The Kopan Monastery is a gated community of Buddhist monks found on a hilltop north of Boudhanath.
Founded by Lamas Thubten Yeshe and Zopa Rinpoche in the early 1970s, the Monastery houses 360 monks in grounds which include an enormous Bodhi tree, the Chenrezig gompa (temple), statues, prayer wheels, prayer flags (at the top of Kopan Hill) and the colourful Thousand Buddha Relic Stupa (pictured).
The Monastery is twinned with the nearby Khachoe Ghakyil Nunnery. Those visiting should expect to replace the hubbub of central Kathmandu with morning chanting, an evening pooja/puja ceremony (involving pageantry and traditional Tibetan music made from cymbals and large horns), study, silence, peace and love. The Monastery also offers daily and longer courses in meditation and yoga, provides panoramic views over the Kathmandu valley, has an immaculately kept garden and great gift shop and cafe. Just beware of the monkeys: they have a habit of stealing ice-cream from unsuspecting tourists!