Bodhnath, location of one of the world’s largest and most spectacular stupas, is home to Nepal’s sizable community of Tibetan refugees. Here, unlike China, you can bear witness to active Tibetan Buddhism WITH Dalai Lama portraits plastered to everything that doesn’t move. Young Tibetans sell “Free Tibet” T-shirts, and Buddhism rules.
Bodhnath is best in the evening when the whole community comes out to do the kora around the stupa. Young and old circle the massive structure spinning prayer wheels and chanting as they go – anything for a few extra karmic points! This is my favorite place in Kathmandu.