From 1768 to 2008, the city of Kathmandu served as the seat of the ruling Shah family. From centuries of Newar merchant families, Kathmandu developed into Nepal’s most important commercial and business center. How much is there to know about the culture and heritage of Kathmandu? See for yourself with these Kathmandu facts.
- Nepal is a country from Asia located at the southern slopes of the Himalayan mountain ranges.
- Kathmandu is the biggest city and capital of Nepal.
- As of 2020, over 2.5 million people reside in Kathmandu.
- Kathmandu was established as a municipality in 1931.
- The city of Kathmandu stands approximately 1,400 meters above sea level.
- Kathmandu is surrounded by 4 major peaks: the Shivapuri, Phulchoki, Nagarjun, and Chandragiri mountains.
- Rather than handshaking, Nepalese would press their palms together and say Namaste, which means “I bow to you.”
- The city is one of the fastest-growing metropolitan areas in South Asia.
- The historical inhabitants of the Kathmandu Valley are the ‘Newar people.’
- The Newar people are known for their contributions to art, literature, trade, cuisine, agriculture, and culture of Kathmandu.
- The Newar people maintained their age-old traditions and considered themselves as the true custodians of the culture, religion, and civilization of Nepal.
- Kathmandu is home to Nepal’s palaces, mansions, and gardens of the Nepalese aristocracy.
- The tourism industry plays an important part in the economy of Nepal. For instance, Kathmandu is visited by 1.2 million tourists each year.
- Nepali and English are the main languages spoken in Kathmandu.
- The 2015 earthquake destroyed most of Kathmandu’s historic sites.
- Kathmandu was once known as ‘Kantipur’ which means the ‘City of Glory.’
- The diverse cultural heritage and religions are the foundation of the CIty of Glory.
- Kathmandu is part of the top 10 upcoming travel destinations in the world.
- Kathmandu is also known as the city of temples.
- Over the years, Kathmandu struggled with a slow internet connection with an average of not more than 260 kbps. Nevertheless, as of 2020, it improved to 10 Mbps.
Kathmandu Facts Infographics
Mount Everest is 240 kilometers away from Kathmandu.
Kathmandu is located in the Kathmandu Valley in the central district of Nepal. The highest mountain on earth, Mount Everest, lies approximately 240 kilometers east of Kathmandu.
Mount Everest can be viewed from Kathmandu.
In contrast to the belief of many, Mount Everest can be viewed from Kathmandu. Kathmandu’s Chandragiri hills provide an extensive view of the Mount Everest and Himalayan ranges on a clear day.
Kathmandu's temples are full of religious artworks.
Kathmandu is well-known for its religious monuments. The city is home to various monasteries, temples, and stupas. The Changu Narayan and Pashupatinath Temple of Kathmandu have remarkable and historic religious artworks.
Kathmandu is Nepal's metropolis.
Most of Nepal’s business canters are located in Kathmandu. Aside from tourism, Kathmandu is famous for its handicrafts exports, artworks, traditional garments such as the pashmina, and paper. Simultaneously, these industries bolster Nepal’s economy.
Nepal is a landlocked country.
In other words, Kathmandu does not have a territory connected to the world’s oceans and is surrounded by different nations. Its bordering countries are India and China.
Kathmandu was never ruled by foreigners.
Although most of the nearby countries like China and India were once subject to foreign rule, Kathmandu never fell to the hands of colonizers.
According to geologists, Kathmandu Valley used to be a big lake.
The tectonic uplift of the southern edge of the valley as well as the enclosure of the proto-Bagmati River formed the big lake over 1 million years ago. Over time, the lake shifted northwards as the southern rim of the Valley rose 3cm a year. Eventually, the Earth‘s weathering formed Kathmandu Valley.
Hinduism is the dominant religion in Kathmandu.
The most dominant religions in Kathmandu are Hinduism which accounts for over 80%, followed by Buddhism, Islam, Kiratism, and Christianity.
Freak Street is the most famous street in Kathmandu.
Freak Street, affectionately dubbed “Old Freak Street” is a popular destination for locals as well as tourists in Kathmandu. This aged street is the place for budget-friendly guesthouses, trekking companies, shopping centers, restaurants. Hippies are also known to go to this place back in the 70s.
Kathmandu is the 17th highest capital in the world.
Standing at approximately 1,400 meters above sea level, Kathmandu ranks as the 17th highest capital of the world.