The capital city of Kosala in India and one of the six great Indian cities during the lifetime of the Buddha. DN.ii.147 It was six leagues from Sāketa. Vin.i.253 It was on the banks of the Aciravatī.Vin.i.191 Vin.i.293 The road from Rājagaha to Sāvatthī passed through Vesāli, Vin.ii.159f. and the Pārāyanavagga Snp.1011–1013 gives the resting places between the two cities Setavyā, Kapilavatthu, Kusinārā, Pāvā and Bhoganagara. Further on, there was a road running southwards from Sāvatthī through Sāketa to Kosambī. Near the city was the Andhavana. Between Sāketa and Sāvatthī was Toraṇavatthu. SN.iv.374
The Buddha passed the greater part of his monastic life in Sāvatthī, and the vast bulk of all Suttas are set there.
His first visit there was at the invitation of Anāthapiṇḍika. The chief patrons of the Buddha in Sāvatthī were Anāthapiṇḍika, Visākhā, Suppavāsā and Pasenadi.