Rajgir is a city in Nalanda district of Bihar. It was the first capital of Magadha Kingdom. Rajgir was most ancient city dates back to 3000 years old. According to Hindu mythology this was ruled by Jarasandh of Mahabharata. Wrestling match between Bheema and Jarasandh was conducted here. Mahavir spent 14 years of life in this city. City is divided into two parts. First part is surrounded by 7 hills and other part was established by King Ajatsharu. Major attractions of this temple are Hot springs, Trekking and Rope way. Rajgir Dance Festival and Makar Sankranti Mela are most famous festivals in Rajgir.
What to see in Rajgir:
Sonbhandar Caves: These caves are also known as Swarna Bhandar which means Store of Gold. It is believed that treasury of King Bimbisara present in this cave. Sonbhandar caves are most ancient and rock cut caves which were dates back to 500BC.
Pippala Caves: These are situated on the top of the hill, Vaibhava Hill. It is a house for the monks. It is believed that Lord Buddha has done meditation in these caves. These are natural caves.
Hot springs: These are situated at the foot of Vaibhava hills.
Vishwa Shanti Stupa: This is located on the top of Ratnagiri hill. With the help of ropeway visitors has to reach this place. As a symbol of world peace this was built by Japanese. There are 4 statues of Lord Buddha on each corner.
Ajatshatru Fort: This was built by Ajatshatru king of Magadha in 6th century. At the top of the fort 6.5sq.m stupa stands.
Jivaka’s Mango Garden: Jivaka used to be royal Physician of Magadha rulers namely Ajatshatru and Bimbisara.
Ashoka Stupa Peak: This is one of the attractions of Rajgir which was built by Emperor Ashoka with bricks.
Ancient 40kms wall: This is popularly known as Cyclopean wall. It is one of the few important pre-Maurayan stone structures.
Jain Temples: In Rajgir there are 26 Jain temples are situated. These are located on hill crest. Only way to reach this place is through trekking.
Other attractions of Rajgir: Other attractions of Rajgir are Monastery Venuvana Vihara, Ghora Katora Lake, Bimbisara Jail, Gymnasium of Jarasandh, Nava Nalanda Maha Vihira, and New Venu Vana Vihara.
What to see around Rajgir:
Ruins of Nalanda University: It is located 15kms away from Rajgir. These ruins are located in the Nalanda town. It is the oldest Buddhist University.
Nalanda Archaeological Museum: Four main galleries are included in this museum. Main hall consists of Nagaraj Sculptures, Parshvanath sculpture, Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, Bhumisparsh postures etc…This was established in 1971. It is located 13kms away from Rajgir.
Other attractions near Rajgir: Other attractions near Rajgir are Nalanda, Bihar Sharif, Pawapuri, Kundlapur, Swarajpur, and Barabar Caves.
Getting to Rajgir: Rajgir is well connected with road and railways. From the cities such as Bihar Sharif, Pawapuri, Nalanda, Patna, Gaya etc… buses are available to reach to this place. Nearest airport is located at Gaya which is 68kms away from this place. Gaya airport is well connected with Varanasi, Kolkata and Delhi.
Getting around Rajgir: Buses, Taxis, Tonga’s are available to visit the surrounding places of Rajgir.
Best time to visit Rajgir: Best time to visit Rajgir is between October to March.
Where to stay in Rajgir: Only budget and midrange hotels are available to stay in Rajgir. Bihar State Tourism Development Corporation is maintaining 3 tourists’ bungalows for the tourists.
Where to eat in Rajgir: Only limited restaurants are available to eat in Rajgir. Almost all the restaurants serve only vegetarian. Chinese, Punjabi and North Indian Cuisines are available.