One of the 3 royal cities in Nepal, Patan (also known as Manigal) is known for its prosperous cultural heritage and is a center of fine arts. Patan was once the capital of a powerful kingdom. Patan is a sophisticated and, in a Nepali kind of way, bohemian. While Kathmanduites are busy gathering power and wealth, Patan’s inhabitants appreciate the finer things of life, which perhaps clarifies the area’s alternate name, Lalitpur. Above all, it stays a proud city of artisans. Situated about 5 km south of Kathmandu, on the southern side of the Bagmati River, Patan is one of 3 regal cities in the valley.
Patan is famous for its festivals,feasts and ancient art and sculptures. It basically represents the ‘city of artisans’. A destination for experts of fine arts, Patan is packed with wood and stone carvings, metal statues, ornate architecture, together with dozens of Buddhist and Hindu temples, and over 1200 monuments.
Comparatively, Patan is more peaceful and less chaotic than Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal. This city is located across the Bagmati River. Since, the past two decades, it has emerged as the foreign capital of Nepal. One must absolutely come to Patan to explore Nepal’s rich cultural history. It is just located 7 kms away from Kathmandu and can be reached very easily. The city of Patan was broadly damaged by the 25th April 2015 earthquake. But there are still many beautiful places for the tourists to visit.
Another good motive to come to Patan is to take benefit of the shops and restaurants put up to provide to the NGO workers and diplomats who reside in the surrounding suburbs. Patan has also come out as the foreign aid capital of Nepal: the offices of the UN and countless NGOs are scattered around the western suburbs, as are many expat habitations.