Personally, 2012 among other things has been a year of adding new travel destinations. (An entire 2012 wrap-up blog post will be coming up later).
After the previous one to Goa, here is a little photoblog of a visit to the Nalanda University ruins, some 90 kms from Patna, the capital of Bihar The ancient unviersity was established in the 5th or 6th century A.D. and was a renowned seat of learning with scholars coming from far an wide. The Budhhist university fell into ruins once it was ransacked by Bakhtiyar Khilji, a Turkish attacker. So all that is standing now are the ruins which are still being excavated.
Having my roots in the present day Nalanda district, I have been quite ashamed at not having visited the place even once. Although my parents claim that I had but was too small to remember. So as I had no memories of the same, this was my first trip to the place. Here are some picture of the once-great-university. The destruction of the Nalanda university certainly took away lots of our intellectual & cultural heritage. Hopefully the Nalanda Open University being built not too far from the site would be better able to preserve the intellectual wealth.
|A beginning can be made by preserving this sign first|
|Dormitories for the students|
|Another view of the hostels|
|The Great Library|
|Inside the corridors of "learning"|
|Another view of the Library|
|A headless statue of Buddha|
|The Great Bell of Peace with inscriptions in many languages|
|Overall, a nicely maintained place|
The place was nice and relatively quite clean, lots of greenery around. Already amajor truist attraction, it certainly has potential to become even more attractive. All that is required is a little more marketing. But before that infrastructure should be built to be able to handle the large amounts of tourists coming in.
Coming up next - A visit to Rajgir, the ancient Magadh capital.