town, central Nepal, situated in the Kāthmāndu Valley on the Bāghmati River, just east of Kāthmāndu. Regarded as the holiest place in Nepal, it is the site of an ancient Śaivite (i.e., devoted to the Hindu god Śiva) temple of Paśupatinātha (Pashupatinath). The temple is built in pagoda style with gilt roof, and the banks of the Bāghmati are paved for several hundred yards. There are numerous other shrines in the vicinity. The Śivarātri festival in February or early March attracts Hindu pilgrims from India and other foreign countries. Pious Hindus also go there to die, believing that they will find salvation if they expire with their feet in the sacred waters of the river at Pashupati.

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