Lumbini is famous for being the birthplace of Shakyamuni Buddha. It is a small village that sits on the border with India, where the steamy plains of the Terai remind us how difficult living there must have been in the time of Buddha.
The exact site of Siddhartha Gautama’s birth is marked by a protected archeological dig that lies directly next to a pillar erected by King Asoka in 300 BCE. Behind the archeological site is the reflecting pool where Buddha’s mother, Queen Mayadevi, is believed to have bathed after giving birth to a son who was destined to become a spiritual guide to all beings, in 623 BCE.
In 1896, Nepalese archaeologists (led by Khadga Samsher Rana and assisted by Alois Anton Führer) discovered a great stone pillar at Lumbini. Führer postulated that the pillar was placed at the site by Ashoka (emperor of the Maurya Empire) circa 245 BCE. Since the later archeological discovery of this site in the 1920s, many temples and monasteries have been built and continue to be built in the Lumbini Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1997, which spans 4.8 km (3 mi) in length and 1.6 km (1.0 mi) in width.
It is a 22 km drive from Lumbini to Thiraulakot, where the remains of what is believed to be Kapilvastu, the Shakya family fortress where Gautam Buddha lived until departing at age 30 to seek enlightenment. Karnali Excursions is happy to personalize at trip to Lumbini and Kapilvastu just for you!
- Nativity marker stone to mark the exact birthplace of Shakyamuni Buddha
- Ashoka Pillar
- Puskarini, the Sacred Pond
- World Peace Pagoda
- Highly revered monastery built by various Buddhist communities of the world