For the zone of Nepal, see Lumbini Zone
Lumbini Zone
Lumbini Zone, is one of the 14 zones of Nepal and is home to Lumbini site, the birthplace of Siddhartha Gautama, who later became the historical Buddha and founder of the Buddhist philosophy...


Lumbinī (Sanskrit: , "the lovely") is a Buddhist pilgrimage
Buddhist pilgrimage
The most important places of pilgrimage in Buddhism are located in the Gangetic plains of Northern India and Southern Nepal, in the area between New Delhi and Rajgir. This is the area where Gautama Buddha lived and taught, and the main sites connected to his life are now important places of...

 site in the Rupandehi
Rupandehi District
-Village Development Committees :*Aama*Aanandaban*Amari*Amawa Marchawar*Amuwa Paschim*Asurena*Babhani*Bagaha*Bagauli*Bairghat*Balarampur*Bangai*Bangai Marchwar*Baragadewa*Barsauli*Basantapur*Betakuiya*Bhagawanpur*Bisunpura*Bodabar*Bogadi...

 district of Nepal
Nepal , officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas and bordered to the north by the People's Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India...

. It is the place where Queen Mayadevi gave birth to Siddhartha Gautama, who as the Buddha Gautama
Gautama Buddha
Siddhārtha Gautama was a spiritual teacher from the Indian subcontinent, on whose teachings Buddhism was founded. In most Buddhist traditions, he is regarded as the Supreme Buddha Siddhārtha Gautama (Sanskrit: सिद्धार्थ गौतम; Pali: Siddhattha Gotama) was a spiritual teacher from the Indian...

 founded the Buddhist tradition
Buddhism is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha . The Buddha lived and taught in the northeastern Indian subcontinent some time between the 6th and 4th...

. The Buddha lived between roughly 563 and 483 BCE. Lumbini is one of four magnets for pilgrimage that sprang up in places pivotal to the life of the Buddha, the others being at Kushinagar
Kushinagar , Kusinagar or Kusinara is a town and a nagar panchayat in Kushinagar district in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. It is an important Buddhist pilgrimage site, where Gautama Buddha is believed to have attained Parinirvana after his death.-Demographics: India census, Kushinagar had a...

, Bodh Gaya, and Sarnath
Sarnath or Sārnātha is the deer park where Gautama Buddha first taught the Dharma, and where the Buddhist Sangha came into existence through the enlightenment of Kondanna. Sarnath is located 13 kilometres north-east of Varanasi, in Uttar Pradesh, India...


Lumbini is geographically located 25 km east of the municipality of Kapilavastu, Nepal
Nepal , officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas and bordered to the north by the People's Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India...

; where the Buddha lived until the age of 29. Lumbini has a number of temples, including the Mayadevi temple, and others under construction. Also located here is the Puskarini or Holy Pond where the Buddha's mother took the ritual dip prior to his birth and where he, too, had his first bath, as well as the remains of Kapilvastu palace. At other sites near Lumbini, earlier Buddhas were, according to tradition, born, achieved ultimate awakening
Bodhi is both a Pāli and Sanskrit word traditionally translated into English with the word "enlightenment", but which means awakened. In Buddhism it is the knowledge possessed by a Buddha into the nature of things...

 and finally relinquished earthly form.

In Buddha's time

In the Buddha's time, Lumbini was situated between Kapilavastu and Devadaha
Devadaha was a township of the Sākiyans . It is near Nawalparasi District of Nepal. The Buddha stayed there during his tours and preached to the monks on various topics...

. It was there that the Buddha was born. A pillar now marks the spot of Asoka's visit to Lumbiní. According to an inscription on the pillar, it was placed there by the people then in charge of the park to commemorate Asoka's visit and gifts. The park was previously known as Rummindei, two miles north of Bhagavanpura.

In the Sutta Nipáta (vs. 683) it is stated that the Buddha was born in a village of the Sákyans in the Lumbineyya Janapada. The Buddha stayed in Lumbinívana during his visit to Devadaha and there preached the Devadaha Sutta.


In 1896 Nepalese archaeologists (effort by Khadga Samsher Rana) discovered a great stone pillar at the site attributed to Ashoka
Ashok Maurya or Ashoka , popularly known as Ashoka the Great, was an Indian emperor of the Maurya Dynasty who ruled almost all of the Indian subcontinent from ca. 269 BC to 232 BC. One of India's greatest emperors, Ashoka reigned over most of present-day India after a number of military conquests...

. Records made by the Chinese pilgrim Faxian
Faxian was a Chinese Buddhist monk who traveled to India, Sri Lanka and Kapilavastu in today's Nepal between 399 and 412 to acquire Buddhist scriptures...

 were also used in the process of identifying this religiously acclaimed site.


Lumbini, as of 1997, is an UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site
A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a place that is listed by the UNESCO as of special cultural or physical significance...

 specifically nominated for the international World Heritage program.

The holy site of Lumbini is bordered by a large monastic zone in which only monasteries can be built, no shops, hotels or restaurants. It is separated into an eastern and western monastic zone, the eastern having the Theravadin
Theravada ; literally, "the Teaching of the Elders" or "the Ancient Teaching", is the oldest surviving Buddhist school. It was founded in India...

 monasteries, the western having Mahayana
Mahāyāna is one of the two main existing branches of Buddhism and a term for classification of Buddhist philosophies and practice...

 and Vajrayana
Vajrayāna Buddhism is also known as Tantric Buddhism, Tantrayāna, Mantrayāna, Secret Mantra, Esoteric Buddhism and the Diamond Vehicle...


The holy site of Lumbini has ruins of ancient monasteries, a sacred Bodhi tree
Bodhi tree
The Bodhi Tree, also known as Bo , was a large and very old Sacred Fig tree located in Bodh Gaya , under which Siddhartha Gautama, the spiritual teacher and founder of Buddhism later known as Gautama Buddha, is said to have achieved enlightenment, or Bodhi...

, an ancient bathing pond, the Asokan pillar and the Mayadevi temple, where the precise place of birth of Buddha is located. From early morning to early evening, pilgrims from various countries perform chanting and meditation at the site.

A Non-governmental organization
Non-governmental organization
A non-governmental organization is a legally constituted organization created by natural or legal persons that operates independently from any government. The term originated from the United Nations , and is normally used to refer to organizations that do not form part of the government and are...

 called "Asia Pacific Exchange and Cooperation Foundation" (APECF) backed by chairman of the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) and then Prime Minister Prachanda
Puspa Kamal Dahal ; born Chhabilal Dahal on 11 December 1954, also known as Prachanda ]]. Prachanda led CPN as it launched an insurgency on 13 February 1996. In 2008 the ensuing civil war culminated in the overthrow of the Shah dynasty in favor of a communist...

, the Chinese government
Chinese government
The phrase "Chinese government" may refer to:- Contemporary :* Government of the People's Republic of China * Government of the Republic of China - Historical :* Chinese dynasties* Beiyang Government...

 and a UN
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 group called "United Nations Industrial Development Organization" (UNIDO) signed a deal to develop Lumbini into a "special development zone" with funds worth $3 billion.. The venture was a China-UN joint project. A broader 'Lumbini Development National Director Committee' under the leadership of Pushpa Kamal Dahal was formed on October 17th, 2011.. The six-member committee included Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist)
Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist)
The Communist Party of Nepal , also known as CPN-UML, CPN, is one of the largest communist parties in Nepal. It was created on January 6, 1991 through the unification of the Communist Party of Nepal and the Communist Party of Nepal...

 leader Mangal Siddhi Manandhar, Nepali Congress
Nepali Congress
The Nepali Congress is a Nepalese political party. Nepali Congress led the 1950 Democratic Movement which successfully ended the Rana dynasty and allowed commoners to take part in the polity. It again led a democratic movement in 1990, in partnership with leftist forces, to end monarchy and...

 leader Minendra Rijal, Forest Minister Mohammad Wakil Musalman, among other leaders. The committee was given the authority to "draft a master plan to develop Lumbini as a peaceful and tourism area and table the proposal" and the responsibility to gather international support for the same..

By air

The closest airport is at Siddharthanagar
This article is on the Nepali town. For the district in Uttar Pradesh, see Siddharthnagar District.Siddharthanagar is a municipality near the Indian border on the Outer Terai plains of Nepal, west of Kathmandu Nepal's capital...

, where are flights to and from Kathmandu are served.

External links

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