Patan is a shopping paradise, all the streets around Durbar Square are full of souvenirs and antiques shops. I´m not shure about the prices but i found the area are less crowded than kathmandu, and with souvenirs of better quality.
Most of the visitors just come to visit Durbar Square, but Patan is a very interesting city, with lot of Hinduist and Buddhist temples to discover, take any of the steets from Durbar and try to find the more than 600 stupas and bahals around the city.
There are three small Vishnu temples in the square. The most interesting of all are this Shikara-style temple ( kept in bad conditions), with it´s lions guarding the entrance and the Vishnu statues in the walls.
This two storey temple dedicated to Narayan is located a few meters back of the square. Built in 1565 is the oldest temple in the Patan. It has four stone lions guarding the entrance, and is specially famous for it´s erotic figures carved in the roof struts (Well, i couldn´t find anyone).
This is the second tallest temple in the square . A three storey temple dedicated to god Hari Shankar (the half Vishnu) and built in 1704 by a princess daughter of King Yoganarendra Malla. It has an arcade beautifully decorated with wood carvings depicting the tortures of the damned.
This big and beautiful decorated temple was built in 1627, it consist of an arcade with wood carvings and is specially attractive because of the guardians of it, two massive stone constructed elephants guarding the entrance, at the back of the building there´s a small statue of a bull (Shiva´s vehicle).
After paying the entrance fee in the southern gate of the square, there are three statues; One of Hanuman the mighty monkey deity, covered as usual with a orange silk cloak, and also a Narsinga and Ganesh statues.
This beautiful Shikara-style stone temple was built in 1637 by Siddhi Narashima Malla, and is located in the middle of Durbar Square. It consist in a central tower encircled by three arcades with shrine like pavilions. There are some beautiful reliefs carved in their walls with scenes of the Mahabharata and Ramayana epics. A statue of man bird Garuda is facing the Mandir. In my opinion it´s the one of most impressive constructions of the square.
This chowk is a beautiful courtyard, containing intricate woodcarvings in columns and walls with some small statues of deities in it, the place is famous for the Tusha Hill a sunken water tank beautifully carved, unfortunately i couldn´t see the tank because actually is under restoration under the Unesco. Outside the building there are statues of Hanuman, Narsinga and Ganesh
This chowk is the oldest of the three chowks that forms part of the Royal Palace and was built by Srinivasa Malla in 1666 to house the Taleju Shrine. There are two stone lions guarding the entrance, around the chowk there are three Taleju temples. The shrine is located south and is topped by a tower with triple pagoda roofs decorated with hanging bells.
An impressive complex full of temples and buildings of the Newari Nepalese style, the city was founded in the 3rd century ad, it was destroyed in 1480 by the muslim emperor Sam Suddin Iliyas and rebuild by King Siddhi Nar Singh Malla. There´s an entrance fee of Rs200 payable at the southern end of the square. I really enjoyed the Square, i`ve found it less crowded and chaotic than Kathmandu`s Durbar, i visited the place in August so it was heavy rain but even with that i found it amazing.
A lotus shaped pool with three carved stone Makaras (crocodile deities) with water spouting from their mouths. The main sources of the Hiti are channels built by the Malla kings in the 15th century. It´s a very popular spot with people drinking the tap water and other washing their hands, feet and even their hair.
The residential palace compound of Keshav Narayan Chowk which houses the museum dates from 1734, displacing a Buddhist monastery that is still remembered in an annual public rite on the palace doorstep. But both monastery and palace rest on far older foundations that may go back to the Licchavi Period (ca. 3rd to 9th century).
Altered over time to suit other purposes, and partly fallen into decay, the building has undergone a thorough restoration for more than a decade through the joint efforts of His Majesty's Government of Nepal and the Austrian Government. Some parts are new, others were reconstructed to their original appearance, and interiors were adapted to the needs of a museum with appropriate modern facilities added. The museum was finally established and opened in 1997.The garden to the rear of the museum has been adapted to incorporate a pleasant resting place and The Patan Museum Cafe run by the Summit Hotel, Kathmandu. The Patan Museum Cafe has been crafted to complement the superb period ambience achieved by the architects and builders of the Museum itself. Located in the inner courtyard of the Keshav Narayan Chowk in Patan Durbar, the cafe will offer a mix of traditional and western delicacies and light meals in a setting unparalleled in the Kathmandu valley. The cafe area may also be booked for special evening functions for classical dance or music, for receptions, banquets, theatre, etc
The museum’s exhibits cover a long span of Nepal’s cultural history and some rare objects are among its treasures. Their meaning and context within the living traditions of Hinduism and Buddhism are explained. Most of the objects are cast bronzes and gilt copper repousse work, traditional crafts for which Patan is famous
The ancient Royal palace has been converted into a museum. This is a Unesco World heritage site. View of Patan Square is not complete unless you see it from the top of the Museum. Here are some photos!
KRISHNA MANDIR: Built in the seventeenth century by King Siddhi Narsingh Malla, the temple of Lord Krishna holds a commanding position in the palace complex of Patan. It is the only temple in Nepal to have 21 shrines and is completely made of stone. Most of the important scenes from the ancient Hindu epics the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, have been engraved on its friezes.