Bodhgaya is famous for its Mahabodhi Temple (above) which is at a walking distance from the central part of the city. However, as our hotel was a bit away from the center of the city, we decided to have a look at the temples and monasteries nearby before going to Mahabodhi Temple. There are numerous temples in Bodhgaya, mostly built in Pagoda style. We visited the Wat Thai Temple (on the left), Royal Bhutan Mandir, Indosan Nipponji Japanese Temple and several others (whose names I don’t remember). We also visited the Great Buddha Statue, 80 feet in height. This Buddha Statue (Daibutsu in Japanese) was dedicated to Lord Buddha by Daijokyo. This huge statue (below) took four years to be built and was completed on November 18, 1989. The statistics are as follows:
The height of Lord Buddha: 64 feet
The height of the base: 10 feet
The height of the lotus: 6 feet
After all these, we finally arrived at the Mahabodhi Temple. As our visit collided with the Kajyu Monlam festival, the temple was beautifully decorated. We also saw many monks in bright red attire (including some very young boys who were probably new to the rank of the monks), from various parts of India and abroad, staying at the place.
We stayed there (the Buddha statue of the temple below) for almost 1.5 hours soaking the sight and the divine aura of the atmosphere. Finally, after having our lunch, we started for Gaya (from where we would board the train t Kolkata at night). However, we reached Gaya quite late in the evening due to some unforeseen circumstances and had to cancel our sightseeing at that place. So, our short tour was at its final stages and we bid adieu to the place (with a promise to myself that I would return once again, to cover what remained unseen and to revisit Nalanda a second time).
Images courtesy: Phalguni Banerjee