Siddhartha, while still an ascetic, visited Rajgir while on his way to Bodhgaya and was met by Bimbisara the king of Magadha. So impressed was King Bimbisara by Siddhartha that he persuaded him to stay in his kingdom. Siddhartha promised that he would come back once he attains enlightenment and proceeded on his journey. Thus after preaching at Sarnath, the Buddha came back to Rajgir with over a thousand followers.
King Bimbisara was overjoyed on seeing the Buddha and offered them the Veluvana Bamboo Grove which became the first estate of the Order and also the Buddha's favorite residence. The Buddha converted King Bimbisara on the Gridhrakuta hill. In old age Bimbisara was imprisoned and killed by his son Ajatasatru. However Ajatasatru himself later became a follower of the Buddha. The Buddha spent many years of his life here. It is the place where Devadatta a wicked cousin of the Buddha made several attempts on his life. After the death of the Buddha, Ajatasatru brought his share of the corporal relics and enshrined them inside a stupa. A few months later when it was decided to hold the first Buddhist council in the Sattapanni cave of the Vaibhara hill, Ajatasatru built a large hall in front of the Sattapanni cave. On this occasion for the first time the Buddha's teachings were written down under the guidance of his disciple Kashyapa.