Kathmandu is the capital city of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal. It has been so ever since the unification of Nepal, which is marked as a significant historical event in the country. To the south and north of this metropolis, Kathmandu, lie the sub-metropolis cities, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur. Kathmandu Metropolitan City lies amidst the great hills, namely Shivapuri, Phulchowki, Nagarjun and Chandragiri. The city lies at an elevation of 1400 metres above sea level.
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Kathmandu Metropolitan City Area
Kathmandu Metropolitan City lies in the northwest part of the Kathmandu Valley and occupies an area of 50.7 km2. The city’s total area is small, with the area of the whole country; Nepal itself is small. However, according to the latest census, it has a population of more than 975 thousand people, which is staggering. It is the most populous city of Nepal, where people from different corners of the country resides.
Key features of Kathmandu Metropolitan City
Kathmandu Metropolitan City is the centre of Nepal’s history, art, culture and economy. The city contains the President’s House and office, the Prime Minister’s Office (Singha Durbar), the Nepal Government’s central Ministries, the majority of all the central offices, Government and Private Television stations, and other organizations. The power and political clout seem centralised in the capital, and people from different parts of the country originally want to live in the city for different facilities and job opportunities.
Kathmandu Metropolitan City History
The history of the city is more than 2000 years old. Multi-ethnic and multi-religious people reside in Nepal, each with their traditions. Thus, a small city in a small country has much to offer regarding art, culture and history. The main religions that prevail are Hinduism and Buddhism. Along with it, there are various other religions too, and as a result, there is diversity in the festivals, culture, traditions, etc. However, there is unity among the people, and there has never been a riot based on this diversity. The patriotic feeling of being Nepali is present in the people’s hearts.
Kathmandu Metropolitan City Economy and GDP
The economy of the metropolitan city of Kathmandu plays a huge role in the economy of the country. Kathmandu accounts for more than one-third of the national GDP. The economic areas in Kathmandu city comprise manufacturing, trade, agriculture, education, transport, hotel and restaurants and the tourism industry. Lokta paper and Pashmina shawls are famous in Kathmandu. It is the most important industrial and commercial centre in the country. New Road, Durbar Marg, Asan, Putalisadak, and Thamel are the major economic hubs in Kathmandu city.
Tourism has great potential in Kathmandu city. In 2013, it was selected as the 3rd topmost travel destination in the world by TripAdvisor. It was in the frontline in Asia. Sacred and holy places like Pashupatinath temple, Boudhanath Stupa, Swayambhunath etc., bring a lot of tourists from all over the world to Nepal as they have huge significance in the Hindu and Buddhist religions. Various UNESCO-enlisted cultural heritages are in Kathmandu, the country’s pride. As tourism has flourished, the city boasts various luxury hotels like The Hyatt Regency, Dwarika’s, The Yak and Yeti and many others.
Though the city is the heart of the country, it is not exempt from problems. There is a serious problem of air pollution in the city and the increased rampant urbanization. Also, the city faces problems with waste management. In many places, there is a problem of water supply too. The city has come out of the load-shedding problems, which has become a great relief for the people of Kathmandu, who have been dealing with electricity problems for over a decade. Post-earthquake of April 2015, destruction was severe, but slowly, the city is returning to its normal state. The government and the people should take the steps possible from their level to curb the sources of the problems, turn the city into a beautiful and organized city, and set an example for other cities of the country.