Thamel is the tourist centre of Kathmandu and all life is here in its narrow, crowded chaos. If you don't mind crowds, motor scooters coming at you from all angles coupled with the constant gentle badgering from shop owners there are plenty of shops, bars and restaurants packed into the area. Be prepared to haggle - or to be ripped off. Never accept the first price. But the atmosphere, even after dark, is non threatening.