01: Flight to India (New Delhi)
Around Midnight arrival in
New Delhi. The cosmopolitan city
and capital New Delhi is the main gateway for the travellers
to India. Upon arrival, you will be met by an Indo Vacations representative
and transferred to the hotel.
02: New Delhi - Lucknow (by train)
This morning is at leisure. In the afternoon we will drive to the
railway station for the train to
03: Lucknow - Sravasti (about 170 km)
Upon arrival in Lucknow, we will drive further to
(ancient Savatthi) was the capital of Kosala Mahajanapada
and was the biggest town in the Gangetic plains during
the Buddha's lifetime. Sravasti was host to the Master
for 25 years during the annual vassavasa (rain retreat)
when the Sangha congregated at one place. Sravasti is situated
in Gonda district in eastern Uttar Pradesh, called
In Sravasti we visit the famous monastery where Lord Buddha
spent 24 rainy seasons preaching.
04: Sravasti - Kushinagar (about 380
Today in the morning drive from Sravasti to
Kushinagar is the place that the Buddha chose for his
Mahaparinirvana, or final exit from this earth. Kushinagar
or Kushinara as it was then known was the capital of the
Malla republic, one of the republican states of northern
India during the 6th and 5th centuries BC. There are several
new monasteries and temples. Today we visit the Rambhar
Stupa that marks Buddha's cremation ground. Mahakashyapa
lit the funeral pyre at Mukutabandha Vihara (Rambhar
in Kushinagar. Today not much remains of this stupa expect
a large brick mound rising to a height of almost 15 metres
set within a well-kept park. We also visit the large Burmese
Chandramani Bhikshu Bharamasala. This is the oldest monastery
in Kushinagar. We will also visit the Kushinagar Museum.
05: Kushinagar - Patna (about 253 km)
In the morning after having breakfast we drive further
Patna. Patna, the ancient Indian town of Pataliputra
was thriving township during the Buddha's lifetime.
the state capital of Bihar is situated on the banks of
the Ganga. It is the major entry point for pilgrims who
wish to travel in the footsteps of the Buddha. Today we
will drive to Kumrahar to see the ruins of Pataliputra,
which is about 6 km from Gandhi Maidan. The remains of
a massive assembly hall with bases of 80 pillars have
been excavated at the site, of which only one pillar remains
Today after having breakfast we have sightseeing in
Today we visit Patna Museum, Golghar, Patna Sahib. The
British established the Patna Museum in the year 1917.
This museum has more than 50,000 rare and valuable antiquities
and art objects. The most prized possession here is the
Holy Relic Casket containing the sacred ashes of the Buddha,
unearthed in Vaishali. Golghar is a mammoth concrete granary
built by the British, subsequent to the great famine of
1770. Two spiral staircases from either side lead to the
top, which affords a panoramic view of the Ganga and the
town. Gurudwara Har Mandir Sahib, popularly known as Patna
Sahib is the sacred shrine of the Sikhs. The site is hallowed
as the birthplace of the 10th Guru of the Sikhs, Guru
Gobind Singh. Between Patna and Patna Sahib is
where the opium factory and the storehouses of the British
were located. It now houses the Government Printing Press.
07: Patna - Rajgir (about 100 km)
In the morning after having breakfast we drive to Rajgir.
Enroute we visit Nalanda, the ancient Buddhist University.
During the lifetime of the Buddha Rajgir (Rajgriha) was
the capital of the powerful Magadhan kingdom, ruled by
the virtuous king Bimbisara. Rajgir is about 100 km from
Patna. This town attracts various pilgrims and tourists.
The town also boasts the largest number of horse drawn
carriages. Today we will visit the Vishwa Shanti Stupa.
It is a marble structure with niches bearing golden images
of the Buddha, built by the Nipponza Myohoji sect of Japan.
Opposite the Stupa stands the Saddharma Buddha Vihara.
Then we will drive further to Griddhakuta. The strange
rock protrusion resembling a vulture's beak probably gave
the hill its name. In the rock cut caves here the Buddha
spent many rainy seasons, meditating and preaching. Rajgir
is also famous for its seven hot Sulphur Springs,
Satadhara is situated at the foot of Vaibhava Hill. The
hot springs are a part of the Lakshmi Narayan Temple complex.
08: Rajgir - Bodhgaya (about 70 km)
In the morning after having breakfast we drive to
Bodhgaya (once Uruvela village) is the place where 2500
years ago in the 6th century BC, a young ascetic, Siddhartha
attained enlightenment to become the Buddha and found
Buddhism, one of the world's oldest religions. Bodhgaya
is the spiritual home of the Buddhists. Today we visit
the Mahabodhi temple built to mark the spot where the
Buddha attained enlightenment. The famous Mahabodhi temple,
which stands in the centre of the Mahabodhi Temple Complex,
has been restored and rebuilt over the centuries. The
Mahabodhi Temple Complex houses all the major pilgrimage
spots. A large circular stone with the Buddha's footprints
is kept in a small shrine on the left. We also visit the
Bodhgaya museum that is located near the Mahabodhi temple.
It houses antiquities excavated in and around Bodh Gaya.
It has a large collection of Buddhist and Hindu relics,
terracotta seals, scriptures and pillars from the Sunga
09: Bodhgaya - Varanasi (about 242
In the morning we drive further to
is without doubt India's most sacred city and thus visited
by over one million people. Varanasi is also called the
city of light - Kashi or Benaras. Buddha visited this
city in 500 BC. Varanasi is regarded as one of the oldest
and the holiest city. According to the Indian chronicles,
Varanasi was established as a city around twelve hundred
years ago before the Christian era.
In the early morning we take boat ride on the holy River
Ganges and enjoy sunrise on the boat.
Ghats (flight of
steps) and the activities of pilgrims on that are the principal
attraction for visitors to Varanasi. Thousands of pilgrims
and devotees visit this city to make holy prayers, to
meditate and to purify themselves through taking a bath
in the holy river Ganges. In the noon we visit the city
of Varanasi. A drive can also be organised to
Sarnath (10 km). Sarnath is the place where Buddha
delivered his first sermon at deer park.
11: Varanasi - New Delhi (by air)
In the afternoon we drive to the airport for the flight
from Varanasi to New Delhi. In New Delhi we have rest
of the day at leisure. Rooms are available to get fresh
and change before we depart to the airport with Indo Vacations
12: New Delhi
Around midnight flight to home destination.
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