- The capital of the Magadh Mahajanpad (State) before the foundation of Patliputra is named after Raj Griha, literally meaning the “Royal Palace”.
- Town sprawls in a valley amidst scenic surroundings and is one of the most important tourist and Buddhist pilgrim centres in India.
- Lord Buddha is said to have spent several years hare.
- During his stay, delivered sermons and proselytized Mauryan emperor Bimbisar, at the Griddhakoota hill.
- Rajgir is reverently mentioned in great epics – Ramayana and Mahabharta.
- It is also a sacred site for the Jains and Hindus.
- Lord Mahavira, the 24th Jain tirthankara and founder of Jainism, meditated and delivered his first sermon here.
- The hills around Rajgir are dotted with beautiful Jain shrines.
- Town is also an excellent health and winter resort.
- Hot water ponds here possess curative properties, which help in the cure of many skin diseases.
MODE OF COMMUNICATION:
- Airport: Gaya Airport, Gaya (GAY), 34 kms away from Rajgir town. Lok Nayak Jayaprakash Airport, Patna (PAT), 101 kms away from Rajgir town.
- Rail: Gaya Railway Station, Gaya, 78 kms away from Rajgir town.
- Road: Well connected by road.
SIGHTSEEING AT A GLANCE
FORT & MONUMENTS
Ajatasatru’s Fort Cyclopean Wall
Griddhakuta Hill & Shanti Stupa Saptaparni Cave Kundalpur Pawapuri Swarajpur-Baragaon
PARK & GARDEN
Amaravana/ Jivekarmavan Gardens
Bimbisara Jail Chariot Route Marks
ATTRACTIONS OF RAJGIR
- Amaravana/ Jivekarmavan Gardens:
- It was the seat of the royal physician Jivaka, who is said to have treated the wound of Lord Buddha here.
- Ajatasatru’s Fort:
- It was built during 6th century B.C. by Ajatasatru, the king of Magadha.
- The 6.5 sq. metre stupa is also believed to have been built by him.
- Bimbisara Jail:
- King Bimbisara was imprisoned here by his son Ajatashatru.
- Bimbisara is said to have chosen the site for his incarceration, as from here he could see Lord Buddha climbing atop the Griddhakuta hill to do his meditation.
- Chariot Route Marks:
- Strange marks cut deep into rock are believed to be of Lord Krishna’s chariot, when he visited Rajgir during the epic Mahabharata period.
- Cyclopean Wall:
- Relics of the wall, which once encircled the town, can be seen at the exit of Rajgir to Gaya.
- It is one of the few remnants of pre-Mauryan structures.
- Griddhakuta Hill & Shanti Stupa:
- Lord Buddha set in motion his second wheel of low at Griddhakuta Hill.
- He delivered many sermons from here and his teachings were first recorded in writing at this sacred site.
- The Buddha Sangha of Japan built a huge Shanti Stupa (Pease Pagoda) atop the hill to commemorate the event.
- The stupa can also be reached by an aerial ropeway.
- Hot Sulphur Springs (Saptdhara):
- It lies at the base of the Vaibhava hills and has separate bathing places for men and women.
- Water is said to have curative powers.
- Above the springs is Pippala Cave, also known as “Jarasandh Ki Baithak”.
- Saptaparni Cave:
- First Buddhist Council was convened hare after the Mahaparinirvana of Lord Buddha.
ATTRACTIONS AROUND RAJGIR
- 18 kms away from Rajgir town.
- Digambar Jains believe that it is the birth place of Lord Mahavira, the founder of Jainism.
- A Jain temple and two lotus lakes mark the sacred site.
- 35 kms away from Rajgir town.
- Known an Apapuri (a sinless city) is one of the most important Jain pilgrim centres.
- Lord Mahavira delivered his last sermon and breathed his last over here around 500 B.C.
- His cremation site is marked by beautiful Jalamandir temple, built in white marble.
- It is said that devotees not only took away the ashes of the Lord, but also removed a large amount of soil around the funeral pyre, which created the water tank.
- Samosharan is another splendid shrine at Pawapuri.
- 18 kms away from Rajgir town.
- Lake with its temple of Sun God comes to life, twice a year in “Vaisakha” (April-May) and “Kartika” (October-November) during the Chhath Puja or Sun Worship.