Location: The Katmandu Durbar Square stands in the vicinity of Katmandu valley. It can be easily reached by public vehicles and it is situated in the heart of the one of the busiest part of the city. This massive complex is home to palaces, temples and courtyards. The original center of Kathmandu is often named as Basantapur, Hanuman Dhoka or Durbar Square all denoting the same location. Kathmandu Durbar square has various historical royal and governmental institutions mixed with temples of different styles and ages.
Objectives: Traveling broadens our mind. It enriches our horizon of knowledge. The things learnt in books could be well understood by direct observations and many new and unwritten knowledge and information can be obtained. The major objectives of our tour were;
- To identify the historical and religious value of Katmandu durbar Square
- To identify the archeological importance of the site.
- To collect information about the various kings who ruled over valley from the Durbar square.
Method of study: • Primary methods: direct field observation, direct questionnaire, and collection of related expert’s opinions. We used the most extensive method of data collection Questionnaire. The people to fill the questionnaire were chosen randomly and they asked to fill some of the aspect of this. It helped us to uncover the work being done here.
• Secondary methods: study of related books, journals, news papers. Different books and the different media were properly searched so that we the student could get a proper information about the place. The inscriptions were also studied with the help of the translated writings which became an important part to discover the ancient site of the kings.
Findings: The Katmandu Durbar square holds the palaces of the Malla and Shah Kings who ruled over the city. Along with these palaces, the square also surrounds quadrangles revealing courtyards and temples. The square is presently known as Hanuman Dhoka, a name derived from the statue of Hanuman, the devotee of Lord Ram, near the entrance of the palace. The preference for the construction of the royal palaces at this site dates back to as early as the Licchavi period in the third century. Even though the present palaces and temples have undergone repeated and extensive renovations and nothing physical remains from that period. The inscriptions in the palace indicate the palace might have been built by Gun Kama Dev, a king ruling in the late tenth century. The palaces in the square became the royal palaces for its Malla kings. When Prithivi Narayan shah invaded the Katmandu valley in 1769, he also favored the Katmandu Durbar Square as his royal palace. Other subsequent Shah kings continued to rule from the square until 1896 till they did not move to Narayanhiti Royal Palace However the square carried the signification of royal coronations, King Birendra in 1975 and King Gyanendra in 2001.
The temples are the chief heritage of the square. The main temples of the square are Taleju Temple built in Vihara style with unique Newari culture, Bhagawati temple originally known as Narayan temple, Jagannath, kotilingeshwor Mahadev, mahendreswara etc.
The Durbar Square not only carries the religious value but it is equally important open book of history. It has become a center of tourist attraction and thousands of tourists visit the palace every year.
Conclusions and recommendations: This very important heritage of Nepal is not getting much concern from the governmental side. It seems to be neglected. The worn out colors and rotting woods and its fading features speaks that it is not much cared. We saw there was no proper management of cleanliness and visitors care.
The government needs to give deep concern about its cultural and religious value. Timely renovation of the temple has become very important. The dust and dirt in some places have taken the place of originality, it should be removed. Publicity and information about the heritage sites should be made in national and international level to promote tourism in and around this place.