The Sonepur Cattle Fair or Sonepur Mela is held on Kartik Poornima (the full moon day) in the month of November in Sonepur, Bihar, on the banks of river Ganga. Till date, it is the biggest cattle fair of Asia and stretches on from fifteen days to one month.
Sonepur is 25 kilometres from Patna which is well connected by air, rail and road. It is situated at the convergence of the sacred rivers Ganga and Gandak, the Hindus regard it as a holy site.
By Air: Nearest airport- Patna 30 Km.
By Rail: Nearest Railway station Hajipur-10 Km.
By Road: From Patna by bus or hire a taxi.
Saran Dist., Bihar. Nearest town: Hajipur (10 Km). Nearest city: Patna (about25 KM)
Vaishali ; Tourist Information Center. 06225-285425aBihar State Tourism Development Corporation (A Govt.of Bihar Undertaking), Bir Chand Patel Path, Patna. PIN-800 001.Bihar. India. Phone: 91-0612-2225411, 2222622, 2210219. Fax: 91-0612-2210242, 2236218.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web Site: http:// bstdc.bih.nic.in/
November to December
From a week before the fair the State Tourism Department offers Swiss cottage tents with attached baths. At Patna there is a wide choice of hotels.
Harihar Temple : The Hariharnath temple at Sonepur in Saran district is known for the great historical mythological fair on Kartik Purnima day. It is attended by millions of devotees who take holy bath in the river Shaligrami (known as Gandak) and worship in Harihar Temple.
Vaishali: Famous Buddhist pilgrimage centre, 35 kms from Sonepur
Reach there on the first day of the festival, Karthik Purnima.
Nearly all animals can be bought at the Sonepur Mela from all breeds of dogs to camels to buffaloes, donkeys, ponies, monkeys, chimps, Persian horses, sheep, rabbits, bears, cats, and guinea pigs. All varieties of birds, poultry and fishes are also available. The area that attracts all, however, is the one where elephants are lined up for sale. The Sonepur Fair is the only one where such a large number of elephants are sold.
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