Thursday, February 11, 2016

Lesser Known Caves Of India- Aurangabad Caves

More often than not these stunning monuments are forgotten and only its sisters Ajanta and Ellora are widely visited by travellers. Carved between Sinhyachal and Satara range of hills, these caves and carvings are on par if not better than Ellora Caves. These monuments still have their virgin beauty intact. The series of 10 caves are split into two groups- eastern and western, a kilometer apart from one another. These caves were carved between the 2nd and 6th Century.

Climbing a fleet of steps and you reach the ticket counter, a short hike from the ticket counter leads you to these magnanimous series of caves. The panoramic views of the caves en-route are breathtaking and so is the view of Bibi Ka Maqbara with the city in the backdrop.

Cave 1 and 3 are the oldest of all the caves, Cave 1 is an unfinished monastery with pillars that stand completed and the ceiling of its verandah has collapsed. The weak nature of rock formation hindered large scale excavations.

Cave 3 is the grandest of the caves here, portraying a line of devotees kneeling down with folded hands worshiping Buddha, who is seated in preaching position.

The cave series of 6 to 10 are a kilometer away and you can spot some partially carved stupas. Feel free to walk into the cave and see the raw beauty of it and compare the scratch work of this cave with the elaborately carved and sculpted ones.

Cave 7 is the best cave among all the caves. The square sanctum at the center contains a sculpture of Lord Buddha seated on a lion throne in preaching mudra.

The most surprising aspect was a sculpture of Lord Ganesh, it was beautifully sculpted and highlights the fact that religions could co-exist in harmony. It's the attitude and not the religion that creates barriers or differences.

Most of the visitors end up seeing only Caves 1-5 so do ensure that you follow the trek path that leads to Caves 6-10 as they are equally astonishing. A good pair of trekking shoes and a day pack is a must.

We highly recommend that you don't miss these phenomenal monuments. You will be lost in time and still not feel exhausted as these caves are hardly crowded. We were here on a Saturday and were shocked to see only 8 other visitors. We really hope that they receive their share of due credit.


  1. Ganesha's temple is not the co existence of religions as Ganesha himself is a part of Buddhism.
    He is one of their deities, you will find a lot of 'Buddhist shrines' of Ganesha in Thailand, Sri Lanka etc.