Bokacho Gadhi: Discovering Bhaktapur's Special Place in History

26, Feb 2024 |

It is a reminder that amidst the bustling modernity of today, the echoes of the past continue to resonate, waiting to be discovered by those who seek to unveil the treasures of Bhaktapur's legacy.

Nestled amidst the captivating landscape of Bhaktapur, Bokacho Gadhi stands as a testament to the rich historical and cultural tapestry of this ancient city. This specific site, steeped in tradition and surrounded by the intricate charm of Newari architecture, has become a magnet for tourists seeking a glimpse into the past and a connection with the indigenous Newar people of the Kathmandu Valley in Nepal. The term "Gadhi" holds significant meaning in the Newari language, denoting a pond or water tank. Bokacho Gadhi, therefore, represents not just a physical structure but a reservoir of cultural significance.

Visitors to this site are greeted by the allure of traditional Newari architecture, creating an immersive experience that transports them to a bygone era. Perched at an elevation of 2100 feet above the bunker, Bokacho Gadhi offers panoramic views that extend beyond the confines of Bhaktapur. The vantage point provides a sweeping vista of the entire valley and the majestic mountains that form its backdrop. The fort itself stands as a tower of historical significance, with its origins dating back to a time before the invasion of Bhaktapur by Prithvinarayan Shah during the unification of Nepal. The fort served as a strategic stronghold, positioned strategically to command views of the surrounding landscape.

Over time, a tower was added to the fort by the army, enhancing the scenic beauty of the valley and elevating Bokacho Gadhi to a favored destination for both domestic and international tourists. The influx of visitors is not only drawn by the historical resonance of the site but also by the opportunity to savor the local culinary delights, with Dhido and indigenous chicken dishes gaining popularity. Wandering through the site, one can encounter remnants of old and historic bricks and stones, silent witnesses to the passage of time. The preservation of these relics becomes paramount, serving as a link between the present and the distant past. The municipality, recognizing the importance of conserving this heritage, is actively engaged in the construction of the Vindhyavasini temple near the tower. This endeavor reflects a commitment to safeguarding the historical integrity of Bokacho Gadhi. Delving deeper into the historical narrative, it is revealed that during the unification of Nepal, Prithvinarayan Shah himself traversed the hallowed grounds of Bokacho Gadhi.

Legend has it that he visited the Ashapureshwar Mahadev Temple in the vicinity, then ascended to Bokacho Gadhi, where he strategically built a bunker. From this elevated vantage point, he surveyed the expanse of Bhaktapur, formulating plans for the impending attack. The bunker, concealed within the fort, now lies dormant, awaiting excavation. The potential revelations that may surface from this archaeological endeavor hold promise for unraveling additional layers of Bhaktapur's history. The Nepal Army has expressed its intent to embark on a meticulous excavation process, emphasizing the need for a measured and respectful approach to the historical and archaeological heritage contained within Bokacho Gadhi. As the story of Bokacho Gadhi unfolds, it weaves together elements of strategic military planning, architectural prowess, and cultural significance.

The site stands not only as a physical structure but also as a living testament to the resilience of Bhaktapur's heritage, beckoning visitors to embark on a journey through time. It is a reminder that amidst the bustling modernity of today, the echoes of the past continue to resonate, waiting to be discovered by those who seek to unveil the treasures of Bhaktapur's legacy.

Photo Credit: Facebook, Youtube

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