Buddhist Sites in India & Nepal

Duration : 12 Nights/13 Days
Places to see : Delhi - Varanasi - Bodhgaya - Nalanda - Rajgir - Patna Vaishali - Kushinagar - Sravasti - Lumbini - Kathmandu - Departure

Day 01: Home - Delhi
On arrival in Delhi, you will be welcomed by our executive and transferred to your hotel (Rooms will be booked from 1200 hrs to facilitate immediate check in).

New Delhi, the capital and the third largest city of India is a fusion of the ancient and the modern. Standing along the West End of Gangetic Plain, the capital city, Delhi, unwinds a picture rich with culture, architecture and human diversity, deep in history, monuments, museums, galleries, gardens and exotic shows. Comprising of two contrasting yet harmonious parts, the Old Delhi and New Delhi, the city is a travel hub of Northern India. Narrating the city's Mughal past, Old Delhi, takes you through the labyrinthine streets passing through formidable mosques, monuments and forts. The imperial city of New Delhi displays the finely curved architecture of British Raj.

Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 02: Delhi
Have a healthy breakfast at the hotel and embark on sightseeing tours of Old & New Delhi.

In Old Delhi drive past Red fort, built in Red Sand stone this imposing fort is 3 Kms in perimeter with the height of the wall varying from 18 to 30 meters at places.

Visit Jama Masjid is one of the largest mosques not only in Delhi but also in India. Completed in 1658 this Mosque has three gateways, four angle towers and two 40 m high minarets. Also visit Raj Ghat -Mahatma Gandhi's Memorial.

In New Delhi, drive past Janpath, Rashtrapati Bhawan (Hindi for presidential palace) and India Gate is perhaps one of the most impressive structures built in the capital of India. This historic monument was built as a memorial to commemorate the 70,000 Indian soldiers killed in the First World War.

Visit Humayun's Tomb: built in mid 16th century this is an early example of Mughal architecture.

Also visit Qutab Minar. It is a one of the finest monuments in India and is 238 feet in height. Qutab Minar is 47 feet at the base and tapers to nine feet at the apex. The city tour ends with a visit to Laxmi Narayan Temple (Birla Mandir).

Overnight will be at hotel.

Day 03: Delhi - Varanasi
Transfer to airport for flight to Varanasi - Varanasi is the World's most ancient living city. Sunrise on the riverfront, as seen from a boat, can be spiritually uplifting sight. Crowded with temples, and its labyrinth of streets, the city attracts the maximum number of tourists. The religious capital of Hinduism, Varanasi is the carpet manufacturing place of India. It was previously known as Kashi - the city that illuminates. The present name is derived from the fact that the city is at the confluence of the rivers Varuna and Asi.
Overnight at hotel.

Day 04: Varanasi
In the morning drive to Daswamedh Ghat and take a boat ride on the sacred river Ganges to see the cremation Ghats and witness the living traditions of one of the world's oldest and most important religions. (To start at 0500 hrs. for the best lifetime experience) For you to appreciate this remarkable city, we'll transfer you to the banks of the River Ganges before the sun rises. Board a boat with your guide and proceed to the middle of the river, where at sunrise the sight unfolds before you. Thousands of faithful come daily to the banks to bathe and pray while in the background, temples and palaces rise in tiers from the water's edge. Return for a walk through the cobblestone streets along the banks of "Ganga". As shops are opening, the place now becomes a beehive of activity as the faithful are coming and going.

Visit Sarnath - 5 miles out of Varanasi for a day excursion: One of the holiest Buddhist sites in the world, where Buddha preached his first Sermon in 590 BC. Witness the ruins of a once flourishing Buddhist monastery and then visit a fine Museum which houses an excellent collection of Buddhist art and sculptures found at the site.

Overnight at hotel.

Day 05: Varanasi - Bodhgaya
After breakfast drive to Bodhgaya - is the most important Buddhist pilgrimage centre and attracts Buddhists from all over the world. It is the place where Lord Buddha entered into meditation and attained enlightenment.

Overnight at Bodhgaya.

Day 06: Bodhgaya
Full day sightseeing of Bodhgaya. You will visit the Bodhi Tree and Mahabodhi Temple. Bodhi Tree is at the western side of the Mahabodhi Stupa in Bodhgaya. Under this and historic Bodhi Tree Shakyamuni Buddha, then known as Gautama, attained enlightenment some 2540 years ago.

The Mahabodhi Temple stands east to the Bodhi Tree. Its architectural effect is superb. Its basement is 48 square feet and it rises in the form of a slender Pyramid, till it reaches its neck, which is cylindrical in shape. The total height of the temple is 170 feetAlso visit Sujata Temple, Niranjana River & take part in religious activities.
Overnight at Bodhgaya.

Day 07: Bodhgaya - Nalanda - Rajgir - Patna
Early morning proceed to visit the historical towns of Nalanda & Rajgir.

Nalanda was the most renowned university in ancient India. Established in the 5th century B.C. it remained a live center of learning till the 12th century A.D. Rajgir was the lifetime of the Buddha and was the capital of the powerful Magadhan kingdom, ruled by the virtuous King Bimbisara.
Proceed to Patna after lunch (145 kms / 4 hrs).
Overnight at Patna.

Day 08: Patna - Vaishali - Kushinagar
In the morning you are drive to Vaishali. It was at Vaishali that Lord Buddha delivered his last sermon and announced about his Nirvana. Here you can see the majestic Ashoka Pillar, the Lotus tank, Chaumukhi.
Proceed to Kushinagar - a small wooded town. It was here Lord Buddha ended his earthly journey passed into Mahaparinirvana.
Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 09: Kushinagar - Sravasti
Morning visit Kushinagar the various stupas and temples. Kushinagar is the Place where Buddha entered perfect tranquility - the state of Mahaparinirvana.

Afternoon drive to Sravasti - This place seems to have fascinated Lord Buddha very much for he spent over 1/4th of his life over here, recollecting the Jatakas or the stories of his previous births. Today Sravasti is full of old stupas, majestic monasteries and several temples. The city is believed to be founded by Mythological King Sravasti and has old stupas, majestic monasteries and several; temples.
Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 10: Sravasti - Lumbini
Morning visit Sahet Mahet (capital of ancient kingdom of Kosla, Jetawana Gardens Buddhist temples etc.

Later proceed to Lumbini - a place in the South-Western Terai of Nepal, evokes a kind of holy sentiment to the millions of Buddhists all over the world-as do the Jerusalem to Christians and Mecca to Muslims. Lumbini is the place Lord Buddha - the apostle of peace and the light of Asia was born in 623 B. C.
Overnight at hotel.

Day 11: Lumbini - Kathmandu
Morning visit Buddhist temple & stupas.
Later, drive to Kathmandu- the capital of Nepal, is the largest city in the country. Nepal capital city is in shape of Khukuri knife and its glorious history dates back to two thousand years. Located in the bowl shaped Kathmandu Valley, the city is the cultural hub of the country and probably the most sought after tourist destination. The home town of Newaras is the meeting point of various ethnic groups.
Overnight at hotel.

Day 12: Katmandu
Morning half-day sightseeing tour of Kathmandu also called the 'City of Glory'. Visit includes, Durbar Square, Kasthamandap - said to be constructed from a single piece wood. Kumari Ghar - home to the World's only living Goddess. A short visit to Bhairab - the God of destruction, Taleju Temple - built in 1549 AD and Hanuman Dhoka Palace. Thereafter visit Swoyambunath Stupa, said to be one of the oldest Buddhist Stupas in the World, which is majestically set high on a Hill overlooking Kathmandu Valley. It is nicknamed as the monkey temple after the tribe of monkeys that look after the hill and often amuses the visitors.

Afternoon - half-day sightseeing tour of Patan, the "City of Fine Arts". Visit Durbar Square, Krishna Temple, built in 1637 AD, which holds a commanding position in the palace complex of Patan, it is the only temple in Nepal that has 21 spires and is entirely made of stone, Hiranyavarna Mahavira - the Golden Temple of Lord Buddha and the Tibetan Handcrafts Center.
Overnight at Hotel.

Day 13: Kathmandu - Departure
Morning half-day sightseeing tour of the medieval city of Bhaktapur, also called the "City of Devotees" where you will meander down narrow lanes past centuries old homes and temples. The tour will begin with a vist to Durbar Square, The Golden Gate, Places of 55 Windows, Lion's Gate. The Nyatpola Temple, the tallest of its kind in Nepal, Bhairab Temple, the Pottery Centre and Dattratraya Temple.

Afternoon half-day sightseeing tour of Pashupatinath, a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. This massive temple complex sits alongside the banks of the holy Bagmati River. Only Hindus are allowed to enter the courtyard of the temple, whereas tourists can see the temple from the eastern side of the Bagmati River. Afterwards, visit Boudhanath, a Buddhist Stupa said to be one of the largest in the world. This massive structure stands tall with four pairs of eyes each facing the four cardinal directions, watching for righteous behaviour of mankind and for human prosperity.

Evening transfer to international airport to connect flight for onward destination.

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