Explore Tansen’s fascinating history
Likened to Darjeeling for its steep roads that climb the hillside, it has its own charm and a rich history. Once the capital of the Magar kingdom of Tanahun under the reign King Mukunda Sen, the kingdom of Palpa had expanded as far as the Koshi River in the east, Gorakhpur in the south and Gulmi and Kaski districts in the west and north respectively. Until the rise of the Shahs, it was one of the most powerful kingdoms in Nepal. It even came close to conquering Kathmandu in the 16th century under the leadership of King Mukunda Sen (1518-1553 AD). Although the power of the Magars waned in the 18th century, Tansen recovered as a Newari trading post on the busy trading route between India and Tibet. In 1806, Prithivipal Sen, the last king of Palpa, was invited to Kathmandu but was a trap and he was beheaded there. Palpa then became part of the Kathmandu kingdom with Tansen the administrative city for the area.

palpa-tansen-nepal

Sightseeing: palaces and temples
There is plenty to see in Tansen. You enter Durbar Square through the huge gate, Baggi Dhoka, where the chariots of religious festivals have to pass through. There are fine woodcarvings on the buildings on both sides of the gate, examples of the fine Newari craftsmanship. Tansen Durbar was built in 1927 by Pratap Shamsher Jang Bahadur Rana and formed the grand palace that was the seat of the Rana governors. Though in January 2006 during the Maoist insurgency it was destroyed, after the abdication of the king a few months later, the palace was one of the first government buildings to be restored. It now houses a small museum.

Sittalpati, a curious octagonal pavilion can be found in the main square. It was built under the order of Khadga Shamsher, governor of Palpa from 1891- 1902. (Shamsher, an ambitious politician, was exiled from Kathmandu after plotting against the Prime Minister.) In the past, it was used by the governors of Tansen when they had public announcements to make, but now it is a popular spot for locals to hang out and chat. Close by is the oldest temple in town, the two-tiered pagoda style temple of Bhimsen. According to the ‘Mahabharata’ although not a god, Bhimsen was the mightiest hero and Newars worship him like a god for the protection of their property and for when they go on business journeys.

At the bottom of Asan Tole, there is Amar Narayan Mandir, the large classic three-tiered pagoda style temple is sacred to the Lord Vishnu. It was built in 1807 by the first governor of Tansen, Amar Singh Thapa and is very beautiful with its carved wood deities. The ****** carvings on the wooden structures are remarkable. The temple is surrounded by one meter wide stone wall locally known as the Great wall of Palpa. In the vicinity of the temple, there are two other temples. Mahadev Mandir is found just below, sacred to Shiva and the other is to Vishnu Paduka.

Bhagawati Temple was rebuilt by Colonel Ujir Singh Thapa, the governor of Palpa in 1815 in commemoration of the victory over colonial British Indian Forces in the battle fought at Butwal. The large temple was damaged by the devastating earthquake in 1935 after which it was renovated in its smaller present size. Close to Bhagawati Temple are three small temples of Shiva, Ganesh and Saraswati, the goddess of wisdom. Every August, a chariot procession of deities is paraded through the town with military honor to observe the historic battle.

Up of the side of Srinagar Hill, you can find Siddhi Binayak Temple, the temple of the God Ganesh. It is said that the sculptors who came to Tansen from Kathmandu to build Amar Narayan Temple, also carved the figure of an elephant on a big stone. It was given the shape of God Ganesh, whose head according to mythology was replaced by the head of an elephant after he was beheaded by his father, Lord Shiva.

dhaka-clothing-palpa
Explore Tansen’s fascinating history Likened to Darjeeling for its steep roads that climb the hillside, it has its own charm and a rich history. Once the capital of the Magar kingdom of Tanahun under the reign King Mukunda Sen, the kingdom of Palpa had expanded as far as the Koshi River in the east, Gorakhpur in the south and Gulmi and Kaski districts in the west and north respectively. Until the rise of the Shahs, it was one of the most powerful kingdoms in Nepal. It even came close to conquering Kathmandu in the 16th century under the leadership of King Mukunda Sen (1518-1553 AD). Although the power of the Magars waned in the 18th century, Tansen recovered as a Newari trading post on the busy trading route between India and Tibet. In 1806, Prithivipal Sen, the last king of Palpa, was invited to Kathmandu but was a trap and he was beheaded there. Palpa then became part of the Kathmandu kingdom with Tansen the administrative city for the area. palpa-tansen-nepal Sightseeing: palaces and temples There is plenty to see in Tansen. You enter Durbar Square through the huge gate, Baggi Dhoka, where the chariots of religious festivals have to pass through. There are fine woodcarvings on the buildings on both sides of the gate, examples of the fine Newari craftsmanship. Tansen Durbar was built in 1927 by Pratap Shamsher Jang Bahadur Rana and formed the grand palace that was the seat of the Rana governors. Though in January 2006 during the Maoist insurgency it was destroyed, after the abdication of the king a few months later, the palace was one of the first government buildings to be restored. It now houses a small museum. Sittalpati, a curious octagonal pavilion can be found in the main square. It was built under the order of Khadga Shamsher, governor of Palpa from 1891- 1902. (Shamsher, an ambitious politician, was exiled from Kathmandu after plotting against the Prime Minister.) In the past, it was used by the governors of Tansen when they had public announcements to make, but now it is a popular spot for locals to hang out and chat. Close by is the oldest temple in town, the two-tiered pagoda style temple of Bhimsen. According to the ‘Mahabharata’ although not a god, Bhimsen was the mightiest hero and Newars worship him like a god for the protection of their property and for when they go on business journeys. At the bottom of Asan Tole, there is Amar Narayan Mandir, the large classic three-tiered pagoda style temple is sacred to the Lord Vishnu. It was built in 1807 by the first governor of Tansen, Amar Singh Thapa and is very beautiful with its carved wood deities. The erotic carvings on the wooden structures are remarkable. The temple is surrounded by one meter wide stone wall locally known as the Great wall of Palpa. In the vicinity of the temple, there are two other temples. Mahadev Mandir is found just below, sacred to Shiva and the other is to Vishnu Paduka. Bhagawati Temple was rebuilt by Colonel Ujir Singh Thapa, the governor of Palpa in 1815 in commemoration of the victory over colonial British Indian Forces in the battle fought at Butwal. The large temple was damaged by the devastating earthquake in 1935 after which it was renovated in its smaller present size. Close to Bhagawati Temple are three small temples of Shiva, Ganesh and Saraswati, the goddess of wisdom. Every August, a chariot procession of deities is paraded through the town with military honor to observe the historic battle. Up of the side of Srinagar Hill, you can find Siddhi Binayak Temple, the temple of the God Ganesh. It is said that the sculptors who came to Tansen from Kathmandu to build Amar Narayan Temple, also carved the figure of an elephant on a big stone. It was given the shape of God Ganesh, whose head according to mythology was replaced by the head of an elephant after he was beheaded by his father, Lord Shiva. dhaka-clothing-palpa
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