8 Places to Visit in Gaya | Tourist Places in Gaya

Gaya is a renowned religious city that pops into mind after Varanasi. Located around 100 km from Patna, Gaya is a beautiful old city that attracts visitors worldwide due to its importance in religion and culture. Located close to the banks of the Phalgu River, this famous city is also mentioned in the epics of Mahabharat and the Ramayana.

It is believed to be the location where Lord Rama and Goddess Sita went to sacrifice the remains of their father, Dasharatha. Gaya is also known for its Bodh Gaya town, a renowned Buddhist pilgrimage site that attracts tourists from all over the world. In this article, we’ll discuss the top 8 tourist places to visit in Gaya that are essential to see, as all of these spots are incredibly famous worldwide.

Tourist Places in Gaya:

1. Vishnupad Temple

Vishnupad Temple

As the name implies, Vishnupad Temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is among the most famous places in Gaya. It is an ancient temple where Lord Vishnu himself defeated Gayasura, the evil demon. In the temple, devotees can still see the 40-cm-long footprints left by Lord Vishnu, now covered by silver.

Built by Ahilya Bai in 1898, nowadays, thousands of devotees visit the Vishnupad Temple daily. On the top of the temple, devotees can see a 50-kg gold flag that a devotee of Lord Vishnu donated. Mobile phones are prohibited in the temple, so you must surrender your phone to a guard when you enter.

2. Mahabodhi Temple 

Mahabodhi Temple

Another temple we suggest you visit in Gaya is the Mahabodhi Temple. Located within Bodh Gaya, the Mahabodhi Temple is a sacred Buddhist place where you can see people from all religions. Built by Emperor Ashoka in the 3rd century, it is now classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

As one of the oldest temples in India, Mahabodhi Temple houses a 2,000-year-old sculpture of Lord Budha. This famous temple’s dome is constructed of 289 kg of gold, which the Kingdom of Thailand donated in 2013. On the temple’s premises, worshippers can view the famous tree under which Lord Buddha attained enlightenment.

Like Vishnupad Temple, mobile phones are not permitted inside the temple. However, visitors can take their cameras with them by paying the extra cost. Inside Mahabodhi Temple, you can see numerous Buddhist devotees from across the globe praying to Lord Buddha for his blessings.

3. Great Buddha Statue

places to visit in Gaya

Located in Bodh Gaya, close to the Mahabodhi Temple, lies a stunning 80-foot-tall statue of Lord Buddha sitting on a lotus blossom that draws hordes of Buddhist tourists from all across the globe. Established by the Dalai Lama in 1989, it took seven years to build this magnificent masterpiece.

The Great Buddha Statue is the first statue of Lord Buddha ever constructed out of India’s soil. Built using a combination of red granite and sandstone blocks, it is beautiful all day and night. As one of the top tourist places in Gaya, near the Great Buddha Statue, visitors will find various street stores and food stalls where they can go shopping and satisfy their appetites.

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4. Maaa Mangla Gauri Temple

Maa Mangla Gauri Mandir

Located in Bhasma Kut Hill, Ma Mangla Gauri Temple is another well-known temple in Gaya. As one of the sacred Shakti peethas, it draws many devotees and visitors, especially during Navratri. Built in the 15th century, devotees need to climb 100 steps to reach the temple.

In the temple complex, devotees will find small temples dedicated to Lord Shiva and Goddess Mahishasura, Durga, and Dakshina Kali. The temple houses a tiny clay lamp believed to have been burning continuously and occasionally. If you believe in spirituality and gods, then Ma Gauri Temple is the ideal place to visit in Gaya.

5. Archaeological Museum

Archaeological Museum Bodhgaya

The Archaeological Museum is a unique destination in the center of Bodh Gaya. Here, visitors can admire a variety of antiquated artifacts and statues from ancient times. Also known as the Archaeological Society of India, this tourist destination is only a few feet from the famed Mahabodhi Temple.

The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) established the museum in 1956. It contains artifacts representing Goddess Durga, Lord Vishnu, and Buddhas whose sculptures are believed to date to the 2nd century. Alongside the sculptures, the museum also has coins from the period of Mughal rule. If you plan to visit Mahabodhi Temple, you should definitely check out the Archaeological Museum, as here you will learn a lot about the past and the religion of the nation called India.

6. Dungeshwari Cave Temple 


Also called Mahakala Caves, Dungeshwari Cave Temple is among the most visited places in Gaya. Dungeshwari Cave Temple is situated just 12 kilometers from the Gaya railway station. This beautiful cave is believed to be where Lord Buddha meditated for six years before visiting Bodh Gaya. Surrounded by lush greenery, Dungeshwari Cave is among the top places to visit in Gaya, and it draws many visitors worldwide.

Visitors can view the 6-foot-tall gold statue of Lord Buddha and Hindu god sculptures inside the cave. As the temple is far from the hustle and bustle of the city, you can see numerous people practicing meditation here since this cave is a sanctuary of peace you can’t find elsewhere in India. Surrounded by small mountains, visitors must climb for at least 20 minutes to reach the temple. The temple is open from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., but verifying and confirming the exact time is recommended before going to Dungeshwari Cave Temple.

7. Barabar Caves 

Barabar Caves

Another cave we suggest adding to your bucket list of the top tourist destinations in Gaya is Barabar Caves. Located in the heart of Jehanabad, Barabar Caves are considered one of the most ancient caves made by man and date back to the Mauryan period.

Barabar Caves comprise four caves, including Vishwa Zopri, Sudama, Lomas Rishi, & Karan Chaupar caves. Barabar Caves are situated 35 km from the train station in Gaya. These stunning caves are constructed of granite stone, which looks lovely and realistic.

8. Muchalinda Lake

Bodh Gaya

Also known as Lotus Pond, Muchalinda Lake is another sacred place in Gaya linked to Lord Buddha. Surrounded by lush greenery, it is where a snake king protected Lord Buddha from the harsh weather conditions during his meditation.

Today, tourists can see the statue depicting Lord Buddha in meditation in the middle of the Lake. Muchalinda Lake attracts many people and is one of the best outing places in Gaya for those looking for a peaceful spot to visit during their stay.


Above is a list of the best 8 tourist spots in Gaya that you shouldn’t skip when you visit the holy city. Gaya is often called a pilgrimage city, a magnet for people devoted to Hindu and Buddhist religions. In this article, we’ve listed all the most revered religious sites you must not miss while looking for the best places in Gaya.

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