Tourist Places in Nalanda

Nalanda- The Land of Knowledge, Peace and Culture

Nalanda Introduction

Nalanda is positioned in the outer edges of Rajagriha and portrays glitzy and ritzy gills of Indian renaissance. It was a hot spot of Buddhist learning in olden times. Nalanda swank of a rich tradition and culture that has ameliorated accolades worldwide. The city was set up in 5th century and bloomed under the patronage of many rulers. This tiny city was considered as the favorite place of Lord Mahavira and Lord Buddha who had spent several years of their lives at this place. While walking through the fortifications of stupas, viharas and monasteries, one can feel that he/she is walking through the doorsteps of various centuries.

Nalanda History

The city of Nalanda is popular for being the birthplace of a close disciple of Lord Buddha, Sariputra. The city has been a main centre for Buddhism. The University of Nalanda was established by Gupta emperors in 5th century. The Gupta Emperors supported the monasteries of Nalanda and framed them in old Kushan architectural style. Apart from Gupta rulers, Emperor Harshavardhana and Ashoka were some of the best emperors who constructed viharas, monasteries and temples in Nalanda. The University of Nalanda was stacked with teachers and students from all the regions of India came to Nalanda monastery to study Buddhism here.

Nalanda is a must visit for all those people who wish to explore the rich culture of India, the colorful incidents and events of the history.

Places to See in Nalanda

Nalanda University - An impressive edifice in the entire history of Indian subcontinent, Nalanda University is considered as World’s first university established in 5th century. It is said that Lord Buddha had visited the place and gave holy lectures here. It is sprawled in an area of 14 hectares and has been structured in Kushana style of architecture. The university was the well-established monastery under the Gupta rulers. The infrastructure of university has 3 to 6 storeys in addition with a college of fine arts set up by Gupta emperor, Kumaragupts, a huge library that has a collection of more than nine million volumes and 300 apartments. Other significant structures were a white palace, Ratnasagar, Ratnaranjaka, and Ratnodadhi. Remains of shrine representing dancers, floral designs and household scenes are also seen at university site. Hieun Tsang, the Chinese intellectual spent 10 years at the university and records Nalanda as a great learning centre with 1,500 teachers and 10,000 monks.

Nalanda Museum - Culture and heritage are something that every country is proud of. The resources from which the historical past of the nation is outlined can be seen in museums. Nalanda Museum was established in 1917 and a retreat to the eyes. The museum offers you an authentic glance into the Pala art that proves that the university gave the same value creative arts in addition with intellectual development. It comprise of antiques found at the unearthed site at Nalanda. Apart from displaying the imaginative dexterities, the variety of sculptures exposes the ornaments, attires and other aspects. These antiques are of bronze, terracotta, stucco and stone. The great assortment portrays that Buddhism had great influence in and around areas. The second gallery shows one hundred and forty seven various objects including iron implements, stuccos and terracotta.

The museum has four galleries and has a wide collection of 13463 antiques and 349 are on exhibit in the four galleries of museum. The key gallery comprises of sixteen statues on display that are worth mentioning. Buddha in Varad, Dharmachakra, Trilokya Vijay, Bodhisattva etc are the main attention grabbing sculptures on the floor. Almost all the artifacts in the museum reflect Hindu, Jain and Buddhist ideologies.

The Great Stupa - The great stupa of Nalanda is another major attraction in this small village. The wonderful architectural structure has got seven layers of structure in a line that is meant for the defense of the original stupa. The great stupa is the outcome of seven successive accretions. Flanked by terraces and steps, wonderful statue sand votive stupas, the great edifice offers you a splendid glance of past magnificence of Nalanda. The neighbouring stupa are decked with extend of niches displaying Buddha, Bodhisattvas, and other significant incidents of Buddha’s life.

Bihar Sharif - Bihar Sharif is an important place of Muslim learning constructed in the 13the century. This place was the capital of Pala rulers in erstwhile days and represents the picture of lively town. The tiny town houses a good number of Muslim tombs, pillars and mosques that portrays the earlier value of this place as Muslim pilgrimage. The tomb Makhdum Shah Sharif-ud-din is the most important mausoleum that magnetizes tourists.

Surya Temple Surya temple is an ancient shrine and also considered as the most sanctified place in Nalanda. Devoted to Sun God, the holy place is situated nearby Nalanda premises. The major attraction of temple is five feet tall statue of Goddess Parvati. In addition to this, there are various idols of Hindu and Buddhist Gods in this shrine. Thousands of believers visit to this place of worship to see popular Chhat Puja that held twice in a year. Also popular with the name of ‘Surajpur Baragaon’, the temple has blossomed with excellent architecture that is simply fascinating. Constructed with the finest stone, Surya temple can easily magnetize any tourist. It is said that people who put their feet in the shrine, would get back with good luck and blessings.

Nav Nalanda Vihar - In order to maintain the old custom of knowledge alive, Bihar government set up the Nav Nalanda Vihar near the famous Lotus Pond. Established in the year 1951, Nav Nalanda Vihar mainly dealt with research related to Buddhism and education in Pali script. A lot of students from the countries like Korea, Japan, Bhutan and Japan are come here and get thorough knowledge of Buddhist and other ideologies.

Hieun Tsang Memorial Hall The memorial hall was framed in the memory of famous Chinese scholar and traveler, Hieun Tsang. The great scholar visited India in 5th century and studied at renowned Nalanda University. Hieun Tsang stayed at this place for more than twelve years and wrote in detail about the society of modern India. The hall houses the popular writings of Hieun Tsang. The architecture and magnificence of this hall provides a knick-knack of Nalanda University.

Kundalpur - Kundalpur is the birthplace of the most popular follower of Lord Mahavira, Gautamswamiji. The place is a significant destination for Jains, especially for Digambar division of Jains. Digambar Jain devotes believe that it is the birthplace of Lord Mahavira. Kundalpur has many beautiful temples that can easily draw attention of any tourist.

Fast Facts and Figures
  • State- Bihar
  • Altitude- 67 m
  • District- Nalanda
  • Significance- a Buddhist site
  • Famous for/as- Heritage
  • Languages- Hindi
  • Best Season- October to March
  • Weather- summers (max) 44°C to (min) 20°C, Winters (max)28 °C to (min) 4°C
How to reach Nalanda

By Air - Lok Nayak Jayaprakash Airport at Patna is the nearby airport to Nalanda that is positioned at a distance of 90 km. Regular flights are available to all the main cities of India. Tourists can also take private buses, state transport and taxis services that generally takes approximately 3 hrs to reach Nalanda.

Railway Route - Rajgir is the closest railway station that takes visitors to Nalanda. Tongas and private taxis can be taken in reasonable fare.

Road Route - Nalanda is situated on NH-82 and has a good road network to Gaya, Patna and Bodhgaya and other prominent cities of Bihar.

If you really wish to explore the finest tourist places in India, then Nalanda is a must visit place for you. Visit the holy city and explore the enthralling destination that will certainly fill your heart with immense happiness.

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