Cosmos Global Documentaries THE THREE ROYAL CITIES OF NEPAL
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With its three ancient Nepalese royal cities, Kathmandu Valley, at the foot of the mighty Himalayas, contains some of the most precious treasures in Asia along with a truly unique and medieval atmosphere. However, the beauty of this country and its historic buildings have for many years been out of the reach of most foreigners. And even today, Nepalis full of mystique.
Kathmandu became increasingly important during the reign of the Malla sovereigns who created one of the city’s main landmarks, Durbar Square. The Taleju Temple is located in the heart of the Durbar district. It is believed that in the 10th century, King Gunakamadeva II founded the town. He moved his residence from Patan to today''s Kathmandu. However, little of the architecture of that time has survived to the present day. The heart of Durbar Square, the richly decorated and spacious Hanuman Dhoka Palace, dates back much earlier.
Not only because of its famous carved peacock windows but also due to its museum, Bhaktapur is the centre of traditional Nepalese wood carving. Compared to other royal cities in Patan and Kathmandu, Bhaktapur is the most original and is without a doubt the most historically authentic.
The city owes its remarkable buildings and renovations to comprehensive donations from several countries. Only essential work and modernization were undertaken and they eventually contributed to an improvement in the daily life of the local population.
According to legend, the founding of Patan, with a population of over 150,000 and the second largest royal city in Nepal, dates back to Pre-Christian times. As opposed to the Malla cities of Khatmandu and Bhaktapur, that were mainly influenced by the Hindu religion, Patan was for many years a major Buddhist city. It is believed that it was founded in the 3rd century B.C. by the famous Buddhist emperor, Ashoka, who visited the town while on a pilgrimage from Northern India.
Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Patana are the three legendary royal cities of Nepal that still possess a mysterious and ancient power and continue to be the sacred sanctuary of Himalayan art.