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7 things to do in Kathmandu

Kathmandu is the capital city of Nepal. You can explore thousands of years of culture here, while making your way through historic temples and monasteries that belong to Hindus and Buddhists alike.

Basantapur Durbar Square
Photo: Jorge Láscar@flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Basantapur Durbar Square

Through the 19th century, Basantapur Durbar Square was the playground of the Nepalese monarchy. Due to natural disasters over the years, many buildings in the square have needed repair, but Durbar square maintains a tradition of Nepalese architecture and is ranked as an UNESCO World Heritage site.

Shechen Monastery

Shechen Monastery

A Tibetan Buddhist monastery, Shechen Monastery was founded in the late 17th century. Three hundred monks take care of Shechen, which is one of six mother monasteries in Nepal.



Located on an ancient trade route, this place of meditation is a must-see on any spiritual journey around Kathmandu. Boudhanath is one of the largest stupa's in the world, and many Tibetan traders and merchants have offered their prayers to this land over the centuries.

Kopan Monastery

Kopan Monastery

The Kopan Monastery is not far from Boudhanath and is mostly known for teaching Buddhism to foreigners. Starting in the 1970s the monastery offered a month-long meditation course in November and December. At other times throughout the year, please note that the monastery is only open to the public on Saturday.

Harati Devi Temple

Harati Devi Temple

The Tibetan name of the Harati Devi Temple is Swayambhunath and translates to "sublime trees." The ancient religious architecture frames a museum, library, stupa, and more; and visitors are sure to discover much about Nepalese traditions of worship at the Harati Devi Temple.

Pashupatinath Temple

Pashupatinath Temple

You'll find the Pashupatinath Temple on the banks of the Bagmati River. A Hindu temple, Pashupatinath has been on UNESCO's World Heritage list since 1979. If you're visiting in February or March, check out the Maha Shivaratri festival, which more than 70,000 people celebrate at this temple.



A historical site in the tradition of Buddhism, Lumbini is where Queen Mayadevi is said to have given birth to Siddartha Gautama in BC 623. Immerse yourself in monasteries here, as Lumbini is in a monastic zone, in which hotels or restaurants cannot be legally built nearby.

Planning Your Kathmandu Visit

How to Get Around Kathmandu?

The easiest way to get around short distances is by hiring a bicycle rickshaw. You can also hire a taxi or rent a bike. Make sure to negotiate fares at the beginning of your journey.

When to go to Kathmandu?

The best time to go to Kathmandu is October through November as the sun shines the most often. During the summer your plans are likely to get rained out--it's monsoon season. The second best time to visit is February through May, when winter is over but the rain has not yet begun.

What to Eat in Kathmandu?

Many say Kathmandu has the most varied cuisine available in Asia. While you're in Nepal, be sure to sample some local fare. We recommend you try daal (lentil soup), with bhat (rice), or a vegetable curry. Another staple is a Momo, which is a Tibetan style dumpling that uses Nepali spices.

Good to know

  • Language
  • Currency
    Nepalese Rupee (Rs)
  • Time Zone
    UTC (+05:45)
  • Country Code
  • Best time to visit
    The best time to visit Kathmandu is in the fall. You'll find the best weather Kathmandu has to offer, with comfortable temperatures in the 70s.

Things to Do in Kathmandu

Top Attractions in Kathmandu

Cities in Nepal

Other Sightseeing Options in Kathmandu

Want to discover all there is to do in Kathmandu? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Kathmandu

Buddhism and hindu in the hearth of kathmandu

Just a great experience. Probin and the monk Dendup were just the perfect guides. It was a tour full of interesting thinks: we got to know about the temple and the monastery life, about traditions, culture and religions. We discovered the history of Kathmandu, and a lot of interesting facts about hindu and Buddhist religion. It was a great pleasure to spend few hours with Probin and Dendup cause they teached us in 3 hours more then what we learned in 14 days. Everything was well organized! Thanks a lot!

Swayambhunath, Monkey Temple, Tour from a Monk Reviewed by ALESSANDRA, 01/04/2019

An unforgettable day in an unforgettable part of the world

Our guides Sandeep and Mohan were two wonderful people who showed us a wonderful part of their country and shared their in-depth knowledge of nature and culture. We loved our day, took breath-taking photographs, enjoyed the delicious lunch provided and will never forget the awesome views. Thank you!

Outstanding service and overall experience

We saw the entire Himalayan mountain range and Mount Everest from a good distance ... in addition access to the cockpit 2-3 times made for great photos and memories !

45-Minute Mount Everest Flight Tour from Kathmandu Reviewed by Nicolas, 08/22/2018

Good guide, very informative, lovely temples, grotty city.

Thanks to Tilak and driver for a very interesting tour. An unexpected highlight (though not for those of a delicate disposition) was the visit to the riverside where Hindu cremations were taking place. Sad to see the earthquake damage to the temples but good to see restoration work ongoing. I learned a lot about Nepalese culture.

Kathmandu Valley Private 6-Hour Tour Reviewed by Joyce, 03/12/2018

A great guide. I saw rural Nepal - woods, people, farms & temples.

My guide was fantastic - knew the route well and was quietly supportive on a couple of challenging climbs. The tour route gave me an up-close view of Kathmandu valley's woods, hills and small villages. My guide was also very informative about the life of the people. The local guide agency provided me with clear instructions on getting ready and reliable answers to my questions.

Kathmandu Valley 3-Day Trek: Chisapani to Nagarkot Reviewed by a GetYourGuide customer, 02/16/2018