• Last Updated on Jun 8, 2023

Pashupatinath Temple: The Greatest Hindus' temple in Kathmandu

Pashupatinath Temple is one of the most sacred Hindu temples in Nepal devoted to Lord Shiva. It is one of the most religious places in Asia for the devotees of Lord Shiva. Pashupatinath Temple is built in the fifth century and later renovated by Malla Kings. Moreover, the landmark is said to have existed from the earliest starting point of the thousand years when a Shiva lingam was found here.

The biggest temple complex in Nepal extends on the two sides of the Bagmati River, which is considered the holy river by Hindus. The primary pagoda-style sanctuary has a plated rooftop, four sides canvassed in silver and wood carvings of the best quality. One can see various other temples devoted to numerous other Hindu and Buddhist deities encompassing the sanctuary of Pashupatinath.

Nearby is the sanctuary of Guheshwori devoted to Shiva's partner Sati Devi. Incineration of Hindus occurs on raised stages along the river. Only Hindus are permitted inside the doors of the primary sanctuary. The internal sanctum has a Shiva lingam and outside sits the biggest statue of Nandi the bull, the vehicle of Shiva. There are many Shivas lingam inside the compound. The huge Maha Shivaratri celebration in spring pulls here welcoming a huge number of devotees from inside Nepal and from India and other parts of the world.

Experience this exceptionally suggested religious center for a blend of religious, social, and spiritual experiences. Located 3 km northwest of Kathmandu on the banks of the Bagmati River, the sanctuary region also includes Deupatan, Jaya Bageshwori, Gaurighat, Kutumbahal, Gaushala, Pingalasthan, and Sleshmantak woods. There are around 492 sanctuaries, 15 Shivalayas (hallowed places of Lord Shiva), and 12 Jyotirlinga (phallic sanctums) to explore.

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A brief history of Pashupatinath

The exact date of Pashupatinath construction is obscure as there is no documented report regarding its construction history. Regardless of this reality, the Pashupatinath is viewed as the most significant Hindu sanctuary of Nepal.

The earliest evidence of the sanctuary goes back to 400 A.D. The main sanctuary of the Pashupatinath complex was built toward the finish of the seventeenth century to replace the past one, wrecked by termites. Countless smaller sanctuaries were developed around the main sanctuary on the two banks of Bagmati River during the most recent couple of hundreds of years.

There are various legends, related to the development of the sanctuary. The most famous one states, that the sanctuary was based on the site where Shiva lost one of his antlers, while he was in the guise of a deer. He and his better half touched base on the bank of Bagmati, and astonished by the magnificence site chose to change themselves into deers and stroll in the encompassing woodlands.

Sooner or later divine beings and people chose to return them to their obligations. however, Shiva rejected to return, and they needed to utilize compel. In the battle, Shiva lost one of his antlers, which later turned into the main lingam adored by Hinduists in Pashupatinath. Later this relic was lost, and as indicated by another legend, found again by a herder, whose bovine demonstrated the area of lingam by watering the place it was covered with her drain.

Pashupatinath is where exceptionally old Hindu ceremonies are organized in an astounding starting structure, allowing the guests to feel the one-of-a-kind soul of Hindu customs of life, demise, and reincarnation.

Some Interesting Facts about Pashupatinath

The Pashupatinath Temple is a sanctuary committed to Lord Pashupatinath who is also known as Lord Shiva. Situated in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal, this sanctuary has been recorded as a World Heritage Site on UNESCO's rundown.

Existing since 400 A.D.

Pashupatinath Temple doesn't only hold religious importance, but it also has historical significance as its history dates back from 400 B.C.

The Legend related to its Origin

There is a famous legend related to the origin of the Pashupatinath Temple. As per this legend, every day a cow used to visit this particular spot and offer her milk to the ground. One day, the cow was seen by her owner and got suspicious. Thus, he uncovered the place and found the Jyotirlinga of Lord Shiva. Gradually an ever-increasing number of individuals gathered around the Shiva Lingam to worship, and Lord Pashupatinath got well known while this place turned into a pilgrim spot.

The Structure

Pashupatinath Temple is situated on the Western Bank of waterway Bagmati. This sanctuary is considered a perfect work of art of Hindu design. The fundamental sanctuary comprises of working with bunk rooftop and brilliant tower. It is cubic fit as a fiddle, and the four primary entryways are shrouded in silver sheets. Likewise, the two-storied rooftops had been built from unadulterated copper secured with gold. The primary fascination of this sanctuary is the sparkling Shivalinga and the gigantic brilliant statue of Shiva's Bull, Nandi.

The Lingam

The Lingam at Pashupatinath sanctuary is exceptional. Its uniqueness is because the Lingam is four-faced. The faces are to such an extent that they are towards the four directions. The face facing East is called Tatpurusha, the face facing West is called Sadyojata, the face facing North is called Vamadeva, and the face facing South is called Aghora. The highest part of the Shivling is called Ishan.

Only Hindus can enter

The main sanctuary of the Pashupatinath Temple can be gotten to just by the Hindus. For individuals of every other religion, the various parts of the building are open aside from the primary sanctuary.

Paintings and Sculptures

There are numerous extraordinarily creative artworks and figures in various parts of the sanctuary. On the two sides of every entryway of the sanctuary, there are pictures of numerous Gods and Goddesses and Apsaras. Practically every one of these sketches is done in gold. Every single pillar, which underpins the top of the sanctuary is likewise etched with pictures delineating diverse kinds of sexual postures.

Arya Ghat

Arya Ghat at Pashupatinath sanctuary is of extraordinary significance as this Ghat is the main place close to the sanctuary whose water is viewed as sufficiently consecrated to be brought into the sanctuary. Additionally, this Ghat is viewed as propitious, and hence the individual from Nepal's Royal family as well as the common people are incinerated here.

Nirvana seekers

It is said that Pashupatinath sanctuary is blessed to the point that if you are incinerated on its premises, you will again accept birth as a human paying little heed to the wrongdoings you have done in your lifetime. Along these lines, various older individuals visit this place to spend the most recent couple of long stretches of their lives in the Pashupatinath sanctuary commence.

Open air Cremation

Consistently on the bank of Bagmati River nearby to which Pashupatinath sanctuary is arranged, outside incineration happens. The oldest child of the expired shaves his head and finishes the rituals. Rather than seeming terrible, the incineration appears to be very tranquil.

Unharmed during the 2015 Earthquake

On 25 April 2015, when a seismic tremor of 7.8 extents hit Nepal, it began turning the vast majority of the close-by structures and some of the UNESCO site's legacy locales into the residue. In any case, Pashupatinath Temple which has withstood the trial of time by and by stood tall confronting the debacle.

With only a couple of breaks on the divider, it showed up as a supernatural occurrence structure in all residue and rubble. While the devotee guaranteed it as an indication of perfect power, others are contending that its solid base and design are the primary components that caused the Pashupatinath sanctuary to withstand the impacts of the tremor.


A visit to Pashupatinath Temple is included in Kathmandu Half Day tour or Kathmandu full day tour, Taste of Nepal, Kathmandu Transit tour & Glimpse of Nepal Tour.

Arjun Rijal

Arjun Rijal

Hello, Hi & Namaste from the Himalayas !!!

I am Arjun Rijal, Founder Director of the Outfitter Himalaya Holidays P. Ltd & working as a travel planner/consultant for Nepal, Bhutan, and Tibet Travel. I love hiking, trekking, and traveling.

I have been in most of the trekking regions in Nepal, that include Everest Base Camp, Annapurna Base camp, Annapurna Circuit, Manaslu, and Langtang. I also have travelled to Bhutan, India & planning further travel to many other countries in the world.

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