A City of Devotees: Bhaktapur

Kathmandu Valley is made up of 3 cities: Kathmandu (ye), Patan( yala), and Bhakatpur (Khappe). Kathmandu is the city of temples, Patan is the city of arts, and Bhaktapur is known as the City of Devotees. Bhaktapur is unique since they have restored and preserved the traditional architecture and culture keeping the brick façade with wood-carved windows as well as brick-paved walkways throughout the city. Bhaktapur is also a UNESCO Heritage site, and has a 19th century Malla Durbar (palace) that showcases the artistry of the artisans who worked under the Patronage of Mallag Kings. Here you cannot miss the Golden gate, the 55-windowed palace and the King’s statue on a stone pillar.

The most famous temple in Bhaktapur is Nyatapole, the five-storey pagoda temple which has now withstood 2 massive earthquakes. Dedicated to a tantric deity, this is the tallest temple in this old city and is located in Taumadhi square. Beside the Nyatapola is the pagoda style Bhairavnath Temple: Dedicated to Kasi Bhairav, the three storied temple of Bhairavnath has only the head of Bhairav in the inner sanctum. Bhairav is the dangerous aspect of Shiva. Originally built by King Jagat Jyoti Malla, the temple was improved by King Bhupatindra Malla who had a passion for art. This Bhairav plays an important role during the popular Bisket Festival celebrated in April each year.

The first of the large water bodies one comes across in Bhaktapur is Siddha Pokhu (Pokhari) which is also the largest lake in this area. It was originally meant to supply drinking water to the people of Bhaktapur. Built in the 15th Century by King Yakshya Malla, this large rectangular tank is full of fish and is occasionally open to the public for fishing and boating. The Dattatreya temple is uniquely dedicated to the holy trinity of Hindu mythology: Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu. Dominating the Dattatreya Square, it stands facing the Bhimsen temple and close to the famous Peacock Window. This window is part of the Woodcarving Museum. This peacock window is where Hotel Roadhouse draws inspiration and pays homage to the most intricate wood carving across all 3 Durbar Squares.