Paṭnā is the capital of the Indian state of Bihar, and one of the oldest continuously inhabited places in the world. The modern city of Patna lies on the southern bank of the Ganges, as it flows past with the combined waters of the rivers Ghagra, Sone and Gandak. At the point where the city is located, the sacred Ganges looks more sea than river: mighty, wide and never-ending. A city of 1,800,000 people, the city is approximately 25 km long and 9 km to 10 km wide.
The ancient Patna known as Patliputra was the capital of Nandas, Mauryans, Sungas and the Guptas down to the Pala Empires, was a magnificent city and was the wonder of its age. It was situated at the confluence of the Ganga and the Sone. Patliputra was also a famous seat of learning and fine arts. Its population during Maurya period (around 300 B.C), was about 400,000.