Buddhist Pilgrimage of India (9D8N)

Golden Asia Tours

Buddhist Pilgrimage of India (9D8N)

LUMBINI(NEPAL): Birth Place of Prince Siddharth; BODHGAYA: Lord Buddha attained spiritual birth.; SARNATH: Lord Budha Gave First Sermon ; KUSHINAGAR: Lord Buddha Attain Mahaparinirvana

Day 01 - Arrive New Delhi
Arrive Delhi. Met upon arrival at Delhi & transferred to your hotel.

Day 02 - New Delhi - Lucknow -Sravasti
Early morning take Shatabdi Express to Lucknow at 6.15 a.m. Reach Lucknow at 12.3O p. m. After lunch depart for Sravasti by road (approx.3 hrs). Visit the Jetavana Gardens where the Buddha spent twenty four rainy seasons. At Sravasti, Buddha confounded his critics with a million-fold manifestation of himself seated on a thousand-petalled lotus, as fire and water emanated from his body. Also visit the Augulimala Cave & the Ananda Bodhi Tree. Overnight at Sravasti.

Day 03 - Sravasti -Lumbini (Nepal)
Leave early in themorning for Lumbini. Arrive Lumbini, visit the birth place of the Buddha. Your tour of Lurnbini include the Lumbini Gardens, the Ashokan or Rummirpillar, the base relief image of Maya Devi, Puskarnim - the sacred pool sanctum of the birthplace of the Buddha. Overnight at Lurnbini.

Day 04 - Lumbini - Kushinagar
After early breakfast proceed to Kushinagar. It is here that the Buddha passed into Mahaparirvana. The Mahaparinirvana temple houses a recumbent figure of the Buddha brought from Mathura by the monk Haribala. Also visit the brick ruins of the Rambhar Stupa representing the Chaitya which was erected on the sacred grounds of the Buddha's cremation. Here you will also see the Indo-Japan-Sri Lanka Buddhist centres and temples of various other nations. Overnight at Kushinagar.

Day 05 - Kuushinagar -Vaishali - Patna
After breakfast proceed to Vaishali. Vaishali was the centre of the Buddhist Council congregation, held after 100 years of the Buddha's Mahaparinirvana. At Kolhua Lord Buddha delivered his last sermon. Later, Emperor Ashoka erected a huge pillar to commemorate the spot of the last sermon. Proceed to Patna for your overnight stay.

Day 06 - Patna - Rajgir -Nalanda - Bodhgaya
After breakfast proceed to Rajgir, the site of great sanctity and significance for Buddhists. The Gridhakuta hill was the seat from where the Buddha delivered many of His sermons. It was here that the teachings of the Buddha were recorded in writing for the first time. An aerial ropeway takes pilgrims up the hill where the Japanese have built a beautiful Stupa. Visit Veluvana (Bamboo Garden), the Vulture's Peak, Sattapanni Cave (site of 1st Buddhist Council) and other Buddhist sites. Leave for Nalanda which holds the site of the oldest universities of the world. It had twelve million books, ten thousand students, two thousand teachers and was a centre of great learning which reached its zenith between the 5th & 1 s"centuries AD. Both Lord Buddha and Lord Mahavira are said to have visited this place. Emperor Ashoka built a Vihsra, while Emperor Harshvardhan donated a 26m high copper image of the Buddha. Emperor Kumar Gupta on the other hand built a college of fine arts at Nalanda. Arrive at the holy city of Bodhgaya by evening for your next destination on your pilgrimage.

Day07-ln Bodhgaya
Bodhgaya is the most important Buddhist pilgrimage centre where Lord Buddha attained spiritual birth. Visit the magnificent Mahabodhi Temple, the giant Bodhi tree which is believed to have grown from the original Bodhi tree where the Buddha attained Nirvana. Also visit the Chankarama, the Jewel•walk where Buddha strolled while in deep thought as well other temples and monasteries erected in this holy city by Buddhists from across the world.

Day 08 – Bodhgaya – Sarnath – Varanasi
After an early breakfast proceed to Varanasi, one of the holiest and fascinating cities in the East (6 hours). Visit Sarnath. The Dhamek stupa here marks the spot of the Buddha’s first sermon after enlightenment at this deer park. The museum with a remarkable statue of the Buddha setting the Wheel of Law in motion is another item of interest. Also visit the Mulagandha Kutir Temple. Sarnath’s hallmark is its tranquillity. Return to Varanasi by evening for your overnight stay.

Day 09 – Varanasi – Delhi by Flight – Depart
Proceed on an early morning cruise on the River Ganges to see the sunrise and bathing ghats. Later transfer to Airport to connect flight for Delhi, On arrival meet & City tour of New Delhi & Old Delhi, After dinner transfer to International airport to connect flight for onward destination.