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Kathmandu's Street Markets Tour, Kathmandu
Kathmandu's Street Markets Tour
Guide Location: Nepal » Kathmandu
Guide Type: Self-guided city tour
# of Attractions: 8
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.5 km
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia and Wonderlane
Author: helenp
This self-guided walking tour is included in the iOS app "City Maps and Walks (470+ Cities)" in iTunes and the Android app "Kathmandu Map and Walks" in Google Play.
Kathmandu is a true heaven for shoppers, especially for the ones who are ready to explore street markets. In this city, markets are the place where you can buy quality products without wasting all your money - Monk's robes, soft silks, woolen garments, artifacts, etc. The list is truly endless. Unfortunately, in Kathmandu you are not allowed to buy authentic antiques, but you can purchase copies. Check out the most popular shopping spots in Kathmandu using this self-guided tour.
Tour Stops and Attractions
New Road
1) New Road
New Road is situated east of Durbar Square. The road is called Kings Way because it leads to the Royal Palace Museum, where, once, the kings of Nepal lived. Here you can purchase imported luxury items of high quality. A couple of small shops on New Road are dedicated to the traditional musical instruments of Nepal - fiddles, flutes, etc. Another traditional souvenir sold here is the khukri - a traditional knife.
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia and सुधिर मानन्धर
Basantapur Square
2) Basantapur Square
Dealers in Basantapur Square sell a multitude of Tibetan-style curios. These tempting artifacts made of silver, turquoise, coral or ivory are mainly fake, though you can find some interesting items too. Fine ethnic jewelry, in gold and silver, is another exquisite item that can be purchased in the old city.
Image Courtesy of Flickr and Wonderlane
Freak Street
3) Freak Street
Freak Street is a narrow street situated south of Durbar Square. It is a fun place to shop for Tibetan woolen garments, jackets and mittens. Be sure to buy quality textile, else it will fall apart the very next day. Among Nepal's famous bargains are kit bags, caps and clothes made from black felt with rainbow fringes.
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia and Lavenderstreak
Makhan Tole
4) Makhan Tole
Makhan Tole, also known as Makhan Tol, is situated north of the famous Durbar Square. This area is popular among shoppers because here thangka, paubha and other fine arts are sold by numerous dealers. A thangka is a form of art, widespread in Tibet. It is a piece of silk on which Buddhist deities or mandalas are embroidered. A paubha represents the Nepali version of thangka - a scroll upon which the painting is done.
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia and Zionorbi
Indra Chowk
5) Indra Chowk
Indra Chowk is situated on Hanuman Dhoka street, in the heart of the old city of Kathmandu. Indra Chowk is considered to be a center for the sale of textiles. Blankets, clothes, shawls, and scarfs made of pashmina are a local treasure, as this fabric is now banned in India. Pashmina is a kind of Nepali cashmere and in Indra Chowk it can be bought at very low prices. Also, sari material can be purchased in this market.
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia and Lavenderstreak
Asan Tole
6) Asan Tole
Asan Tole, also named Ason Tole, is an open market located at the intersection of many streets, near the Annapurna temple and the Ganesha shrine. The distinctive feature of this market is that it's always extremely busy. Besides the traditional goods sold here, you can find - spices, dried fruit, brass pots, and topi, a kind of Nepali cap.
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia and BetacommandBot
Thamel Chowk
7) Thamel Chowk
Thamel is a popular tourist destination in Kathmandu. Thamel has been the center of the tourist industry in Kathmandu for over two decades, growing up between two of the original hotels, the Kathmandu Guesthouse and Hotel Utse. Even though Thamel has been referred to as the "ghetto" by some, most low-budget travelers consider it a tourist haven. Its concentration of narrow streets are lined with small shops selling everything from food and provisions to clothes, walking gear, cakes, pastries, music, DVDs (mostly pirated), handicrafts, etc. The area has some very good restaurants too.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia and McKay Savage
Sight description based on wikipedia
Durbar Marg
8) Durbar Marg
Durbar Marg is a major economic hub, along the New Road and Putalisadak. This open market sells a large variety of handicrafts, artworks, garments, pashmina, paper, etc. Durbar Marg is also well-known for having the best shops that sell branded clothes. Curio Arts is a good boutique to start with. However, here you can also find dried fruit, pastries, etc.
Image Courtesy of Flickr and magical-world
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