Hotel comprising separate chalets huddled on a hill with spectacular mountain views. Run by Sita and her husband with real affection and friendliness. They can organise treks (the hotel has been used by Everest teams) and will ply you with good local food and ensure you get up in time to catch the mind-blowing sunrises.
The Fort Resort - Nagarkot (City Office)
P O Box 3004, Lazimpat, KTM
Tel: 977 1 4432 960 / 4432 964 fax: 977 1 4432 958
Swayambhunath is a Buddhist stupa atop a hill in the Kathmandu valley. It's best to get there before sunrise - you'll be unlikely to meet any other tourists, just crowds of Nepali and Tibetan people. Swayambhu is a hive of activity at this time, with chanting, meditation and worship playing alongside the pre-school karate class, police training up those steep steps, earnest young men doing their exercises, the games of the monkeys and dogs.
It's a wonderful place at any time, but I think you see it at its best and most natural at sunrise. Beautiful light for photography too, if that's your thing. And there's a lovely view across the Kathmandu valley. If you fancy a walk, there's a lovely peaceful monastery at the top of the next hill along.
It's an easy walk from the centre, but you could also take a bus from Sohrakhutte, or find a taxi. Ask to be dropped at the bottom of the steps, rather than at the top. Then walk up to the stupa
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