Vaishali, the World's First Republic | Things to do in Vaishali

Kolhua Ashoka pillar hd image download
Kolhua Vaishali

History of Vaishali

Vaishali is believed to be the first republic in the world; it has taken its name from King Vishal of the Mahabharat age. He is said to have constructed a great fort here, which is now in ruins. Vaishali is a great Buddhist pilgrimage and also the birthplace of Lord Mahavira. It is said that the Buddha visited this place thrice and spent quite a long time here. The Buddha also delivered his last sermon at Vaishali and announced his Nirvana here. After his death, Vaishali also held the second Buddhist Council.

The great Lichchavi clan ruled Vaishali in the sixth century BC, and the empire extended up to the hills of Nepal. The Lichchavi state is considered to be the first republican state of Asia. According to the Jataka stories, (Buddhist story books giving the account of different births of the Buddha), Vaishali was ruled by some 7707 kings of the Lichchavi clan. Ajatshatru, the great Magadh King, annexed Vaishali in the fifth century BC and after that Vaishali gradually lost its glory and power.

Vaishali is also famous as the land of Ambapali (Amrapali), the great Indian dancer who is related to many folktales. Ambapali (Amrapali) was a beautiful and talented courtesan, who later took sanyas to follow the path of the Buddha.

Culture & Heritage

Vaishali today is a small village surrounded by banana and mango groves as well as rice fields. But excavations in the area have brought to light an impressive 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 B.C. in the time of the Vajjis and the Lichchavis. And while Pataliputra, capital of the Mauryas and the Guptas, held political sway over the Gangetic plain, Vaishali was the center for trade and industry.

Lord Buddha visited Vaishali frequently and at Kolhua, close by, preached his last sermon. To commemorate the event, Emperor Ashoka, in the third century B.C. erected one of his famous lion pillars here. A hundred years after the Mahaparinirvana of the Buddha – Vaishali hosted the second great Buddhist council. Two stupas were erected to commemorate this event. Jainism, too, has its origins in Vaishali, for in 527 B.C., Lord Mahavir was born on the outskirts of the city, and lived in Vaishali till he was 22. Vaishali is then twice blessed and remains an important pilgrim center for both Buddhists and Jains, attracting also historians foraging for the past.

On the outskirts of Vaishali stood the grand double storied Buddhist Monastery. Buddha often discoursed here. He extended spiritual enfranchisement to women by admitting them to the Holy Order which was founded here. Legend has it that on one of his visits, several monkeys dug up a tank for his comfortable stay and offered him a bowl of honey. This is regarded as one of the great incidents in the legends of Buddha, who announced his approaching Nirvana and preached his last sermon here.

What to See in Vaishali | Things to do in Vaishali

Ruins of Vaishali | Ruins of World’s first republic

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Ruins of Vaishali Image

Archaeologists have uncovered a good deal of Vaishali. It begins with a huge mound which is associated with the ancient Parliament referred to Raja Vaihala Ka Garh. Bawan Pokhar temple houses a rich collection of black basalt images dating back to the Gupta and Pala period. Another black basalt, four headed Shivling (Choumukhi Mahadeva) was discovered when a reservoir was being dug. Behind the bawan pokhar temple is a Jain temple famous for its image of the Trithankar. A little distance from these temples lies the Lotus Tank which used to be a picnic spot of the Lichchhavis

Vaishali Museum

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Artifacts at Vaishali Museum found in Excavation
Vaishali museum houses some of the archaeological remains discovered in Vaishali during excavation. Facing the museum is the Abhishek Pushkarni which was holy to Lichchhavis. One side of the lake is newly built Vishwa Shanti Stupa, a sixth in the series to be erected in India. Close to the museum is the shaded Stupa which is supposed to have housed the Casket Relic with the Ashes of Buddha.

Vishva Shanti Stupa

Vishva Shanti Stupa Vaishali hd image free download

Vishva Shanti Stupa Vaishali

A 125ft, tall peace pagoda which was built by the Buddha Society in collaboration with Japanese government was excavated in 1969. It is a really huge, white, beautiful Stupa surrounded by enormous greenery, serenity and a pond where you can spend some leisure time boating and breathing in the fresh air.

Just next to Vishwa Shanti Stupa is Abhishek Pushkarni known as coronation tank and the sacred waters of this tank were used for anointing the elected representatives before their pledge, at the time of Lichchavis. And as you amble around you will find a museum on the north bank which houses the artifacts found during excavation, dividing them into four galleries which houses terracotta items of Human figures, terracotta items of animal figures with wheels, cast coins, antles, bones and iron and copper commodities and earthen wares


Ananda stupa & Ashoka pillar kolhua image free download


Kolhua Inportant Budhist place Lord Buddha delivered his last sermon. There is a hudge stupa and a well restored Ashokan pillar, and the famous Monkey tank were local children like to jump and swim. This place is crowded by pilgrims. At the entrance you can buy a small wooden reproduction of the Ashokan pillar, as well as other souvenirs.

Must visit in Kolhua, The Ashoka Pillar, Ananda Stupa and Ram Kund

A life size-pillar beside a brick stupa at Kolhua commemorates Buddha’s last sermon and announcement of his approaching nirvana. The lion faces north, the direction Buddha took on his last voyage. Adjacent to this is the tank associated with the monkeys offering honey. Nearby are the skeletal remains of a monastery where Buddha resided and a votive stupas dot the region.

The Lion pillar – attributed to Emperor Ashoka is still intact and looks magnificent next to a large Stupa built by Ashoka himself. During excavation, a relic chamber was discovered an in contained a highly polished stone relic casket.

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Ashoka Pillar/Lion Pillar

Ashoka Pillar is the most popular sightseeing destination of Vaishali situated near a Buddhist monastery and a coronation tank, named Ramkund. It is also a Lion Pillar like the other Ashoka pillars but the difference between this Ashoka pillar and other Ashoka pillar is that, this one has only one lion capital.All the pillars were built at Buddhist monasteries, many important sites from the life of the Budha and places of pilgrimage.

This is one of the must to see tourist places in Bihar. This is close to Patna so person traveling Patna would be so easier to make trip to Vaishali.

How to reach Vaishali

One can easily reach Vaishali by Taxi and it’s a Day Trip from Patna or Muzaffarpur. Vaishali is 63 Km from Patna, 36 Km from Muzaffarpur and  37 Km from Hajipur.

Where to stay in Vaishali

There are not many hotels in Vaishali, only one hotel is there. It’s only a day trip from Patna or Muzaffarpur where one can find good hotel to stay. It’s advisable to night stay in Patna where one can utilize their time to see more places in Patna.

Location of Kolhua Vaishali

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