Buddhist Pilgrimage Tour

Duration : 11 Nights & 12 Days

Destination Covered : Delhi-Patna-Nalanda-Rajgir-Bodhgaya-Varanasi-Khushinagar-Lumbini-Sarvasti-Gonda-Delhi

Day 1: Delhi

Arrive Delhi. On arrival at the airport, you will meet our representative and be transferred to hotel. Day free for leisure. Overnight in Hotel.

Day 2. Delhi

Full day city tour of Old & New Delhi. Morning visit Qutub Minar built by Qutub-ud-Din Aibek in 1199, Humayun's Tomb, India Gate (War Memorial Arch) and Lakshminarayan Temple - a modern Hindu Temple. Also drive past President's House, Parliament House, Government Secretariat Buildings and Connaught Place shopping centre. Afternoon visit Raj Ghat and Shanti Vana - the cremation sites of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru, Jama Masjid, Red Fort and drive past Chandni Chowk.

Day 3: Delhi / Patna

Morning transfer to airport to connect flight for Patna. On arrival, assistance and transfer to hotel. Afternoon excursion to Vaishali (55 kms) - known for Buddha Stupas, Ashoka Pillar and Bawan Pokhar Temple. This is the place where Buddha announced his Mahaparinirvana and happens to be the birthplace of Lord Mahavira. Overnight at hotel.

Day 4: Patna / Nalanda / Rajgir / Bodhgaya

Morning drive to Bodhgaya (140 kms / 4 hrs) enroute visiting Nalanda and Rajgir. Nalanda-a great center of Buddhist learning and one of the most famed university citadels of ancient times. Rajgir, it was once the ancient capital of the powerful Kingdom of Maghada. From the out-skirts of Rajgir, a historic road leads to Gridhakuta or vultures peak where the Buddha preached. Here the first Buddhist Council was held after the Lord's Mahaparinirvana. On arrival, check in at hotel.

Day 5: Bodhgaya

Full day visit - Bodhgaya, in the state of Bihar, reckoned as the most important Buddhist pilgrimage center, is the place where Lord Sakyamuni (Gautam Buddha) entered into meditation after being moved by the sufferings of mankind. The giant Bodhi Tree (Peepal) that we see today is believed to have grown from the original Bodhi Tree under which, sitting on the raised platform, Prince Siddharth meditated and finally attained Nirvana. Then there is Chaukramana, the Jewel Walk, where it is believed that the Buddha strolled while in deep thought. Also visit Shaivite Monastery and famous Jagganath Temple. Overnight at hotel.

Day 6: Bodhgaya / Varanasi

Morning leave Bodhgaya for Varanasi by surface (250 kms / 7 hrs). Varanasi is famous for Hindus and Buddhists as its close proximity to Sarnath. On arrival transfer to hotel. Overnight at hotel.

Day 7: Varanasi

Early morning boat excursion on the river Ganges, a ferry pilgrimage from ghat to ghat. People bathe early in the morning to offer the prayers to the rising sun. Come back to hotel for breakfast. Later sightseeing tour of the city including the Bharat Mata Temple with a big relief map of India in marble, Durga Temple, Tulsi Manas Mandir, Banaras Hindu University which has an Art Gallery and the Mosque of Mughul Emperor Aurangazeb built on the site of an ancient Hindu Temple. Afternoon excursion of Sarnath - where Lord Buddha gave his first sermon. Visit the ruins, the stupa, the Buddhist temple and the Museum (Museum closed on Fridays).

Day 8: Varanasi / Kushinagar

Drive to Kushinagar (260 kms / 8 hrs). Upon arrival check in at hotel. Kushinagar is the place where Lord Buddha attained Mahaparinirvana in his 18th year. Overnight a thotel.

Day 9: Kushinagar / Lumbini

Morning visit Kushinagar, one of the principal centres of Buddhist pilgrimage, is the place of Mahaparinirvana. The monuments of Kushinagar are situated in three distinct comprising the main site of the Nirvana Temple, the central stupa and surrounding monasteries. Later drive to Lumbini (in Nepal) (170/ 4 hrs). Upon arrival check in at hotel.

Day 10: Lumbini / Sravasti

Morning visit the village of Lumbini in Nepal, where the Queen Mahamaya gave birth to Prince Siddhartha who later became the Buddha. Over 2000 years ago the Emperor Ashoka set up a commemorative pillar here. The pillar carries the inscription - Here the Buddha was born-. Another shrine preserves an ancient image depicting the nativity of the Lord. Later drive to Sravasti (about 150 kms / 04 hrs) and check in at hotel.

Day 11: Sravasti / Gonda / Delhi

Morning visit sacred city for Buddhists. Buddha himself spent many summers here to deliver important sermons. Here Anathapindaka was built in the garden of Prince Jeta for the reception of the Buddha. Today, the remains unearthed testify to the flourishing condition of this sacred spot in the Gupta period. Drive straight to Gonda railway station (40 kms) to connect train # 2553 Vaishali Express dep. 19:40 hrs. Overnight on train

Day 12: Delhi / Onward Destination

Arrive Delhi at 06:30 hrs. Transfer to international airport to connect flight back home.