States of India
Altitude: 52 metres.
Temperature: (Max./Min.) Summer 44 Deg C/21 Deg C. Winter 23 Deg C/6 Deg C.
Rainfall: 120 cms.
Best Season: October to March.
Vaishali today is a small village known for its historical past. The epic Ramayana tells the story of the heroic King Vishal who ruled here. Historians maintain that one of the world's first democratic republics with an elected assembly of representatives flourished here in the 6th century. Vaishali, on the left bank of the Gandak river, is spiritually supreme : Lord Buddha visited this place frequently and at Kolhua, close by, preached his last sermon. One of the famous lion pillars have been erected here by Emperor Ashoka. A hundred years after the Mahaparinirvana of the Buddha - Vaishali hosted the second great Buddhist council. Jainism, too, has its origins in Vaishali, for in 527 B.C., Lord Mahavir was born here and lived in Vaishali till he was 22. Vaishali is then twice blessed and remains an important pilgrim centre for both Buddhists and Jains and other religions also.
Vaishali has a past that pre-dates recorded history. It is held that the town derives its name from King Vishal, whose heroic deeds are narrated in the Hindu epic Ramayana. However, history records that around the time Pataliputra was the centre of political activity in the Gangetic plains, Vaishali came into existence as centre of the Ganga, it was the seat of the Republic of Vajji. Vaishali is credited with being the World's First Republic to have a duly elected assembly of representatives and efficient administration.
The Chinese travellers Fa-Hien and Hieun Tsang also visited this place in early 5th and 7th centuries respectively and wrote about Vaishali.
While talking of the famous men and women associated with Vaishali, Amrapali was the cynosure not only of Vaishali but of the neighbouring kingdoms as well.
Therefore, to avert bloodshed, the parliament of Vaishali declared her to be a Court dancer besides consigning her to lifelong spinsterhood. Later she became a devout Buddhist and served the Lord Buddha.
Treasures of Vaishali :
The Lion Pillar at kolhua, was built by Emperor Ashoka. It is made of a highly polished single piece of red sandstone, surmounted by bell shaped capital, 18.3m. high. A life-size figure of a lion is placed on top of the pillar. There is a small tank here known as Ramkund.
Bawan Pokhar Temple :
An old temple built in the Pala period stands on the northern bank of a tank known as Bawan Pokhar and enshrines beautiful images of several Hindu gods.
Buddha Stupa-I :
The exterior of this stupa which is now in a dilapidated condition has a plain surface. One-eighth of the sacred ashes of the Lord Buddha were enshrined here in a stone casket.
Buddha Stupa-II :
Excavation at this site in 1958 led to the discovery of another casket containing the ashes of the Lord Buddha.
Raja Vishal ka Garh :
A huge mound with a circumference about one Kilometre and walls nearly 2m. high with a 43m. wide moat around them, is said to be the ancient Parliament house. Over seven thousand representatives of the federal assembly gathered here to legislate and discuss the problems of the day.
Shanti Stupa :
On the south bank of the Coronation Tank built by Buddh Vehar Society.
Kundupur (Birth place of Lord Mahavira)
4km. It is believed that the Jain Tirthankar, Lord Mahavir was born over 2550 years ago. Mahavir is said to have spent the first 22 years of his life here.
Coronation Tank :
Coronation Tank or Abhishekh Pushkarni, Its water were believed to be sacred in the old days and all of Vaishali's elected representatives were anointed here before their swearing in.
Other places of Interest:
Chaumukhi Mahadeva, Harikatora Temple, Lotus Tank and Miranji-Ki-Dargah, Jain Temple etc.
Travel Info :
By Air : The nearest airport is Patna, 56 Km.
By Rail: Hajipur on the North Eastern Railway is the nearest railway station, 35 Km.
By Road: Vaishali is well connected by road to Patna (56 Km), Muzzaffarpur (36 Km) and Hajipur (35 Km).