There are many interesting towns and villages worth visiting in the area around Patan.
The village of Harisiddhi lies some 10 km (61/4 mi.) south of Kathmandu on the way to Godavari. It is known for its temple dedicated to the goddess Harisiddhi Bhavani, an aspect of the fearsome Durga.The 17th-18th c. temple, one of only two four-storied pagodas in the Kathmandu Valley, is otherwise rather undistinguished. Its Tantric priests wear the traditional long white skirts and wear their hair in a bun.Harisiddhi also has a celebrated dance troupe whose performances are a highlight of the village year.
Lubhu, about 5 km (3 mi.) south-east of Patan, boasts two temples dedicated to Mahalakshmi, goddess of prosperity and mother earth. Since prosperity for the villagers means rice and cereals, these are the gifts they bring her.However, Mahalakshmi is also an aspect of Bhairavi, female counterpart of the terrifying Bhairava. In this form she is celebrated with orgiastic festivals and animal sacrifices. Every year the goddess is honored with puja at a kind of harvest thanksgiving. Many villages have her as their guardian deity.
Thaibo, another village on the Godavari road, about 10 km (61/4 mi.) from Kathmandu, has a small shrine dedicated to Ganesh. The nearby Sanathaneshvara Mahadeva Temple is also of interest, standing on a hill worshipped in its own right as a lingam. From here there is a fine view of the Kathmandu Valley.
One of the temples to Mahalakshmi is situated in the village, the other outside it among fields. The former is three-storied and dates from the 17th c. Both have delightful wood-carvings.
In the center of the village near the Mahalakshmi Temple a circular area enclosed by a stone wall marks the site of an old fort. Only the wall with its outer and inner gates survives together with the goddess Bhagwati's two-storied shrine.
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