Top choice in Bihar

This massive, bulbous granary was built by the British army in 1786 and was being restored at the time of writing. The idea behind its construction was to avoid a repeat of the terrible 1770 famine – look for the old carved sign on one side, reading, 'For the perpetual prevention of famine in these provinces' – although fortunately it was never required.

Its dual spiralling staircases (142 steps each) were designed so that workers could climb up one side and down the other. The viewing gallery on top of the monument affords excellent vistas of the city and the Ganges, but won't be open to public until restoration work is complete.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Bihar attractions

1. Patna Museum

0.65 MILES

Housed in a majestic colonial-era building, this museum contains a splendid collection of Mauryan and Gupta stone sculptures, some beautiful bronze…

2. Buddha Smriti Park

0.97 MILES

This peaceful 9-hectare park, inaugurated by the Dalai Lama in 2010, is notable for its massive sandblasted charcoal stupa (₹50), which houses a unique,…

3. Bihar Museum

1.38 MILES

This impressive museum, one of the largest in south Asia, has three history galleries, plus displays on contemporary art and ethnic groups of Bihar. It…

4. Ruins of Pataliputra

3.15 MILES

You'll have to rely heavily on your imagination to envisage what was once one of the greatest cities in the ancient world, ruled by kings Ajatasatru (491…

5. Chhoti Dargah

16.67 MILES

One potential excursion from Patna is to hire a taxi to this architecturally elegant three-storey mausoleum fronted by a large tank, 30km west of Patna…

6. World Peace Pagoda

25.65 MILES

This impressive, modern whitewashed pagoda built in 1996 by Japanese Buddhists dominates the Vaishali area.

7. Archaeological Museum

25.83 MILES

The small museum at Vaishali contains some fine 1000-year-old Buddhist statuary and an intriguing 1st- to 2nd-century AD toilet pan. It also has an…

8. Buddha Relic Stupa

25.9 MILES

This 5th-century stupa, originally 12m tall, is now in ruins, but it was once one of the eight locations in which Buddha's ashes were buried. The…