Rajgir has come up as one of the most important pilgrimage for the Buddhist.Rajgir also has some very beautiful Hindu and Jain temples which attracts Hindus and Jains also to the place.
Not only as a place for worship, Rajgir has come up as health and winter resort with its warm water ponds. These ponds are said to contain some medicinal properties which help in the cure of many skin diseases. The added attraction of Rajgir is the Ropeway which takes you uphill to the Shanti Stupa and Monasteries built by the Japanese Devotees on top of the Ratnagiri hills.
Best time to visit Rajgir
October to March is the best season to visit Rajgir
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By Rail : Though Rajgir itself has a railway station yet the nearest convenient railhead is at Gaya 78 kms.
By Road : Rajgir is connected by road to Patna - 110 kms, Nalanda - 12 kms, Gaya - 78 kms, Pawapuri - 38 kms, Bihar Sharif - 25 kms etc. Bus : Regular buses are available from all the above said points to Rajgir.
The Vishwa Shanti Stup is located on a 400 meter high hill. The stupa is built in marble and on the four corners of the stupa are four glimmering statues of Buddha. To reach the top of this hill one has to come through the “Ropeways”. This place is also called the GriddhKoot.
6 kms away from Rajgir are two rather strange cave chambers were hollowed out of a single massive rock. One of the chambers I believed to have been the guard room, the rear wall has two straight vertical lines and one horizontal line cut into the rock; the doorway is supposed to lead to king Bimbisara Treasury. Inscriptions in the Sankhlipi or shell script, etched into wall and so far undeciphered, are believed to give the clue to open the doorway. The treasure, according to folklore, is still intact. The second chambers bears a few traces of seated and standing etched into the outer wall.
At the foot of Vaibhava Hill, a staircase leads up to the various temples. Separate bathing places have been organized for men and women and the water comes through spouts from Saptdhara, the seven streams, believed to find their source behind the "Saptarni Caves", up in the hills. The hottest of the springs is the Brahmakund with a temperature of 45 degree Centigrade.
Above the hot springs on the Vaibhava Hill, is a rectangular stone sculpted by the forces of nature which appears to have been used as a watch tower. Since it later became the resort of pious hermits, it is also called Pippala Cave and popularly known as "Jarasandh ki Baithak" after the name of the King Jarasandh, a contemporary of Lord Krishna described in the epic Mahabharata
It is to be said that that it was a store of Gold of King Jarashandh. A unread story about the cave is that there is a lot of gold in this cave and a script is written on a stone is the code to unlock the door of this Swarn Bhandar.
The Venuvana Vihara
Between the larger fortification of the old town and the hills along the east of the river Saraswati is an extensive are called Venuvana or Bamboo garden of king Bimbisara, who made it as a gift to Lord Buddha. According to Buddhist tradition, it was the favorite resorts of Buddha when he stayed at Rajgir.
Ratnagiri – one of the five hills of Rajgir, houses on it’s to a dome shaped beautiful white marble built World Peace Pagoda. It is an emblem of world peace built by Rev.
(Late) Fuji-I-Guruji, the Chief Buddhist Monk of Japan. An 1100ft long aerial ropeway chairlift carries people from the foothill to the top close to the pagoda. This ropeway
ride is an exciting experience.
To the east of the Venuvan area, close by the side of the road on its east are the ruins of a stone structure, built in the fashion of Pippala cave. The site occupies a very prominent situation on the road from the modern Rajgir town to the hot- springs.
Rajgir is a ancient city in Bihar and one of the oldest settlements. It was the first capital of Magadh whcich became the Maurayan empire. It is a holy place for Buddhists and Jains. To celebrate this heritage a three day festival is celebrated here with dance, music, and devotional singing. It is 95 kms from Bihar and the nearest rail is at Gaya around 70 kms away. It is held in December. Nearby in Rajgir one can aslo visit the Brahmakund hot water spring, peace stupa, bimbisar jail, ajatashatru fort and jarasandh's akhara.
It takes place in Rajgir once in three years. 15 kms from Nalanda, Rajgir has many temples and monasteries. Arti is performed on the banks of Saraswati river and people take dips in the hot water springs. Last mela was in August 2012.