Shravasti being an important pilgrimage and tourism destination is well connected to the rest of Uttar Pradesh and India.
Location: In Eastern region of Uttar Pradesh, India
Best time to visit: October to March
Nearest Airport: Lucknow Airport
Nearest Railhead: Balrampur Junction
Must Visits: Temple of Lord Buddha Maha Mangol, Maheth and Saheth
Language spoken: Hindi, Urdu and English
History of Shravasti teerth begins with the formation of Janpad's by Yugadidev Shri Adishwar Prabhu. This place was the capitol city of North Kaushal Janpad. Many Jain Kings such as King Jitari, the father of third Teerthankar Shri Sambhavnath Bhagwan and others past here after Bhagwan Adinath. King Prasanjeet ruled this place at the time of Bhagwan Mahaveer. He was a loyal follower of Prabhu Veer. The main listener of Prabhu Veer King of Magadh Samrat Shrenik has wedded the sister of King Parasanjeet. This was also called by the names of Kunal Nagari and Chandrikapuri in the old days. Many Jain temples and Stoops (pillars) were present in this city. It is specified in history that greater king Samrat Ashok and his grand son King Samprati also constructed many temples and Stoops at this holy place. This teerth place is also descripting in "Brihatkalp". Chinese traveler Fahiyan has also described this holy place in his memories of traveling India during 5th century BC. One more Chinese traveler during 7th century BC, Hun-Yen-Sang, has described this place as Jet van Monastery. Later this was called as Manikapuri. This was ruled by King Mayurdhwaj during 900 AD, by King Hansdhwaj during 925 AD, by King Makardhwaj during 950 AD, by King Sudhavadhwaj during 975 AD and by King Suhridhwaj during 100 AD. All of them were Jain Kings belonging to Bhar Vansh. Dr. Bennet and Dr. Vincent Smith have also specified them as Jain Kings. Work done by King Suhridhwaj for strengthening religion and defending the temples in his empires from Muslim attack will always taken as a great reminder of history. He also defeated Mohamed Gazanavi. Acharya Jinprabh Surishwarji has specified this teerth as Mahith in his granth "Vividh Teerth Kalp" in 14th century of VS. During those days many Jin-home having big boundary walls, idols and Dev kulika's were present in this city. Doors of the temple use to shut down automatically at the time of Sunset and opens in the morning. This was said to affect of Shri Manibhadra Yaksha. A Lion use to visit the temple on the occasion of annual gathering and would go only after the completion of Aarti. Allaudin Khilji and his soldiers damaged this temple. Pandit Vijaysagarji and Shri Soubhagya Vijayji have described this teerth in 18th century. Number of ancient idols and inscription were recovered after digging Sahet Mahet area near Shravasti village. These are kept in museums at Lucknow and Mathura. Archeological Department has acquired an ancient temple present near the Mahet Fort. This place is described as the birthplace of Bhagwan Sri Sambhavnath. The damaged remaining at Sahet Mahet reminds the ancient ness of this place. At present this is the only temple present at this teerth place.
Maha Mangole Temple : Shravasti is an important historical and religious attraction in Uttar Pradesh. The place has for long been attached to Lord Buddha and his times. It is said that Lord Buddha spent 25 years living in the monastery of Jetavana that is situated in Shravasti. It is at Shravasti only where Lord Buddha is supposed to have astonished rival teachers by performing miracles. It is in Shravasti that Buddha transformed Angulimal from a dacoit into a Buddhist monk. He also delivered many important sermons here. The two 21 meters high pillars erected by Emperor Ashoka mark these sites. They are on either side of the eastern gateway of the Jetavana monastery. Shravasti was a flourishing center of learning during the Gupta period too. When the famed Chinese traveler Hiuen Tsang visited this site, he found several damaged Stupas and ruins of monasteries at this place.
Mahaveera Temple : It is said that Lord Buddha spent 25 years living in the monastery of Jetavana that is situated in Shravasti. The city also has the pride of being the place where many of Vinaya rules, Jatakas and Sutras were first discussed. The place rose to prominence when excavation works revealed that Saheth was the original site of once magnanimous Jetavana monastery. The place saw sudden spurt in tourism after that discovery.
Maheth : Maheth is important cluster of shrines in Shravasti. Though not as famous as Saheth, Maheth also has a cluster of shrines that are very popular among the tourists visiting Shravasti. In fact, Maheth was the actual site of the erstwhile Shravasti city. Spread across the area of near about 400 acres, Maheth was the site of numerous shrines and Stupas. Maheth has been identified with the remains of the city proper. Nevertheless, the site for long had remained abandoned and ignored. It was only in the early decades of 20th century when the excavation works were initiated that the site raised to prominence.
Saheth : Saheth is one of the most visited clusters of shrines in the Buddhist tourism circuit of Eastern Uttar Pradesh. Saheth covers an area of around 35 square Kilometers and is located in the very heart of Shravasti. The site falls on your right when you move nearly a kilometer Southwest from Maheth. The place forms an important angle in the Buddhist Triangle of Sarnath-Sravasti-Kushinagar in the eastern Uttar Pradesh. The place is full of numerous monasteries and shrines related to Buddhism apart from quite a few Stupas. Although most of these are in ruins, the place has a charm of its own. Emperor Ashoka started the construction works that was continued by his successors. Kushana and Gupta rulers later carried it forward. It can be broadly classified that while most of the Stupas belong to the Kushana period, the temples are predominantly in the Gupta style.
How To Reach :
By Air - The nearest airport from Shravasti is Lucknow. Lucknow Airport is near about 170 kilometers from Shravasti. The airport is well connected to other cities in India such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Agra, Chennai and Bangalore through a range of flights operated by both private as well as public carriers.
By Rail - The nearest railhead is Balrampur that is 17 Kilometers from Shravasti. Nevertheless, Gonda railway station that is also nearby is a better option when it comes to connectivity. Gonda station is well connected to other cities in Uttar Pradesh and India such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Agra, Lucknow, Bangalore and Ahmedabad etc.
By Road - Shravasti is well connected to the rest of Uttar Pradesh by roadways. The nearest mega terminus is at Gonda that is 50 kilometers from the downtown Shravasti. Gonda in turn is well connected by bus to cities like Lucknow, Bareilly, Kanpur, Allahabad, Agra and Mathura. Both Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation as well as Private players operates these buses