Printed under the aegis of His Majesty's Government of Nepal Ministry of Industry & Commerce, this Kathmandu City map from March 1969 offers a richly detailed and engaging portrayal of Nepal's capital. The map, issued by the Department of Tourism and printed locally at The Asian Printing Press in Kathmandu, provides an invaluable glimpse into the cityscape during a period of significant cultural and social changes.
The Kathmandu City map was issued at a time when the city was transforming from a traditional Himalayan city into a bustling modern metropolis. This was the era following the overthrow of the Rana regime in 1951, a period marked by democratic reform, modernization, and the opening of Nepal to the outside world. The map, therefore, captures a historic snapshot of Kathmandu during its transition, encapsulating the traditional and the modern, the local and the global.
The map is both a practical guide and an informative resource, with numerous points of interest numbered and named. From major landmarks such as the Hanuman Dhoka (Darbar Square) and the iconic Bodhnath Stupa, to functional sites like Tribhuban University and various embassies, the map weaves a detailed narrative of the city's structure and the diverse functions it accommodates. Notably, the presence of different international embassies underscores Kathmandu's growing importance in the geopolitical landscape of the late 1960s.
The included inset of "Kathmandu Centre" provides a more detailed look at the city's core, and the verso furnishes crucial tourist information, from hotels and exchange rates to a smaller pictorial representation of the Kathmandu Valley. This dual focus on the city and its surrounding valley demonstrates Kathmandu's interconnectedness with its broader geographical and cultural context.