Established in 5th century AD, Nalanda was a famous university of ancient India. During the rule of Harsha, the fame of university reached far and wide. Under the Pala ruler Dharampal, the glory of the university reached its zenith. The renowned Chinese traveller Hiuen-Tsang, who came to India during the rule of Harshvardhan in the 7th century and studied at Nalanda, has referred to Nalanda University in glowing terms. From his accounts it can be said that the university was a great centre of education and was famous even in far-off countries. According to Hiuen-Tsang, the number of students at the university was 10,000 and the faculty consisted of great minds drawn from different parts of India.Separate buildings were used for the study of the students. Some buildings had the seating capacity of 10,000 students. The library of the university was very large and consisted of three buildings, one of them nine storied. Admission to Nalanda University was difficult. The rules of the university were tough and had to be obeyed. Students were not required to pay any fee. The expenses of the university were met by the donations given by the rulers and the rich.
The enormous pyramidal mass of the Temple No.3 is impressive and from its top commands a splendid view of the entire area. It is surrounded by smaller stupas, many of which are studded with small and big statues of the Lord Buddha in various poses or 'Mudras'.
This site has become UNESCO World Heritage Site.