Photos of Kathmandu Valley, centre of Nepal’s civilisation

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Kathmandu Valley, centre of Nepal’s civilisation

The Kathmandu Valley was also known as the Nepal (or Nepa) Valley, at the crossroads of ancient Indian civilisations. It may have been inhabited as early as 300 BCE; the Licchavi Kingdom ruled it from around 400 to 750 CE, and the Malla dynasty from the 12th to the 18th Century CE. The Gorkha Kingdom conquered it and became present-day Nepal. The Kathmandu valley is inhabited by the Newar or Nepa people, who are the creators of the historic civilisation of the valley, in the three kingdoms of Kathmandu, Patan (now Lalitpur), and Bhadgaon (Bhaktapur).

Street, Bouddha neighbourhood
Farmer's house, Kathmandu valley
Road to Gokarna
Village of Gokarna
Road leading to Sundarijal
Village road, Gokarneshwar
Street in Gokarna
Footpath in Gokarna
View down in Gokarna
Woman carrying a jar
View near Gokarna
Women bringing sacrifices, Dakshinkali
At Dakshinkali Temple
Meat being cleaned
Sadhu, waiting for alms
Between Kathmandu and Budhanilkantha
Cymbal player, Budhanilkantha
Boys burning incense
Woman ringing a bell,
Musicians, Budhanilkantha
Wiping Vishnu's mouth
Bringing holy water
Praying to Lord Vishnu
At Tribhuvan Airport

In the valley, there are many villages with two-story houses and farms, temples, shrines, and places of pilgrimage. About 9 kilometres northeast of Kathmandu is the open-air Budhanilkantha Temple. It features a giant basalt statue of Lord Vishnu in the middle of a recessed pool of water, reclining on the coils of the cosmic serpent Shesha. It is considered the largest stone carving in Nepal.

Dakshinkali Temple, about 22 kilometres south of Kathmandu, is one of the major Hindu temples in Nepal dedicated to the goddess Kali. Cockerels and uncastrated male goats are slaughtered as offerings to the goddess, who, it is believed, protects her devotees and children from mishaps and misfortunes.