I tried following the Lonely Planet walking tour this morning that started from Tha Hiti to Durbar Square but only got it right up to Annapurna Temple at bustling Asan Tole, the old commercial area of Kathmandu, after hanging a left af the street where the tree stump with coins are, offerings to the deity of the tooth aches.
From Annapurna Temple, I took the street on the left side and ended-up at a main road. There were very nice sites though including a stupa.
Backtracked and tried to guess the correct road based on where Durbar Square is. Apparently, this was where all things brass were sold from bells, statues, trays, pots, pans, and a whole lot of stuff. Made a mental note of coming back here to get some brass plates similar to what I ate on at Thamel House Restaurant.
The architecture along the street was stunning.
I soon came upon the Krishna Temple crammed between brassware shops and whose octagonal shape is unique.
Shop owners keep shop at ground level.
Opposite the temple was a small shrine made of colorful mosaic tiles.
Continued down the road passing by more brassware shops. Made me feel like I was walking along a Middle Eastern souk with all the gleaming brass.
Passed by this 3-tiered temple and near it, a ruined one being restored.
Finally hit busy Indra Chowk where Mahadev Temple sits at the center and festooned with colorful blankets for sale.
This is where I should have turned right to continue with the route but I got confused and I also needed to pee so I ended-up entering the square and heading to the toilets. Took a look at the vendors on the square and bought a small Nepalese double-headed drum for NPR 1,500 down from the original NPR 4,000.
Parked my feet at one of the benches fronting the Gaddhi Baihak all covered-up with tarp. Looked at the map again and decided to try to follow another section of the route doing it in reverse from Durbar Square. Followed the narrow street at the end of the square past some music shops. Ducked into one and inquired about a narrow double-headed drum and was quoted Rp2500.
First stop was Yatka Bahal which was easy to miss as it is quite hidden from street and accessible by a short narrow alley.
At the center of the large courtyard was a stupa.
Surrounding the courtyard were beautiful buildings crammed in between modern concrete ones.
However, the real treasure is the lovely building behind the stupa with a portico supported by carved posts.
There it stood silently like a jewel waiting to be discovered.
Back to the street and this time in search of the famous window in all of Kathmandu and it did not disappoint never mind that it’s now atop a shop.
Turned right at the corner and stumbled on what looked to be a shrine for this red elephant.
Unfortunately, I must have made a wrong turn somewhere as I ended up at Indra Chowk again! I just decided to head back to Thamel Marg and find the sights that I didn’t notice before such as this bas relief of Shiva in a shallow recess in a wall guarded by an orange Ganesh.
Across it is a really beautiful antique house that purportedly had the first glass windows in Kathmandu! Looks like the originald are still in place and are badly in need of cleaning.
You don’t really need a guidebook to wander the streets unless you want to know what you’re seeing (which makes you better appreciate the sights). One way or another, you’ll end up at Thamel Morg or at a street that leads tp it.