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Sarnath Tourism

Fast Facts
Location
25.3811N 83.0214E
State
India
Country
India
District
Varanasi
Best time to visit
Oct - Mar
Language Spoken
Hindi, English
Nearest Railway Stations
Sarnath, Varanasi Junction, Mughalsarai Junction
Nearest Airport
Varanasi (26kms), Allahabad(140kms)
Famous for
Archaeological Site,Stupas, Temples
Max & Min Temperature
12°C & 43°C
Sarnath Tourism

Sarnath is a most popular Buddhist pilgrimage destination, near Varanasi city. It is located in 10kms north-east of Varanasi. It the actual place where Gautama Buddha first gave sermon to world, after attaining enlightenment. It was a deer park in that time. It is a very peaceful place with stupas, museums, Ashoka pillar, lion statues (emblem of India), excavated site. Apart from Buddhist monuments, here you will also find beautiful Jain temple also. Their is small village called Singpur, where 11th Tirthankara of Jain religion "Shreyansanath" born. Sarnath Jain temple is dedicated to him. Sarnath is also referred by other names as Sarangnath, Mrigadava, Rishipattana, Migadaya and Isipatana. Buddha has mentioned Sarnath as one of the sacred 4 places that a Buddhist devotee should visit. Other 3 places are Lumbini, Bodh Gaya & Kushinagar. It is important part of Varanasi sightseeing. You can easily reach Sarnath by taxi, bus or any other mode of transportation.

Names of Sarnath
Sarnath name is derived from Sarangnath which means "Lord of deer". It is related to ancient Buddha story in which Buddha was in form of a deer and offered his life for sake of doe who is suppose to be killed by Benaras King Brahmadatta as he consumes deer meat. By knowing this, King Brahmadatta heart melted and decided to stop killing deers and make deer park at present Sarnath. It is also known as "Mrigadava" which simply means "deer park". Similarly Sarnath also named as "Isipatana" which is a Pali language word means place where holy men landed. Similarly it is also referred as "Rishipatana" which also means same.

Sarnath History
Sarnath was a forested land near Kashi (Varanasi) where deers and other wild animals use to live. After attaining enlightenment at Bodh Gaya, Gautama Buddha reached this place to meet his 5 disciples (Kondanna, Bhaddiya, Vappa, Mahanama and Assaji) who left Buddha earlier. During that time it was Deer park and now it is Sarnath. On meeting them at Deer park, Gautama Buddha taught them what he posses through enlightenment. As a result they also became enlightenment and a group of enlightenment people was formed called Sangha. It was the first sermon of Gautama Buddha and was called Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta. It was the first time when Buddha told the Four Noble Truths and how to practice Eightfold paths. Buddha spend rainy season here and during that period his disciples count reaches to 60 called Arahants. They later went on different directions to preach Buddhism and its suttas for well being of society. In later years, Buddha visited Isipatana time to time and preached his findings. In later years, this place was referred in many historical documents as study center where large number of Buddhist monks were living and studying.

During Sarnath visit, we will also notice the prominently erected Jain temple, close to Dhamekh stupa which shows its deep relation with Jain religion. Eleventh Tirthankar of Jain religion named Shreyansanath Bhagwan was born in Sihanpur village on twelfth day of the dark half of the month of Phalgun. This place is located close to Sarnath site. His father name was King Vishnu raja and mother name was Queen Vishnu Devi in the Ikshvaku clan. Being close to birth place of Jain guru, it is a sacred place for Jain devotees also.

Sarnath Tourism
From above details, it is evident that Sarnath is a very important pilgrimage and tourist destination, near Varanasi city.Thousands of tourists visit this place, every day. Sarnath is counted among such places which are not dependent of any formal introduction or description but your presence itself make you feel the aura of that holy land. Its history itself is sufficient to give reason to visit this place, in addition of visit stupas, temples, excavation sites. Here are listing some of the important tourist attractions at Sarnath:
Sarnath Tourist Attractions

In addition to above listed Sarnath tourist attractions, you can visit many other Buddhist monasteries, temples, parks and sacred sites like Bodhi Tree, Chinese temples, Sarangnath Temple, Japanese Temple, Deer Park, Kittoe's monastery, Matri Buddha Temple etc.

How to reach
Sarnath is located 10kms north-east of Varanasi city and well connected with road. It is connected by bus, taxi, flight and train options. Nearest railway station for reaching Sarnath is in Sarnath railway station (railway code: SRNT). It is a small railway station and mainly connected by passenger trains (runs on local basis, stops at small stations). It is connected with places like Varanasi city, Gorakhpur, Lucknow, Barabanki, Ballia, Chhapra. If you don find your station in this list then best option is to reach Varanasi Junction (Railway code:BSB) in Varanasi city which is well connected with places like Mumbai, Howrah, Lucknow, Haridwar, Amritsar, Delhi, Patna, Gaya, Jabalpur, Coimbatore etc. One more option is Mughal Sarai railway station (Railway Code:MGS) which is about 19 kms from Sarnath and is important railway station for reaching Sarnath.

Nearest airport for reaching Sarnath is Lal Bahadur Shastri Airport (IATA code: VNS). It is also popularly known as Varanasi airport. Lal Bahadur Shastri Airport is about 26kms from Sarnath and is easily accessible by taxi. Varanasi airport is well connected with places like Delhi, Khajuraho, Gaya, Mumbai, Kolkata etc. You can also take flight from Varanasi to Agra. Airlines companies operating their flights from Varanasi airport are Spice Jet, Thai Airways, Jet Airways, Air India etc. Other nearby airports are Bamrauli Airport (code:IXD) in Allahabad (140kms) and Amausi Airport (code:LKO) in Lucknow (300 kms).

Sarnath Distance Chart (from Sarnath )
Varanasi
10 Kms.
Bodh Gaya
250 Kms.
Allahabad
140 Kms.
Lucknow
300 Kms.
Khajuraho
410 Kms.
Bandhavgarh National Park
480 Kms.
Agra
630 Kms.

Similarly Sarnath is easily accessible by roadalso. It is well connected by road and can be reached by bus or by taxi. We operate regular taxi services from Varanasi to Sarnath, Allahabad to Sarnath, Bodh Gaya to Sarnath, Lucknow to Sarnath, Khajuraho to Sarnath. Their is regular bus service from Varanasi to Sarnath.

Climate
Sarnath lies in North India and here climatic conditions are similar to what we find in places like Delhi, Agra, Khajuraho. Here you can experience all seasons like Summer, Winter and Monsoon. Winter prevails from October to February, Summers season is from mid of March to mid of July. In normal conditions, Monsoon reaches Sarnath in end of July to end of September. Here minumum temperature dips to 5 °C in winters and in Summers it goes up to 45°C. Rainfall is normal but sometime it receives heavy rainfall in Aug-Sept months and nearby river Ganges gets flooded.

Best time to visit
Best time to visit Sarnath is from October to March. It is the peak time when Sarnath welcomes most of the tourists. During this period, climatic conditions of North India remains good and conditions remains favorable to other North & South Indian destinations. Sarnath remain accessible throughout the year so one can visit anytime of year. If you are interested to visit Sarnath with Varanasi in festival mood then period from October to January is the best time when important Hindu festivals are celebrated in Varanasi at full fame like Dussehra, Diwali, Ganga Mahotsav, Makar-sankranti etc.

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