Bodh Gaya is a village in the northeast Indian state of Bihar . It is considered one of the most important Buddhist pilgrimage sites in India, attracting Buddhism followers from all over the world.
Bodh Gaya is mostly filled with Buddhist religious centres and historical spots as well as ample ecological beauty. The top places to see in Bodhgaya include –
- Mahabodhi Temple – An ancient temple made of brick – this is built around the site where Gautama Buddha (the founder of Buddhism) is said to have attained enlightenment beneath a sacred Bodhi Tree, and whose direct descendant exists within this temple’s complex, along with other trees, shrines and a pond.
- Muchalinda Lake
- Indosan Nippon Japanese Temple
- Royal Bhutan Monastery
- Thai Monastery
- Metta Buddharam Temple
- Archaeological Museum Bodh Gaya – A government archaeological museum which has a collection of relics and artefacts related to Gautama Buddha’s life and that of Bodh Gaya village.
- Bodh Gaya Multimedia Museum – A museum depicting Gautama Buddha’s life through multimedia elements.
The major festivals celebrated in Bodh Gaya are –
- Buddha Jayanti (Birth anniversary and enlightenment Gautama Buddha as Buddha from his earlier identity as Prince Siddharth. It generally falls in the month of April or May, depending on the Hindu calendar).
- Buddha Mahotsava (A three-day annual festival that is celebrated in Bodhgaya focusing on various religious activities, with Buddhism followers from across the world taking part).
- Nyingma Monlam Chenmo (A three-week annual festival celebrated in January/ February, this is also known as Prayer Festival, conducted in Bodh Gaya which is attended by the holy Dalai Lama also, who visits the city to attend this each year).
- Maha Kala Chakra Puja (An annual religious event where people conduct prayers over a period of 7 to 10 days to remove obstacles in life).
If you’d like to buy some souvenirs, some things you can shop for in Bodhgaya are craft items, Buddha idols, fabrics, clothes, home décor items and other accessories. Here are some of the good market places to check out in Bodhgaya –
- Singh Mart Bodhgaya
- Bodhgaya Shopping Complex
- Tibetan Refugee Market
Following is a list of some of best restaurants in Bodhgaya –
- Nirvana the Veg Cafe
- Tibet Om Cafe
- Maya Heritage Restaurant
- Maya Rooftop Restaurant
- Hari Om Cafe
- Siam Thai Restaurant
- Rose Apple Cafe
- Fujia Green
Some good hotels in Bodh Gaya for a comfortable stay include the following –
- Bodhgaya Regency Hotel
- Maha Bodhi Hotel, Resort and Convention Centre
- Maya Heritage
- Hotel Bodh Vilas
- Marasa Sarovar Premiere Bodhgaya
- Bodhi Regency and Residency
- Hotel Sakura House
- The Royal Residency
- Hotel Tathagat
- Hotel Bodhgaya Gautam
Bodhgaya STD Code – 0631 (to be used before dialling numbers from a device that is not locally registered).
Common emergency numbers –
- Police – 100
- Fire – 101
- Child Helpline –1098
- Health Department – 102
Hindi is the official language of Bodh Gaya.
- Welcome - Svagat
- How are you? - Aap kaise hai?
- What's your name? - Aapka naam kya hai?
- I don't know - Mujhe nahi pata
- I don't understand - Mein samjha nahi
- Thank you - Dhanyavad