On this day trip from Bhopal, drive to Sanchi and visit the 3rd century Buddhist Stupa, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a pilgrimage destination for Buddhists from around the world. Also visit the 5th century Udaygiri Caves situated near the town of Vidisha. The 20 rock cut caves contain some of the oldest surviving temples in India.Highlights • Great Stupa of Sanchi • Ashoka Pillar • 5th century Udayagiri Caves
You will be picked up from your hotel in Bhopal for the one hour drive to Sanchi that is located at a distance of 30 miles from Bhopal.Located in Sanchi is the Great Stupa that was commissioned by Emperor Ashoka of the Mauryan dynasty. Legend has it that Emperor Ashoka after his bloody conquest of India was repentant of his deeds and took solace in Buddhism. He built several Stupas across India to preserve and spread the Buddhist faith. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Stupa in Sanchi is one of the best preserved Stupas in India.The Stupa is in the shape of a large hemispherical dome that is 54 feet high. It has a central chamber where the relics of Lord Buddha are kept. It is surrounded by four ornamental gateways that open up to the four directions. A sandstone pillar is also found on the grounds of the Stupa. It has the edict of Emperor Ashoka engraved upon it in the ancient Brahmi script.Next take lunch (own expense) at a local restaurant.After lunch you will be driven to Udayagiri caves. Of the 20 caves there, one is a Jain cave with the oldest known Jain inscription dating back to the 4th century A.D. The other caves bear Hindu inscriptions and have Hindu Gods carved on the walls.At the end of the tour, you will be driven back to Bhopal and dropped off at your hotel.