Saturday, May 11, 2013

Kailash Manasarovar Yatra -2012 -6


 Patan Durbar Square

 After  Boudnath we proceeded to the world Heritage site of Patan Durbar square which is also called as the "City of Fine Arts".   It's also called Lalitpur, which means "City of Beauty". In the small, mountain-sheltered valley of Nepal namely Kathmandu is the place where kingdoms rose and fell, palaces and temples were built, destroyed and rebuilt, and the Nepali art and  culture were developed and refined.  Apart from Kathmandu,  Patan  and Bhaktapur are the other two places were palaces  and beautiful temples were built.  Patan  is the second-largest city of Nepal and is separated    from Kathmandu by Bagmati River, but for all practical purposes they are continuous.   In Nepal Durbar means Palace , there are  darbar squares in front of these three  old palaces.

Statue of Lord Ganesh 

Patan has a long Buddhist history and it's  four corners are marked by stupas built by Emporer Ashoka. The main development of this town took place under the Malla Kings  during 16th to 18th century especially during the reign of Siddhnarsingh  Malla. Patan's central Durbar square is packed with temples,  undoubtedly  the most  stunning  display of  Newari architecture.  These temples are   of  diverse style also there are many bahals(Buddhist monastries) are scattered around this fascinating  Patan town.  The rectangular  square has  its longer axis on the  north-south and the palace forms the east side of the square.

Narasimha  statue 

Vehicles are stopped at Patan Dhoka  city gate bus stop and we have to walk around 2 Km to reach the  durbar square.  The entry fee is 200 Nepal Rupees.  The statues of Lord Ganesh, Lord Narasimha the fierce form of Lord Vishnu and Hanuman  guard the square.

The marvelous  wooden carving of  the buildings 

The palace itself is a three-storey building with  excellently carved roof, windows and doors especially supports of the roof are carved with  deities with multi-hands. The Garuda panel unique to Nepal is also found  in the front door of the palace. The palace has been now converted into  a museum . The bronze statues of Ganges and Yamuna are worth mentioning .

 Minute beautiful architecture of Front door of the Palace

Facing the palace are a row of temples. The Bhimsen temple  dedicated to the God of trade and business forms the Northern end. This is a three  storey  temple and a lion  tops a pillar in front of the temple to show the extraordinary power of Bhima the hero of Mahabharatha. Next to palace  is sunken  Manga Hiti which has a lotus shaped pool and three wonderfully carved stone crocodile-head spouts. Next to this is the Mani mantap a pavilion built for crowning of the kings. Next to Bhimsen temple is the Vishwanath temple This is a two storey  pagoda style temple  with two large elephants guarding the temple and has Nandi in front of the Lord Shiva who is worshipped in the form of Shiva Lingam. .

 Garuda panel with  Shiva Lingam

Continuing into the square  we reach the Krishna Mandir, built in Indian style. This is a three storey temple . The first and second floors are made up of Lion pavilions top of the temple rises like a corn. Opposite the temple is the Garuda pillar  the top of which is decorated with a beautiful Garuda with folded hands.  Lord Krishna's shrine is there in the third floor.  On the rear side there is a  shrine for Lord Rama. Also all the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu are beautifully carved in this floor.   In the first floor we find the carvings depicting the episodes of Mahabaratha  and in the second floor  episodes from Ramayana. The two great epics of India. Next to Krishna Mandir is Jagannarayan temple ,the plinth of this made of brick and two lions guard  this temple. 

 Beautiful  bronze statue of River yamuna

 Minute carvings in one of the windows of Patan Palace

In front of the palace on the top of a column  is the statue of King Yogendra Malla. The golden figure of the kneeling king, protected by a hooded cobra  and a bird above the cobra. behind the statue of the King are the three smaller Vishnu temples.  Next to these temples id the pagoda style Hari Shankar temple dedicated to half-Vishnu, half-Shiva deity.  we also see the large  bell hanging between the two stout pillars.  

 Patan Palace 

Krishna Mandir

Closeup of Krishana Mandir

The beautiful Garuda facing Lord Krishna

Then there is the octagonal Krishna temple  opposite to this temple is the Sundari chowk  which houses the sunken Tusha Hiti in which are carved in stone Ashta Matrikas( Eight Mothers), Eight Bhairavs and Eight Nagas.  Next to Sundari chowk is the Mul Chowk in the middle of which stands the  small Bidya temple. 

Sikara style Jagannath temple

Many temples of Patan square

 Marvellous wooden carvings

Kumari Bahal ( House of the Living Goddess)

Nepalis worship a real living girl as a Kumari Devi. This living  Goddess resides in a building known as the Kumari Bahal, right beside the Kathmandu's Durbar square. The Kaumari is selected from a particular Newari Gold Smiths. Customarily she is somewhere between 4 years old and puberty and must meet 32 physical requirements and horoscope  also should match. The selected Kumari is worshipped as Living Goddess still she reaches puberty. After the nice visit ti Patan Durbar square we  travelled to Boudnath.

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