One of the most known and visited the World Heritage Site of Nepal is situated at the heart of Kathmandu. Kathmandu Durbar Square offers the spectacular architecture and lucidly showcases the skills of the Newar artists and craftsmen over several centuries.
Kathmandu Durbar Square is the focal point of attraction for visitors as it uncovers the historical background of architecture and culture of Nepal. The Durbar Square holds the historical significance as it held the coronation of King Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev and King Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev in 1975 and 2001 respectively.
Attractions of Kathmandu Durbar Square
Gaddi means “Throne” and Baithak means “Meeting” in Nepal, so the Gaddi Baithak altogether means the reception hall. Gaddi Baithak was built in 1908 during the Rana Regime with the British influence to serve as the reception hall to foreign dignitaries. This enormous white alluring structure southern part was decimated during the quake of 2015 but has now been renovated.
Basantapur Tower (Nine Storey Palace)
Nine Storey Palace is one of the major attractions of Kathmandu Durbar Square. It was built by King Prithvi Narayan Shah in the mid-eighteenth century. This Nine Storey Palace propounds the tremendous perspective on the western part of the Kathmandu Valley. The Nine Story Palace was annihilated by a massive earthquake of 2015 and is undergoing reconstruction work.
Taleju Temple was built in 1564 by King Mahendra Malla and is located in Trishul Chowk, attached to Hanuman Dhoka Palace. Taleju Bhawani was the clan Goddess of the Malla kings, who ruled Nepal from the 12th to the 18th century. Taleju temple can only be visited by Hindus once a year on the ninth day of Dashain.
Located at the Southern end of Kathmandu Durbar Square, Kumari Ghar is one of the most curious attractions of the area, where the only living goddess “Kumari” resides. The girl is chosen through an ancient and mystical selection process to become the human incarnation of demon-slaying Hindu goddess Durga. One can enter the courtyard of Kumari Ghar, but can’t enter this three-story building. Photos are permitted in the courtyard, but it is strictly forbidden to photograph the Kumari.
Located at the Kathmandu Durbar Square in the religious premises of Hanuman Dhoka, Kal Bhairav is a fierce manifestation of Lord Shiva. It is believed that the sculpture was sculpted in the 6th century. Bhairav here wears a necklace of skulls, trampling a corpse all the while. People believe that Kala Bhairav had decapitated one of Lord Brahma’s five heads and as punishment, was made to carry that head and roam around for many years till he was forgiven.
Swet Bhairav represents the most dangerous face of Lord Shiva. It is covered with a large lattice window throughout the year and taken out only during the festival of Indra Jatra. Traditional Nepali liquor and rice beer are distributed from a pipe coming out of the mouth of Bhairav during Indra Jatra.