With its ornate palaces, temples and squares, Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, is a fascinating place. Ideal for exploring by foot, the city offers a startling array of market stalls and craft shops selling locally produced goods. What's more, the people are considered to be amongst the friendliest in Asia. Highlights include the courtyards and chambers of the Royal Palace, Durbar Square with its highly-detailed wooden temples and the Red Towers for a view of the city and the surrounding mountain peaks. There are various interesting sights in the outlying area around Kathmandu such as Swayambhunath, a 2,000 year old Buddhist stupa supporting a lofty conical spire capped by a copper-gilded pinnacle and Bhaktapur, an enchanting ancient city with winding alleyways and a stunning palatial complex brimming with architectural gems. The altitude of Kathmandu is 1,370 metres.