(Altitude 2000m/6, 560 ft., 32 km/20 miles)
Following breakfast, we check out hotel as we spend overnight in Nagarkot today. We visit a few attractions of the valley before we head out to Nagarkot.
We first visit the magnificent Boudhanath Stupa. With 328 m long periphery of octagonal shape and 125 f height, Boudhanath is among the largest Buddhist monument in the world. Originally built in the 5th century, the stupa is an important pilgrimage site for Buddhist people. The are is predominantly Tibetan as Tibetan refugees have made the area their home and there are several monasteries of different Buddhist schools.
Next, we stop in Pashupatinath Temple -that claims to be one of the holiest Hindu temples in entire South Asia. Situated on the bank of Bagmati River which is a tributary of sacred Ganges-the temple attracts Hindu devotees from all over the country and India. Admission to the temple is reserved for Hindus only, yet we can have a close up view of the temple and activities in the premises from other side of the river. The temple and the surroundings are vibrant with rites and rituals performed by Hindu devotees. We will also have opportunity to watch the Hindu cremation services in the bank of the river.
Our final stop before head out to Nagarkot is Bhaktapur - one of the three medieval principalities of Kathmandu valley and the best preserved one. Bhaktapur, with its Durbar Square with beautiful palaces and temples with intricate wood carving and fabulous stone sculptures and brick paved streets looks like an open air museum! The major attractions in Bhaktapur are the Palace of 55 windows, the giant Taleju Bell in front of the palace, the golden gilded gate with beautiful metal works in its semi-circular pediment, the royal bath tank inside the palace, 5 storied Naytapola temple - that survived quite a few major earthquakes, Duttratraya Temple, and Pujarimath complex with Peacock window - the masterpiece woodcarving in Nepal. We walk through the narrow alleys with private houses on both sides and visit potter’s square where we learn the traditional methods of pottery making. We will also take a chance to stop by a wood carvers’ workshop near Duttratraya.
Now exit the town and continue on a scenic to Nagarkot. The road zigzags up and climbs through the terraced farmlands, juniper and pine trees and beautiful villages to the ridge top of Nagarkot. On a clear weather day, we are greeted by superb views of the snow-capped mountains. We check in hotel and after some refreshment, we take relaxed stroll around.