The Changunarayan Temple was built during the Licchhavi era and is without a doubt an outstanding example of the art and architecture of that era. Its construction dates back to that time period. It is also known as the oldest temple in all of Nepal.
This two-story Vishnu temple is said to be neither a pagoda nor a shikhara in terms of its architectural design. On the other hand, it is constructed in the shape of a pagoda. This temple was built in the style of architecture that is common in Nepal, and it has kept the history of the Licchhavi dynasty alive up to the present day.
The revered temple can be found atop the highest point in the hill station of Bhaktapur, which is located in the north of Bhaktapur. In terms of distance, Bhaktapur Durbar Square is approximately 6 kilometers away from this location. This temple is home to some of the world's oldest inscriptions and sculptures, with some of them dating all the way back to 464 C.E. So, it is thought that one of the most powerful kings of the Licchavi empire, King Mandev, was the one who started the construction process.
The building that houses the temple has four entrances, one for each of the cardinal directions. Each of the entryways has a pair of lions, a Sarabhai, a griffin, and an elephant stationed on either side of it to serve as a guard.
The funnel-shaped west gate of the temple is adorned with intricate snake designs and serves as the primary entrance. Not only the gates, but also the support struts, are adorned with intricate wood carvings. The eleven incarnations, or avatars, of Lord Vishnu and the carvings of other gods, are only there for decorative purposes. This is also true of the other gods.
Within the Areas of the Temple of Changu Narayan
In point of fact, the Changu Narayan Temple is the primary temple that can be reached by going straight to the Changu Narayan grounds.
The revered god Chinna Masta resides within the Chinna Masta Temple, which is the next stop on our journey. Similarly, the Kileshwor Mahadev Temple, which is situated right next to the Chinna Masta Temple, is equally lovely despite its diminutive size. In spite of its size, it has some of the most beautiful carved struts I've ever seen.
These wondrous works of art also include a number of stone sculptures depicting Lord Vishnu in various forms. To begin with, the vast majority of them are from the sixth or seventh centuries. This is the first important fact to note. They each depict Lord Vishnu in a unique incarnation and relate a unique story.
According to the evidence, King Bhupatindra Malla was also involved in the refurbishment of the Changu Narayan temple. Despite this, it boasts of having nearly every incarnation of Lord Vishnu represented on its grounds. Yes, there is a rest stop just around the next bend in the road.
In the vicinity are depicted Vishworup, Narshima, Vaikuntha Vishnu, and Vishnu Vikrant. The statues of Shridhar Vishnu, Garuda Narayan, and Chanda Narayan, as well as those of King Bhupatindra Malla and Queen Bhuvan Laxmi, all add to Changu's beauty.
How can one reach Changu Narayan Temple?
In Kathmandu, finding a bus that will transport you to Bhaktapur is simple. You must then board a different public bus to complete the 6 km journey from Bhaktapur to Changu Narayan.
Another option is that from any part of Kathmandu, you can alternatively hire a taxi, which would cost Rs. 1000. The cost of a cab from Bhaktapur is Rs 300.
The Changunarayan Temple was built during the Licchhavi era and is without a doubt an outstanding example of the art and architecture of that era. Its construction dates back to that time period. It is also known as the oldest temple in all of Nepal. Many people say it has a modern look and can be the perfect place for a photo shoot. There are many events that happen there, and it's a great place to visit. If you're looking for something to do in Nepal, this is the place you must visit.