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Bhaktapur, also known as Bhadgaon, means 'city of rice' in Nepali and is one of the main cities of the Kathmandu Valley region in Nepal. It can easily be reached by car or bus from Kathmandu and it is worth staying a night to soak up the atmosphere in the early hours and evening when most tourists have moved on.
Bhaktapur is listed as a World Heritage site by UNESCO for its rich culture, temples, and wood, metal and stone artwork. The old town is pretty much traffic free and is a delight to explore on foot. It dates back to 12th century and is set on the old trade route to tibet. The local traditions and old medieval architecture are more or less intact so it feels like you are entering a living museum. You'll see grain being threshed by hand and rice drying in the sun along with handmade pottery and other ancient crafts and traditions taking pace. The main Durbar Square is very impressive and so much quieter than the frenetic Durbar Square of Kathmandu.
|Ganesh Guest House||Sukuldhoka||guesthouse||-|
|Pagoda Guest House Bhaktapur||Taumadhi Square-11 Pagoda Guest House & Restaurant||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|View Top Lodge And Restaurant||Sarangkot -3 Pokhara Nepal||HOSTEL||-|
|Heart of Bhaktapur Guest House||Kulmanani Bhaktapur-11||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Cosy Hotel||Pottery square Bhaktapur-12||GUESTHOUSE||-|
Internet connectivity is increasing rapidly, and obviously its availability is most widespread in Kathmandu (especially in Thamel and around the Boudha Stupa in Boudhanath) or Pokhara. In those two cities, most hotels and lodges will have free Internet connection with Wi-Fi. So will many restaurants. More and more villages will have Internet available at some lodges, usually with Wi-Fi.
See also: International Telephone Calls
There are two main mobile operators in Nepal. Government run NTC (Nepal Telecom Company), and private Ncell (previously called Spice Mobile and Mero Mobile). Both operators allow tourists to buy SIM cards for about 200NRs in Kathmandu and most major towns. You will need to bring a passport photo, fill in a form and have your passport and visa page photocopied, expect too also have your finger prints taken. Try to buy the SIM card at a shop owned by the phone company as if you buy it from a corner shop it can take some time for the card to be activated, despite promises that it will be done in " a couple of hours".
Ncell SIM's - can be bought from many stores, but are best bought from official stores in Birgunj or Kathmandu. Micro SIMs can be cut for free if you need. Ncell offers two different SIM cards. The first is a usual SIM card that allows you to make calls to any phone (local calls are about NPR2.5/min), and you can also buy mobile data to use. The second is a data only SIM card, and can not be used for making or receiving calls. The advantage to the second sim being the rates for data are significantly cheaper than a call and data SIM.
Nepal Post is the Postal Service Department of the Nepali Ministry of Information and Communications and the national post office of Nepal. Services are terribly slow, especially to international destinations. Post offices are generally open Sunday to Thursday from 10:00am to 5:00pm, and on Friday until 3:00pm, although some offices keep longer hours. For packages, it is recommend to use international courier services like DHL, TNT or UPS.
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