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Dakshinkali Temple
Dakshinkali Temple

Dakshinkali Temple

20km (12mi) From Kathmandu, Kathmandu, Nepal

The Basics

Dakshinkali Temple is the most important Kali temple in Nepal. Kali is the Hindu goddess of empowerment, time, and change. Her name refers to the color black, kalo in Nepali, and she is often called Dark Mother. Devout Hindus believe that bloodthirsty Kali needs biweekly sacrifices. On Tuesdays and Saturdays, worshippers bring animals to the temple where they are killed and butchered. The meat is either taken home or cooked and eaten at the temple.

Travelers often visit Dakshinkali Temple on a day trip from Kathmandu that might include visiting nearby Pharping and Chobhar, too. Alternatively, Pharping is a good place to check out when hiking up Mount Champadevi.

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Things to Know Before You Go

  • Non-Hindus are not allowed inside the temple building itself.

  • Be respectful of devotees when taking photos and watching the sacrifices as it’s a sacred ritual to believers.

  • Those squeamish about blood might want to skip this temple, but travelers interested in learning more about traditional Nepali beliefs and customs will find it fascinating.

  • There is no entry fee.

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How to Get There

Local buses run to Dakshinkali from central Kathmandu’s Old Bus Park and Ratna Park (with additional buses running on Tuesday and Saturday to accommodate the extra visitors), and the trip takes about two hours. Alternatively, join a day trip with transportation included, or hire a taxi to take you to Dakshinkali.

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When to Get There

The animal sacrifices are made on Tuesday and Saturday, so expect the temple to be crowded at these times. Saturday, the Nepali day of rest, is the busiest time to visit. It is also busy during the annual Dashain festival, Nepal’s biggest Hindu festival, which falls in September or October.

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Visit Pharping

The town of Pharping is about half a mile (one kilometer) from Dakshinkali, and some tours visit both areas. Pharping offers views of bright green rice fields, through which you can take a short hike. Pharping is holy to Tibetan Buddhists who believe it is where Guru Rinpoche attained enlightenment. There are some important temples and meditation caves to visit, as well as golden-roofed monasteries in the hills around the town.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the nearest attractions to Dakshinkali Temple?
A:
Attractions near Dakshinkali Temple:
Q:
What else should I know about attractions in Kathmandu?
A:
As well as visiting the Dakshinkali Temple, check out these trip ideas to make the most of your visit: