Ellora Caves

 

Overview

The Ellora Caves, known locally as "Verul Leni' is located on the road Aurangabad-Chalisgaon at a distance of 30 km to the north-north-west of Aurangabad, the headquarters of the district. The name itself Ellora inspires everyone as it represents one of the largest rock-hewn monastic complex of temples in the world. Ellora is also famous in the world for the largest single monolithic excavation in the world, the large cave Kailasa (16).  The visit of these caves is appreciated maximum during the monsoon season, when each stream is filled with rain water, and all the sophisticated is green and lush. The monsoon season is not only a rainy season in this part, the local visitors are attracted to visit these ideal sites for a preview of the mother nature in full bloom.
 
The caves are of sizes volcanic eruptions basaltic formation of Maharasthra, known under the name of "Deccan Trap", the term "trap being of Scandinavian origin representative step of the formation of volcanic deposits. The rock formation, on the erosion has given birth to the terraces with flat summits. AT Ellora, it can also have a quick overview of the channels (cave near 32) through which the volcanic lava once flowed. These channels, due to overheating, have a brownish color characteristic red color. Similar Rock has been used for the construction of the Grishneshwar Temple nearby and are also used for the floors of the pathways for Bibi-ka-Maqbara.
 
The hills in which the caves are carved, is part of the Sahyadri ranges of the Deccan and date of the Cretaceous period of the geologic time scale (about 65 million years ago).  The hills rise abruptly from the surrounding plains on the south and west, the west surface being very widely used for debulking" cave complex. The hill also supports multiple streams, among them, the most important being the Elaganga, which flows into the Shiv, a stream of the Godavari river system. The Elaganga is in all its strength during the monsoon season, when the waters of an overflow of a dam upstream in the near 
Mahismati allows the waters springing from the earth of "Sita-ki-NAHANI" cave near 29 as a crash in cascade.
 
The volcanic lava flowed during different periods, has given rise to many horizontal flow alternating with vesicular trap beds. The vesicular diseases traps form the upper part of each of the enormous beds trap. The different lava flows has also given rise to both vertical and horizontal joints in the rock formation. Depending on the nature and the mineralogical content of the lava flow, the rock formations also vary in character and texture, giving rise to various qualities of granularity coarse and fine formations. The ancient builders to Ellora, as other places, in particular, has chosen the fine formations of the Deccan trap, ideal for carving and rock pebble. In addition, the former manufacturers also trace the horizontal and vertical joints in the rock formation to reduce the labor and time during the excavation and rock the fractionation. The basaltic rock is also ideal for rock pebble, as they are soft during the initial excavation and hardens on exposure to the environment.
 
The basaltic flows training Deccan Plateau is ideal for rock pebble, the technique which is widely understood in the ancient world. This has led the believers of various faiths to establish their colonies in them. By a rough estimate, there are nearly 1200 caves of various sizes in the entire Maharashtra, whose nearly 900 only belong to Buddhism.
 
The region is also famous for its antiquity. It has been inhabited since time immemorial, the stone tools belonging to the Upper Palaeolithic (around 10,000 to 20,000 years ago), Mesolithic (less than 10,000 years) testimony of this fact. The rest Chalcolithic (2500-1000 BC) in the vicinity also indicates the continuity of human occupation in this region.
 
The importance of Ellora in the first centuries of the Christian era is also heard by the conclusions of the parties of the Satavahanas, the ruling dynasty during the period. The Satavahanas had their capital at Pratishtana (modern Paithan) and decided that the whole of the area between the Sea of Oman and the Gulf of Bengal and bordered by the Narmada river on the north. Ellora is located on the old trade route linking the ports of the west coast of the Sea of Oman, Sopara (Surparaka, the Supara of greek; Subara of Arab writers; the former capital of the north Konkan), Kalyan a prosperous port; Chemula, greek Samylla geographers, Chemula of Silaharas, on the island of Trombay and inland cities, Paithan (Pratishtana), Ter (Tagara ; ; ), Bhokardan (Bhogavardhana) etc. The fact that Satavahanas traverse this region is attested by inscriptions at Nasik (caves and inscriptions of donors for their time in the hospital "Chora" caves, located at a distance of 40 km to the west of Ellora. Ellora is located directly on the old trade route who had crossed to Pratishtana via Aurangabad, Ellora, Ital "Chora", Patne Nasika, modern (Nasik).  Nasik is at the crossroads of the old trade route linking centers on the east and the west and those of the north to the south.
 
The location of the old route of trade does not result from activities at Ellora during the Satavahana rule. Brisk activities were already in close proximity on "Chora" Ital, Nasik, Ajanta is trying hard, etc. , and it could have been a diversion of the ancient builders to support any activity here. However, as the multiplication of religious establishments have been held in every corner of Maharashtra, the ideal location of Ellora was inevitable.
 
As well has increased one of the largest caves of Ellora excavations, that too of three different religious denominations, namely Buddhism, ancient Brahmanism at and Jainism. The caves are likely to circa 6th - 7th century A.D. in 11th - 12th century A.D. In total, there are nearly 100 caves in the hill range from which 34 caves are famous and visited by many tourists, from which the caves 1 to 12 are Buddhist; caves 13 to 29 are Brahmanical caves and 30 to 34 are Jainism. Two other groups of caves are remarks on the Elaganga and on the upper terrace, namely the Ganesh Leni and Jogeshwari Leni.
 
These religious establishments could have received royal patronage of various dynasties, even if inscriptional evidence are missing for most of them. The only real inscriptional evidence is that of the Rashtrakuta Dantidurga (c. 753-57 A.D. ) on the rear wall of the mandapa before Cave 15. The large cave Kailasa (16) is attributed to Krishna I (c. 757-83 A.D. ), the successor and the uncle of Dantidurga. A copper plate grant of Baroda of the period of Karka II (c. 812-13 A.D. ) speaks of the greatness of this building. The inscription tells us that this large building has been built on a hill by Krishnaraja to Elapura (Ellora) and even the celestial beings moving in the sky were struck by its magnificence, as if it was autonomous, which has not been established by the mortals, and even the architect who has caused, it is surprising that struck that he could build. In addition to the two inscriptions, the whole cave complex lack the inscriptions on the nature found in other cave sites such as Ajanta is trying hard, Nasik, Karle, Kanheri, etc.
 
In the absence of concrete elements inscriptional evidence, we can deduce the royal dynasties which could have extended their patronage to the religious establishments. The opening of religious establishments to Ellora coincides with the departure of the tradition of Ajanta is trying hard. It is well known that the excavations have begun here before the Rashtrakutas arrived on the scene and the caves 1 to 10 and the cave 21 (Ramesvara) were permanently built before them. 
 
These excavations are usually assigned to the Kalachuris of Mahismati, seemed to have taken control of the region around Nasik and parts of the former Asmaka (region around Aurangabad) including Bhogavardana (modern Bhokardan) and the Chalukyas of Badami who have held their grip in this region for a short period before their feudatories, the Rashtrakutas took over.
 
The majority of establishments Brahmanical and Buddhist remaining are those that can be attributed to both Rashtrakuta which indicate the religious tolerance of the contemporary period. The caves Jainism definitively post-date the Rashtrakutas as indicated by the style of execution and fragmentary inscriptions. This region was under the control of areas like Kalyani Chalukyas and Yadavas Deogiri (Daulatabad) during this period. The favoritism toward Jainism under the Yadavas is also known by the results of several sculptures of Jainism faith of Daulatabad. As well, we have the largest religious conglomerate to a single and same place, which means that religious tolerance and solidarity of different faiths.
 
The Ellora Caves, unlike Ajanta is trying hard, have a distinction that they have never lost to oblivion, due to their proximity 
to the trade route. There have been many written documents to indicate that these caves are visited regularly by the enthusiastic travellers and royal personalities as well. The first, is that of a geographer arabic they have also been able to see 'udi of the 10th century A.D. in 1352 A.D. the approach roads for the caves have been repaired on who has followed the visit of the Sultan Hasan Gangu Bahmani, who were also camped on the site and visit the caves. The other important accounts of these caves are by Firishta, Thévenot (1633-67), Niccolao Manucci (1653-1708), Charles Warre Malet (1794), Seely (1824).  During the 19th century A.D. these caves were the property of the Holkars of Indore who were sold at auction for the right of worship and of the rental for the religious as well as a form of entry fees. After the Holkars, these caves transmitted in the control of the Nizams of Hyderabad, which, thanks to their department of archeology carried out the repairs to and maintenance of the caves under the direction of archaeological survey of India. The caves are under the maintenance of the archaeological survey of India, after the reorganization of the states and the dominions of yesteryear Nizams merged in the state of Maharashtra.
 
A brief account on the architectural splendours and artistic expressions of various caves is given here to help to understand the true nature and importance of this wonderful place.A tourist may fix the date of the visit of these caves as a function of time available and depending on the interest for the ancient art if a visitor has at its disposal three to four hours, and then the cellar our 10 (Visvakarma - Cellar), 16 (Kailasa), 21 (Ramesvara) and 32 & 34 (Jainism group of caves) should not be missed. Thus, by visiting the caves, you can have a preview of the art representative of Buddhism, ancient Brahmanism at and Jainism. If a visitor has a full day at his disposal, the cave #s 2, 5, 10 & 12 of the Buddhist group; cellar #s 14, 15, 16, 21 & 29 of the group Brahmanical caves and 32 to 34 of the group Jainism should be visited.
 
The caves are searches in the sediments of a large plateau, running in a north-south direction for nearly 2 km, the scrap metal in the shape of a half-circle, the Buddhist group at the right arc on the south, whereas the group Jainism left arc on the north and the Brahmanical group at the center.
 

Open from sunrise to sunset Closed on Tuesday

Entrance Fee:

Citizens of India and visitors of SAARC (Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Maldives and Afghanistan) and BIMSTEC Countries (Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Myanmar) - Rs. 10 per head.

 

 

Location

Country
India
State
Maharashtra
City
Aurangabad
Location
Ellora Caves
Address
Maharashtra State, Aurangabad District, Khulatabad Taluk , Verul Village N20 1 35.004 E75 10 45.012
Contact Info
Phone:
Mobile :
Fax :
Near Cities
Nearest Bus Terminal
ellora caves
Nearest Railway Station
Ajanta & Ellora (AWB)
Nearest Airport
Aurangabad Airport
IN
latitude : 19.862699510 longitude :75.398101810
Corporation : Aurangabad
GPS Code : VAAU
Open Year
1983
Architect
753-57 A.D
Dedicated To
Buddha
Visiting Hours
Open from sunrise to sunset Closed on Tuesday

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