The oldest Hindu Temple, Changu Narayan
Changu Narayan is the oldest temple in Nepali history and stands on the top of a hill called Changu or Dolagiri. It is located in Changunarayan VDC of Bhaktapur district and is 8 miles east of Kathmandu and a few miles north of Bhaktapur. The temple is dedicated to the deity Lord Vishnu. The temple was originally constructed during the Lichhavi Dynasty that dates back to 4th century and was rebuilt in 1702 after a major fire occurred.
Architecture and History
The temple is already unique in its own style. It is an example of one of the finest Nepali architecture as it is already enlisted in the UNESCO World Heritage Site.”The two-story roofed temple is neither in Shikhara nor in Pagoda Style but it has an architectural style which can be described as traditional Nepali temple,” says Professor Madhan Rimal, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Tribhuwan University.
There are many small temples in the area of Changu Narayan Temple. Such as Lord Shiva, Ashta Matrika, Chhinnamasta, Kileshwor and Krishna temples. One can enter the temple through four gates, guarded by life-size pairs of animals such as lions, Sarabhai, griffins, and elephants.
Situation of Temple after Earthquake
The devastating earthquake that took place on April 25, 2015, did not do any harm to the main temple of Changu Narayan but did serious damage to Krishna Mandir located near the main temple. It also destroyed the living traditional museum. Though there has been some preservation works the temple does not shine like the original one.