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Butwal

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Butwal (Nepali: बुटवल) is a large town in southern Nepal in Rupandehi District, in Lumbini Zone—of which Butwal is the administrative center. It is located 240 kilometres west of Kathmandu and 22 kilometers north of Bhairahawa, at the northern edge of the Terai plain below the Siwalik Hills. Its name is derived from Batauli Bazaar in the town's oldest district. Through highway and air links, Butwal connects western Nepal to the capital Kathmandu. It has highway connections to Bhairahawa and the Indian Border at Sunauli [2] and to hill towns Tansen and Pokhara.

Butwal is not in itself a tourist town but it is a major and preferable location for stay during visits to the nearby tourist hotspots of south-Western Nepal. Lumbini, the Mecca for Buddhists and the birthplace of the Buddha, the founder or Buddhism and the preacher of peace to the world, is about 40 kilometres South of Butwal. Likewise, Devdaha, the place famous as the the home of the maternal family of the Buddha, with ruins of ancient Buddha-era palaces and artefacts, is 15 km to the east of the city. Similarly, Tansen, a very beautiful Newar hillstation city is only about 30 kms to the north. Taulihawa, the ancient kingdom of Buddha's dynasty, with its Buddha era palace ruins, is 50 Kms west of Butwal. Butwal, as a large town and with good infrastructure for accommodation and conferences and connectivity to these places, should be a place of choice for intermediate stay during the visit to this tourism circuit.

Butwal in itself is also famous for the Anglo-Nepal War where the English were defeated by the Gurkha force at the Jitgadhi fort. The Manimukunda Sen Park marks this area and is worth a visit to escape the heat and dirt of the town. HillPark is another potential urban-trek site that would be a nice place to climb early in the morning or in the evening, as it gets uncomfortably hot for a hiking during the day. There are couple of good lakes, which can be a good bird-watching or picnic spot, to the west of Butwal.

Butwal can be the gateway to Pokhara and Bharatpur, the two other main tourist places in Nepal.


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