Nepal is undoubtedly a photographer’s delight, a land of eternal fascination. Since opening to foreign visitors in the fifties, it has been the epicenter of Himalayan photographic activities. Photographing in Nepal not only offers an opportunity to immerse oneself in Himalayan bliss but also a rare opportunity chance to take a step back in time. This photography tour lets you capture the lifestyle and nature of the historic Kathmandu city and beyond.
As the cultural, commercial and political hub of Nepal, Kathmandu Valley is a city bearing the legacy of a rich yesterday which is highlighted by the presence of many living structures listed by UNESCO as heritage sites. The valley covers an area of 218 Sq. miles and consists of three main cities of Kathmandu, Lalitpur (Patan), and Bhaktapur (Bhadgaon). The spirituality of the town and the people are depicted in innumerable temples on almost very corner of the older part of town like Kathmandu Durbar Square, Ason, Indra Chowk, etc. The valley also holds some of the greatest Stupas that attract pilgrims and visitors from all over the world, namely the Boudhanath and Swayambunath. Pashupatinath is one of the most sacred places for Hindu worshippers and attracts thousands of visitors and worshippers daily. A visit to Nagarkot hill station will give you a glimpse of country side of Nepal.
Upon arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu, you will be received by our representative and transferred to your Hotel. If arrive early mid-day is free to venture around the city close to your hotel. Welcome dinner at the hotel in the evening.
After Breakfast, meet your tour guide at the hotel’s lobby. S/He will escort you through the colorful street of an old town to the Kathmandu Durbar Square – The kingdom of an ancient Nepal. Situated in the heart of the city, The preference for the construction of royal palaces at this site dates back to as early as the Licchavi period in the third century. Even though the present palaces and temples have undergone repeated and extensive renovations and nothing physical remains from that period. But still we can appreciate numerous beautiful architectural structures built in between 15th to 19th Century by Malla Dynasty and Shah Dynasty including three-roofed Taleju Temple (1564), in a typical Newari architectural style and is elevated on platforms that form a pyramid-like structure and a palace, Gaddi Durbar (1908) highly influenced by European architectural designs, covered in white plaster, has Greek columns and adjoins a large audience hall, and a royal balcony.
After getting to know more about the ancient kingdom, we will be having a lunch break at the rooftop cafe at the heritage site and then continue with our tour to next spot. Swayambunath Stupa, it is said that the Stupa is more than Two Thousand years old and this seems to be confirmed by a damaged stone inscription found at the site, which indicates that King Vrsadeva, the Great Grandfather of King King Mānadeva (464-505 CE) ordered work done in 640 CE. Although the site is considered Buddhist, the place is revered by both Buddhists and Hindus as an important pilgrim site. The Stupa symbolizes knowledge. The painted eyes on all four sides symbolize the all-seeing power of Buddha.
It is about 30 minutes drive to Boudhanath Stupa, another important Buddhist pilgrims’ site with one of the largest stupas in the World and more than 50 gompas (Tibetan convent) in & around the Boudhanath Stupa premises. The stupa also served as a
base camp during ancient time for Tibetan traders who enters the Kathmandu Valley by the village of Sankhu in the northeast corner. You can experience the Tibetan vibes while visiting there. Every morning and evening, many Buddhist devotees come here to pray and circumambulate enabling the visitors to observe local religious practices. [Lunch at Boudha].
From Boudhanath Stupa, it is about 10 minutes drive to Pashupatinath Temple, a sacred Hindu temple located on the banks of Bagmati River also considered the holiest cremation ground for Hindus. The existence of Pashupatinath temple dates back to 400 B.C. and is believed to be the oldest Hindu temple in Kathmandu. The main temple is built in Nepalese pagoda style having four main doors all covered with sheets and covered by copper roofs of gold plating. It comprises of 264 hectars of land including 518 ancient temples and monuments.
Patan, once an independent and mighty kingdom of the Kathmandu Valley, Patan became a melting pot of two influential religions, Hinduism, and Buddhism. The pious Krishna (Hindu) temple, which rests in the middle of the town; into the very own town, whose entire city's architecture was dedicated to the philosophy of the Buddhist Dharma-Chakra (Wheel of Righteousness) molds Patan, to this date, as a glorious city of culture, religion, art, and heritage. There are many fine arts and handicrafts, ancient places, temples, shrines with exquisite woodcarvings. [Lunch at Patan]
Bungamati lies five kilometers south of Patan. A typical Newari village is tightly clustered against a hilly riverside slope surrounded by terraced rice fields. A stone paved path leads to a gate guarded by two lions and the head of a third one. As you walk the streets, you will find hundreds of masterful wood carvers and sculptors offering you excellently hand-crafted items at bargain prices. Most of them work from home and they may even offer you other articles for sale on the side. The Bungamati Newar enjoys an incredibly rich culture which extends over the fields of language, writing, art, architecture. The people who live here have been practicing their skill or trade, which has been passed down for generations, for most of their lives and they always greet you with a smile.
Khokana, a tiny village right next to Bungamati, is mainly known for the production of rich mustard oil since ancient time. It was also the first town in Nepal to be lit with electricity in 1911 AD. It is worthwhile to seek out one of the villages oil press, located in poorly lighted factories with medieval atmosphere. Khokana has been nominated to be listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, representing a vernacular village and its mustard-oil seed industrial heritage.
After breakfast, we will visit the almost perfectly preserved city of Bhaktapur (Bhadgaon in the past), which is situated 14 kilometers east of Kathmandu and covers an area of 4 square miles. Bhaktapur means the city of devotees. A lot of pottery and weaving can be found here, as these are the traditional home industries. The Durbar Square of Bhaktapur holds precious architectural pieces like the Golden Gate, the Palace of 55 windows, and the Lion Gate etc. People and the place still remain traditional. The museum of Bhaktapur contains various old paintings, sculptures, and handicrafts. The residents of this city are highly regarded for their skill in making exquisite woodcarvings and handicraft goods. The third of the medieval city-states in the Kathmandu Valley, Bhaktapur was always described as the best preserved. Tragically, however, the 2015 earthquake caused terrible devastation and loss of life. Nevertheless, only a few temples were destroyed, there is still much to see here, and tourism is vital to the community.
We then continue to our Resort at Nagarkot on the Kathmandu Valley Rim. Sunset views from Nagarkot back across the valley to Kathmandu are very impressive.
Nagarkot, a beautiful hill station, 35 kilometers east of Kathmandu and at an altitude of 2,174 m, Nagarkot stands on a ridge between the Kathmandu valley in the west and the Indrawati Valley in the east. We'll get up early to catch the sunrise from the roof of the lodge and after breakfast walk or drive to a nearby hilltop along the ridge for spectacular views over the Himalayas.
After a short exploration in Nagarkot, drive back to Kathmandu. Free day for independent activities.
Our adventure in Kathmandu Valley comes to an end today! After Breakfast, Free till departure transfer to the airport to connect with the onward flight. Return home to tell the tale of legendary adventure.
All accommodations are on twin-shared basis. Single supplement will be served on request and will cost an additional USD 299.
Min 2 pax
Landmarks, Heritage, Cultures, UNESCO World Heritage Sites
As mentioned in Intinerary
Boutique Hotel & Resort
All year round