Kathmandu, Dec. 3: Max was strolling around Makhan, taking photos of the shops and temples, on Tuesday when nature called. He looked around for the proper facilities but could not spot any. He asked the local shopkeepers who suggested he visit a café or a restaurant, but he would probably have to make a purchase.
approached a member of Kathmandu Metropolitan City’s police force who directed
him to the tourist toilet at Nava Adarsha High School near the Kumari House. “It
would have been good if they had more toilets,” Max, who preferred to not share
his surname, told The Rising Nepal after attending to his business. “Thank
god I was nearby but what if someone was a bit far and needed to use the
restroom more urgently?”
precisely what happened to Amy, who also did not divulge her full name because
of the embarrassing nature of the matter. She was at Naradevi on Thursday when she
felt a shiver down her spine. Her body began feeling heavy and her tummy
bloated. She knew what this indicated and told her guide, who suggested they make
their way to Basantapur to use the toilet at Nava Adarsha.
“But it was
an emergency. I either had to find a restroom or find a new pair of pants,” she
chuckled as she described her situation. “Fortunately, after pleas from my
guide, a local allowed me to use the restroom in his house.”
no toilets here except the one at Basantapur?”
put this question to Chandra Gopal Pradhan, head of the Hanumandhoka Durbar
Square Conservation Programme, who answered that the Nava Adarsha School
lavatory was indeed the only tourist toilet in the palace complex. Use of the
toilet is free to all foreigners and the Programme makes sure to keep it clean
throughout the day. But it is still the only one available to tourists visiting
context, 137,904 foreigners visited Hanumandhoka Durbar in the fiscal year
2022/23. That’s an average of over 375 tourists per day who only had the restroom
at that one location at their disposal, pun unintended.
Patan Durbar Square, which saw 151,800 Nepali and 105,632 foreign visitors in
the same fiscal year, does not have a separate restroom for tourists. However,
Lalitpur Metropolitan City stated that there are several ‘smart’ public toilets
in the city that both denizens and “visiting guests” can use with ease.
nearest to the Patan Durbar Square is at Mangal Bazaar across the road from the
Area Post Office. “But there are no signs showing the way from the Durbar,”
complained Dambar Basnet, a domestic tourist visiting from Tanahun.
daughter-in-law was showing him the Krishna Temple when he felt the need to
address the biological imperative. He could not find a lavatory, so he asked
the person at the tourist ticket counter who pointed him to the one at Mangal
“I think there
should be a sign telling tourists where important facilities like the restroom,
police station, hospitals and ATMs are,” Basnet said.
Durbar Square, which welcomed 167,652 foreigners in 2022/23, seems to be best
at “toileting,” Max proclaimed. He visited Bhaktapur on Wednesday, a day after
his experience at Hanumandhoka and he said he saw “relieving facilities” at the
main entrance gate to the square, Dattatreya and the Silu Mahadev Temple.
the Tourist Information and Service Centre (TISC) of Bhaktapur Municipality
could not give an exact number but said that they had tourist toilets at the
three locations mentioned, and at Chyamasingh, TISC buildings and multiple
other places across the square. Like at Basantapur, they are free to use and
are kept clean, the Centre said.
like Basnet in Patan, Max would have found a sign helpful. “Some small
information boards here and there would go a long way,” he felt.