Bhaktapur means 'the city of devotees" in the Sanskrit language. Its also known as Bhadgaon and was founded in 889 AD by King Anand Dev.
Fourteen kilometers east of Kathmandu, this is the most "relaxing" city of the valley to visit. The main reason is that there is no motorized traffic inside the town : this sharply contrasts with the bustle of the two adjacent cities : Patan and Kathmandu. So arriving in the city is a big step backwards in time.
As you wander through the narrow brick paved streets, many alleys are transformed in playground by kids and will show hidden shrines and statues.
Clay craftsmanship as well as cloth weaving are still practiced here very much, and this give a peaceful and medieval touch to the city.
Bhaktapur Durbar Square is entered through a massive royal gate, and opens up to the most unspoiled complex of palaces, shrines and other landmarks I saw during my all trip in India and Nepal.
The palace complex in the middle of the city was home to many kings, which even ruled over Kathmandu and Patan around the 14th century.
The entrance of the Palace of Fifty-five Windows is called Lun Dhwaka (the golden gate). This Golden gate, considered as one of the most important piece of art in the valley, is topped by a Garuda, the vehicle of Vishnu, who is shown killing a number of serpent. Below is an image of the four-headed, six-teen armed "Taleju Bhawani". This goddess, symbol of female force, is honored in many temples in the valley.