Heritage walk in Kathmandu
The heritage walk in Kathmandu is one of the nicest walk to discover the core Kathmandu with its lively activities. The walk starts in the main tourist hub of Thamel and ends at the same place. The walk covers all the old streets, temples, markets crossroads and even a Buddhist temple. One can make an extension of a walk to visit Kathmandu Durbar Square as well. Kathmandu Durbar Square is full of temples, old palaces with its beautiful courtyards. The complex is listed in the world heritage sites by UNESCO and was an active palace until 1896 AD. This popular walk familiarizes the ancient way of life in Kathmandu and old shopping streets for residents of Kathmandu. Till now many of the Kathmandu residents consider these streets to do their shopping even same objects are available in their neighborhood. The walk also takes to observe some of the old alleys with small shrines in the courtyards inside. Kathmandu is famous for its myriads of temples so one can see all different type of temples and most of them are active till the date. One can get a complete idea of how the insider’s area is totally different than the tourist area. If you are interested to try the local food, there is a choice also but we always recommend checking the hygiene of the place and the condition of the place where they prepare the foods.
Major attractions of the walk
Asan actually is a cross road where six different streets meet and always filled with vegetable sellers, ginger, turmeric, and fruits sellers. One can buy anything in Asan. The rush of activities in Asan is overwhelming so find a comfortable corner to watch all the activities. It has a temple of goddess Annapurna and Ganesh.
Six small streets meet this small square and the cross road is dominated by the rectangular shrine of Akash Bhairav which is guarded by gilded griffons. The ground floor of the temple is full of shops and you can often see people queing up to drink Lassi as the famous Lassi sellers are concentrated here. In fron of Akash Bahirav temple there is a famous Pote Bazar which sells glittering glass beads. The multi strand beads which a married women set with gold ornaments.
The classic architecture from Kathmandu valley, the temple is for god of compassion white Machhendranath. White Machhendranath is a patron deity for Newar Buddhist from Kathmandu valley. The temple is caged in iron grill work to protect the valuables from the temple. There are shops selling the objects which are necessary for doing the rituals.
The replica of the monkey temple and considered visiting this stupa give religious merit of visiting Swoyambhunath making 365 steps. This actually made for aged and weak people who cannot reach Swoyambhunath by walking in the past. The current structure is from 17th century but the temple dates back to as early as 6th century.
Who can participate in the heritage walk in Kathmandu?
Anyone who likes to see Kathmandu on local’s way and does not have any problems walking in the crowded and narrow streets and have a zeal to understand Kathmandu in a real way can participate for the walk. One can go with camera to capture the streets and temples as well as day to day life of people on the way.
The best hour to do this walk
The temples and market are active in the morning and in the afternoon so mornings and afternoons are better to do this walk. You can actually do the walk throughout the day but mornings and late afternoons there are more people in the streets than day time.
The cost of this heritage walk
We charge half day tour price for this walk, if you like to add Kathmandu Durbar Square you can include it also. The cost will be different depending on your accommodation. If you stay in Thamel, you don’t need transport so the trip will be cheaper if you need transport there will be extra cost. Please feel free to write to us about options.
The route of the Walk
We have different route but our best sought route is following:
Thamel-Thahity-Asan Bazar-Paltan ghar-Janabahal-Indrachok-Makhan-Kathmandu Durbar square –Indrachok-Kilagal- Kathsimbhu-Chhetrapti-Thamel
How many hours the total tour last?
Normally whole tour last up to four hours including Kathmandu Durbar Square which comes in our half day tour.
Can I do this walk on my own?
The streets are really confusing and some of the temples and streets are well hidden so we recommend you to take our professional guide who is familiar with all the streets, temples and landmarks in the area. The guide also explains about the places so you will understand better everything. If you want to do on your own you can do this also.
Is there entrance fee in this walk?
There is no entrance fee except Kathmandu Durbar Square, if you wish to visit Kathmandu Durbar Square there is an entrance fee for all foreigners. The entry to Durbar Square is free after dark as there are no picture opportunities and many courtyards are not accessible during this hour.
What happened if I get tired and not able to walk after doing part of the walk?
Rikshaw, a tricycle is available in most of the streets but you might be missing some temples in the tour. Some wider streets even taxis are available.
Is this area good for shopping?
It depends with the interest of the people but tourist they don’t go for shopping in this area. You can get local spices, tea, coffee, Himalayan salts during the walk.
There are no serious problems but as you are going on the very busy area there might be pick pocketing so carry just enough cash and carry your vitals safely. Most of the streets are blacktopped or stone paved but part of the streets might be muddy in the rainy season.