Formerly known as Aranya Kshetra, the city of Arrah gets its name from the Aranya Devi Temple located in the city. It’s the perfect place for a weekend getaway from Patna, which is about 40km away. Surrounded by the rivers Ganga and Sone, since Arrah has witnessed a lot of historic events especially during India’s Independence, it is a treasure trove of marvellous architectural structures and beautiful temples.
The most important attraction is Bisram, a temple devoted to Jainism. ‘Bisram’ literally translates into ‘rest’. Dedicated to the 24th tirthankar Lord Mahavir, it is believed that he rested here during his travels. There’s even a huge stupa in the place where he rested and delivered his sermon.
Jagdishpur Fort, about 30km from Arrah is a must-visit too for its tremendous historical importance. It was the former residence of the freedom fighter – Babu Veer Kunwar Singh. Famously also known as ‘son of the soil,’ Kunwar Singh was an eminent figure during the 1857 freedom movement. The highlight of the fort is this massive statue where he’s riding on a horse.
The Aranya Devi Temple, dedicated to Goddess Shakti, is the most visited attraction in Arrah. Apart from the statues of Aranya Devi in the main temple premises, there are idols of other Gods and Goddesses made in marble and adorned in jewellery and other fineries. However, its during the aartis when the devotees gather to chant prayers that the true spirit of the place comes alive.
Located at an hour’s drive from Arrah, in Brahmapur, the famous Shiv Temple is believed to have been built by Lord Brahma, the ‘Creator of the Universe.’ Legend goes that, the Shiv Ling here emerged from the underground many many years ago. The temple is locally also known as Brahmeshwar Nath, one of the many names of Shiva.