Swayambhunath (the Monkey Temple)
Swayambhunath is one of the oldest religeous sites in Kathmandu Valley, founded in the 5th century.
The Buddha eyes (wisdom eyes) on the stupa has been symbolic to Nepal. I skew the image to provide a flatten view of potential look if we are starring at eye level.
To foreign tourist, this temple complex is better known as the Monkey Temple.
My first symbolic recognition of Nepal has been the Buddha Eye. The symbol that looks like ? nose is the symbol of unity.
Both Tibet and Nepal associate a deep link in my memory as the prayer wheels.
I always visualize the worshipers turning the wheels and chanting for prayer, looking for some form of blessings.
The temple is visible from Kathmandu Durbar Square.
Even though some guidebooks indicated that it is 20 minutes walk from Thamel. My observation suggests that it is better to take a taxi to the site because it looks like a long walk and climb up the stairs to reach the temple on top of the hill. Once you reach the temple, it provides a vista view of the cityscape.
There are few other temples, shops, hostels, monastries on the hill top.
Visitors could easily spent 1-2 hours at the complex.
The structures near the main stupa are a bit crowded (not as spacious as Boudhanath).
As part of the Kathmandu UNESCO World Heritage site, it is worth visit this historical and religious site.
Locals and pilgrims normally take the 365 steps from East side, and perform the clockwise praying ritual.
By the way, there is a swimming pool dedicated to the holy monkeys.