The Mahaparinirvan Express is a special tourist train that takes passengers on a spiritual tour through Buddhist India, where Buddhism originated more than 2,500 years ago.
The train gets its name from the Mahaparinirvana Sutra, which contains the Buddha's final explanation of his teachings. Its sacred journey includes visits to the most important Buddhist pilgrimage sites of Lumbini (where the Buddha was born), Bodhgaya (where he became enlightened), Varanasi (where he first preached), and Kusinagar (where he passed away and achieved nirvana).
Mahaparinirvan Express Features:
Mahaparinirvan Express Route and Itinerary:
- Day One - Delhi (afternoon departure from Safdarjang Railway Station)
- Day Two - Gaya (visit Bodhgaya temples)
- Day Three - Rajgir and Nalanda
- Day Four - Varanasi (visit Sarnath, and the holy Ganges river for the evening aarti). The tallest statue of Lord Buddha in India is in Sarnath.
- Day Five - Gorakhpur (visit Khusinagar)
- Day Six - Gorakhpur (day trip to Lumbini in Nepal)
- Day Seven - Gonda (visit Sravasti)
- Day Eight - Agra (visit the Taj Mahal and Fatehpur Sikri) and return to Delhi by 6 p.m.
Mahaparinirvan Express Journey Duration:
Mahaparinirvan Express Cost and Classes of Travel:
The fare in a first class air conditioned compartment (1AC) is $160 per person, per night. Two tiered air conditioned class (2AC) costs $130 per person, per night. Three tiered air conditioned class (3AC) costs $110 per person, per night. If you're unsure about what the different classes of travel mean, this guide to accommodations on Indian Railways trains provides an explanation.
The cost includes the train journey, food, road transfers by air conditioned vehicle, sightseeing, Darshan to visit holy places, hotel stay in air conditioned rooms, and entrance fees.
Mahaparinirvan Express Reservations:
You can make a reservation for travel on the Mahaparinirvan Express by visiting the Indian Railways Catering & Tourism Corporation's Rail Tourism website or at Indian Railways booking offices.
More information is available on the website, or from Indian Railways by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or phoning (91-11) 2370-1100/2370-1174.