(Last Updated on : 14/03/2015)
Kesariya is located at a distance of 55 kilometers from the state of Vaishali, Bihar. This place is famous for the tallest Stupa of the world. However today only its ruins remain due to the Bihar earthquake in1934. Buddha's most renowned discourse, Kalama Sutta, was preached to the Kalama people when Buddha was staying in their town--Kessaputta or Kesariya.
According to legends when Budha left Vaishal for Kusinagara in his last year a group of Vijjians followed him and refused to return. When they reached Kesariya Buddha compelled them to return back to their homes. The group dispersed reluctantly. As they were leaving Buddha handed them his begging bowl. To commemorate this event a Stupa was built here. In the writings of Fa-hien and Hiuen Tsang this Stupa has been mentioned.
The major attraction of Kesariya is the Stupa that has five terraces and each terrace is adorned with life size statues of Buddha. It is presumed by the experts that the stupa was originally 51 ft in height and1400 ft in circumference. It is said that the stupa was originally around 70 feet in height. From above the stupa each terrace looks like a giant mandala. Kesariya has, thus, become a popular tourist site for the Buddhists.
Travelers can reach Kesariya from Vaishali. This district is located at a distance of 55 kilometers. The nearest airport for Kesariya is at Vaishali and the nearest railway station is at Hajipur. Bus and taxi services are also easily available from Vaishali for Kesariya.