Changu Narayan Temple

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UNESCO World Heritage site of Nepal

UNESCO stands for United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is one the governing body of a UN established in 1846, with the objective of maintaining peace and security worldwide promoting and collaborating among nations through education, science, and culture as the universal respect on justice. UNESCO‘s activity is also to support and safeguard cultural heritage, promoting cultures, handicrafts, and arts.

According to the listing of World Heritage Sites, There are ten heritage sites of Nepal, which people from different parts of the word travel in order to view the beauty of Real Nepal. Among the ten there are 8 cultural heritage sites and 2 Natural beauty sites. The ten heritage sites listed in UNESCO are.

  1. Pashupati Nath Temple – Kathmandu District
  2. BoudhaNath- Kathmandu District
  3. SwayambhuNath- Kathmandu District
  4. Kathmandu Durbar Square- Kathmandu District
  5. Patan Durbar Square- Lalitpur District
  6. Bhaktapur Durbar Square- Bhaktapur District
  7. Changu Narayan District- Bhaktapur District
  8. Birthplace of Buddha- Lumbini
  9. Chitwan National Park- Chitwan
  10. Sagarmatha National Park- Sagarmatha

Bhaktapur known for the city of culture in Nepal or the living Museum of Nepal, has various interesting cultural beauty, festivals, and foods. People love traveling to Bhaktapur to view the beauty of the culture. Among 10 heritage sites, two Cultural sites are from Bhaktapur i.e. Bhaktapur Durbar Square and Changu Narayan Temple. Today, I will just be describing the Changu Narayan Temple and its beauty.

Changu Naraya Temple – UNESCO Heritage Site in Bhaktapur

CountryNepal
DistrictBhaktapur
MunicipalityChangunarayan
Built ByLichchhivi King- Mandev I
SanctumLord Bishnu
Major Festival DaysChangu Narayan Jatra, Mahashanan, Jugadi Nawami, and Haribodhini Ekadashi
Architecture StylePagoda Style

Changu Narayan Temple is one of the oldest temples which was built during the time of Lichchhivi’s rule. Changu Narayan Temple was built by Lichchhivi Dynasty King- Mandev during the 4th century (325 AD.) and was rebuilt in 1702 after the major fire occurred. It is located on the high hilltop known Changu or Dolagir in Changu Municipality of Bhaktapur District. Besides the temple, you can find a champak tree forest and a small village with a small Newar community around the temple. This hill is about 7 miles or 12 Km east of Kathmandu and few miles north of Bhaktapur. The river named- Manahara River flows beside the hill.

Changu Narayan Temple shows Nepal with rich fascinating works. The temple is two-storey roofed which is said to be a pagoda Style. The temple is built dedicated to Lord Vishnu as an incarnation of Narayan. The temple also has other Hindu gods such as Lord Shiva, Ashta Matrika, Kileshwor, Krishna, and Chhinnamasta inside the courtyard of the main temple. You can find four entrances to enter the temple and these gates are guarded by the pairs of animals such as Elephants, Graffins, Sarabhas, and Lions. There are ten different incarnations of Lord Bishnu in the temple. The entrance gate has the carving of Snakes (Naaga) and in the main entrance of the temple have Chakra, Sankha, Kamal and Khadga at the top of Stone Pillar. There are some inscriptions which were established by King Mandev during 464 AD.

Related: Lichchhivi Dynasty of Nepal

Things to Observe in Changu Narayan Temple

Garuda- Garuda is the flying vehicle of Lord Bishnu, who is half human and half bird. As you enter the main entrance you can view the pillar erected by my King Mandev during 464 AD. And see a stone statue of Garuda Kneel front the west face of the temple built.

Statue of King and Queen of Malla Period: In the temple, you can also see the statue of King Bhupatindra Malla and his beloved queen.

Chandra Narayan (Garuda Narayan): It is the sculpture of Garuda and Narayan. The Sculpture shows Lord Bishnu riding his vehicle Garuda, built during the 7th century.

Statues of Bishnu- Sridhar Bishnu, Baikuntha Bishnu, Chhinnamasta, Bishworup, Bishnu Bikrant, Narasimha, and Kileshwor.

Some Other Things to observe around the temple

Museum

There is one private Museum located near Changu Narayan Temple which is known as the first private museum of Nepal. It has the collection of ancient coins, tools, arts, and architecture. Talking about architecture, you can view every great ancient historical-artistic, religious archaeological and other rare objects. The tools you can see were used by the Newar family during a medieval period in Nepal.

Similarly, you can view the ethnographic museum nearby temple which has both objects and photographs related to the cultural traditions of various cultural groups.

Festivals

During some special festivals and occasions, people organized festivals and was started in the ancient period of time. Some of the major festivals observed in Changu Narayan Temple and devotees go for worship during Changu Narayan Jatra, Mahashanan, Jugadi Nawami, and Haribodhini Ekadashi. People also worship temple on other special occasions such as birthday and marriage with a special puja.

References:
Changu Narayan Temple, (n d). From: Wikipedia. Retrieved from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Changu_Narayan_Temple

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