Bordering the north-west region of Kathmandu is the district of Nuwakot which is extremely rich in natural and cultural beauty. One of the finest short-trekking destinations, Nuwakot is the beginning point where the unification of Nepal started. Endowed with natural beauty, Nuwakot is very rich in history and is famous for its coffee plantation and welcoming homestays too.
History of Nuwakot
King Prithvi Narayan Shah captured Nuwakot with the plan to use it as a base to conquer Kathmandu valley. He built a massive, military towers on the surrounding hills to block trade between Kathmandu and Tibet. He was able to conquer Kirtipur after the third attempt only. After that, he was a success in conquering Patan and Kathmandu. Though he died in 1775 at the age of 52, his dream of unifying the kingdoms of Nepal into one was carried out by his sons which continued through to modern-day Nepal.
Places to visit in Nuwakot
Nuwakot palace also called ‘Saat Tale Durbar’ which means the seven-storied palace is the main attraction of the Nuwakot. Located on the top of the hill, it used to be a palace of king Prithvi Narayan Shah. It used to be a museum but it was closed in 2011. Previously, the first floor was a reception for a museum, the second floor was used for religious purposes, and the third floor contained the living quarters of the king and his two wives.
Balcony encircling the entire floor providing the view of the surrounding hills can be seen on the third floor. The fourth floor was for the king’s guard, the fifth floor contained a large banquet room, sixth was an interrogation room and finally, seventh floor was just a look-out tower.
Taleju temple is the 35-meter block like temple dedicated to the goddess Taleju. Goddess Taleju was from south India but was adopted by the Malla royals in the 14th century. It was resurrected by the King Mahendra Malla but now due to the earthquake of 2015, its internal and external structures are damaged. Like the Taleju temple, it is open to visitors for only one day during the Dashain festival.
The exact date of the construction of this temple is unknown, but it is considered one of the oldest temples of Nepal. Built-in Newari architecture, Bhairab temple was badly affected by the earthquake of 2015. It can be entered from a series of stone step and its Inner courtyard is still in very good condition. A local priest drinks the blood of an entire buffalo and vomits it back up during the Sindur Jatra festival. It is considered a sign of Devotion.
Once an army barrack, Garad Ghar is located in a peaceful and scenic garden area. It used to be a four-storied building, but now only two floors are present.
Ranga Mahal (Dance Hall)
Just beside Garad Ghar, is the old dance hall building known as Ranga Mahal. Used for various formal events, ceremonial occasions, and for performing arts, Ranga Mahal still stands with some damage but the entry is not allowed. It is a Newari architecture building as the king used designers, artists, and workers from Patan to build this building.
Arun Sharma Says,”Best place carrying a lot of historical feelings.”
Pramish Pokharel says,” Its better and different than picture. Also it’s on top so we can enjoy great views of Bidur, hills and forest & amazing clouds from it.”
Sudhir Pathak says,” You can view beautiful nature from here. Here Sel and Chiya (Tea) are the best.”
Nisse Holmström says,” Historic setting in rural area with beautiful experience.”
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