Gaya

 

Monuments:

Vishnupad Temple: The temple is dedicated to Vishnu and is one of the most visited Hindu Temples in India. Gaya is also popular for Pind daan. Pind daan is of great significance amongst Hindus who believe in Moksha. In the case of normal death Pind daan has to be done in three places namely; Surya Kund at Vishnupad temple, Falgu River and Akhaya Vat.

Mangla Gauri Temple: It is a temple of great significance, the breast of Sati is worshipped here.

Dungeshwari Cave Temples: It is believed that Gautama Buddha spent 6 years of his life meditating in the central cave out of the three caves before he embarked to meditate under the Mahabodhi tree where he was ultimately enlightened. The central cave has the  statue of emaciated Buddha in meditating position. Another cave houses a golden Buddha, a statue of Hindu Goddess Dungeshwari is also found in the temple.

Brahmayoni Temple: Perched on the top of the hill, Brahmayoni Temple is of religious and historic significance.

Natural Places:

When in Gaya one must visit the outstanding Barabar Hill Caves. These Mauryan era Rock-cut caves were carved during the first phase of Buddhism. Nature lovers must visit the Falgu river. As per the legends, the river lost it’s water because of Sita’s curse. One can enjoy walking on the sandy banks. This place is perfect for picnics. 

Food:

Since Gaya is a town in Bihar, Bihari Cuisine dominates here. When in Gaya one should have Bihari thaali which consists of simple, dal, rice, roti and vegetables. Side dishes that one should definitely try are Litti chokha, Ghugni, Khaja, Chandrakala, Peda, Mutton tilkut, anarsa, chhora dahi, Kebabs and Reshmi Kababs, etc.

Activities:

To enhance the knowledge pertaining to Buddhism and the History of Gaya one must visit the Gaya Museum. It has an incredible collection of Buddhist and Hindu relics, terracotta figurines, stone sculptures etc. One may also visit the less popular City Museum. One can travel to Bodhgaya and visit all the historical sites there and also join a course in Bodhgaya International Vipassana Meditation Centre.

Shopping:

For day to day shopping one can visit Tower Market. Ghani Market and Ambedkar market are the two other popular markets.