Bhaktapur & Vajra Guest House

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Taxi ride to Bhaktapur

Traffic is jam packed on Kathmandu's roads Motor bikes and cars are close to you at all times

We easily got ourselves a taxi to Bhaktapur where we would be staying for the next two nights. It cost 1500 Rs which is very good value for the distance of about 13 kilometres. Birendra had booked us in to Hotel Vajra which is inside Bhaktapur’s Durbar Square. Most tourists go to Bhaktapur’s Durbar Square for a day trip and then they go home at night but we were staying there for two nights which we were really looking forward to. The taxi dropped us off at the boundary of the square and we paid our $15 USD to go inside. The $15 fee gave us entry for a whole week. To get our entry permit we had to show our passports and the ticket person wrote our passport numbers on each of our tickets.

 

Durbar Square in Bhaktapur

Bhaktapur is an ancient Newar town and is the third largest city in the Kathmandu Valley. It used to be the capital of Nepal. It is now a UNESCO World Heritage site and we knew we would enjoy staying in a World Heritage area.  The Durbar Square area has to be seen to be believed. It is untouched and so well preserved. We were looking forward to seeing temples, ponds, traditional architecture, monuments and much more. You can read more here about the various things to see in Durbar Square.

 

 

Jeremy with his head out of the window Jeremy with his head through his window

Walking across the Square to Vajra Guest House


We had to drag our luggage across the Square to reach our hotel. We were besieged by guides wanting us to use their services. It was plainly obvious we were struggling along with our big bulky luggage but they were still trying to stick to us like limpets. Everyone is struggling to make a living I guess. We were tired and politely said “No, thank you” to all of them. We just wanted to reach the hotel and book in. Later we would be happy to wander around by ourselves. They kept reminding us of how cheap their services would be.

 

Hotel Vajra impresses

We were instantly impressed with the service at Vajra Guest House. Although we were a bit early for check in we were well looked after. We were seated in the front lounge and given complimentary soft drinks. When our rooms were ready a lovely boy showed them to us and explained everything. He was clearly proud of where he lived and worked. He then took us up to the roof garden and gave us more information about the guest house and Bhaktipur.

Rooms at the Vajra Guest House Our rooms at the Vajra Guest House
Garden area at the delightful Vajra guest House The garden area at the guest house

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Back in our rooms we settled ourselves in and then went downstairs to an outdoor covered area in the garden for lunch.

I had cheese and tomato sandwich + chips + salad, Ian had club sandwich + chips + salad and Jeremy chose a hamburger + chips. The men got six chips each but I got eight! Perhaps they were intended to be a garnish only. Anyway they were the best chips we’d eaten since leaving home. Cooked to perfection!


Bhaktapur Durbar Square truly amazes us

After lunch we slowly plodded around Durbar Square taking photos of everything. It’s one of those places where no matter which way you look you can find something that takes your breath away. The area was much bigger than we expected. We’ve seen interesting stone bath/washing areas and large, man-made "ponds" that look like they are centuries old. We poked our heads through a little “doorway” in a wall and found a delightful little café hidden inside and down some steps. It was like a café in a secret garden. We vowed we would go there for lunch the next day.

Jeremy strolling through Pottery Square Jeremy walking through Pottery Square
Incredible architecture surrounds you Amazing architecture is everywhere you look

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Back to Hotel Vajra

We came back to the hotel at about 5 p.m. Jeremy got the hotel Wi-Fi working on our little lap top. There was no response from Birendra. Now I think about it, it was not surprising there was no emailed response. He was off on his trek, wasn’t he! Anyway we wanted to make sure he knew we were moving to a different hotel when we got back to Kathmandu.  So we decided we had better ring him. A lovely boy from the hotel helped us make the call. We stayed in the lounge for a while relaxing and sending emails. Two little girls got attracted to Jeremy and started playing on his lap top. Between the two of them they managed to shut the computer down. Their Dad was talking to us for a while. He said there were 370 temples in Bhaktapur. He knew of someone from overseas who stayed in Bhaktapur and catalogued all them. OK some are tiny but 370 is an enormous number of temples.

 


Dinner at Hotel Vajra

We were so impressed with the roof garden that we thought we’d have dinner up there. We soon changed our minds when we climbed up there. It was a bit too cool and breezy at that time of evening. So, we ate in the same area we had our lunch. Jeremy had pizza, Ian had tomato soup and chicken shish kebabs, I had mushroom soup and vegetable shish kebabs. All totally 100% delicious.

 

 

Wandering around Durbar Square at night.

Ian and I needed to short stroll to walk our dinners down so off we went. Jeremy stayed at the hotel “talking” to Tanya online. We felt somewhat like locals walking around that evening. There were hardly any tourists left there. The place was quiet apart from a few teenagers who looked as bored as teenagers often do when they have nothing to occupy their time.

 

Showers and bed

It had been a long day seeing as we’d been awake since before 4 a.m. Ian hopped in the shower first. He thought something was wrong with the hot water because he was showering in cool water. Eventually the hot water came through the pipes and all was fine. There is a sign in the bathroom saying guests must turn off the tap that is located above the hot and cold taps each time they finish showering. If it doesn’t get turned off then the whole hotel will run out of hot water. Strange! Hopefully a good night’s sleep is ahead of us.

 

Next page - Duttatraya Square

 

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