The cultural treasure of Bhaktapur

Posted by Diederik , October 2018

When a person thinks about Nepalese architecture the first image that pops in their head is probably that of Bhaktapur. Bhaktapur is located a few kilometres outside Kathmandu and has an old town that is absolutely breath taking. In the morning, our guide and driver picked us up from our hotel and we set of for Bhaktapur. The drive took around 50 minutes gave us a great insight in the local live of Kathmandu as our driver explained about traditions and holy sites as we drove through different neighbourhoods. Arriving in Bhaktapur, we had to pay an entrance fee to enter the city centre since it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. When we entered the old town of Bhaktapur, we were stunned by its beautiful architecture. Our guide took us to the Durbar square where we could see the royal palace surrounded by temples and stupas. Although the Durbar square was badly damaged by the earthquake, our guide explained that most heritage sites were rebuild and the result was amazing, a beautiful square with plenty of culture. Our guide took us a bit further in Bhaktapur and we encounter the 5-story pagoda style Nyatapola temple. Our guide explained that this temple is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Siddha Laxmi, and was built in 1701. Next, our guide took us the Bhairab Nath Temple, a pagoda temple dedicated to the dreadful aspect of lord Shiva; Bhairab and to the Dattatreya Temple. Our guide explained that the statues represented the Hindu trinity: Brahma the creator, Vishnu the preserver and Shiva the destroyer. On the way back to the car, our guide took us to Ta Pukhu, a big reactangular water pond built in the early 15thcentury. When the day came to an end we felled blessed that we had the opportunity to visit this magical place and that we learned more about the Neplali culture and its heritage.

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