Places to Visit in Nalanda

In ancient India, Nalanda was a prime seat of knowledge and learning. In the 5th century, the Gupta emperors founded here a university for the study of Buddhism, which was one of the greatest study centers in the contemporary world.

The biggest of all tourist attractions in Nalanda is the excavated remains of the ancient Buddhist University of Nalanda, which had over 5,000 international students and teachers, and a library of nine million manuscripts at the time. Its elaborately planned temples and monasteries represent the rich, ancient legacy of knowledge in Bihar and speaks volumes of its glorious past. The place is still counted as one of the ancient places with rich history.

Places to See in Nalanda

Nalanda University Archaeological Complex

This is the excavated site of the great university. Spread over an area of 14 hectares, the complex had red brick buildings hemmed by gardens. A central walkway runs through the complex from north to south. On the eastern side of the central alley, were the Viharas (monasteries) and the Chaityas (temples) adorned its western side. A half broken statue of Lord Buddha is housed in a chapel.

The Nalanda Archaeological Museum

The museum, although small in size, stands just opposite to the entrance of the excavated site. It has an impressive collection of Buddhist and Hindu bronzes and a number of undamaged statues of the Lord Buddha that were found in the area. Two enormous terra-cotta jars, which stand behind the museum in a shaded enclosure, date back to 1st century.

Nava Nalanda Mahavihara

The institute, devoted to the study and research in Pali Literature and Buddhism, is a new addition to the tourist attractions in Nalanda. Many students come to study here from abroad.

Hieun Tsang Memorial Hall

The hall has been constructed in memory of the famed Chinese Scholar, Hieun Tsang. Tsang lived in this place for 12 years during the 7th century AD and studied Yoga from Acharya Shil Bhadra.

Surajpur Baragaon

Close to Nalanda, the region houses a Sun temple beside the lake and is dedicated to the Sun god. It is a popular Hindu pilgrimage. There are idols of many Hindu gods as well as goddesses and even some of the Buddhist deities at this temple. However, the main attraction is the idol of Goddess Parvati.

The Stupa of Sariputra

The Stupa of Sariputra is one of the popular attractions in Nalanda. Sariputra was the favourite disciple of Lord Buddha who attained salvation and became an Arhat. Structured in a pyramidal shape, it has towers above the entire complex. The premises of the Stupa has pillared structures surrounding it, which make it look spectacular.

Last Updated on : November 7, 2016