site for passing from one stage of life to the next through the purifying and destroying flames of cremation. However, on a happier note, visitors may also get to see the temple in a buoyant festival mode with one of the many Hindu festivals celebrated here throughout the year.
Swayambhunath: You will first visit the Swayambhunath temple complex that sits atop a high hill overlooking Kathmandu and the entire Kathmandu Valley. Swayambhunath is perhaps the most sacred Buddhist pilgrimage site in Nepal. It consists of a very large white stupa with the all-seeing-eye of Lord Buddha plus many small stupas and beautifully carved stone shrines. This is a wonderful place to catch your breath and start to understand and appreciate the deep importance of Buddhist belief to the people of Nepal and the Himalaya region. Make sure you ring the many bells to awaken the gods and let them know you are in Nepal. Take the time to enjoy the view over Kathmandu and have your guide point out the many other highlights of the city. In the far distance to the east, you may also be able to see the hills of Nagarkot. If you feel energetic you might also like to try some or all of the 350 steps that lead all the way from Kathmandu city up to your Swayambhunath temple vantage point.
Kathmandu Durbar Square: The next stop today is the beautiful Kathmandu Durbar Square or the royal palace square of the ancient Malla Kings of the Kathmandu Valley. This square and all its architectural treasures are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. While some damage to buildings occurred in the 2015 earthquake the site still contains many stunning architectural gems. The original royal palace courtyards are open to visitors and you will marvel at the intricate timber carving and beautifully crafted brickwork of the palace. The open square outside the palace has many beautiful multi-story pagodas and temples with ornate carving and carpentry artwork that tells some of the stories of the ancient kings and their mystical time and beliefs. The square also contains many important Hindu temples and statues such as Vishnu and Lord Shiva. Durbar Square also contains the unique and intriguing Kumari Chok. This is an ancient and ornate house where resides the Raj Kumari – the Living Goddess. She is a young girl chosen through an ancient and mystical selection process to become the human incarnation of the Hindu mother goddess, Durga. If you are in the courtyard of her home at the right time in the afternoon you may see a brief glimpse of the Goddess at her window.
After breakfast, full day sightseeing tour of Bhaktapur Durbar Square and Chandagiri Hill via Cable car. Overnight in Kathmandu
Bhaktapur Durbar Square is another UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a wonder of traditional and religious architecture. Your guide will escort you to the main palace building with its balcony of 55 windows and its precious Golden Gate entrance. You will also see the beautiful Nyatapola Temple with its five levels of pagoda roof symbolising the five basic elements of all creation. This is the tallest pagoda in Nepal and built with beautiful architectural artistry. Your tour will also take you to the Pottery Square where pots are made and fired using traditional methods. This part of the complex is like a living museum of the potter's trade. You may also have the opportunity visit a thangka painting school and watch highly skilled and patient artists paint complex traditional Buddhist designs or mandala.
Now that you have personally visited and experienced the major cultural wonders and treasures of Nepal it is time to return home and tell your family and friends about all you have seen during your journey through Nepal. You guide and transport vehicle will collect you from your hotel in good time to take you to the Tribhuvan International Airport. You might like to chat with your guide about your next tour destination in the Himalaya region - Langtang Ri is certain to have a tour package available for any location you can imagine. We hope to see you again very soon.
Footwear : Well broken-in walking shoes - thick socks, light socks, camp shoes.
Clothing : Warm jacket and trousers, sweater or fleece jacket, underwear, warm and cotton trousers or jeans, shirts and T-shirts, shorts, long underwear, wool hat, sun hat, gloves, bathing suit, track suit.
Other equipment: lock, day pack, water bottle, sun cream, sunglasses, flashlight with spare bulbs and batteries, lip salve, gaiters.
Other items: Insect repellent, diary, First aid kits,, camera, film, cards and personal medical