Changu Narayan Temple and Village
This is the most ancient Hindu temple in Kathmandu and is dedicated to lord Vishnu. The complex is built on a peninsula which was not submerged in water as most of the flat valley once was, and it may have even earlier roots than are now known. The lavishly decorated two-tiered principal temple stands in a spacious courtyard that is filled with artistic and priceless statues, idols and sculptures, some dating back to 4th century.
For many years the earliest inscribed date known in the valley was here, on the base of an early 5th century pillar. The image of Vishnu in the main temple is so holy that non-Hindus are not allowed to see it (though it has been widely copied by Nepali artists).
The temple comples lies at the western end of a long, narrow ridge. The village of Changu Narayan sits along this ridge. This attractive and characteristic town would be reason enough to visit, even without the temple complex.
The Magnificent Seven - The World Heritage Sites of the Kathmandu Valley
The Valley of Kathmandu is fertile, flat and compact. It is situated at the altitude of between 1,200 to 1,500 meters (between 4,000 to 5,000 feet).
The valley is also small, with an area of only 220 square miles (570 square kilometers). Yet in its smallness, there are record seven World Heritage Sites declared by the UNESCO - a fact unrivalled anywhere in the world! The seven man-made wonders are the milestones of Nepal's past and a living museum of high culture.
Unesco World Heritage Sites in Kathmandu