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How to get to Panauti

Take a bus, bike, taxi or private car ...
David Ways | Updated: | Nepal travel guides

My Rating:3.0  
Getting to the ancient city of Panauti is easy
about - directions - map
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About getting to Panauti

Located between Kathmandu city and Dhulikhel, Panauti is often overlooked but easy to get to. Do read my full guide to Panauti. It's worth putting aside a full day for Panauti or if you are looking for a night in an authentic Newar city then an overnight stopover is a good choice.

Panauti up until recently has been relatively untouched in terms of tours and tourism - this is one of its charms. In 2017 many travel agents are trying to package it into an overnight "community homestay" often pushing side treks from there. This is fine if you on a tight schedule. But it's highly overpriced and run by a private company. If you are independently traveling with time then it's highly recommended you do everything yourself. Because getting to Panauti is easy. And there are cheaper accommodation options available.

Did you know?

Panauti was founded in 1793 but is said to predate much of Kathmandu city with strong origin links to the Hindu god Shiva.

The road to Panauti is was recently resurfaced. However, Kathmandu city in 2017-2018 is having a major road building overhaul which has kicked up a lot of dust. Thankfully once you are out of the city the road to Panauti is relatively well kept.

Transport to Panauti

There are several transportation methods to Panauti depending on your budget and schedule.

By bus: direct buses to Panauti depart from the old bus park (Ratna) in Kathmandu city every 15 minutes or so for 60 rupees (1.5 hours). These buses stop in Banepa but you don't have to transfer. They will continue on to Panauti bus park.

If you are coming from other locations in the Kathmandu Valley like Bhaktapur or Dhulikhel and cannot get a direct bus to Panauti then get one to Banepa. From the small station in Banepa just ask for the next bus to Panauti which is about 20 rupees.

Do be aware that the last buses from Panauti generally finish up around 6pm. However, during the winter they sometimes finish at 5pm. Do ask once you arrive.

By taxi: taking a taxi from Kathmandu to Panauti is quite easy but you will have to bargain hard for about 2,500 rupees. Most taxi drivers will be happy to wait for you if you are making the return journey after a few hours. There are taxi's around the bus park in Panauti.

By motorcycle: taking a motor bike from Kathmandu to Panauti is easy. However if you are not used to the virtually ignored traffic rules in Kathmandu it might be a bit stressful. GPS does work in Nepal but it's unwise to take your eyes off the road. You'll also need to find a safe place to park. For such a short trip a motorbike tends to put too much stress on you compared to other options.

By mountain bike: until Kathmandu cities roads have been rebuilt taking a mountain bike to Panauti can be a dangerous, polluted and tiring ride. The roads are being rebuilt around the city throughout 2017-2018 - the mountain bike tour companies need to make a profit so they keep pushing tourists to rent a bike. Save the mountain biking for the next couple of years to Pokhara or anywhere outside the Kathmandu Valley!

By private car or jeep: Hiring your own car or jeep and driver is quite convenient when visiting Panauti. They are generally more comfortable and as most are can be hired for the day it's possible to fit in another site such as Dhulikhel or Bhaktapur on the same day. Private jeeps can be rented with a driver for about USD$35-50 per day. Air-conditioning is usually extra.

By private tour: If you are stuck for time or are looking for a private vehicle plus guide to show you around then taking a private tour is a good option. Do check out this recommended package tour to Bhaktapur and Panauti.



What's the best transport option to visit Panauti?

To be honest the bus is the easiest and most cost effective way to reach Panauti! Since he road was repaired it's no longer the bumpy ride it once was.

Otherwise if you want something more comfortable then hiring a taxi is the next best option.

Map to Panauti

Do read my full free online guide to Panauti for more. Meanwhile full directions to Panauti and maps are available in my guidebook below.


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Panauti in the Kathmandu Valley

Panauti by the rivers, Kathmandu

Panauti is easy to reach from Kathmandu and very much worth a visit
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Full guide:
» Guide to Patan    
Central Patan
  - Patan Durbar Square
 South Patan
  - Mahaboudha Temple
  - Uku Bahal
  - Machchhendranath temple
North Patan
  - The Golden Temple
  - Kumbeshwar Temple Complex
West Patan
  - The Kumari Living Goddess
East Patan
  - The Balkumari Temple

Make the most out of your journey:
» Get my full guidebook to Patan!


Full guide:
» Guide to Bhaktapur
Durbar Square
» Guide to Bhaktapur Durbar Square
  - Erotic Elephants Temple (Shiva Parvati)
  - Basantapur Chowk (Sculptures)
  - National Art Gallery / Museum
  - The Golden Gate (Sundhoka)
  - Taleju Temple (Mul Chowk)
  - Naga Pokari 
55 Window Palace
  - Siddhi Lakshmi
  - Stone Lions
  - Pashupatinath Temple (Bhaktapur)
  - Vatsala Durga Temple & Taleju Bell
  - Chyasalin Mandap
Near Durbar Square
» Taumadhi Square
» Dattatraya Square
Just outside Bhaktapur
» Kailashnath Mahadev (Tallest Shiva statue)
» Nagarkot

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Bardia National Park

Full guide:
» Guide to Lumbini
» History of Lumbini
» Ashokan Pillar in Lumbini

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» Download my Guidebook to Lumbini!


The bridge leading to Panauti from the bus park is my prefered way of reaching the old city

Bridge opposite the bus park in Panauti
Take the bridge opposite the bus park in Panauti for a more scenic way to reach the old city

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