Kathmandu is a melting pot of over 100 different ethnicities that inhabit Nepal. This brings together a multitude of cultures that unite the rich cultures of Kathmandu Valley. From the minute you land at the Tribhuvan International Airport, you get to see the cultural diffusion which is so overwhelming to experience.
People travel from all over the world to witness the beauty and grandeur the Kingdom of Nepal has to offer. The beautiful scenery around you is mesmerizing, after hours and hours of traveling finally you're getting to see the mighty Himalayas. Adam Auther, a backpacking tourist from Canada, said, "It's always been on my bucket list to travel to Nepal and trek in the Himalayas, and this is the starting point to it." On the way from the airport to Thamel, there is so much to see, from the local markets to the bus stands to the very famous and sacred Pashupatinath Temple.
For starters, Thamel is the most happening place in Kathmandu and also the traveler's hub, which is also home to the most progressive elements of the modern world. If you're looking for a place to stay, then this would be your best shot since you get to see the best of Kathmandu here. From 5 star hotels to Backpacker's hostels, you can choose from more than a thousand options. Thamel is filled with tons and tons of shops and stalls, where you can get almost everything. These shops sell one of the best tea, prayer flags, clothes, books, groceries and much more. The stuff sold here sure do have intense influence from Tibet, China and India but the place is also famous for its Nepali culture since it's a multicultural, multilingual and multiethnic country.
If you just have a day and want to learn more about the history and culture of Nepal, then you should definitely visit the Durbar Square of Kathmandu (which is located in the centre of the city), Patan and Bhaktapur. Along the Durbar Marg, you can find all the International Brands, available only in this part of the country, at the end of this road you will also find the very famous Narayanhiti Palace Museum. One of the most important things in a human's life is Food, and Kathmandu has one of the best restaurants to answer to your cravings no matter what kind of food you're looking for.
If you're a coffee person and are looking for Starbuck, you will surely be disappointed but don't worry there are so many local cafes which offer the best beverages, Himalayan Java Coffee stands out, located in the middle to be the best. During the evenings, the streets swell up with beautiful lights and eager travelers, this is one of the best things to see in Kathmandu. However, most shops and restaurants close by 8 PM, though some of the cafes and bars are open till 12 AM. If you want to experience the best of things, you need to find happiness in the smallest of them, and the city of Kathmandu does justice to that.
(Rusith is an intern from Bangalore)