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Major Buddhist Places in India




Lumbini
Lumbini is the birthplace of Buddha and is 306 km from Kathmandu in Nepal. Buddha was born in 623 BC in Lumbini. It is assumed that Buddha himself have known four places of future pilgrimage in the Parinibbana Sutta, namely, the sites of his birth, enlightenment, first discourse and death. All of these events occurred in open under the trees. Lumbini is listed in the World Heritage Site. Famous places of Lumbini are Sacred Garden, Maya Devi Temple, Puskani Pond, Ashokan Pillar, Nepal Buddha Temple.

Access: Lumbini can be reached via Bhairahawa, which is well connected with Kathmandu and Pokhara by air and road. Bhairahawa and Lumbini are well linked with an all weather road and frequent bus service is easily available.

Sarnath
Sarnath, 10 km from the holy city of Varanasi, is a significant site of the Buddhist Circuit. Buddha reached to Sarnath shortly after he attained enlightenment in Bodhgaya. He delivered his first sermon or Maha Dharma Chakra Pravartan at the Deer Park in Sarnath. Emperor Ashoka visited Sarnath 234 BC and erected a stupa here. Several Buddhist structures were raised at Sarnath between the 3rd century BC and the 11th century AD. Some famous places of Sarnath are Chaukhandi Stupa, Dhamek Stupa, Mulgandha Kuti Vihar, Sarnath Museum.

Access: Sarnath can be accessed via Varanasi, which is well connected with all the important cities of India by air, train or bus. Varanasi is at a distance of 10 km from Sarnath and is a large city.

Sankasya
Sankasya is 47 km from Farrukhabad in the state of Uttar Pradesh. It is more also known as Sankisa. As per to Buddhist mythology, it is believed that Buddha descended at this very place along with Brahma and Devraj Indra after giving discourses to his mother in heaven. The Buddhist traditions also say that all Buddhas descend to earth at this place.

Access: The nearest airport to Sankasya is at Agra and the railway station is at Pakhna, which is 12 km away. There are regular bus and taxi services are available from Farrukhabad to Sankasya.

Rajgir
Rajgir is to found at a distance of 15 km from Nalanda in Bihar. It was the capital of the Magadh Mahajanpada when Patliputra was not established. In the ancient times, Rajgir was called Rajgriha, which means the 'Home of Royalty'. This place is important because Buddha spent many years in Rajgir and also delivered some significant discourses here. Buddha converted Emperor Bimbisar to Buddhism at the Griddhakoota Hill in Rajgir. The teachings of Buddha were written down at Rajgir and it was also the venue for the First Buddhist Council. Other famous places of Rajgir are Vishwa Shanti Stupa, Venu Vana Monastery, Griddhakoota Hill.

Access: The nearest airport to Rajgir is at Patna, which is 101 km away. Rajgir is well linked by rail and road network with all the important cities of Bihar.

Bodhgaya
Bodhgaya is 13 km from Gaya in Bihar. It is the place where Prince Siddhartha attained enlightenment under a pipal tree after years of search for the truth and knowledge. He attained the supreme enlightenment and became 'The Buddha' or 'the Enlightened One'. Bodhgaya is the most the holiest pilgrimage center for Buddhists from all over the world. The Mahabodhi Temple at Bodhgaya is listed in the World Heritage Site. Bodhgaya is famous for Mahabodi Temple.



Access: Bodhgaya can be reached via Gaya, which is connected with the major Indian as well as foreign cities by air and rail. Gaya is 13 km from Bodhgaya and is well connected by frequent bus and taxi services.

Kushinagar
Kushinagar is 51 km from Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh. Kushinagar is important because it is the place where Buddha attained the state of Mahaparinirvana or Permanent Bliss at the age of 80. The pilgrims as well as the tourists from all over the world visit Kushinagar for its historical importance. Three great Chinese scholars Fa-Hien, Hiuen Tsang and I-Tsing, who traveled to India, also visited Kushinagar. Main attractive place of Kushinagar are Mahaparinirvana Temple, Nirvana Chaitya, Ramabhar Stupa, Matha Kuar Shrine.

Access: Kushinagar can be accessed via Gorakhpur, which is well connected by rail and road network with important cities of India. There are regular bus and taxi services for Kushinagar from Gorakhpur, Lumbini, Kapilavastu, Sravasti and Sarnath.

Vaishali
Vaishali is 36 km from Muzzafarpur in the state of Bihar. Lord Buddha regularly visited this place and preached his last sermon at Kolhua, a nearby place. Emperor Ashoka erected one of his well-known lion pillars here in the 3rd century BC commemorate the event. Famous place of Vaishali are Kolhua, Vaishali Museum, Raja Vishal Ka Garh, Bawan Pokhar Temple.

Access: The nearest airport to Vaishali is at Patna, which is around 70 km and the nearest railway station is at Hajipur 35 km away. Vaishali is well connected by regular bus and taxi services from Patna, Muzaffarpur and Hajipur.

Sravasti
Sravasti is situated 34 km from Balrampur and 134 km from Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh. The city assumed to be founded by the mythological king Sravast. Lord Buddha preached here after he got his enlightenment. Buddha has 24 rainy seasons in the Jetvana Gardens at Sravasti and has performed some miracles here. After the death of Buddha, this monastery got royal patronage. Famous place of Sravasti are Gandha-Kuti, Kosambi-Kuti, Ananda Bodhi Tree.

Access: Lucknow is the nearest airport to Sravasti which is 134 km away. The nearest railway station is at Balrampur, which is 34 km away. Sravast is well connected by road network with many cities of Uttar Pradesh.


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