After morning pickup from select hotels in central Kathmandu, travel in a climate-controlled private vehicle with your guide and driver to Swayambhunath Temple.
During the 20-minute drive to the hilltop temple, your guide explains the importance of Hinduism and Buddhism in Kathmandu Valley. Upon arrival, ascend 365 steps that lead to a white stupa decorated with fluttering prayer flags. Take in sweeping views from the World Heritage-listed site, which overlooks Kathmandu and the distant snow-capped Himalayas (if the skies are clear).
Take a shorter walk back to your vehicle then drive for a half-hour to reach Patan's Durbar Square. Known as Nepal's City of Art, this UNESCO-listed plaza includes ancient temples, a royal palace, a museum, and a maze of fascinating side streets. The earthquakes of 2015 damaged many of the temples in the area, and repairs are underway.
Hear about the long history of Patan Durbar Square and its key highlights, then visit the Patan Museum with your guide. There you can view works of bronze and copper religious art in addition to other artifacts.
Your tour ends with drop-off around 1pm at your Kathmandu hotel.