Welcome to Sanchi
In 262 BC, repentant of the horrors he had inflicted on Kalinga (Odisha), the Mauryan emperor Ashoka embraced Buddhism. As a penance he built the Great Stupa at Sanchi, a domed edifice to house religious relics, near the home town (Vidisha) of his wife Devi. Sanchi became an important Buddhist monastic centre and over the following centuries further stupas and other monuments were added. After about the 13th century it was abandoned and forgotten, until rediscovered in 1818 by a British army officer.
Today, the remarkably preserved Great Stupa is the centrepiece of Sanchi’s World Heritage–listed Buddhist monuments.
Although you can visit Sanchi in a day trip from Bhopal (46km southwest), the village is a relaxing spot to spend the night, and a number of side trips can be taken from here.