Capital of Nepal
Kathmandu is the capital of Nepal. The ancient city of Kathmandu is situated on the bank of the Bagmati River in central Nepal. The capital of Nepal is full of Hindu temples and Buddhist monuments of various gods and goddesses. The city is also known as the city of temples. Kathmandu is noted for the most beautiful religious, cultural, and historical heritages with extraordinary craftsmanship. The city is also known as the city of art. The city was established as the capital of Nepal by King Prithivi Narayan Shah along with the victory over Kathmandu Valley during his unification campaign.
Table of Contents
- 1 Capital of Nepal
- 2 People of Capital of Nepal (Kathmandu)
- 3 Population of Kathmandu
- 4 Places to see in Kathmandu
- 5 Activities to do in Kathmandu
- 6 Hiking Destinations around Kathmandu
- 7 Heritage Sites in Kathmandu
- 8 Language of Kathmandu
Capital of Nepal
Kathmandu also spelled Katmandu or Kantipur is the capital of Nepal. It lies in the hilly region of Nepal, near the confluence of the Bagmati and Bishnumati Rivers. It is located at an elevation of 4,344 feet (1,324 meters) above sea level.
It was founded in 723 AD by King Gunakamadeva. Its early name was Manju-Patan. The present name “Kathmandu” refers to a wooden temple (Kath, “wood”; mandir, “temple” or “edifice”. Kastamandap which is said to have been built from the wood of a single tree by Raja Lachmina Singh in 1596 was a kettledrum from which the name of the city was derived. The Kastamandap still stands in the central square and is used for the accommodation of sadhus (holy men). The capital of Nepal, Kathmandu served as the seat of the ruling Shah family of the Gurkha people from 1768 to 2008.
The city has become the country’s most important business and commercial center through the efforts of its Newar merchant families. The City is famous in the international arena since being the administrative center. Besides the capital of Nepal, Kathmandu is the commercial hub with a remarkable stand-up in industrial growth.
Kathmandu, the capital city of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, has a long history of around 2000 years. Kathmandu valley is dominantly inhabited by Hindus and Buddhists. People of other religious backgrounds also live in Kathmandu which has made it the cosmopolitan of culture.
Kathmandu is also the origin place of Nepali civilizations, art, and culture. It is also a cultural and religious hub. Around 98% people of Kathmandu valley are literate. Kathmandu being the federal capital boasts the highest contribution in GDP in Nepal.
Kathmandu is the Shangri-La of typical Nepali Culture, Traditions, Festivals, People, Art, Architecture, and many more. This small city is a mystic land and there are quite many things to hold your attention.
People of Capital of Nepal (Kathmandu)
The capital of Nepal is Kathmandu and it is the largest metropolitan city of Nepal. The city is located in the bowl-shaped valley in central Nepal surrounded by four major mountains, namely: Shivapuri, Phulchowki, Nagarjun, and Chandragiri.
Kathmandu Valley is just like a melting pot of people of various ethnicity, religions, and backgrounds. Though it was dominantly inhabited by the Newars in the beginning, the present population structure of the valley boasts a mixed cultural upbringing. The valley is dominantly inhabited by the Hindus and the Buddhist majority.
Kathmandu Valley represents a cultural melting pot of the country, where people from various backgrounds have come together from diverse populations. The native ethnic group in the Kathmandu district is Newar. Besides that Brahmin, Chhetri, Tamangs, Gurung, Magar, Rai, Limbus, Thami, Sunuwars, Thakalis, Damai, Kami, Sherpa, etc are the other prominent people inhabiting Kathmandu.
Population of Kathmandu
The population of Nepal in 2019 is reportedly 29.7 million. About 125 ethnic groups are speaking over 123 languages. The distinction between caste and ethnicity is understood better with a view of the customary layout of the population.
Kathmandu Valley is among the highly populated region in Nepal. It has the highest population density in Nepal. The Capital of Nepal, Kathmandu is inhabited by 1.745 million people. The Kathmandu valley with its three districts including Kathmandu has the biggest population in Nepal. Kathmandu district accounts for a population density of 4000 per square kilometers whereas Kathmandu metropolitan city has a density of 13,225 per square kilometers. It is by far the largest urban agglomerate in Nepal, accounting for 20% of the urban population in an area of 5,067 hectares (12,520 acres) (50.67 square kilometers (19.56 sq. mi)).
Places to see in Kathmandu
Nepal has been enlisted as one of the must-see destinations in the world by International Magazines and surveys time and again. Kathmandu has been enlisted as the number one travel destination in the world recently.
The Kathmandu valley is the gateway of tourism in Nepal till now. The valley is the melting pot of people and culture. The valley has preserved the ancient glamour of our heritage and traditions. Here is a short description of the places to see in Kathmandu.
Thamel is in the heart of Kathmandu. This is the tourism hub of Nepal. All the important trekking companies, hotels, and tourism businesses are centered here. In fact, Thamel is s heaven for tourists in Nepal. It contains numerous hotels, restaurants, and shops that cater specifically to western tourists. It is located in the northern region of Kathmandu. This is a must-visit place. Thamel looks apparently beautiful during the night.
Budhanilkantha Temple is located on the foot of Shivapuri Hills. It is one of the most remarkable artworks of sculpturing. The temple dedicated to Lord Bishnu is one of the largest stone sculptures in the town. The trip to Budhanilkantha is one of the nearest sightseeing in Nepal. The trip can be further extended with a hike in the Shivapuri National Park.
Kirtipur is an ancient city in Nepal. It is located 5 km southeast of the valley. It is one of the popular religious destinations in Nepal. Many people visit Kirtipur for natural scenery as well. The small town of Kirtipur is the foundation of the Newar culture and traditions in Kathmandu valley. Bagh Bhairav, Uma Maheshwar, Chilancho Stupa, Shri Kirti Bihar, etc are some of the major religious and cultural sites in Kirtipur.
Gardens of Dream
The Garden of Dream is one of the best places to visit. It is located in the heart of the capital of Nepal, Kathmandu nearby Thamel. It is a neo-classical garden located in the Keiser Mahal in the Kathmandu Valley. The garden consists of three pavilions, an amphitheater, ponds, pergolas, and urns. From the mid-1960s, upon the death of its patron, Kaiser Sumsher Rand, it lay in neglect but was recently restored with the help of the Austrian government. The garden is among the must-visit place.
Taudaha Lake is a small lake located on the outskirt of Kathmandu Valley. The name came from Newari Language where “Ta” means Snake and “Daha” means lake. The place is very amazing, peaceful and the lake has a great number of fishes and you can also enjoy fish feeding. One can also enjoy photography while visiting Taudaha
Chobhar is another top destination to visit in Kathmandu Valley. It is really peaceful and offers the most beautiful mountain panoramas at the backdrop. Chobhar Cave, Chobhar Gorge, a small temple, etc are the worth visiting places in Chobhar. Chobhar caves are an extensive network of natural phreatic caves near the village of Chobhar, which is located 9 km southwest of Kathmandu. Chobhar is also known for the Chobhar gorge through which all the water of the valley drains.
Nagarkot is a well-known travel destination in tourist places in Kathmandu. The hill is famous for its Himalayan views and panorama. Nagarkot is well known for its stunning natural beauty and several hotels. The village is stacked up with hotels and accommodations, allowing you to view nature straight from the balcony. The views themselves are breathtaking. The hill station offers the best mountain views of the 13 outstanding peaks including the Rolwaling range, Ganesh Himal and Langtang Range.
Activities to do in Kathmandu
Kathmandu is a noted tourism destination in the world. People from all over the world come to the capital of Nepal for various purposes. All the international visitors come to Kathmandu before heading towards any trekking destinations. The capital of Nepal offers unlimited options for visitors. Kathmandu is historically, culturally, and naturally beautiful. This small city is popular for many sightseeing, hiking, pilgrimage, bird watching, photography, etc.
Hiking Destinations around Kathmandu
Sundarijal also means beautiful water is a very popular destination for sightseeing and short hiking in Kathmandu. It is famous for its natural serenity, and beautiful forest. The region also signals the ancient culture and traditions of the Newar people. The place is best known for its waterfalls. It is located on the edge of Shivapuri National Park. Many visitors come over here for hiking or mountain biking.
Phulchowki surrounds the valley of Kathmandu. The mountain is called ‘Phul,’ to reflect flowers, the literal meaning. This place is a natural garden of flowers and everything bright-beautiful.
The Mountain is a bed of wild roses, along with iris, yellow jasmine, and several native flowers. Exploring it is fun and enchanting because of the grove of rhododendrons in various hues. The path or the trail towards the summit includes keeping able roads. The route takes you through the Buddhist shrine as well. If you really love peaceful hikes, it suits your taste.
Chandragiri Hill is a very popular travel destination in Kathmandu. It is located in the southwestern flank of the Kathmandu valley, on top of a small hill. The hill offers the most beautiful panoramas of the entire valley. Chandragiri is very popular for cable car rides. Chandragiri hill has now become the most eligible destination in the valley for its strategic location and lush green wilderness. The ride on the cable car begins at Godam in Thankot and leads you to the top of the hill. Bhaleshow Mahadev temple is located on the top.
Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park
Shivapuri National Park is exciting, enthralling, and extremely inviting. The park is very famous for bird watching. The park boasts of over 300 species of birds and several rare orchids. The forest comes alive with a diverse range of flora and fauna. The park preserves several endangered species of animals, birds, and plants. The park preserves a total of 318 species of birds. It is one of the best places to visit while in Kathmandu.
Heritage Sites in Kathmandu
Nepal is rich in cultural and natural heritage. Some of them have been listed in the World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. Kathmandu valley alone has seven such heritages which are on the World Heritage list. Pashupatinath Temple, Swyambhunath Stupa, Bouddhanath Stupa, Kathmandu Durbar Square, Changunarayan Temple, Pathan Durbar Square, and Bhaktapur Durbar Square are the most beautiful world heritage sites from the Kathmandu Valley. These are the heritages that were enlisted in the World Heritage Sites of UNESCO since 1979.
This is a holy place for Hindus. The sacred place is considered one of the most important temples in the world and one of the most visited tourist places in Kathmandu. The complex is on the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list for decades. The extensive Hindu temple has a sprawling collection of images, inscriptions, ashrams, temples, and images. The temple complex includes the temple of Pashupati, Deupatan, Jay Bageshori, Gaurighat, Kutumbahal, Gaushala, Pingan Nath, and Sleshmantak Forest. There are about 492 temples, 199 stupas, chaityas, sandals, 1000 shillings, etc.
It is another most important destination which is situated on top of a hill in the Kathmandu Valley. This tourist place in Kathmandu is an ancient architectural marvel and one of the best attractions of the city. The entire complex is surrounded by a wide variety of trees. It comprises the main stupa, many shrines, temples, monasteries, museums, and a well-stocked library. The temples are painted with the eyes and eyebrows of the Buddha with the number 1 in local script painted as the nose of the lord, which is a sight to behold in itself.
Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu is a significant place located in Kathmandu. Located on an ancient trade route that entered Kathmandu from Tibet, the stupa is the largest in Nepal and holds a special place in Buddhism. The place has seen many traders and travelers offering prayers to their lord here, as the Stupa is considered to be the tomb of the remains of Kassapa Buddha. With a lot of legends attached to the place, it is one of the best places to visit in Nepal and easily deserves to be called so.
Kathmandu Durbar Square
It is located in the heart of the city. The Malla Kings ruled over Kathmandu from here. After the conquest of the Kathmandu Valley, King Prithivi Narayan Shah started to rule from here and it became the capital of Unified Nepal. It is the most significant place to know about Nepalese art, culture, and history. The premises has Hanumandhoka, Basantapur Palace, Taleju Temple, Museum, House of Kumari, Kastamandap, etc.
Bhaktapur Durbar Square
It is the palace complex of the Malla Kings. It is located in the Bhaktapur District. Famous heritages like 55 Window Palace, Nyathapole Temple, a Statue of King Bhupatindra Malla, Museum Art Gallery, Gilden gate, Various Bells, Datatraya Temple, etc are mild blowing artistic features found here.
It is the oldest temple in the Kathmandu valley. It is located in the Bhaktapur district. It was built during the time of Lichchhivi King Mandevin in the 5th century. The temple is built in the Pagoda style of architecture. There are several high-class models of stone inscriptions, stones, woods, and metallic art. It is one of the four Narayan believed to be in Kathmandu valley.
Patan Durbar Square
This was the palace square of the then Malla Kings of Patan during Medieval Nepal. It is located in the Lalitpur district. Krishna temple with 21 golden pinnacles is the masterpiece of Malla art and architecture. Besides this, there are Bhimsen temples, Vishwanath temple, Jagat Narayan Temple, Statue of Yog Narendra Malla, Mahabauddha, Kunbheshwor Mahadev, a temple of Rato Machhindranath, etc.
Language of Kathmandu
Nepal is a multi-lingual country. According to the census report 2011, a total of 123 languages are spoken in Nepal. Nepali is the official language of Nepal and it is spoken by the majority of the people. The constitution of Nepal has equally preserved all the languages spoken in Nepal as the language of the nations.
Besides Nepali, Newari, Maithali, Bhojpuri, Tamang, Gurung, Limbu, Magar, Tharu, Awadhi, Urdu, Hindi languages are spoken by the majority of the people.
To talk about the languages spoken in the capital of Nepal, Kathmandu 62.7% people speak Nepali, 16.9% people speak Newari, 8.3% people speak Tamang, 2.1% people speak Maithili, 1.2% people speak Gurung, 1.2% people speak Magar, 1.2% people speak Sherpa and other languages like Bhojpuri, Hindi, Rai, Limbu, etc are also spoken by a small group of people.
Kathmandu is the capital of Nepal and almost every ethnic community resides in Kathmandu valley in harmony. Therefore, people also speak their mother tongue to communicate with each other. Newari or Nepal Bhasa is dominantly spoken hereafter Nepali, the official language of Nepal.