About Pottery Square

Pottery Square is located to the south of Bhaktapur Durbar Square and is quite close to Taumadhi square so some call it Taumadhi Potters Square as there actually several pottery areas in Bhaktapur. It's formal name is actually Bolachha Tole but "everyone" knows it simply as Potters square. Out of several, it is the most famous and popular Potters square to visit for many reasons.

Woman sitting with drying pots in Pottery square Bhaktapur
Pottery square when the sun is shining is a great time to visit with potters like this woman sitting out in the sun as her clay ware dries

Pottery Square contains a genuinely authentic Newari pottery kilns, open air drying areas and of course clay pottery!The word "Tole" in Newari (Nepali) means "market street area" and this is one of the best traditional market areas in Bhaktapur. This also includes the main market street leading to Potters square from Bhaktapur Durbar square. The walking time is only about 5 minutes but if you are looking for genuine handmade crafts it could take you much longer with all the shopping en route! Potter using a Potter's Wheel in Pottery Square Bhaktapur

For those looking for genuine Nepali experiences Potters square will show you an authentic Nepali kiln along with potters at their wheels and oodles of clayware being sun dried. There are also a few shrines and temples here along with a slightly hidden one. The area is not big at all, but on a busy day it's jam packed with action.

Did you know?

Potters Square is not just a mere "tourist attraction," but a truly authentic traditional potters' market that has its origins in the 16th century. In the 1970s, when tourists started to visit, the potters faced no difficulties in selling their crafts directly from the kilns.

Today, this place remains a genuine potters' square where one can witness the traditional Nepali pottery-making process. Nevertheless, some shops have established souvenir stalls, and if you happen to be present during a guided tour passing through, the atmosphere might feel a bit commercial. The best approach is to disregard the tour group until they depart. As the area is compact, most groups move on within 5 minutes. The key to enjoying Potters Square is to embrace a leisurely pace, akin to the locals.


Must see highlights around Potters Square

If you are visiting Potters square in Bhaktapur along with the rest of the city, I highly recommend you download my guidebook. It includes a fantastic heritage walk around Bhaktapur including Potters Square, maps, and photographs of every temple so you'll never be confused as to what's what again!

Jeth Ganesh Temple

Jesh Ganesh Temple in Pottery Square

The largest but still small temple in Potters Square is the two-roofed Jeth Ganesh temple dedicated to the son of Shiva known as Ganesh. The temple was built in 1646 when a wealthy potter donated it to the square. Behind it and beside it are several "Pati" or rest houses, still used today by local residents for shelter and socialization.

Open Potters Drying Area

Pots drying in Pottery Square, Bhaktapur

One of the main attractions at Pottery Square is the central area used for sun-drying clay ware. Visitors are welcome to watch the potters at work, but should not walk through the central area.

Potter's Wheels

Potter using a Potter's Wheel in Pottery Square Bhaktapur

Running alongside the main square are several potters wheels where potters create their clay products. Visitors can observe the process, but joining in is not typically possible. The area is famous for its black clay known as "Dyo Cha."

Potters Square Kilns

Kilns in Bhaktapur

Behind the potters wheels are traditional Nepali straw-fired clay kilns. Visitors are free to observe but should be mindful of the work in progress.

Vishnu Shrine

Vishnu Shrine in Pottery Square, Bhaktapur

In the center of Pottery Square is a shrine dedicated to Vishnu, a simple construction made of bricks with an ornate stone statue.

Souvenir stalls

Old Woman by souvenir stalls in Pottery Square, Bhaktapur

Souvenir stalls in the square offer typical Nepali style souvenirs. If interested in purchasing pottery pieces, approach the nearby potter for assistance. ```

Another tip is not to forget that first market street you came down from after leaving Bhaktapur Durbar Square, it's filled with a far more interesting collection of souvenirs.

One last temple and where to go nextPottery drying in front of temple in Pottery Square, Bhaktapur

I'll leave the last temple up to you to find. It's in my guidebooks mentioned below. It's not hard to find though!

From Potters Square you can easily wind your way back to back to Bhaktapur Durbar Square or more interestingly make your way to the tallest temple in Nepal located at Taumadhi square.

If you get my downloadable guide to Bhaktapur it contains every temple in the square and far more: all laid out in a great walking tour, maps and parts of Bhaktapur not covered in any other book. Get my Bhaktapur guidebook here. For even more indepth discovery, get my book Kathmandu Valley Heritage Walks.

Entrance fee for Pottery Square

The current fee for foreigners is included in your overall Bhaktapur ticket price.

This ticket covers all of Bhaktapur, including Bhaktapur Durbar Square, Pottery Square, Taumadhi Square, and Dattatreya Tole.

If you are planning to stay in Bhaktapur, show your passport at the ticket office to extend the same ticket for one week at no extra cost.

Ticket booths are located at all the main entrance streets into the old city of Bhaktapur, and there are random "ticket inspections," so make sure to hold on to your ticket!

Map & Directions to Pottery square

From Bhaktapur Durbar Square simply walk down the side street near the Kedernath temple (opposite the golden gate).

Map of Pottery square


Need a better map? Get my 100% original and detailed maps of Bhaktapur and more in my guidebook
Extract of the best map for Pottery Square, Bhaktapur

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