Butkara III Archaeological Remains


Visit Guide to Butkara III Archaeological Remains

The Butkara Stupa is an important Buddhist stupa located near Mingora in Swat, Pakistan. The Mauryan ruler Ashoka may have erected the Butkara stupa, although it is typically dated to the second century BCE. During the ensuing centuries, the Butkara stupa was expanded five times, each time by constructing over and enclosing the preceding construction.

Main image: Mobeen ur Rehman, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Getting There

It could be approached from Barikot bazaar, some 8/9 Km from the main bazzar but very hidden inside the valley, on the other side of mount Elum, Magharzar valley.It is one of the best and most interesting Stupas of Swat valley, rarely visited by the tourists.

What to Expect

Tourists who visit to this place will learn a lot about Buddhist sculptures and Buddhist religion. The can learn about the old Buddhist civilization. The valley under the shadow of Mount Elum is filled with views of forests, fields and clouds. The road winds with a fresh water stream which is picturesque in its own right. So the tourist can enjoy this areas as a picnic spot as well.


Butkara stupa was “monumentalized” by the addition of Hellenistic architectural decorations during the 2nd century BCE, suggesting a direct involvement of the Indo-Greeks, rulers of northwestern India during that period, in the development of Greco-Buddhist architecture.

An Indo-Corinthian capital representing a Buddhist devotee within foliage has been found which had a reliquary and coins of Azes II buried at its base, securely dating the sculpture to earlier than 20 BCE.

The nearby Hellenistic fortifications of Barikot are also thought to be contemporary. A large quantity of the artifacts is preserved in the National Museum of Oriental Art and the City Museum of Ancient Art in Turin’s Turin City Museum of Ancient Art.

Facilities Available

All the facilities are available near to Butkara Stupa at about 1km distance from this site:

  • A lot of hotels and motels are located on the road side of Mingora Swat with beautiful views.
  • Bazaars with local foodis also available for the tourists.
  • Landline and mobile connectivity makes it comfortable for the tourists to communicate.
  • Local tourist’s guides are also available for tourist facilitation.
  • Local and private transport is easily available 24/7.
  • For security near police stations are also available.
  • Hospitals are also available at the near to this site.