Bihar is one of the oldest States in India. The land of Buddha, as it is popularly called, has a rich cultural heritage which is evident from numerous ancient monuments that are spread throughout the State. Bihar attracts many tourists from all over the world. The hospitality and warmth of the local people tempt many tourists throughout the year. Around 6 million tourists travel to Bihar every year.
Apart from Patna, the capital city, there are innumerable places in Bihar that are interesting as well as spiritual. Some of the important places to visit are Bodhgaya, Nalanda, Rajgir, Gaya and Sitamarhi. The climate is wonderful throughout the year and is very tourist-friendly.
It is an important religious destination for pilgrims from various religions like Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Hinduism and Islam. The temples in Bihar are very attractive and have rich historical connections. The Buddhist shrines are exquisite, and Bodhgaya, the UNESCO world heritage site is a remarkable sight on India Holiday Packages.
Northern Bihar — Sitamarhi and Sonepur
The northern part of Bihar is dominated by Sitamarhi and Sonepur. Other towns of Northern Bihar are Madhubani, Darbhanga, Begusarai, Balmiki Nagar and Muzaffarpur. These are some great tourist spots in this region. You can visit Sitamarhi if you are interested in Hindu mythology. This place is a cultural extravaganza. The festivals and rituals that take place here are most sought-after by the public. The picturesque location of these places helps the visitors feel relaxed through the journey. The Sonepur Mela that is held every November is a visual treat for any tourist. The cattle fair is an interesting event in this part of Bihar, and people from all over the country come to enjoy it.
Southern Bihar — Bodhgaya, Nalanda and Bihar Sharif
The Southern part of Bihar is dominated by religious destinations like Bodhgaya, Nalanda and Bihar Sharif. Bodhgaya is a major Buddhist shrine close to the capital city of Patna. The journey to this place is quite scenic. Tourists from all over the world swarm in here to have a glimpse of the origin of Buddhism. To spend a few days in this part of Bihar would be an enjoyable and learning experience for any tourist. Bihar Sharif is a pilgrimage of the Muslims of the country. Nalanda is another very important place in Southern Bihar. The ruins of Nalanda University are very attractive because of the historical significance of the ancient Buddhist learning centre. Other attractions include the Huen Tsang Memorial Hall, Nalanda Museum, Nav Nalanda Vihar and the Surya Mandir. The tourists visiting this part of Bihar hardly miss these places. There is a scope of some shopping too in Southern Bihar. You can bring home some exotic handicrafts, paintings and photographs.
This tourism destination of Bihar in India also includes botanical gardens, national parks and places of historical and religious interest, which tourists would love to visit. A visit to Bihar alone gives you a picture of India, Indian values, Indian dignity and Indian culture. Some famous tourist destinations of Bihar are listed below to know Bihar better.
Tourist Destinations in Bihar
1. Mahabodhi Mandir, Gaya: The memorably decorated temple of Lord Buddha is situated in Gaya. The temple alone is 170 feet (51 metres) high and it consists of a beautiful large image of Lord Buddha. This temple is a historic temple built by King Ashoka in the 3rd century BC.
2. Mahavir Mandir, Patna: This modern temple of Lord Hanumanji is situated in Patna. The attraction of these spots is in the nights when the temple is lit up with multicoloured lights.
3. Har Mandir Sahib of Patna: This beautiful holy shrine of the Sikhs is made up of white marble. This shrine is of Guru Gobind Singh, the last Guru of the Sikhs.
4. Shanti Stupa: This Shanti Stupa is situated on a 400-metre tall hill, and it is built-in stunning white marble. The main attractions of Shanti Stupa are its 4 corners. These 4 corners are sparkling statues of Lord Buddha. To get to this place you need to take the ropeway.
5. Barabar Caves: These are situated in Gaya. These caves are carved on Nagarjuna hills. This historic spots of Bihar consist of 7 caves out of which 4 caves have carvings on the life of Lord Buddha.
6. Gaya and Rajgir: Gaya is one of the Hindu pilgrimage cities in Bihar, and Rajgir is one of the most significant tourist spots. Rajgir has a complex of temples and monasteries, regarded as an ideal spot of Buddhism.
7. Mahatma Gandhi Setu: This bridge is the longest River Road Bridge in the world. The length of the bridge is exactly 5.575 km, and it contains two-lane roadway and a two-meter wide footpath.
8. Vikramshila Museum: This museum is a wonder. It is situated at the entrance of the Excavation Site. It exhibits a variety of ancient monuments, art pieces, ancient utensils, coins, jewellery and also ancient weapons.
9. Valmiki National Park: This National Park is situated by the side of the river Gandak in the West Champaran district of Bihar. It is home to the great tigers of India. It is adjacent to Royal Chitawan National Park of Nepal.
10. Sanjay Gandhi Biological Park: It is situated in Patna. Sanjay Gandhi biological park is one of the largest National Parks of India. This park alone has as many as three hundred different species of trees, herbs and shrubs. Moreover, it is home to species of approximately 800 animals and birds. It also has a snake house and aquarium.
Thus Bihar provides varied visiting spots to the tourists of the country and abroad.