Kathmandu (; Nepali: काठमाडौँ, Nepali pronunciation: [ˈkaʈʰmaɳɖu]) is the capital and largest city of Nepal, with a population of around 1 million. Also known as the city of temples, the city stands at an elevation of approximately 1,400 metres (4,600 feet) above sea level in the bowl-shaped Kathmandu valley in central Nepal. The valley was historically referred to as the"Nepal Mandala" and has been the home of the Newar people, a cosmopolitan urban culture in the Himalayan foothills. The town was the royal capital of the Kingdom of Nepal and hosts palaces, mansions and gardens of the Nepalese aristocracy. It has been home to the headquarters of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) since 1985. Today, it's the seat of government of the Nepalese republic, based in 2008, and is a part of the Bagmati Pradesh.
Kathmandu is and has been for many years the center of Nepal's history, art, culture, and economy. It has a multi-ethnic population within a Hindu and Buddhist majority.
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