The ancient Bishnu Temple
Changu Narayan temple located atop a hill about 19kms east of Kathmandu is considered the oldest of all the temples in the valley. Built in the two-tiered pagoda style, the main shrine is guarded on all sides by pairs of real and mythical beasts, elephants, lions, winged lions and ram-horned griffons. The roof struts feature some amazingly intricate carvings of Tantric deities. All around the courtyard are a series of extraordinary carvings dating from the Licchavi era, showing Vishnu in his various avatars (incarnations). Dedicated to Lord Vishnu Changu Narayan is of great historical importance. The oldest piece found here is a sculpture of Garuda, the mythical bird and the mount of Lord Vishnu dating back to the 5th century AD. From up here one can get a view over the surrounding countryside.