To get to special places in the world always require a bit of a special effort. Ajanta and Ellora Caves in the state of Maharashtra are two of these special places. A long way of the beaten tourist route, the nearest big town is Aurangabad which is south east of Mumbai.
Ajanta Caves is a UNESCO World Heritage site and consists of 30 rock-cut Buddhist cave monuments which date from the 2nd century BCE to about 480 or 650 CE. There are delicate coloured paintings on the walls in some of the caves as well as finely crafted stone statues of the past and present lives of the Buddha. Only discovered by the English in the 1920’s the caves are preserved by their sheer location
from the force of nature.
Ellora Caves are just as important with monuments and artwork of Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism from the 600-1000 CE period. There are over 100 caves with 34 being open to the public and you are free to wonder around unassisted. The main Hindu cave is the most impressive with its rock carvings dedicated to Shiva and the detailed carving work is impressive.
The caves are certainly worth the effort – both are in rural locations and can be reached by car or by local bus.
Take a flight to Aurangabad from Mumbai (the closest big city) or Delhi or take a train from Mumbai. Ajanta is 95kms and Ellora 35kms from Aurangabad. We have 3 day 2 night packages www.eknotravels.com.au