Pilgrimage Tour
Pilgrimage Tour

Nalanda - Famous Buddhist Pilgrimage in Bihar

One of the major Buddhist pilgrimage sites, Nalanda is also known for the ruins of the world famous ancient learning centre. Nalanda was a resort for saints and austere. Founded by the Gupta Dynasty in 5th century, it remained the greatest seat of learning for over 700 years. Nalanda has a fabulous history dating back to 6th century in the times of Gautama Buddha and Lord Mahavir. Having rich tradition and mores, this place has gained honors worldwide. It is a fantastic destination for history lovers.  One must not miss out a place like this that carries great culture and history of the ancient times.

Location

Nalanda is located in South Bihar, at a distance of 12km from Rajgir.

How to Reach Nalanda, Bihar

  • By Air – Airport at Patna is the nearest airport , at a distance of 90km from Nalanda. Regular flights are available to all major Indian cities of the country.
  • By Train – Nalanda railway station is well connected to major Indian cities. Rajgir is the nearest railway station to Nalanda at a distance of 12km
  • By Road – Bus facilities are available from Patna, Gaya, Biharsharif and Rajgir. Taxi facilities can also be availed by tourist.

Hotels in Nalanda

  • Shubham Hotel and Restaurant: this hotel is located in Rajgir and easily approachable from railway station and bus stand. This hotel has all the facilities to make your stay comfortable with reasonable rates.
  • Hotel Nalanda Regency: this hotel is centrally located in Rajgir. It is a 3 star hotel, which is 100km from Patna international airport and 70km from Bodhgaya international airport and 1km from Rajgir railway station. This hotel have 2 restaurant- ‘Annapurana’ and ‘Navedita’. 
  • Manish rest House – this rest house is in Biharsharif located at a distance of 3km to Bihar Sharif Railway station.
  • The Rajgir Residency – located on Nalanda district, this hotel is 4km from Rajgir Railway station. The Rajgir residency is a value for money accommodation in Rajgir.

What/Where to Eat

Apart from its varied attractions, the state is also known for its luscious mouth-watering cuisine. If you are in Nalanda then do not wrap up your journey without tasting the traditional cuisines of the region. The Khaja of Silao and Rajgir, Litti Chokha, Dalpuri, Peda, Tilkut are some of the special delicacies of Nalanda, that are not be missed.

  • Nalanda Hotel – This hotel have Multi cuisine restaurant, one is ‘Annapuaran’ where you can enjoy Indian, Chinese, Continental, Thai and Srilankan food. Another one is ‘Navedita’ vegetation restaurant.
  • Hotel Shubham and Restaurant –  located in rajgir, restaurant of this hotel serves Gujrati, Bengali and North Indian Food.

Tourist Places to visit in/near Nalanda, Bihar

  • Nalanda University – Nalanda is recorded as the world’s earliest university set up in the 5th century BC. It is believed that the Buddha had visited this place and gave sermons near the ‘Mango grove of Pavarika’. The sects of Buddhism- Theravada, Vajrayana and Mahayana were born due to the teachings of the university. The scholars of the Nalanda University such as Bodhidharma and others took Buddhism to other parts of the world. The decline of Buddhism in India is associated with the destruction of the Nalanda University by the Islamic invasion of India in the 12th century CE. Today, the entire Nalanda site has been divided into a number of sites that include 11 monasteries and several temples built in red bricks.
  • Surya Temple (Sun Temple) – located near Nalanda University, Surya Mandir is dedicated to the Sun God and features a numbers of Hindu devotees.
  • Hiuen Tsang Memorail Hall – this is one of the major tourist attraction in Nalanda and was built in the memory of the famous Chinese traveller Hiuen-Tsang. He came in India during the Gupta period and stayed at Nalanda University for 12 years. He studied yoga here under the guidance of Acharya Shail Bhadra. A lot of information is obtained about ancient India through his literary works. He travelled the whole India during his stay at Nalanda.  
  • Kundalpur – Kundalpur is located about 4 km away from Nalanda railway station. It is a famous pilgrim centre of Jainism, devotees believed that this is the sacred place of Lord Mahavira Garbha, Janma and Tapa Kalyanka.
  • Nalanda Archaeological Museum – This museum is situated in front of the ruins of the famous ancient learning centre of Nalanda. This museum was established in 1917. The sculptures and images in this museum speak volumes about the golden era, an era when india was the leading centre, imparting knowledge to thousands of students from all over the world.   
  • Pawapuri – it is a sacred place for the Jains located in the Nalanda district. Lord Mahavir who was the last of the 24 Tirthankara attained nirvana or Moksha here. He was cremated at Pawapuri.
  • Bihar Sharif – The driving distance between Bihar Sharif and Nalanda is 12km. It is the district headquarter of Nalanda in the state of Bihar. It was the capital of the Pala rulers. The city has important Jain, Buddhist, Hindu and Muslim heritage and landmarks.

Best Time to Visit Nalanda

The ideal time to visit Nalanda would be from October to March during the winters. The climate is cold, pleasant and ideal for sight-seeing.

Once a seat of learning Nalanda, today is one of the fast developing regions of Bihar.  Recently Government of India has proposed to restore and revive the ancient site as Nalanda International University.

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Where to Stay

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