Four Ashokan Stupas of Patan

The four Ashokas stupas are a testimony to ancient culture, tradition and lifestyle of the Kathmandu Valley. It is believed that Emperor Ashoka, who expanded Buddhism far and wide, came to the Valley in the 3rd century BC. He  built four stupas in four corners of the Patan city.

LAGAN THURA (SOUTHERN STUPA): Of the four stupas of Patan, the southern mound is known as Lagan Thura Stupa. It is the largest among the four stupas, measuring 47.40 meters in diameter and 11.80 meters in height. The mound is crowned by a recent structure, a miniature cenotaph added on the top. The shrines of Tathagatas (Buddhas) are believed to have been added in 1878.

TETA THURA (EASTERN STUPA): This Stupa is located about 200 meters east of Tyagal Tole of Patan near the Ring Road. It is comparatively bigger than the other two Stupas in perimeter. The perimeter of this Stupa is 75.83 meters and height 10.4 meters. It has fire Vedica (railing) of height 1.6 meters with one Tathagata in each direction. The dome of 4.5m in height is paved with firebricks with a square Harmika on the top. There are three inscriptions which are very difficult to read.

PUCHO THURA (WESTERN STUPA): The stupa is located on the busy Pulchowk intersection in the western end of Patan. The perimeter of this Stupa is 75.52 meters and it is 12 meters tall. It also has a Vedika of height 1.2 meters with one Tathagata in each direction. The dome is 6.5 meters tall is paved paved by firebrick. It does not have Harmika. The thirteen-ring Cakravalis are constructed directly over the dome in a square shaped pyramid structure. A Yasti caps the top.

IBAHI THURA (NORTHERN STUPA): This Stupa is comparatively more complex and smaller than the other three Stupas. It looks similar to the Swoyambhunath Stupa in Kathmandu. It has a perimeter of 60.62 meters. It has five Buddha in the Vedika with their consorts except the Tathagata Vairocana. The Vedika is 1.5 tall and the dome is 5.5 meters in height. A square Harmika sits on the top of the dome. We can see a 13-step Cakravali with a Yasti on top of the Harmika.