Bihar Travel Guide: A Journey Through History, Culture and More

Bihar, often overshadowed by its more flamboyant neighbors, unveils a unique tapestry of history, spirituality, and natural beauty waiting to be explored. Delve into the ancient roots of Buddhism in Bodh Gaya, where Lord Buddha attained enlightenment. Explore the architectural marvels of the Magadha Empire, like the majestic ruins of the Nalanda University, a renowned center of learning in ancient India. Witness the serene beauty of the Vikramshila Ghats, a series of steps leading down to the holy Ganges River, and experience the vibrant aura of the Chhath Puja, a harvest festival where thousands gather to offer prayers to the Sun God. Bihar promises an enriching experience, where the echoes of the past resonate with the warmth of the present, offering a glimpse into the heart of India’s cultural and spiritual heritage.

How to Reach Bihar:

Bihar boasts excellent connectivity, making it easily accessible from various parts of India and beyond. Here’s an overview of your travel options:

By Air:

  • Patna Airport (PAT): The largest airport in Bihar, located in Patna, the capital city. It offers regular flights to major Indian cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Bangalore, as well as international connections to select destinations.
  • Gaya Airport (GAY): Primarily serves domestic destinations, with frequent flights connecting to Delhi, Kolkata, Varanasi, and other major Indian cities. This airport is closer to Bodh Gaya, a major Buddhist pilgrimage site.
  • Other airports: Smaller airports like Darbhanga (DBR), Muzaffarpur (MZU), and Purnia (PUR) are also operational in Bihar, connecting to specific regional destinations.

By Train:

  • Bihar has a well-established railway network, connecting major cities and towns within the state to various parts of India. Key railway junctions include Patna Junction, Gaya Junction, and Muzaffarpur Junction.
  • Trains offer a comfortable and budget-friendly way to travel, with various express and passenger trains operating across the state.

By Road:

  • Bihar is well-connected by national highways and state roads, making road travel a viable option.
  • National Highways like NH 31, NH 30, and NH 33 pass through Bihar, connecting it to neighboring states and major cities.
  • Public and private buses operate across the state, offering a convenient and affordable way to travel between towns and villages.

Best Time to Visit Bihar:

Bihar, nestled in the heart of eastern India, welcomes visitors year-round with its diverse landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and spiritual significance. However, to experience the state at its finest, choosing the ideal time becomes crucial. Here’s a glimpse into the distinct offerings of each season to help you decide:

For Pleasant Weather and Sightseeing (October to March):

  • Embrace the Comfort: This period offers the most favorable weather, with comfortable temperatures ranging from 10°C to 25°C, making it ideal for exploring historical sites like the Nalanda University ruins and the Mahabodhi Temple in Bodh Gaya.
  • Witness Vibrant Festivals: Enjoy the festive spirit of Bihar during this time. Witness the grand celebrations of Chhath Puja, a harvest festival dedicated to the Sun God, or experience the colorful Durga Puja.
  • Ideal for Outdoor Activities: The pleasant weather makes it perfect for outdoor activities like cycling, exploring wildlife sanctuaries like the Valmiki National Park, and enjoying boat rides on the Ganges River.

For Budget Travelers (April & May):

Summers of Bihar
  • Enjoy Lower Costs: If traveling on a budget is a priority, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons of April and May. You might encounter slightly warmer temperatures, but you’ll likely find better deals on flights and accommodation.
  • Embrace the Local Culture: Immerse yourself in the local culture by participating in vibrant fairs and festivals held during these months.

For Monsoon Enthusiasts (July to September):

  • Witness Lush Landscapes: The monsoon season transforms Bihar into a verdant paradise, with lush greenery and cascading waterfalls. This period offers a unique perspective on the natural beauty of the state.
  • Be Mindful of Travel Disruptions: Be aware that heavy rainfall can sometimes lead to disruptions in travel plans and potential road closures.

For Winter Delights (November to February):

  • Experience Cooler Temperatures: Escape the scorching summer heat by visiting during the winter months. Enjoy comfortable daytime temperatures and experience the serene beauty of the landscapes under a clear sky.
  • Limited Outdoor Activities: While the weather is pleasant, some outdoor activities might be limited due to cooler temperatures.

Top Attractions:

Mahabodhi Temple, Bodh Gaya:

Mahabodhi Temple, Bodh Gaya

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Mahabodhi Temple is considered one of the holiest Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the world. It is believed to be the place where Lord Buddha attained enlightenment under the sacred Bodhi tree. The temple complex, adorned with intricate carvings and sculptures, is a testament to the rich Buddhist heritage of Bihar.

Patna Sahib Gurudwara: 

Patna Sahib Gurudwara

Patna Sahib Gurudwara, also known as Takht Sri Harmandir Sahib, holds immense significance for the Sikh community. Located in the bustling city of Patna, Bihar, it commemorates the birthplace of Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the tenth Sikh Guru. Built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh, the first Maharaja of the Sikh Empire, in the 19th century

Nalanda University Ruins, Nalanda:

Nalanda University Ruins, Nalanda

Nalanda University, established in the 5th century CE, was a renowned center of learning in ancient India. The ruins of this once-great university, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, offer a glimpse into the intellectual and cultural achievements of the past. Explore the excavated monasteries, stupas, and classrooms, and imagine the vibrant academic life that flourished here centuries ago.

Vikramshila Ghats, Kahalgaon:

Vikramshila Ghats, Kahalgaon

Located on the banks of the holy Ganges River, the Vikramshila Ghats are a series of steps leading down to the water. This picturesque spot is not only a popular bathing and prayer site but also holds immense historical significance. Vikramshila, an ancient university much like Nalanda, once stood here, making it a center of Buddhist learning and scholarship.

Patna Museum, Patna:

Patna Museum, Patna

The Patna Museum, established in 1912, houses a vast collection of artifacts and antiquities that tell the story of Bihar’s rich history and cultural heritage. Explore galleries showcasing Mauryan, Gupta, and Pala period sculptures, bronzes, and paintings, and gain insights into the artistic and cultural evolution of the region.

Bodhi Tree, Bodh Gaya:

Bodhi Tree, Bodh Gaya

The sacred Bodhi tree in Bodh Gaya is believed to be the very tree under which Lord Buddha attained enlightenment. This ancient tree, a symbol of peace and spiritual awakening, is a major pilgrimage site for Buddhists worldwide. Witness the serene atmosphere and the deep reverence paid to this holy tree by pilgrims from all over the globe.



Rajgir, an ancient city with a rich history dating back to the 6th century BCE, is known for its archaeological significance and spiritual importance. Explore the ruins of the cyclopean wall, the ancient hot springs, and the various Jain and Buddhist caves. Take a dip in the natural hot springs or embark on a peaceful hike to the top of the Ratnagiri hills, offering panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

Bihar Museum, Patna:

Bihar Museum, Patna

A contemporary museum established in 2015, the Bihar Museum showcases the rich cultural heritage of Bihar from ancient times to the present day. Explore the diverse collection encompassing archaeological artifacts, sculptures, paintings, and manuscripts, providing a comprehensive understanding of the region’s history and traditions.

Barabar Caves, Sultanpur:

Barabar Caves, Sultanpur

Dating back to the 3rd century BCE, the Barabar Caves are a group of rock-cut caves located near Sultanpur. These caves, some adorned with intricate Mauryan era inscriptions and carvings, were initially used by Jain monks as meditation chambers. Explore the various caves, each with its unique architectural style and historical significance.

Sher Shah Suri Tomb, Sasaram:

Sher Shah Suri Tomb, Sasaram

The tomb of Sher Shah Suri, an Afghan emperor who ruled India in the 16th century, is an architectural marvel located in Sasaram. This octagonal red sandstone tomb, built in the middle of an artificial lake, is considered one of the finest examples of Afghan architecture in India.



Vaishali, an ancient city believed to be the birthplace of Lord Mahavira, the founder of Jainism, holds immense significance for followers of Jainism. Explore the ancient ruins, including the stupas, monasteries, and temples, and delve into the rich history and spiritual heritage of this sacred place.

Munger Fort:

Munger Fort

Witness the formidable Munger Fort, strategically located on the banks of the Ganges River. Explore the various structures within the fort complex, including the Granary, the Jama Masjid, and the Diwan-e- خاص (Diwan-e- Khas), a hall of private audience.

Kanwar Lake Bird Sanctuary, Begusarai:

Kanwar Lake Bird Sanctuary, Begusarai

Witness a haven for birdwatchers at the Kanwar Lake Bird Sanctuary. Spot a diverse range of avian species, including migratory birds, as they flock to this serene lake and the surrounding wetlands.

Kesaria Stupa, Kesaria (East Champaran):

Kesaria Stupa, Kesaria (East Champaran)

Explore the remnants of the Kesaria Stupa, an ancient Buddhist monument dating back to the 3rd century BCE. Witness the intricate brickwork and imagine the religious significance it held centuries ago.

Valmiki National Park:

Valmiki National Park

Immerse yourself in the rich biodiversity of the Valmiki National Park, a protected area known for its diverse flora and fauna. Explore the dense forests, spot tigers, elephants, and various other wildlife species, and enjoy the beauty of nature.

Maner Sharif:

Maner Sharif

Visit the Maner Sharif, a revered Sufi shrine dedicated to Hazrat Sheikh Sharfuddin Yahya Maneri, a prominent Sufi saint. Witness the intricate architecture, vibrant celebrations during the Urs festival, and experience the spiritual significance of this sacred place.

Ganga Aarti, Patna:

Ganga Aarti, Patna

Witness the mesmerizing evening ritual of Ganga Aarti, an offering of light and prayers performed on the banks of the holy Ganges River. This vibrant ceremony offers a glimpse into the cultural and spiritual significance of the river for locals.

Manjusri Mahavihar, Bodh Gaya:

Manjusri Mahavihar, Bodh Gaya

Explore the Manjusri Mahavihar, a Tibetan Buddhist monastery known for its colorful architecture and vibrant prayer flags. Immerse yourself in the unique Buddhist traditions and serene atmosphere of this place.

Kakolat Falls, Nawada:

Kakolat Falls, Nawada

Escape the urban landscape and find serenity at the Kakolat Falls, a cascading waterfall nestled amidst lush greenery. Enjoy the scenic beauty, the sound of the gushing water, and the refreshing ambiance.

Gaya Museum, Gaya:

Gaya Museum, Gaya

Delve into the rich history and culture of Gaya at the Gaya Museum. Explore the collection of archaeological artifacts, sculptures, and paintings depicting the region’s past from the Mauryan to the Mughal era.

Son Chiriya Sanctuary, Kaimur:

Son Chiriya Sanctuary, Kaimur

For wildlife enthusiasts, the Son Chiriya Sanctuary offers an opportunity to spot a variety of birds and animals, including the critically endangered Son Chiriya (Grey Partridge).

Beyond Sightseeing:

Embrace the Spirit of Festivals:

Immerse yourself in the kaleidoscope of colors and joyous celebrations during Bihar’s vibrant festivals. Witness the grandeur of Chhath Puja, a harvest festival dedicated to the Sun God, where thousands gather by the holy Ganges to offer prayers. Experience the electrifying energy of Durga Puja, where elaborate pandals are erected, and vibrant processions fill the streets with music and dance.

Explore the Culinary Delights:

Embark on a culinary adventure and savor the unique flavors of Bihar. Indulge in the rich Litti Chokha, a dish of spiced dough balls served with a medley of mashed vegetables. Relish the melt-in-your-mouth Thekua, a deep-fried sweet treat traditionally offered during festivals. Don’t miss the chance to try Sattu, a nutritious and versatile flour made from roasted and ground gram, a staple in many Bihari households.

Delve into the Artistic Heritage:

Bihar is a land brimming with artistic expressions. Witness the intricate Madhubani paintings, a folk art tradition depicting religious and mythological themes on canvas. Learn the art of Bhagalpur silk weaving, known for its vibrant colors and intricate designs. Explore the vibrant Mithila Paiting style, characterized by geometric patterns and mythological narratives.

Engage with Local Communities:

Step outside the tourist bubble and connect with the warm and welcoming people of Bihar. Participate in a village cooking demonstration, learning the traditional techniques and savoring the home-cooked flavors. Engage in conversation with local artisans, understanding their craft and the stories behind their creations. Volunteer at a local NGO or participate in community events, contributing to the betterment of the region.

Food Delights:

Bihar, often known for its historical and cultural significance, also boasts a vibrant and diverse culinary scene waiting to be explored. While the iconic Litti Chokha remains the star of the show, venturing beyond this famous dish unlocks a world of unique flavors and culinary experiences.

A Symphony of Sattu:

Sattu, a versatile and nutritious flour made from roasted and ground Bengal gram, forms the base for various Bihari delicacies.

Bihari food
  • Litti Chokha: is a popular Bihari dish made of roasted wheat balls filled with spiced gram flour, served with mashed roasted vegetables like eggplant, potatoes, tomatoes, onions, and garlic, offering a tasty and fulfilling meal.
  • Sattu Paratha: A healthy and satisfying flatbread made with sattu dough, often stuffed with vegetables or enjoyed plain with chutney or pickle.
  • Sattu Sharbat: A refreshing and energy-boosting beverage, perfect for the hot summers. Sattu powder is mixed with water, lemon juice, and spices, creating a cool and flavorful drink.

Beyond the Maidan: Exploring Regional Specialties:

  • Magoosh: A signature dish from Champaran, featuring mashed potatoes, lentils, and spices, often served with puris or rice.
  • Kadhi Badi: A tangy yogurt-based curry with gram flour dumplings (badis), a popular comfort food enjoyed across Bihar.
  • Malpua: Crispy, deep-fried pancakes dipped in sugar syrup, a melt-in-your-mouth dessert found throughout the region.
  • Khaja: A flaky and sweet pastry made with flour, ghee, and sugar, perfect for satisfying your sweet tooth.

A Vegetarian’s Paradise:

Bihar’s cuisine offers a plethora of vegetarian options, catering to diverse dietary preferences.

  • Dal Pitha: Steamed dumplings filled with a spiced lentil mixture, a wholesome and flavorful dish.
  • Aloo Chana: A simple yet comforting curry made with potatoes and chickpeas, typically served with rice or roti.
  • Bihari Aloo Chokha: Mashed potatoes with roasted chilies and spices, a flavorful side dish for any meal.

A Culinary Journey Through Festivals:

Bihar’s vibrant festivals come alive not only with celebrations but also with unique culinary experiences.

  • Chhath Puja: Thekua and prasad made with rice and jaggery hold special significance during this harvest festival dedicated to the Sun God.
  • Durga Puja: Special sweets like Peda and Mishti Doi are prepared and shared during this joyous celebration.
Chhath puja bihar

Unveiling Local Specialties:

Each region in Bihar boasts its own culinary gems waiting to be discovered.

  • Bhojpuri Cuisine: Known for its use of spices and robust flavors, featuring dishes like Bihari Kebab and Bhoonja.
  • Maithili Cuisine: Characterized by its use of mustard paste and fish, offering delicacies like Machh Pokhto and Litti Maas.
  • Magahi Cuisine: Emphasizes the use of lentils and vegetables, featuring dishes like Dal Puri and Chana Ghugni.

Travel tips:

  • Plan ahead: Pick the places you really want to see and make a schedule.
  • Pack smart: Check the weather and pack clothes that work for both hot and cool weather. Bring a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated and try local drinks like lassi.
  • Respect the locals: Dress modestly when visiting temples and other religious sites.
  • Stay safe: Keep your belongings close, avoid dark alleys, and be aware of your surroundings in crowds. Consider travel insurance in case of emergencies.
  • Eat well: Bihar has delicious food! Try litti chokha for something savory and khaja for a sweet treat.
  • Get around easily: Use buses, trains, and rickshaws to travel between places.
  • Be informed: Stay updated on any news or travel advisories before your trip.
  • Explore beyond the obvious: Visit some hidden gems like Rajgir and Vaishali, not just the most famous spots.


In the end, Bihar is a captivating destination for all kinds of visitors due to its fascinating past, unique culture, and heartening reception. Whether an individual traveller interested in finding their spiritual solace, or a family wanting to join in with so many disparate established traditions, Bihar has something deep and profound to offer those seeking adventure that is completely unique. As you travel with Xplro , these ancient wonders such as Bodh Gaya and Nalanda University will reveal themselves to you, leaving memories in your travels. Moreover, beneath the tourist highlights what make this journey truly unique are the local experiences; culinary delights and warm interactions with the community. Bihar invites you to uncover the soul of India, from sacred banks of Ganges to vivid festivals. Leaving this enthralling state with tales in your ears as you go, we wish you pleasant travels and urge to share your overwhelming experiences and thoughts. Until we meet again in another adventure, may your explorations be filled with as much joy and discovery. Thansks for visiting Xplro.


  1. What are the must-visit tourist attractions in Bihar?
    • Bihar is home to several iconic landmarks such as Bodh Gaya, Nalanda University, Mahabodhi Temple, Patna Museum, Vikramshila University, and more. Each of these sites offers a glimpse into Bihar’s rich history, culture, and heritage.
  2. What is the best time to visit Bihar?
    • The best time to visit Bihar is during the winter season, from November to February, when the weather is pleasant and suitable for exploring the various tourist destinations across the state.
  3. How can I reach Bihar from other parts of India?
    • Bihar is well-connected by air, rail, and road networks. You can reach Bihar by flights to Patna or Gaya airports, trains to major railway stations like Patna Junction, or by road through national highways.
  4. What are some traditional dishes to try in Bihar?
    • Bihar offers a diverse culinary experience with dishes like litti chokha, sattu paratha, khaja, thekua, pitha, and more. These traditional delicacies reflect the rich flavors and unique cooking styles of the region.
  5. Are there any famous festivals celebrated in Bihar?
    • Bihar celebrates various festivals with great fervor, including Chhath Puja, Sonepur Mela, Rajgir Mahotsav, Makar Sankranti, and more. These festivals offer a glimpse into Bihar’s vibrant culture and traditions.
  6. What are the top wildlife sanctuaries and national parks in Bihar?
    • Bihar is home to several wildlife sanctuaries and national parks such as Valmiki National Park, Bhimbandh Wildlife Sanctuary, Kanwar Lake Bird Sanctuary, and Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary, where visitors can experience the diverse flora and fauna of the region.
  7. Are there any adventure activities available in Bihar?
    • Adventure enthusiasts can indulge in activities like trekking in Rajgir hills, rafting in the Gandak River, paragliding in Rajgir, and hot air ballooning in Bodh Gaya, offering thrilling experiences amidst Bihar’s scenic landscapes.
  8. What are some offbeat destinations to explore in Bihar?
    • Bihar has several offbeat destinations worth exploring, such as Munger Fort, Rohtasgarh Fort, Kakolat Falls, Jalmandir Temple, and Bihar Sharif. These lesser-known gems offer a unique perspective on Bihar’s history and culture.
  9. Is it safe to travel to Bihar?
    • Like any other destination, it’s essential to exercise caution and adhere to safety guidelines while traveling in Bihar. Overall, Bihar is considered safe for tourists, but it’s advisable to stay alert and avoid isolated areas, especially at night.
  10. What are the shopping options available in Bihar?
    • Bihar offers a vibrant shopping experience with markets and bazaars selling items like Madhubani paintings, silk sarees, handicrafts, stone sculptures, and traditional artifacts. Some popular shopping destinations include Patna Market, Hathwa Market, and Maurya Lok Complex.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *