Varanasi is located on the west bank of the river Ganga as it flows through the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. After attaining Nirvana, Buddha came to Varanasi in search of his five disciples. Varanasi is 764 kms. From Delhi and 678 kms. from Kolkata. It is well connected by good metalled roads. Varanasi also has an airport and is a major railway station.
One of the oldest living cities of the world, Varanasi is held in high esteem by the Hindu devotees from all over. Once known as 'Kashi' and 'Banaras', the city of spiritual light - Varanasi lies on the banks of the holy river Ganga or the Ganges in Uttar Pradesh. The eternal city, which is rich with its vibrant past is believed to be the favourite place of the Hindu God Shiva, who is supposed to liberate the souls to receive moksha in the city of liberation or moksha - Varanasi.
A place where Lord Buddha left his foot steps nearly 2500 years ago while travelling in the quest of enlightenment, situated by the river Phalgu, Bodhgaya is one of the most important and sacred Buddhist pilgrimage center in the world. It was here under a banyan tree, the Bodhi Tree, Gautama attained supreme knowledge to become Buddha,the Enlightened One. The serenity of the atmosphere remains in the subconscious soul of any visitor who takes the village as a pilgrimage that the Lord himself had chosen for meditation.
There is a magnificent Mahabodhi temple and the Tree from the original sapling still stands in the temple premises. The temple is an architectural amalgamation of many centuries, cultures and heritages. While its architecture has a distinct stamp of the Gupta era, it has later ages inscriptions describing visits of pilgrims from Sri Lanka, Myanmar and China between 7th and 10th century AD. It is perhaps still the same temple Hieuen Tsang visited in 7th century.
The tree is considered holy since Lord Buddha attained enlightenment under it , it is probably the fifth succession of the original tree. Anyone, who likes an ambience of serenity, would understand this place's surroundings to be perfectly weathered for meditation.
The stone platform, where Lord Buddha sat in meditation while he attained enlightenment is known as Vajrasana. The place is restricted for any tourist activity on it; however, even the sight doesn't fail to excite the spirituality of the watcher.
Rajgir (80 kms) was the capital of the mighty Magadhas, described in Mahabharata, during the 6th century BC. It is one of the most important tourist places in India. Being located in a valley, Rajgir is a very scenic place. The attractions include the Ajatshatru fort, Shanti Stupa, Venu van, Karanda tank, Sonbhandar caves, Bhimbisar jail, Gridhkuta and hot water springs and the forestry. There is an aerial ropeway for adding charm to the tour.
96 kms from Bodhgaya, The place where an ancient university, famous all over the world existed, which is 62 km from Bodhgaya and 90 km south of Patna. In this first residential international university of the world, 2,000 teachers and 10,000 monks students from all over the Buddhist world lived and studied here. Nalanda is a place to understand the cultural richness of India during 5th century AD. The excavations have revealed some very interesting facts regarding the ancient university, and the artifacts obtained are naturally a must for every visitor.
Gaya is a Hindu pilgrimage place. Gaya is 102 ms rom Patna and 17 kms from Bodhagaya Bihar. Gaya is one of the most sacred Hindu destinations. The Vishnu temple is the central pilgrimage centre and people believe it has been constructed on the footprints of Lord Vishnu. Hindus believe that if a person's last rites are performed in Gaya, the soul attains Moksha, so thousands come here to offer the last rites and funerary offerings for their ancestors, every year. Main attraction is Vishnupad temple.
Day 01 : Arrive Mumbai (Previously known as Bombay) Arrive Mumbai. Our representative will meet you at the airport on arrival. Transfer to hotel for over night stay.
Day 02 : Mumbai Morning after breakfast visit Elephanta Caves - one hour boat ride across Mumbai Harbour brings lush green Elephanta Island. Here, visit some of the huge and intricately carved Elephanta Caves that date back to the 8th century. Afternoon, city tour of Bombay - visiting 'Gateway of India'
Day 03 : Mumbai - Aurangabad Morning transfer to railway station to connect train # 7617 Tapovan Express dep. Mumbai at 06:10 hrs ar. Aurangabad at 13:30 hrs. Check into hotel. Afternoon city tour of Aurangabad visiting Bibi-Ka-Muqbara, Aurangabad Caves and Daulatabd Fort. Overnight at hotel.
Day 04 : Aurangabad - Excursion to Ellora Caves Morning visit Ellora Caves - 30 kms from Aurangabad lie the finest rock cut cave temples of Ellora - 10th & 11th century, which encompasses the three religion - Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. Of the 34 caves that are both monasteries and temples. Day 05 : Aurangabad - Jalgaon - Bhopal After breakfast drive to Ajanta Caves - located 100 kms, a 2½ hour drive, northeast of Aurangabad in the Waghora valley. These magnificent rock-cut caves, 30 in number, date from 2nd BC to 7th Century AD. They are exclusively Buddhist, unique in that they combine three forms of Art - Day 06 : Bhopal - Agra Sightseeing tour of Saanchi Stupa. A lot of Buddhist travellers across the world visit this serene hill crowned by a group of stupas, monasteries, temples and pillars dating from 3rd century BC to 12th century AD. Day 07 : Agra - Varanasi Morning sightseeing tour visiting the magnificent Taj Mahal, which is entirely made of white marble and its walls are decorated with exquisite Pietra Dura (stone inlay) work. Post lunch tour of the imposing Agra Fort - built of red sandstone and marble is a hilltop citadel with fabulous courtyards, fountains and gates.
Day 0I : Delhi Welcome to Delhi, the capital of India. You will be received and transferred to a pre-booked hotel. You have the remaining day to brace up for the excitement ahead.
Day 02 : Delhi After breakfast sightseeing tour of Delhi. Morning visit Old Delhi. It is a 17th century walled city with its splendid gates, narrow alleys, the enormous Bazaar. Visit Red Fort, Jama Masjid and Raj Ghat. Afternoon tour of New Delhi with wide tree lined avenues, parks and fountains surroundings the imposing government and state Buildings. Visit Humayun's Tomb, an observatory called Jantar Mantar, Qutab Minar, India Gate and President House. Overnight stay at hotel.
Day 03 : Delhi - Agra - Varanasi Leave Delhi for Agra by road (203 kms / 4 Hrs). Afternoon sightseeing tour of Agra, the city of the Taj Mahal. Evening leave Agra for Varanasi by overnight train. (Taj Mahal is closed on Fridays)
Day 04 : Varanasi - Sarnath - Varanasi Arrive Varanasi early in the morning. On arrival check-in at hotel and refresh for a visit to Sarnath -the place where Lord Buddha preached his first Sermon in 590 BC. Afternoon sightseeing tour of Varanasi, visiting Ghats, Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Gyanvyapi Mosque, Durga Temple, Banaras Hindu University, Ram Nagar, Fort and Museum. Overnight at hotel.
Day 05 : Varanasi - Bodhgaya Early morning boat-ride on the River Ganges. Thereafter, leave Varanasi by road for Bodhgaya (242 kms / 6-7 Hrs) one of the holiest Buddhist pilgrimage centers in the state of Bihar. It was here that Gautama attained enlightenment and became Buddha under the "Bodhi" tree Satabodhi Temple. Overnight at hotel. Day 05 : Varanasi - Bodhgaya Early morning boat-ride on the River Ganges. Thereafter, leave Varanasi by road for Bodhgaya (242 kms / 6-7 Hrs) one of the holiest Buddhist pilgrimage centers in the state of Bihar. It was here that Gautama attained enlightenment and became Buddha under the "Bodhi" tree Satabodhi Temple. Overnight at hotel. Day 06 : Bodhgaya Morning visit temples in Bodhgaya - Mahabodhi Temple, Animesh Locan Chaiyata, Mohanta's Monastery, Thai Temple and The Burmese Temple. Later visit Monuments such as - Tibetan Monastery, International Buddhist House, Buddhist Monastery of Bhutan, The Chinese Temple & Monastery and Bodhi Tree. Also visit Archaeological Museum Day 07 : Bodhgaya - Rajgir - Nalanda - Patna Leave Bodhgaya for Patna (157 kms / 4-5 Hrs) en-route visiting Rajgir & Nalanda. Patna is 2500 year old capital city of Bihar. Rajgir was capital of 6th century Magadha Empire and was revered site of Buddha's discourses. Buddha spent many years here. Nalanda is world's oldest university founded in the 5th century. Overnight at hotel in Patna. Day 08 : Patna - Vaishali - Kushinagar Morning leave Patna for Kushinagar (253 kms / 8 hrs) en-route visiting Vaishali -located 55 kms from Patna and holds special significance for Buddhist devotees. Day 09 : Kushinagar - Lumbini - Sravasti Leave Kushinagar by road for Lumbini (170 kms / 4-5 Hrs) - the birthplace of Buddha and is located just a few kilometres inside Nepal. Sightseeing tour of Lumbini and thereafter leave for Sravasti by road (225 kms / 6 hrs). On arrival transfer to hotel and overnight stay.
Day l0 : Saravasti - Sahet & Mahet - Lucknow - Delhi Morning visit to Sahet & Mahet -15 kms from Balrampur and the capital of the ancient Kingdom of Kosala. Day 11 : Day at leisure Arrive Delhi at 06:15 hrs. Transfer to international airport to connect flight for onward destination.
Day 01: ARRIVAL-KOLKATA-BODHGAYA Arrive by a schedule International Flight. Sightseeing of Kolkata Visiting Victoria Memorial. Later Transfer to Howrah Railway Station to connect Overnight Train for Gaya Overnight On Board
Day 02: ARRIVE BODHGAYA Early morning Arrive Gaya Railway Station and Transfer to Bodhgaya one of the holiest Buddhist pilgrimage centres. It was here that Gautama attained enlightenment and became Buddha under the "Bodhi" tree. After some relax visit the Stupa and the various monasteries, Mahabodhi temple built by Ashoka the Great in 3rd Century BC One can visit the Sacred Bodhi tree Overnight stay at the Hotel
Day 03: BODHGAYA-RAJGIR-NALANDA-BODHGAYA After Breakfast Full Day Excursion to Rajgir capital of 6th century Magadha empire. It was revered site of Buddhas discourses. Buddha spent many years here. Day 04: BODHGAYA-VARANASI Early Morning after Breakfast Proceed for Varanasi. On arrival check into Hotel. Afternoon excursion to Sarnath, the principle centre of Buddhism. It was here around 530 B.C that Buddha preached his 1st sermon after gaining enlightenment. Day 05: VARANASI-KUSHINAGAR Early morning boat ride on river Ganges to see the beautiful sunrise at Ganges. On arrival Kushinagar Check into Hotel. Afternoon Sightseeing of Kushinagar. Day 06: KUSHINAGAR-LUMBINI-SRAVASTI After Breakfast Proceed for Sravasti on the way Sightseeing of Lumbini the place where Buddha was born. An ancient shrine with an image representing the nativity of Buddha is still preserved. Continue your drive to Sravasti. On arrival check into Hotel Overnight stay at the Hotel
Day 07: SRAVASTI-LUCKNOW-DELHI-DEPARTURE Morning visit Sravasti (Sahet-Mahet), capital of the ancient Kingdom of Kosala, an active centre for Buddhism. Later drive to Lucknow railway station and board train. Day 07: SRAVASTI-GONDA-AGRA Morning visit Sravasti (Sahet-Mahet), capital of the ancient Kingdom of Kosala, an active centre for Buddhism. After sighseeing proceed to Gonda Railway Station (40 kms) to connect train # 9038/40 Avadh Express dep. 16:30 hrs. Overnight on board. Day 08: AGRA-DELHI-DEPARTURE Arrive Agra at 04:50 hrs. After breakfast, visit Taj Mahal, monument of love that Emperor Shah Jahan built in the 16th century. You'll then visit Agra Fort, which served as the final living quarters for the Emperor to live in imprisonment.
Day 01: ARRIVAL DELHI AGRA. Arrive Delhi. meet on arrival by Top Travels Rep. and drive to Agra (203 kms / 4-5 hrs). Checkin at hotel .O/N Agra.
Day 02: AGRA /VARANASI After breakfast free for shopping Lunch at hotel,In afternnon visit the world famous Taj Mahal and drive thru Agra Fort.. After Dinner transfer to Tundla Railway station to connect train for Vns. (TAJ MAHAL IS CLOSED ON EVERY FRIDAY).
Day 03: VARANASI Arrive Varanasi station then trsf to hotel,(We may get rooms after 12:00 hrs,but would try to get few rooms at least to wash & change) Later Visit SARNATH (where Buddha delivered his first sermon). Then city tour and some shopping in Varanasi Day 04: VARANASI – BODHGAYA Early morning drive 8 hours to Bodhgaya. Check-in at Hotel. Afternoon visit Mahabodhi Temple & Bodhi Tree, Great Buddha Statue, Niranjana River, Sujata Temple - which is across the Niranja River & it's 30 minutes walk through the paddy fields. Also visit various other Buddhist Temples in Bodhgaya. Overnight at Htl in Bodhgaya.
Day 05: BODHGAYA- KUSHINAGAR Early morning drive to Kushinagar with hot lunch on way. On arrival checkin at hotel. Dinner and overnight stay.
Day 06: KUSHINAGAR – LUMBINI Visit mahaparinirwana Temple (where Buddha took his last breathe) and Rambhar Stupa (cremation site of lord Buddha), Japan Temple.
Afternoon drive 5 hrs to Lumbini (Nepal). While going to Lumbini, stop at India/Nepal border for Visa/Immigration formalities. Later check-in at Hotel. 15 Min. drive from the Nepal Border. Dinner and overnight at Htl. Day 07: LUMBINI-SRAVASTI Noon visit Lumbini, the Birth place of Lord Buddha. Afternoon leave for Sravasti. On arrival checkin at hotel. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Sravasti.
Day 08: SRAVASTI/LUCKNOW Visit Sravasti, where Buddha spent his 24 monsoons, visit Jetvana and Ananda Bodhi Tree,then Drive 5 hrs to Lucknow Arrive Lucknow. After Dinner at Lucknow hotel transfer to Railway station to board train to Delhi,Overnight in Train
Day 09: DELHI/DEPARTURE Arrive Dellhi station then trsf to hotel. Morning free for shopping & own activities after Lunch at local restaurant then transfer to Airport to connect flight for onward destination.
The Buddha's Trail With Masterpieces Of Buddhist Art
Day 01 : ARRIVAL MUMBAI-AURANGABAD Arrive by a schedule International Flight. Sightseeing of Mumbai visiting visit Prince of Gateway of India Wales Museum, Parliament House, Marine Drive, Jain Temple, Hanging Gardens. Later Transfer To Mumbai Domestic Airport and depart for Aurangabad. Transfer from Aurangabad Airport to Hotel for Overnight Stay.
Day 02: AURANGABAD-ELLORA-AJANTA-BHUSAVAL-BHOPAL After breakfast take a sight seeing tour of Ellora, one of the highly visited World heritage sites of India. It houses 34 monasteries and temples with some exclusive uninterrupted sequence of monuments that date back from 600 to 1000 AD. The temples of Ellora are dedicated to Brahmanism, Jainism, and Buddhism. It also has some of the excellent stonework depicting the legends related to Lord Shiva
Excursion to the famous Ajanta caves. Ajanta is one of the few historical and architectural marvels of India. Recognized as the World Heritage Site today, it was discovered during the 19th century by a group of British officers who were on a hunt. The Ajanta group of caves, located deep within the Sahyadri hills above the Waghora, depicts the story of Buddhism that prevailed here during 200 BC to 650 AD
Later in the evening transfer to Bhusaval Railway Station to Board Overnight Train for Bhopal Overnight on Board
Day 03: BHOPAL-SANCHI-BHOPAL-AGRA After Breakfast Sightseeing of Sanchi visit Sanchi Stupa- It is unique, not only for having the most perfect and well preserved stupas, but also for offering the visitor a chance to see, in one location, the genesis, flowering, and decay of Buddhist art and architecture during a period of about 1500 years -- almost covering the entire range of Indian Buddhism
After Sightseeing Return to Bhopal and transfer to Railway Station to connect train for Agra. On arrival transfer from Agra Cantt Railway Station to Hotel Overnight stay at the Hotel. Click Here For More Information/Booking Day 04: AGRA Visit to witness the incomparable Taj Mahal with its’ speculative view. Taj Mahal, the architectural modern day wonder of the world; this monument is a fine example of the fusion of many architectural styles is one of the wonders of the modern world. Taj, endowed it with some of the loveliest buildings in the world. The tour continues with a visit to the Agra Fort from where one can get the most moving view of the Taj from the little octagonal tower in the Agra Fort, which lies, across the river Jamuna. Overnight stay at the Hotel. Day 04: AGRA Visit to witness the incomparable Taj Mahal with its’ speculative view. Taj Mahal, the architectural modern day wonder of the world; this monument is a fine example of the fusion of many architectural styles is one of the wonders of the modern world. Taj, endowed it with some of the loveliest buildings in the world. The tour continues with a visit to the Agra Fort from where one can get the most moving view of the Taj from the little octagonal tower in the Agra Fort, which lies, across the river Jamuna. Overnight stay at the Hotel. Day 05: AGRA-DELHI-PATNA (AIR) After breakfast proceed for Delhi. On arrival Sightseeing of New Delhi India Gate, President House Later transfer to Domestic Airport to connect Flight for Patna. On arrival Patna Airport transfer to Hotel for Overnight stay. Day 06: PATNA-RAJGIR-BODHGAYA After early breakfast drive to Bodhgaya enroute sight seeing Rajgir capital of 6th century Magadha empire. It was revered site of Buddhas discourses. Buddha spent many years here. Visit Gridhrakula.
Day 01 : Arrive Delhi Our representative will meet you at the airport and will assist to transfer to hotel. Overnight stay at hotel.
Day 02 : Delhi - Dharamsala Morning sight-seeing tour of Delhi, which includes Jama Masjid - the largest mosque of Emperor Shahjahan. Later proceed to Red Fort, Raj Ghat - cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi, to India Gate - a 42 meter stone arch built in the memory of the Indian Soldiers who died in World War I, Drive past the President's House & Parliament House, Humayun's Tomb - a memorial of the Mughals, the Qutab Minar & Lotus Temple. Later transfer to airport to board flight for Dharamshala. This small city is at an Alt. 2080 M and is Home of His Holiness Dalai Lama. Transfer to hotel. Click Here For More Information/Booking Day 03 : Dharamshala Morning visit the Monastery of His Highness Dalai Lama. Afternoon visit Baijnath Temple_one of the Jyothirlingas. Rest day free to relax. Overnight in Hotel.
Day 04 : Dharmshala – Delhi / Out Morning optional visit to the Monastery of His Highness Dalai Lama again. Afternoon transfer to airport to board flight for Delhi. On arrival connect flight for onward destination.
If its the peace, tranquility and ancient culture that attracts you the most, Ladakh is the place to head for. It has successfully retained its ancient cultural heritage and still untouched by the waves of modernism