Top Tourist Attractions in Shravasti
Shravasti was an ancient Indian city and one of the six major cities in India during the reign of Gautama Buddha. The districts of Balrampur, Gonda, and Bahraich share a boundary with Hravasti. The district headquarters of Shravasti, Bhinga, is roughly 175 kilometres from Lucknow, the state capital. Shravasti, Uttar Pradesh‘s northeastern district, is situated near the Rapti River. It has a strong connection to Lord Buddha’s life. It is one of the most important Buddhist and Jain pilgrimage sites in the world. This town is supposed to have been built by the mythical king Sravast. From the 6th century BC until the 6th century AD, Shravasti was the capital of the Kosala Kingdom.
Best Places to Visit in Shravasti
- Vibhuti Nath Temple
- Suhaildev Wildlife Sanctuary
- Kacchi Kuti
- Pakki Kuti
- Vipassana Meditation Centre, Sravasti
Vibhuti Nath Temple
The district of Shravasti, with its headquarters at Bhinga, is located in northern Uttar Pradesh, near the Nepal border, in the Himalayan range. Pandava spent twelve years in exile and one year hidden during the Mahabharata period. During their exile, they occasionally stay in this forest location known as SOHALVA. At the time, Bhima launched the formation of a village, hence the name of the settlement was Bhimgaon, afterwards changed to BHINGA. Pandva established a Shiva temple known as VIBHUTI NATH in the Himalayan range, 36 kilometres north of Bhimgaon. Every year, thousands of devotees visit the temple. During “Sawan,” millions of devotees visit the temple to pray to Lord Shiva.
Suhaildev Wildlife Sanctuary
Suhaildev Wild Life Sanctuary is located in the districts of Balrampur and Shravasti, near to the Indo-Nepal border, and covers 452 square kilometres. The Suhaildev Wild Life Sanctuary, with a buffer zone of 220 square kilometres, was established in 1988. This sanctuary, located on the international border, is a strip of territory that is approximately 120 kilometres long from east to west and 6-8 kilometres wide. The jungles of Nepal are in the north, and they form a situational unit. The Tulsipur, Barhawa, Bankatwa, Eastern Suhailwa, and Western Suhailwa Ranges are included in the wildlife sanctuary, while the Bhaabar and Rampur Ranges are included in the buffer zone. These natural woodlands are rich in natural resources and biodiversity.
The Suhaildev Wild Life Sanctuary is near an important Buddhist circuit, and many foreign Buddhist visitors visit Shravasti, an important Buddhist holy spot on the sanctuary’s southern boundary. Buddhist travellers travel from Shravasti to the other sacred sites in the circuit, namely Kapilvastu, Lumbini, and Kushinagar.
Prior to the enactment of the Zamindari Abolition Act in 1952, the Maharaja of Balrampur owned the majority of the sanctuary’s forest land, which was known as the Balrampur Estate. Following the abolition of Zamindari, the forests were absorbed into the state of Uttar Pradesh. The presence of the Tharu Tribe is another distinguishing characteristic of the sanctuary. The Tharu tribe, which has mongoloid traits, has lived in this area for a long time and is completely reliant on the forest land for survival and livelihood.
Sheesham, Khair, and other types of vegetation are widely encountered. Trees of Jaamun. Plants such as Jigna, Haldu, and Faldu can also be spotted. Medicinal plants have a place in the forest as well.
Animals in the wild Tigers, leopards, cheetals, bears, wolves, hares, jackals, wild boars, sambars, mankeys, langoors, pythons, and otters are all common sightings. The forest region is also home to a variety of birds, including Black Partridge, Quails, Peacocks, Kingfishers, Bulbuls, Mynahs, Eagles, Nightingales, Cuckoos, and Owls. The sanctuary area is dotted with large water bodies/reservoirs such as Chittorgarh, Kohargaddi, Bhagwanpur, Girgitha, Khairmaan, and Raziataal. These bodies of water attract a great number of both local and migratory birds. Chittorgarh, Bhagwanpur, and Raziataal provide the most gorgeous and fascinating experience of all the water bodies in the sanctuary.
KacchiKuti is one of the two mounds in the Mahet area and one of the major excavated constructions inside Mahet. Kachchi Kuti is a few metres ahead and to the south-east of PakkiKuti. Inscriptions discovered on the lower portion of a Bodhisatva picture recovered from this site indicate that this construction goes back to the Kushana Period. Evidence suggests that this site has been refurbished multiple times since then. Some academics identify the location with the Brahmanical temple, whereas another set of experts, citing Chinese pilgrims Fa-hien&Hiuen Tsang, associate it with the Sudatta Stupa (Anathpindika).
It represents structural remnants ranging from the 2nd century AD to the 12th century AD. Because of the structure’s several strata, identifying it is extremely difficult. Based on the amount of artefacts collected from the site and the form of the exposed structures, it appears that a shrine from the Gupta Period was superimposed over a Buddhist stupa from the Kushana Period. The route connects this structure to the Naushahra and Kandbhari city gates.
PakkiKuti is one of the largest mounds in the Mahet region. It has been recognised as the remains of Angulimala’s stupa, as mentioned by famed Chinese travellers Fa-hien&Hiuen Tsang and Cunningham, while some other academics believe it is the ruins of Prasenjit’s ‘Hall of Law,’ which was built in honour of Lord Buddha by Prasenjit. The structure has since undergone a variety of modifications and additions. It looks to be a rectangular-plan terraced stupa. The supports and drains were installed on the structure as a precautionary measure during the excavation process. The basic pattern of the structural remnants indicates constructional activity from many times, the earliest of which may be attributed to the Kushana Period.
Vipassana Meditation Centre, Sravasti
This meditation centre is located on State Highway 26, directly across from Buddha Inter College, and is only a few minutes’ walk from the Jetavana Archaeological Park. Because Jetavana is the location where the Buddha spent the most time (24 rain retreats), this centre is highly recommended for both beginners and seasoned meditators. Ten-day courses are held twice a month at the centre. These are full-time residential courses with a maximum enrollment of 50 students. Older students of this method are welcome to attend shorter classes, which are offered on a regular basis.
Best Time to Visit in Shravasti
Summers can be exceedingly hot, monsoons provide moderate rain, and winters are bitterly cold. The winter season is the finest time to visit Shravasti because the weather is ideal for a day excursion and sightseeing tour.
How to Reach Shravasti
Lucknow is the closest airport to Shravasti. Shravasti is around 170 kilometres from Lucknow Airport. The airport is well connected to other Indian cities like as New Delhi, Mumbai, Agra, Chennai, and Bangalore by a variety of private and commercial airline flights.
Balrampur, 17 kilometres from Shravasti, is the nearest railhead. However, when it comes to connection, the adjacent Gonda railway station is a superior alternative. Gonda station has excellent connections to other cities in Uttar Pradesh and India, including New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Agra, Lucknow, Bangalore, and Ahmedabad, among others.
By road, Shravasti is well connected to the rest of Uttar Pradesh. The nearest major terminal is at Gonda, 50 kilometres from Shravasti’s centre. Lucknow, Bareilly, Kanpur, Allahabad, Agra, and Mathura are all well-connected by bus from Gonda. These buses are operated by both the Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation and private companies.