Kathmandu City Tour lets you explore some of the city’s ancient heritage sites. Take a Kathmandu City tour packages and discover the medieval cities of Patan and Bhaktapur. In addition, a visit to Nepal’s oldest Hindu temple Changu Narayan is also included in your itinerary.
The city of Kathmandu is made up of three medieval cities – Patan, Bhaktapur and Kathmandu. While Patan is also known as the ‘City of Artisans’, Bhaktapur is the ‘City of Devotees’. The Durbar (royal) Squares of these ancient cities hold some of the finest and well-preserved pieces of traditional art and architecture. Take a leisurely stroll around the splendid Patan Durbar Square and Bhaktapur Durbar Square. Once the power centers of the Malla dynasty, the two palace squares are filled with pagoda-roofed temples and palaces, latticed wooden windows; ornately carved pillars, doorways, arches, and statues. Krishna Temple, Patan Palace Museum, Golden Temple etc. are the attractions at Patan Durbar Square. Bhaktapur’s cultural gems include the five-tiered pagoda-roofed Nyatapol Temple, Palace of 55 windows, Bhairavnath Temple, Pottery square etc. These old cities are full of ancient wonders and mysticism.
Wind up your tour with a delightful drive to Changu Narayan Temple. Set deep in the woods, this hilltop Hindu shrine is Nepal’s oldest temple. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the temple’s grounds are filled with ornately sculpted wooden, stone and metal artifacts. Here you will find the oldest inscription in the country dating back to 464 AD. Come and explore these ancient wonders! Take a tour around these ancient UNESCO World Heritage Sites and see the history come alive.
Departure Time: 9 AM
Duration: 1 day (6 hours approx.)
Starting & Ending Point: Your hotel
Destinations Covered: Patan Durbar Square, Bhaktapur Durbar Square, Changu Narayan Temple
*TOURS DEPART EVERYDAY OF THE YEAR
Our guide will be there at your hotel in the morning. Take a drive to the ancient city of Patan. Also known as ‘City of Artisans’, temples and stupas in various shapes, sizes and antiquity fill this old city. The city is populated by Newars considered as the original inhabitants of the Kathmandu valley. After sometime you reach Patan Durbar Square is where the main highlights of this tour starts. The grey stone temple of Krishna Mandir dominates the entrance of the square. Dedicated to Lord Krishna, this is one of the most significant Hindu temples. The Patan Palace Museum is the former palace of the Malla kings and now houses a museum. Admire the gold, silver and bronze artwork at the Golden Temple or Hiranya Varna Mahavihar.
Bhaktapur, known as the ‘City of Devotees’ has a rustic charm. This city takes you back in time. The royal square is divided into three squares- the Bhaktapur Durbar Square, Taumadhi Square and Dattatreya Square. The brick-laden walkways lead you to temples with intricately carved out woodwork. As you reach the square witness the only five-tiered pagoda-roofed temple in Nepal, Nyatapol. It was built in the 17th century. Walk ahead and peek from the latticed wooden windows of the Palace of 55 Windows. Gaze in wonder at the wonderful metal repousse work of Golden Gate. Further ahead you access the inner areas of the palace. The abundant pagoda styled temples and monuments that dot the square, gives a perfect example of the expressive and complex design of Nepalese architecture back in the middle ages. Stroll around pottery square and observe the potters busy at work - spinning their wheels, firing their kiln and moulding clay into beautiful artifacts.
Changu Narayan Temple
Drive further to the ancient Hindu temple of Changu Narayan. Located deep in a verdant forest the temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The temple dates back to the Licchavi period (450 AD-750 AD) and is dedicated to the Hindu deity Lord Vishnu. The temple’s grounds are filled with ornately carved wood, stone and metal artifacts dating back to Licchavi and Malla periods. Here you will find the oldest inscription (464 AD) found in Nepal. Carved in a stone pillar, the inscription is in Sanskrit and describes an episode from the Licchavi King Manadeva’s life. The temple lies in a secluded and peaceful area. Walk around the and soak in the peaceful ambience, gazing at the historic works of art. Finally wrap up your tour with a drive back to your hotel.
Our Kathmandu city tour packages comprise a full sightseeing of the historical cities of Patan and Bhaktapur and the ancient Hindu temple of Changu Narayan. The sites that you will visit are listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Departures available every day, throughout the year, for private groups as well as independent travelers. The above itinerary is flexible and can be customized as per your needs. To book a ‘Private Tour’ please go to the top right-hand corner of this page.
Click this tab for a detailed Trip Note containing essential information about this trip, including gear and equipment lists and practical information.Essential Trip Information
I recently came to Kathmandu on a business trip. The deal got wrapped up sooner than expected and I was left with a couple of extra days before my scheduled departure. Since this was my first visit to Kathmandu, I decided to do some sightseeing. I did not want to end up getting lost by going off by myself, so I chose to book a guided tour with an agency. I Googled and came across Third Rock Adventures’ website. The company seemed genuine and reliable and I ended up booking a 1-day tour with them. I made an online booking and within minutes received a confirmation. I also received an email from them informing me that the guide will pick me up from my hotel at 9 AM sharp. The next day, Kamal, my guide arrived punctually at the said hour. We sat down for a briefing and he told me briefly about the places we were to visit. Being a history buff, I couldn’t wait for the tour to begin. First off we drove to Patan, an old city located a few kilometers from central Kathmandu. The Patan durbar square was fascinating. Some of the old temples and palace buildings were badly damaged by the earthquake but restoration work was in progress. Patan Museum showcased some interesting artifacts. I fully recommend a visit to this museum for people interested in oriental culture and Buddhism. There’s so much for you to discover here!
Then we took a long drive to Bhaktapur. The scene at Bhaktapur Durbar Square was somewhat similar to that of Patan. The earthquake had destroyed some of the old temples, but those that were left standing were majestic. The repousse work on the Golden Gate was simply marvelous. I spent a good hour or so studying the stone griffins, pagoda roofs and the filigreed woodwork. Kamal took me to the Potters’ Square where a community of potters was busy making terracotta pots the traditional way. Our last stop was Changu Narayan Temple, the oldest Hindu temple in Kathmandu. It was saddening to see what the earthquake had done to this historic site. But the main temple was still standing and there were plenty of delightful sights to keep one engaged. It was also good to see that the damaged monuments were getting restored. This was an insightful tour and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Highly recommended for those interested in discovering the city’s heritage and culture
Third Rock Adventures will arrange all necessary permits and paper work.
We usually provide private comfortable vehicles to individual tourists. For groups we provide comfortable luxury buses for pick up and drop-off’s.
Most of our tour guides speak English, which is a common communication medium. They are also trained, experienced and know the areas very well.
Yes, you are allowed to take pictures of the places. However, taking photographs in certain areas need permission; you can consult your tour guide for that matter. Please do seek permission of people before taking their pictures.
Most of the tour focuses on the UNESCO World Heritage sites in the old cities of Patan and Bhaktapur.