Category Historic, Religious
The Vishwa Shanti Stupa Is Located On A 400 Metre High Hill. The Stupa Is Built In Marble And On…
The Establishment Of Mahavira Was Formed By The Emperor Kumar Gupta In The Fifth Century A.D. From The 5th To…
A leisure attraction and a delightful place for everyone with so much to see and experience. Talk about a wellness…
The Jal Mandir meaning Water Temple, also known as Apapuri, in Pawapuri, meaning a town without sins, in the Indian…
Nalanda, founded in the 5th century AD, is famous as the ancient seat of learning. The ruins of the world's most ancient university lies here which is 62 km from Bodhgaya and 90 km south of Patna. Though the Buddha visited Nalanda several times during his lifetime, this famous center of Buddhist learning shot to fame much later, during 5th-12th centuries. Hieun Tsang stayed here in the 7th century AD and left detailed description of the excellence of education system and purity of monastic life practiced here. He also gave a vivid account of both the ambiance and architecture of this unique university of ancient times. In this first residential international university of the world, 2,000 teachers and 10,000 monks students from all over the Buddhist world lived and studied here. The Gupta kings patronized these monasteries, built in old Kushan architectural style, in a row of cells around a courtyard. Emperor Ashoka and Harshavardhana were some of its most celebrated patrons who built temples, monasteries and viharas here. Recent excavations have unearthed elaborate structures here. An International Center for Buddhist Studies was established here in 1951. Nearby is Biharsharif, where an annual urs is celebrated at the Dargah or tomb of Malik Ibrahim Baya. Baragaon, 2 km away has a sun temple, famous for Chhath puja. To be visited are Nalanda museum & Nava Nalanda Mahavihar in addition to the great ruins.
Temperature (Max./Min.) Deg C: Summer 37.8/17.8; Winter 27.8/10.6.
Rainfall:120 cm (June to September).
Best Season: October to March.
Clothing: Summer – Cottons; Winter - Heavy Woollens.
How to Reach
Air: The nearest airport is at Patna 89 km. Indian Airlines connect Patna to Calcutta, Ranchi, Bombay, Delhi and Lucknow.
Rail: Though Rajgir (12 km) is the nearest railway station to Nalanda yet the nearest convenient rail head is at Gaya 95 km.
Road: Nalanda is connected by good road with Rajgir 12 km, Bodh Gaya 110 km, Gaya 95 km, Patna 90 km, Pawapuri 26 km, Bihar Sharif 13 km etc.
Local Transport: Taxis and Buses are available.
What to Visit
Nalanda University Ruins Archaeological Complex
The total area of the excavation is about 14 hectares. All the edifices are of the red brick and the gardens are beautiful. The buildings are divided by a central walk way that goes south to north. The monasteries or "Viharas" are east of this central alley and the temple or "Chaiyas" to the west. The Vihara-1 is perhaps the most interesting with its cells on two floors built around Nalanda University Ruinsa central courtyard where steps lead up to what must have been a dais for the professors to address their students. A small chapel still retains a half broken statue of the Lord Buddha.
The enormous pyramidal mass of the Temple no .3 is impressive and from its top commands a splendid view of the entire area. It is surrounded by smaller stupas, many of which studded with small and big statues of the Lord Buddha in Various poses or "Mudras".
Nalanda Archaeological Museum
Opposite the entrance to the ruins of the university and houses, there is a small but beautiful collection of Buddhist and Hindu bronzes and a number of undamaged statues of the Lord Buddha that were found in the area. Two enormous terra-cotta jars of the first century stand intact behind the museum in a shaded enclosure. The collection includes copper plates and stone inscriptions, coins, pottery and samples of burnt rice (12th century AD) found among the ruins here.
Nava Nalanda Mahavihara
Nava Nalanda Mahavihara is devoted to study and research of Pali Literature and Buddhism. This is a new institute, where students from foreign countries also study.
Hieun Tsang Memorial Hall
Birth place of Lord Mahavira. 4Km.It is believed that the Jain Tirthankar, Lord Mahavir was born over 2550 years ago. Mahavir is said to have spent the first 22 years of his life here.
Pawapuri, or Apapuri, 38 kilometers from Rajgir and 101 kilometers from Patna, all sins end for a devout Jain. Lord Mahavira, the final Tirthankar and founder of Jainism, breathed his last at this place, and was cremated here around 500 B.C. It is said that the demand for his ashes was so great that a large amount of soil was removed from around the funeral pyre, creating the water tank. A marble temple, the “Jalmandir”, was later built in the middle of the tank, and is now a major pilgrimage spot for Jains. Another Jain temple called Samosharan is located here.
This is headquarters of Nalanda district that lays 30 kms South of Bakhtiarpur on NH-31. This is also a railhead on the Bakhtiarpur Rajgir branch line of the Eastern Indian Railway. This town is known as Bihar Sharif, owing to its many Muslim tombs that still retain traces of its former importance as a Muslim pilgrimage. There is a hill called Pir Pahari, about 1 m to the northwest of the town. At its summit is the dargah or mausoleum of the Saint Mallik Ibrahim Bayu, round which are tem smaller tombs. It is a brick structure surmounted by a dome and bears inscriptions showing that the saint died in 1353. Another great dargah is that of Mokhdum Shah Sharif ud-din, also called Makhdum-ul-Mulk, died here in 1379; the inscription over the entrance shows that his tomb was built in 1569. This tomb, which stands on the south bank of the river, is held in great veneration by the local Mohammedans, who assemble here on the 5th day of Sawan to celebrate the anniversary of his death. The Chhoti Dargah is the shrine of Badruddin Badr-I-Alam, famous saint who died here in 1440.
Dargah of Makhdum Hazrat Sultan Ahmed Charampose, Bihar Sharif (Nalanda). The biggest and the oldest building of Mohalla-Amber in the Bihar Sharif Town (Nalanda), is Tomb of Hazarat Makhdum Sultan Saiyad Shah Ahmed Charampose Teg Barhana Rohmatulla Alaib. He was born in the year 1236 and passed away in 1335 (according to Islamic calendar 657-776 Hizri). He is ranked to a very high order among other Sufi saints and Auliahs. Thousands and thousand of people participate in the ‘Urs’ celebrated here in memory of the Saint every year.
Rajgir just 15 kms from Nalanda is located the complex of temples and monasteries. The place is called Rajgir. It is one of the most important tourist places in India. Being located in a valley, Rajgir is a very scenic place. The small hill grit town is covered with lush green forest which add to the beauty of the place. Rajgir was the capital of the Magadh Mahajanpad (State) when Patliputra was not formed. In those days it was called Rajgrih. Rajgir or Rajgrih means the home of Royalty. This place has been associated with Lord Buddha and Buddhism. Buddha not only spent many years in Rajgir but also delivered sermons here and proselytized emperor Bimbisar at the Griddhakoota hill. The Jivekarmavan monastery was the favorite residence for Buddha. Even Bimbisar gave Venuvan Vihar to Buddha for his residence. It is said that it was at Rajgir that physician treated Buddha, Jivak after he was injured by his cousin Devdatta.The teachings of Buddha was penned down at Rajgir and it was also the venue for the first Buddhist Council. Today Rajgir has come up as one of the most important pilgrimage for the Buddhist.Rajgir also has some very beautiful Hindu and Jain temples which attracts Hindus and Jains also to the place. Not only as a place for worship, Rajgir has come up as health and winter resort with its warm water ponds. These ponds are said to contain some medicinal properties which help in the cure of many skin diseases. The added attraction of Rajgir is the Ropeway which takes you uphill to the Shanti Stupa and Monasteries built by the Japanese Devotees on top of the Ratnagiri hills.
Temperature (Max./Min.) Deg C: Max. 40/Min. 20; Winter-Max. 28 Min. 6
Rainfall:186 cms (Mid-June to Mid-September).
Best Season: October to March.
Clothing: Summer – Cottons; Winter - Heavy Woollens.
How to Reach
Air: The nearest airport is at Patna 101 kms. Indian Airlines connect Patna to Calcutta, Bombay, Delhi, Ranchi and Lucknow.
Rail: Though Rajgir itself has a railway station yet the nearest convenient railhead is at Gaya 78 kms.
Road: Rajgir is connected by road to Patna - 110 kms, Nalanda - 12 kms, Gaya - 78 kms, Pawapuri - 38 kms, Bihar Sharif - 25 kms etc. Bus : Regular buses are available from all the above said points to Rajgir.
Local Transport: Taxis and Buses and Tongas are available.
What to Visit
Pandu Pokhar - Explore
Breathtaking landscapes and fun-filled activities makes PANDU POKHAR – a paradise for all. From beautiful gardens to an open air theatre, to a pond overlooking 37 feet tall bronze statue of King Pandu to a herbal maze – we are a place to enjoy and admire nature. A park with a unique combination of entertainment and camping makes it a wonderful place for corporate events, school excursions, family and other social gatherings. Truly, a beautiful destination for a perfect vacation. Experience the goodness of nature with fun. Starting with adventurous Zipline and Zorbing, the park is filled with fun rides, games and pleasure gardens. At dusk, the display of colourful fountains in the pond enhances the beauty of the park. Evening walks in the serenity of the park allows nature’s peace to flow in, soothing the soul and mind.
GhoraKatora Lake is a beautiful serene spot in Rajgir. According to Hindu mythology, king Jarasandha from Indian epic Mahabharata had his stable here, hence the name GhoraKatora. Thelake offers boating as a merriment to the visitors. There is a glorious sandstone Statue of Buddha in the middle of the lake on a lotus pedestal.
Jarashand ka Akhara
This is the Ranbhumi where Bhima and Jarasandh fought one of the Mahabharat battles.
Seat of the Royal Physician's dispensary where Lord Buddha was once brought to have wound dressed by Jivaka, the royal physician during the reign of Ajatshatru and Bimbisara.
Built by Ajatshatru (6th century B.C.), the king of Magadha during the Buddha's time. The 6.5 sq.meter Ajatshatru's Stupa is also believed to have been built by him.
Once 40 Km long, it encircled ancient Rajgir. Built of massive undressed stone carefully fitted together, the wall is one of the few important Pre-Maurayan stone structures ever to have been found. Traces of wall still subsist, particularly at the exit of Rajgir .
The Vishwa Shanti Stup is located on a 400 meter high hill. The stupa is built in marble and on the four corners of the stupa are four glimmering statues of Buddha. To reach the top of this hill one has to come through the “Ropeways”. This place is also called the GriddhKoot. Aerial Ropeway ticket cost is 60/- RS per Head.
Site of the monastery Venuvana Vihar built by king Bimbisara for Lord Buddha to reside. This was the king's first offering to Lord Buddha.
It is the tank in which Buddha used to bathe.
Two rather strange cave chambers were hollowed out of a single massive rock. One of the chambers I believed to have been the guard room, the rear wall has two straight vertical lines and one horizontal line cut into the rock; the doorway is supposed to lead to king Bimbisara Treasury. Inscriptions in the Sankhlipi or shell script, etched into wall and so far undeciphered, are believed to give the clue to open the doorway. The treasure, according to folklore, is still intact. The second chambers bears a few traces of seated and standing etched into the outer wall.
His impatient saon and heir, Ajatashatru, imprisoned King Bimbisara here. The captive king chose this site for his incarceration, for, from this spot he could see Lord Buddha climbing up to his mountain retreat atop the Griddhakuta hill. There is a clear view of the Japanese Pagoda. The stupa of peace was built on the top of the hill.
A Jain Temple and Museum.
On hill crests around Rajgir, far in the distances one can see about 26 Jain Temples. They are difficult to approach for the untrained, but make exciting trekking for those in form.
Chariot Route Marks
The Chariot Route and hell inscriptions are worth a visit for the strangeness of the phenomenon, two parallel furrows cut deep into rock for about thirty feet giving credence to the local belief that they were "burnt" into the rock by the speed and power of Lord Krishna's chariot when he entered the city of Rajgir during the epic Mahabharata times. Several shell inscriptions, the undeciphered characters current in central and eastern India from the 1st to 5th centuries AD, and engraved in the rock around the chariot marks.
At the foot of Vaibhava Hill, a staircase leads up to the various temples. Separate bathing places have been organized for men and women and the water comes through spouts from Saptdhara, the seven streams, believed to find their source behind the "Saptarni Caves", up in the hills. The hottest of the springs is the Brahmakund with a temperature of 45 degree Centigrade.
Above the hot springs on the Vaibhava Hill, is a rectangular stone sculpted by the forces of nature which appears to have been used as a watch tower. Since it later became the resort of pious hermits, it is also called Pippala Cave and popularly known as "Jarasandh ki Baithak" after the name of the King Jarasandh, a contemporary of Lord Krishna described in the epic Mahabharata.
It is to be said that that it was a store of Gold of King Jarashandh. A unread story about the cave is that there is a lot of gold in this cave and a script is written on a stone is the code to unlock the door of this Swarn Bhandar.
This was the place where the lord Buddha set in a motion his second wheel of law an for three months even during the rainy season, preached many inspiring sermons to his disciples. The Buddha Sangha of Japan have constructed a massive modern stupa, the Shanti Stupa (Peace Pagoda), at the top of the hill in commemoration. A bridle path leads to up to the hill but it is much more fun to take the Aerial Chair lift which operates every day except Thursday. One way ride takes 7.5 minutes and the view is splendid over the hills of Rajgir.
Maniyar Math occupies a prominent position inside the valley of Rajgir. Situated almost in the centre of the enclosure of the inner city on the way to the Sone Bhandar caves, there is this cylindrical well-like structure of archaeological importance. It is situated 1km from the Warm Water Spring. This well is covered by a small temple of the Jains. It is not dedicated to a Jain Tirthankara but to Naga Salibhadra who is said amongst the Jains buried his treasure inside the well. Jains offer their worship at this place to the presiding deity.