- Location: Kathmandu, Nepal
- Significance: Royal Square
- Attraction Type: Temples, Architecture, Royal Palace, shopping
- How to Reach: The Durbar Square is easily accessible from all parts of Kathmandu, via taxis and hired cars.
- Nearest Airport: Kathmandu International Airport
Durbar Square has been at the center of the Nepalese life for centuries. This elaborate, grand and absolutely fascinating square in the national capital of Nepal is where all major royal ceremonies have taken place right from the 12th up to the 19th century. However, most of the constructions took place between the 16th and the 17th century. Presently, it is a UNESCO World Heritage site because of its wonderful array of great architecture and historical worth.
Attractions of Durbar Square
The first thing that attracts your attention during your visit to Durbar Square is a large number of temples that are crowded together. Brilliant carving in stone and wood, great architectural details and the sheer grandeur that they project are enough to sweep you off your feet. The major temples of Durbar Square are as follows: Talejue Temple: This temple was apparently built on the advice of Goddess Telaju herself, who ordered the temple to be built according to the shape of a yantram. The temple is sacred to both Hindus and Jains. Its architecture is also equally fascinating, being the first temple to use a three-tier roof structure and is placed on a platform.
Mahendrashvara Temple: This temple is dedicated to Pashupati, a form of Hindu god Lord Shiva. The temple has been rebuilt after being destroyed in an earthquake in 1934 and is presently dedicated to King Mahendra Malla, the founder of the temple.
Jagannath Temple: Great and elaborate wood carving is what sets this temple apart. It is the most beautiful temple of the Hanuman Dhoka group. The temple was originally devoted to Lord Vishnu but was later dedicated to Lord Jagannath. There is an absolute profusion of deities in the carvings of this temple.
Dequtale Temple: This temple is dedicated to the family deity of the Mallas. It looks largely similar to the Telaju shrine, with some difference in the base. There is a great influence of the nature cult found in the carvings of this temple.
Hanuman Dhoka: The statue of Hanuman or the monkey god adorns the space created in the right angles created between the Regulate and the Taleju temples. Kumari Bahal: This is the temple of the living God, the kumari, a young girl selected from among many as the living incarnation of the Mother Goddess. She, however, returns to her normal life once she attains puberty.
Other temples of the square include the Shiva Temple, the Shiva Parvati Temple, the Vilar Temple, and the Trailokya Mohan Narayan Temple. Other important constructions of the square include the wooden construction of Kasthamandap. This earlier community hall was later transformed into a temple devoted to Lord Gorakhnath.
Other Attractions of Durbar Square
Although the Durbar Square is largely noted for its profusion of excellently carved temples, they are not the only attractions of the town square. The palace itself is decorated with wonderful and intricate wooden windows and panels. The palace is home to the Tribhuwan Memorial Museum and the Mahendra Museum. The Bhandarkar Botanical Garden is also one of the biggest attractions of the Square.
Accommodation in Kathmandu
Durbar Square is easily accessible from all parts of the Nepalese capital city of Kathmandu. It can be reached by cars, taxis as well by using the local transportation. There are a large number of hotels and inns in Kathmandu, catering to all kinds of budgets. Do not forget to do some shopping from Maru Tole, on the Western side of Durbar Square. Hyatt Regency Kathmandu, Dwarika’s Hotel, Hotel Tibet and Hotel Ambassador are some of the most popular hotels in the city.