Lumbini Travel Guide

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Lumbini is the birthplace of Lord Buddha. Buddha was born in 623 BC in the Lumbini garden between two ancient kingdoms of Kapilavatu and Devadaha. According to the tradition of Shakyas, a mother had to deliver child in her maternal home. Buddha's mother Mayadevi was traveling to Devdaha when she felt labor and delivered Buddha in Lumbini garden on the way. Buddha and her mother took first bath in Puskarini pond which still exists and has been restored. Later a stone was placed to mark the exact birth place of Buddha. After Buddha attained enlightenment and his teaching spread wide , places related with Buddha became symbol of reverence. According to Buddha's wish, the four important sites in his life became the power places for Buddhists. Several shrines were erected  and stupas were built until 12th century. The most important was the Indian Emperor Ashoka's visit and erection of columns with writings in 249 BC. The column became one of the song evidence of the Lumbini, the birth place of Buddha.
Many things changed with time. It is believed that king Virudhaka massacred Shakyas and destroyed their kingdom (Kapilavastu) out of vengeance. However Buddhism was wiped out from its place of origin.
Rediscovering of Lumbini started only in the second half of 20th century. Meticulous excavations and researches discovered the marker stone, devotional stupas and puskarini pond near the Ashokan piller based on the travel diary of HUYEN SANG, the Chinese pilgrim from 7th century.
At present, Lumbini has been developed in the area of 12 sq km under the master plan of 'Lumbini Development Trust'. It comprises three sections, the sacred garden, monastic zone and tourism village. The sacred garden has Mayadevi temple housing the exact birth place of Buddha. Monastic zone spread astride the 1 km long canon, is allocated for Buddhist communities from around the world to construct monasteries. The tourism village is where there are hotels, restaurants and other infrastructures necessary for visitors. Many of them are still under construction though.

Part or or all of this text stems from the original article at: http://www.itournepal.com/tour/lumbinitour.php