Bagh Bhairab Temple
Bagh Bhairab is a charming Hindu temple in Kirtipur’s hilltop town. The temple was built in the 16th century in honour of Bagh Bhairab, an incarnation of Lord Shiva in the form of a tiger.
Bagh Bhairab and Gurkha History
If you look closely, you will see a collection of weapons hanging from the upper roof. These were taken from Gurkha soldiers during battles in Kirtipur in the late 18th century and are a reminder of how hard the citizens of Kirtipur fought to maintain their territory. With the great views Bagh Bhairab Temple offers over Kathmandu, it’s easy to see why Kirtipur was such a strategic location in Nepal’s unification.
Legend has it that local shepherds were building a statue of a tiger and went in search of something to use as the tiger’s tongue. Before they left, they asked the tiger to watch their animals but upon returning, the statue opened its mouth to show it had eaten all of them. As punishment, the shepherds didn’t give the tiger a tongue and made its mouth stay open, which is how the statue is found today.