Patan Durbar Square is a UNESCO world heritage site and a melting pot of Hindu and Buddhist architecture, culture, and monuments. With its historical temples, monuments, shrines, sculptures, and idols, it is a wonder of Newari architecture. The city is also home to artists and craftsmen who have managed to keep alive traditional techniques and craftsmanship. While strolling around the gallis in the patan, you may see artists at work on their exquisite creations. This article covers places to visit and things to do in this city of art and artisans.
Patan, the city of artisans, is located around 8 km from the capital of Nepal. It is also known as Lalitpur or Yala. The city is a pure example of religious harmony in Nepal as it has an amalgamation of Hindu and Buddhist temples and monasteries. The city is home to the common deity of Hindus and Buddhists, Rato machhendranath, and is also considered the oldest Buddhist city. At the heart of the city lies Patan durbar square displaying intricately hand-carved wood and stone architecture with gilded metal rooftops, temples, museums, water spouts, and stupas. The area of Patan durbar square is also called mangal bazaar. It has several Buddhist temples, statues, bahals, and stupas, as well as Hindu temples and statues. Thus, it is a melting pot for Buddhism and Hinduism and is a World Heritage site. This article covers places to visit and things to do in Patan durbar square.
Places to visit in Patan Durbar Square
Krishna Temple is perhaps the most impressive piece of stonework in all of Kathmandu Valley. The Shikhara-style temple is entirely built of stones and is dedicated to Lord Krishna. Built-in the 17th century, it proudly houses Lord Krishna’s statues inside the temple’s sanctum. The temple is closed except for the Krishna Ashtami.
Also, the temple is surrounded by depictions of Krishna and the other nine incarnations of Vishnu. It also depicts the events of the Mahabharata and Ramayana through stone carvings. Thus, the Krishna temple is not just a work of art but an open book of Hinduism.
Chyasin Dewi Temple
The Chyasin Dewal Temple is an octagonal structure made of solid granite and was constructed in the 16th century. In some ways, it’s similar to a Krishna Mandir, but its eight-sided design sets it apart. It’s a three-story stone structure with a golden pinnacle on top. The gods and goddesses engraved in stone are the perfect finishing touch to this beautiful temple.
Approximately two hundred meters north of Patan Durbar Square is where you’ll find the Golden Temple, also locally known as the Kwabahal Tole. This Buddhist monastery, also known as the Hirna Varna Mahavihar, was built in the 12th century. The temple’s entrance is guarded by two stone elephants, and the courtyard is built in Nepalese bahal style, surrounded by the
The temple’s interior has a magnificent statue of the historical Shakyamuni Buddha. A minor shrine with a Swayambhunath Chaitya may be seen opposite the main temple. The temple is a pure example of craftsmanship with beautiful carvings of gods and goddesses. It also has several statues of beautifully carved Buddhist gods.
Mahaboudha Temple is a terracotta architectural marvel. Thousands of clay bricks were engraved with a Buddha image to construct this Buddhist temple. This is why the temple is commonly referred to as the temple of a thousand Buddhas. The temple was built in 14 th
century by Abhaya Raj Shakya. He was impressed with the Mahabodhi temple at Bodhgaya, India, and wanted to emulate it. The temple construction took generations and was finally completed in 1601 A.D.
The Vishwanath Temple is an iconic landmark dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva. It houses the stone shivalinga and is decorated with exquisite woodcarvings. Twin stone majestic elephants guard the temple. Furthermore, the temple is especially noted for the erotic imagery artistically sculpted on the roof supports.
Bhimsen temple is located north side of the durbar area. The monument’s antiquity is a mystery, but it was built in honor of Bhimsen, the Newars’ commercial deity. It is a rectangular three-story temple built with unique architecture and characteristics. The long pataka strips on its exterior are unique among the square’s other monuments.
It is believed that these strips are meant to symbolize a divine ladder that the gods use to travel between heaven and earth. Also, it features beautiful wooden brackets depicting Shiva, Parvati, Bhairava, and Ganesh. Finally, each roof tier is given its own metal finials making it more detailed and gorgeous
One of the most notable parts of the palace is the Sundari Chowk. Served as the King’s personal bathing area, the beautiful tap made of polished bronze is locally called Tusha Hiti. The Hindu gods, Garuda, Vishnu, and Laxmi, sit atop a five-headed makhara that has been artistically carved. There is also a little replica of the Krishna Temple. Although the Tusha Hiti is the main attraction at Sundari Chowk, the surrounding walls are noteworthy for their aesthetic and architectural qualities.
Rato Machhindranath Temple
Rato Machhindranath temple lies 400 m south of the mangalbazar and is situated in a vast courtyard called Ta Baha. Machhendranath is the common deity for both Hindus and Buddhists. To Buddhists, he was an incarnation of Avalokitesvara, whereas to Hindus, he was Lord Shiva. He is locally called Bundgadyo and is considered the deity of rain. A unique festival in Patan
includes citywide chariots of the Machhindranath, which occurs in July or August.
Bhadrakhal Water Tank
The Bhandarkhal water tank is situated behind Patan’s royal palace. It was built in the late 17th century and supplied the royal house with water. Three-tiered terraces provide year-round access to water in the palace. The Lohan Hiti water spout, situated on the reservoir’s eastern edge, is the source of the water supply. There is also a dragon-headed spout topped with a stone representation of Ganga, the goddess of water. The water tank is surprisingly well-planned, serving as a great example of ancient water architecture.
The Patan Museum is located in the northernmost Durbar area courtyard. You may enter the museum via a door within the square of Keshav Narayan Chowk. It used to be the palace of the Malla kings but now is a museum featuring a variety of ancient artifacts. The museum’s extensive collection includes stone and metal items, as well as paintings and inscriptions, from the Lichhavi era. Also, King Shree Niwas Malla’s throne, from the 17th century, is the museum’s centerpiece. Apart from this, it provides a beautiful collection of the arts, crafts, and religious artifacts of Nepal’s Hindu and Buddhist communities.
Things To Do In Patan Durbar Square
The Patan Museum is located in the northernmost Durbar area courtyard. You may enter the museum via a door within the square of Keshav Narayan Chowk. It used to be the palace of the Malla kings but now is a museum featuring a variety of ancient artifacts. The museum’s extensive collection includes stone and metal items, as well as paintings and inscriptions, from
the Lichhavi era.
Also, King Shree Niwas Malla’s throne, from the 17th century, is the museum’s centerpiece. Apart from this, it provides a beautiful collection of the arts, crafts, and religious artifacts of Nepal’s Hindu and Buddhist communities.
Evening At Patan Durbar Square
The beautiful durbar area is even prettier at night. The entire area is lightened with beautiful light enhancing the site’s beauty. Get yourself a cup of tea or coffee and enjoy the environment. The place is a bit chaotic even at night, but you can feel the peace and serenity among the chaos.
Visit The Museum
The patan museum has preserved the history of patan and the Malla dynasty pretty well. It has several old statues, paintings, thrones, artifacts, and vintage photos of Patan and Kathmandu valley. If you want to take a trip back in time, make sure you visit the museum.
Art And Photography
Patan is full of jatras and celebrations. The major festival here is rato machindranath jatra, where the chariot is pulled around the entire city. The chariot is 62 feet tall and is made of wood and leaves. Apart from this, Patan celebrates Dashain, Tihar, Matya, Krishna Ashtami, and many more.
Taste Of Patan
The monuments are excellent subjects for live paintings or drawings, whether you are an artist or just like art. You can download the beautiful sites from your eyes and print them on your canvas. Also, the picturesque place is excellent for some magnificent photos.
Get Lost In Patan
Being a newar city, Patan has various authentic newar cuisines and drinks. You can hop into the local Newari restaurants to bless your taste buds. Some of the local restaurants have been operated for generations. Also, there are sweet shops where you can try Newari sweets, including lakhamari, barfi, jerry, etc. Also, coffee and tea at Mangal Bazar are a must.
Patan has several small gallis that are perfect for getting lost. You will be amazed where the gallis will lead to. Getting lost in Patan is like a treasure hunt. The only difference is that plenty of treasures can be found along the path.
Patan has several Buddhist bahals and monasteries. These bahals are Newari courtyards beautifully built with statues of Lord Buddha and other Buddhist deities.Some bahals include Nagbahal, Gabahal, Okubahal, Nabhahal and so on.
Checkout: Top Places To Visit In Nepal (Recommended)