Today's Piprahwa 22 km from Siddharthnagar is identified with ancient Kapilvastu where Lord Buddha spent the early years of his life. Kapilvastu was the capital of the Shakya clan whose ruler was the father of Lord Buddha, and therefore Lord Buddha is also called as Shakyamuni. The Sakya domain was one of the sixteen independent principalities of the 6th century BC. Prince Gautam, as the Buddha was then known, left his palace in Kapilvastu at the age of 29, and revisited in 12 years later, after attaining enlightenment. Today, Kapilvastu Comprises of Several villages, mainly piprahwa and Ganvaria. A large Stupa stands at the ancient site which is said to have housed the bone relics of Lord Buddha. The presence of these relics is testified by an ancient Brahmi inscription found at Piprahwa. The ruins of the royal palace are spread over a large area.
The main stupa of this ancient site, known from the nineteenth century, was excavated in 1898 by W.C. Peppe. This Excavation revealed a massive sandstone coffer containing valuables and other objects, including a casket bearing an inscription, deciphered as sukiti bhatinam sa-bhaginikanam sa-putadalnam iyam salila nidhane Budhas bhagvate sakiyanam.On the basis of this inscription it is opined that the Piprahwa stupa housed the bone relics of Lord Buddha.
Further excavations conducted at Piprahwa 1971 onwards by K.M. Srivastava of the Archaeological Survey of India revealed a number of inscribed clay sealings and a lid of pot, datable to 1st - 2nd century A.D. The inscriptions have been deciphered as Om Devaputra Vihare Kapilavastu Bhikkhu Sanghas and Maha Kapila vastu Bhikkhshu Sanghas which confirmed the location of Kapilvastu Buddhist monastery.
Excavations carried out by Dr. K.M. Srivastava indicated the ruins of the palace of King Shuddhodhan, the father of Prince Gautam (Lord Buddha). It is said to be the place where Lord Buddha spent the first 29 years of his life.
How to Reach
Gorakhpur Airport-109 Km. Sravasti airstrip-146 Km. Kasia aristrip-160 Km. Chaudhary Charan Singh Airport, Lucknow-310 Km. and Babatpur Airport, Varanasi-330 Km.
Nearest Railway Station is Naugarh 22 km.
Good motorable road exists which connects Kapilvastu to major destinations in Nepal. Private buses and Taxis are available from all major cities like Varanasi and Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh.
Lumbini, Lord Buddha's birthplace, adequately depicts many artistic arrangements of his birth, like the Maya Devi's statue in the temple with same name. Lumbini is also picturesque and very quite place making it the heaven for the tourists.
The four-lion statue, a splendid contribution by Ashoka that lies in this place has been adopted as the national emblem. There are many stupas built by Ashoka and temples, the prominent among them are Mulagandha Kuti Vihar, Choukhandi stupa, Ashok Pillar and Dhameka Stupa.
One of the four must visits for the Buddhist pilgrims, according to Lord Buddha himself, Kushinagar is the place where Lord Buddha passed away. It was the centre of the Mallas dynasty who ruled over the place, however, only a little has remained in the ruins related to that period. The structures more prominently represent Ashoka's dynasty that had built many structures in this place of Buddha's death.