Kathmandu: the Ultimate Cultural Destination
Kathmandu (Valley), Nepal, comprises of several municipalities and districts and includes cities of Bhaktapur, Patan and Kathmandu. The Valley is a UNESCO World Heritage Zone comprising of 7 Heritage Sites making for a rare concentration of world heritage in one locality. Its history, which spans more than 2,000 years, is illustrated by this rich tangible and also intangible cultural heritage that is actively preserved by an ethnically and religiously diverse community. The city of Kathmandu is located at approximately 1,400 meters above sea-level and is surrounded by wooded foothills of the Himalayas.
Kathmandu has been consistently regarded as an exceptional cultural destination for tourists looking for an eventful spring in South Asia and was recently crowned the Best Value Destination for 2017 by Lonely Planet.
Discover Kathmandu through Kathmandu Triennale
Kathmandu Triennale (KT) is a thematic event that brings together national and international artists to present multiple perspectives on critical social issues through the medium of art. KT 2017 will be held from March 24th to April 9th, 2017, and will be curated on the theme of The City.
The event will be hosted by a network of partners under the leadership of Siddhartha Arts Foundation and will feature several happenings including a major exhibition (45 commissioned works) curated by Philippe Van Cauteren, Artist Director of S.M.A.K (Ghent, Belgium), historical presentation of Nepali arts, child-friendly exhibitions, cultural events, educational and community outreach programs, curated showcases of South Asian artworks film screenings and public happenings. All events are free, open to public and run throughout the day.
Kathmandu Triennale chronicles contemporary history through innovation in contemporary art showcase. It is the best opportunity to fully immerse in the details that distinguish Kathmandu and Nepal as inspiring natural and cultural destinations.
Contributing to the reconstruction post-earthquake
Central Nepal was hit by two major earthquakes in 2015. More than 9,000 people lost their lives and approximately $6.8 billion worth of damages were recorded. Visiting Nepal is a great way of contributing to the efforts of the on-going reconstruction. The tourism industry is among the largest contributors to the GDP of Nepal. In 2014-15, total revenue from tourism was approximately 20 percent of the total revenue. Nepal is safe and is ready to host travelers. Visiting Nepal is a great way of contributing to the recovery while enjoying everything the country has to offer.
Traveling to Nepal
Nepal is connected to major cities in Asia and the Middle East through the Tribhuvan International Airport, which is served by many of the world’s leading airlines. The airport is located to the east of the city center and is easy to navigate. If you plan to visit Nepal during the Kathmandu Triennale months (March, April 2017), our booth will be located at the exit lobby of the airport, KT 2017 volunteers will be present to welcome and receive you.
Nationals of all countries (with exceptions of Nigeria, Swaziland, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Somalia, Cameroon, Liberia, Ethiopia, Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan and Syria) are eligible for visa-on-arrival. Tourist visa can be received for up to 150 days and fees range between 25 to 50 USD depending on nationality and length of stay. Visa extensions can be requested as well through online forms and a visit to the Immigration Department in the city.
The months of March and April make up the spring season in Nepal and is considered the second tourist season. Temperature in Kathmandu usually hovers around a pleasant mid-20 degree Celsius with clear sunny days and flowering trees in full bloom.
Accommodation and Food
The city is stock full of hotels and restaurants that can accommodate all budgets and tastebuds. As a popular tourist destination, international and ethnic cuisines and palates are aplenty. Hotels are spread across the city and are especially concentrated around Thamel (the original trekker’s hub). Most establishments accept online booking and payment.
Our preferred hotel is the Hyatt Regency.
Historical cities of Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur are easily accessible. Most Nepalis can proficiently converse in English so communicating with locals is easy as well. Taxis are readily available and are metered. Cars, bikes and cycles can be rented and cost between 30 and 150 USD per day. Although most tourists sites can be covered on foot.
You can take flights and buses to other parts of the country. Please be advised that credit cards are only accepted at select venues and/or services only.
Kathmandu commands much of the attention for visitors to Nepal and there is good reason for it. However, there is so much more to see. After spending time in the city and with our activities of the Triennale, you can consider heading to other destinations. Head to Pokhara, the lake city, or Lumbini, the birthplace of Buddha; if you are into adventure, the city can be your starting point for a range of activities including trekking, elephant safaris, white-river rafting, paragliding, mountain biking, rock climbing etc. Some of Nepal’s most important—and fun—festivals like Phagu Purnima, Shivaratri, Lhosar, Ghode Jatra, and Ram Nawami are celebrated during spring. These festivals mean colors, performances and community, and one more reason for you to visit.
For a list of the Triennale’s preferred hotels, restaurants and destinations please get in touch with us. If you plan to visit the city in March or April we will be happy to help plan your itinerary.
Visit Kathmandu at its cultural best.