King Yoganarendra Malla Column and statue
King Yoganarendra Malla Column is... a column topped with a bronze statue of the
King himself. He's portrayed kneelings and is flanked by two smaller statues epresenting his two wives. Over him looms a large corbra snake, and on the cobra's head, sits a bird (which we at first thought was a real bird).
The column and statue were built between 1684–1705.
Vishwanath Temple is a temple built in 1627 by is King Siddhinarasimha Malla and dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva, the Lond of the Universe. Vishwanath , in fact, is just another namefor him. As many other Shiva temples, do expect to find erotic carvings... and, although you will not be allowed inside to see it, expect to usual god shrine to be replaced by a stone linga.
You will recognize this temple by the two twin stone elephants which guard the front entrance, whereas Shiva's vehicle, the bull, is on at the back of the temple.
the old bell
The old bell of Patan's Durbar square is a large bell that was erected in the 18th century and it is also known as the Taleju Bell, This bell, placed in the middle of many temples, is used only once a year, when it is rung during the yearly worshipping at nearby Taleju Degutalle temple. Originally, however, it was used by petitioners: they used to ring it in order to alert the king that someone had a grievance or something to complain.
Taleju Bhawani. temple
Taleju Bhawani Temple is a tall temple built in honor of Taleju Bhawani, a very powerful goddess with four heads and ten armsand - what's more - the clan goddess of the Malla kings by. This temple was built in 1667 by King Shree Niwas Malla. Right by it you can find the the Taleju Bell, which was placed there in 1736 by King Vishnu Malla.
Krishna Mandir Temple
The Krishna Mandir Temple, which was built in 1637 by King Siddhinarasimh Malla, is a magnificent stone temple dedicated to thre Gods, and not only Krishna is its name would suggest. The first floor is all for Krishna, the second to Lord Shiva and the third to Lord Buddha (Lokeshwor). Of all the square temples, this is the most important one, both for its significance and for its architecture, in particular the intricate carvings of its stone pillars.
The legend behind this temple is fascinating: it is said that King Siddhinarasimh Malla one night dreamed of Krishna and Radha standing in front of his royal palace, so when he woke up he ruled that a temple was to be built exactly where it had stood in his dream.
We visited Patan in order to take in its Durbar Square, which is believe to be even more beautiful than the one in Kathmandu... As soon as we got there, we had to agree: it is magnificient and it is also a lot quieter than the one in Kathmandu - well, quiet for Nepali standards.
There are plenty of monuments and temples to see, but what we liked best is the fact that it appeared to be alive with people: in our short stay we witnessed three different processions, which we guess were possibly marriages.
In other words, in was in terms of architecture far more interesting than the capital's Durbar Sqauer and at the same time far less touristy, too. Definitely a must-see.
The Royal Palace
The Royal Palace is more than a palace, it is a complex of buildings and courtyards that once upon a time used to be the home of the Malla kings. There are three parts (each with its own courtyard) to this complex which was founded in 1647 by the king Siddhinarasimha Malla: Sudari Chowk (the first one), Mul Chowk (built in 1666 by Siddhinarasimha's, now home of the Department of Archaeology Conservation Office) and Keshav Narayan Chowk (built in 1734 by another descendant of the family). Of course, the architecture vaires and reflects the period in which it was built. Two more wings were added in 1792 and 1820. This latter one is now the homeof government high school. Only Keshav Narayan Chowk is open to visitors, and entrance is 250 rupees each.
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.
Wander the streets.
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).
Hari Shankar Temple.
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.
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