According to tradition, a Narayan temple occupies each of the four cardinal points of Kathmandu Valley. The western one, Ichangu Narayan, is rustic rather than distinguished, but it nestles in a surprisingly pleasant rural side valley at the southern base of Jamacho. A roughish road leaves the Ring Road immediately opposite Swayambhunath’s western tip; there’s no bus, but taxis wait at this junction, or you can hike or bike up through the suburb of Halchok towards a small notch in the ridge behind a big Buddhist monastery; from here an increasingly rough road descends into the Ichangu valley to reach the temple after about 3km. Just beyond the saddle, another road breaks off to the south beside a quarry; from here mountain bikers could head westwards to Bhimdhunga and on to Thankot, astride the westbound Prithvi Highway.

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