The Ajanta Caves India
Located In Maharashtra, 100 kilometers from the city of Aurangabad. The
Ajanta Caves were discovered accidentally by a British Captain, John Smith
in 1819, while on a hunting expedition. Aurangabad can be reached by flight
or train, or even by motored down to from Manmad , the nearest railhead
being 55 km north at Jalgaon city of Maharashtra, India.
Ajanta and Ellora:
These 3rd-century caves are fine achievements by Buddhist monks and are
considered the finest masterpiece of Buddhist art and architecture.The caves
are cut from the volcanic lava of the Deccan and are set in beautiful
blooming surroundings. These historical manmade caves comprise of beautiful
paintings on the walls and ceilings that depict the life of the Buddha. At
Ajanta, the paintings on the walls, illustrate the events in the life of
The Ellora caves, 34 in number, are the finest specimens of cave temple
architecture. These structures reflect the three faiths of Hinduism,
Buddhism and Jainism, and were carved during the 350 AD to 700 AD period.
The 12 caves to the south are Buddhist, the 17 in the centre dedicated to
Hinduism, and the 5 caves to the north are Jain. . The interiors of the cave
are exquisitely adorned
The Alluring Architecture:
The Ajanta caves are dedicated solely to Buddhism. The caves including
unfinished are thirty in number of which five (9, 10, 19, 26 and 29) are
"Chaitya-Grihas" and the rest are "Sangharamas" or
Viharas (monasteries). Cave 26 by far is most magnificent and has some
ornate sculptures. The Ajanta Caves are well known for their fresco
paintings. The 30 Chaityas and Viharas have paintings, which illustrate
the life and incarnations of Buddha. The interiors are enhanced by a
variety of paintings on the ceiling that include geometric patterns,
floral and ornamental motifs, a variety of animals, birds and plants.
Ellora has 34 caves with intricate interiors and ornamental facades.
The 12 Buddhist Caves depict Lord Buddha in various poses. The 17 Hindu
Caves embody carvings of the Hindu Gods- Siva, Vishnu, Durga, Parvati
and animals. The 5 Jain caves include figures of the Jain saints. The
most fascinating structure is the magnificient Kailash Temple hewn out
of a single rock and is three storeys high. The grand sculpture of
Ravana attempting to lift Mount Kailasa, the abode of Lord Shiva, with
his full might is a landmark in Indian art.
Ajanta Caves ! Contact Us
Ajanta provides a unique platform to study the early phases of Buddhist
sculpture, painting and architecture.
Plan Your Trip:
One can easily spend 2 days at this impressive cave complex and for a
suspended moment in time, lose all track of time.
The best time to visit the caves is during the monsoons- the river is
swollen and the ravine is surrounded by gushing waterfalls. The cooler
winter months- between October and March- are also a comfortable time to
travel to Ajanta. The summers are quite gruelling, especially as you
have to walk around quite a bit.
How to Reach Ajanta:
» By Air : Aurangabad can be reached from New Delhi and
Mumbai (Bombay), international airport. Govt. run Indian airlines flight
to Aurangabad daily from New Delhi and Mumbai.
» By Rail : Two express trains with an accommodation run
between Mumbai an Aurangabad, daily. If travelling from New Delhi to
Mumbai, alight at Jalgoan from where the caves can be reached in one
» By Road: Ajanta- 106 kms, Bombay- 392 kms, Ellora- 30
kms, Nanded- 272 kms, Nasik- 221 kms, Pune- 229 kms, Shirdi- 136 kms.