In the footsteps of Buddha

In the footsteps of Buddha

There are four places, the sight of which will arouse strong emotions in those with faith. Here the Tathagat was born. Here the Tathagat attained enlightenment. Here the Tathagat set in motion the Wheel of Dharma. Here the Tathagat attained final Nirvana. And The Monk, the Nun, the layman or Lay women who has faith should visit these places”. The Buddha

In his very first sermon Lord Buddha put forth the Middle Way, the Four Noble Truths, and the Eightfold Path the message spread rapidly, penetrating caste and class barriers; today Buddhism is a way of life in large parts of the world, its message of peace and tolerance speaks to us all.

Buddha preached that the way to salvation is not dependent on God but on understanding the way things really are for all living beings subject to desire. We take you on a journey to places associated with important events in Buddha’s life.

Prince Siddhartha was born at Lumbini, became Buddha, the Enlightened One, at Bodhgaya, gave his first sermon at Sarnath, lived the greater part of his monastic life in Sravasti, and attained Nirvana at Kushinagar. We also take in Lucknow, a City of Nawab’s  known for its gracious living, and the fabled Taj Mahal in Agra.

Tour Program

Day 01: Arrive Delhi

You will be met on arrival at Delhi airport and transfer to your hotel. In the afternoon visit the bustling sights of Old Delhi including the largest mosque in India known as the Jama Masjid and Rajghat, the resting place (Samadhi) of India’s favourite son, Mahatma Gandhi. The day’s sightseeing ends with a rickshaw ride through the convergent bazaars of Chandni Chowk, the main trading centre of Old Delhi.

Day 02: Delhi – Lucknow

Early morning transfer to railway station to take an exciting day train to the city of Lucknow – the capital of Uttar Pradesh, where you spend two nights in a hotel. Afternoon is at leisure.

Day 03: Lucknow

In the morning visit the Residency Complex, site of the infamous siege of 1857 which was one of the first revolts against the British authorities. Continue your sightseeing tour of the city with visits to the Islamic Imambara shrine and Romi Darwaja city gate. Round off the day exploring Lucknow’s colourful bazaars.

Day 04: Lucknow – Sravasti

Today provides your first real taste of the ‘Buddhist landscape’ as we approach the site of Sravasti. It is here that the historical Buddha spent much of his life teaching the path to enlightenment to those men and women ‘ready’ to listen. Stay in a hotels for the night. In the afternoon visit the local sites of significance including Ananthapindika’s Stupa, Anandabodhi tree and Gandhakuti or Buddha’s hut.

Day 05: Sravasti – Lumbini

Heading further east with your private car and driver you’ll cross Nepal’s southern border and come to the birth place of Buddha at Lumbini. Stay in a hotels for the night. In the afternoon visit the Lumbini gardens and the Maya Devi Temple which is dedicated to Buddha’s mother. There are various modern monasteries that are also worth a quick visit.

Day 06: Lumbini – Kushinagar

Moving on to Kushinagar, you will visit the Mahaparinirvana Temple which is where Buddha is said to have attained Parinirvana. His final words to those congregated at the site are thought to have been, ‘All composite things pass away. Strive for your own liberation with diligence.’

Day 07: Kushinagar – Patna

Leaving Kushinagar you will drive to the city of Patna, stopping en route at Vaishali. It is an auspicious site for devotees of both the Jain and Buddhist faiths respectively. The Buddha is said to have given his final public discourse here and the site was later the birth place of the great Jain saint Bhagwan Mahavira.

Day 08: Patna – Bodhgaya

Drive on to Bodhgaya with a stop at the historic site of Rajgir. Bodhgaya is the site where the young, Siddhartha Gautama, attained enlightenment beneath the Bodhi tree and became the awakened one or Buddha.

Day 09: Bodhgaya

Spend the day calmly exploring the Mahabodhi Temple Complex and other sights associated with the life of Buddha.

Day 10: Bodhgaya – Varanasi

This morning drive to Nalanda. The archeological was once the largest university in existence and students were dedicated to the study of the ‘Buddha Dharma’. Continuing on to Varanasi you’ll stay two nights in a hotel. This evening witness a ceremonial worship or “aarti” on the banks of the Ganges River.

Day 11: Varanasi

Varanasi is one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world today and a highlight for the culturally minded traveller. An early morning boat ride is arranged on the Ganges to see devotees at prayer along the “ghats”. In the afternoon visit Sarnath, the site of Buddha’s first public discourse and a peaceful space to spend a few hours.

Day 12: Varanasi – Agra

Take an exciting day train to Agra and watch the Indian countryside slower pass by. You will stay overnight at Agra hotel.

Day 13: Agra – Delhi

Visit the Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and Fatehpur-Sikri today, before returning to Delhi on the Shatabdi Express train.

Day 14: Depart Delhi

Transfer to international airport in time to board flight to onward destination.

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