Depicting the Jataka Tales: Age old Caves of Ajanta & Ellora

22 Jul

Seeming quiet and meditative and transude a divine energy and power. Ajanta and Ellora Caves are inspired by Buddhism, Jainism as well as Hinduism; and its compassionate ethos, disclose a plenty of artistic excellence unmatched in human history. Beginning with the 2nd century B.C., and continuing into the 6th century A.D., the paintings and sculptures in these Buddhist and Jain caves are ornately carved out in rocks.

Located in Aurangabad:  Ajanta Caves and Ellora Caves are about 99 Kms and 30 kms away from Aurangabad, in northern Maharashtra.  Being some sheer outstanding specimens of Indian architectural excellence, the sculptures in the Buddhist caves depict the nobility, grace and serenity that are inherent in the Buddha. There are around 41 caves in Ajanta & Ellora, 29 in Ajanta & 12 in Ellora.  

Specific Features in caves: Now these caves are listed in the World heritage sites. The best thing about these caves is that they were crafted by hand, with the help of only a hammer and chisel. While the Ajanta caves are rich in paintings and sculpture, the Ellora caves are renowned for their extraordinary architecture. You can get an excellent view and perspective of inside the Kailasa temple by climbing up the hill around it. Its immense size covers twice the area of the Pantheon in Athens and is one and a half times as high. Bring a torch with you to the Ajanta caves as many of them are quite dark and lighting is poor. The best time to visit is from November to March when it’s cooler and dry.

 Built, Architecture and History of the Caves:  Ajanta caves are celebrated for its cave art and architecture. As of 1983, the Ajanta Caves have been an UNESCO World Heritage Site specifically nominated for the international World Heritage program Ellora represents the epitome of Indian rock cut architecture. The 34 “caves” – actually structures excavated out of the vertical face of the Charanandri hills – comprised of Buddhist, Hindu and Jain cave temples and monasteries, were built between the 5th century and 10th century. The 12 Buddhist, You can see the bats hanging in the ceiling of the walls insides the caves; it is really adventuresome when you enter into caves with the Mashaal (Torch) in the hands.

Celebration on the name of Ajanta and Ellora: Ajanta Ellora Festival four days long celebration. In the last week of November each year it  is held at Soneri Mahal (Golden Palace), an historic 17th century architectural marvel in Aurangabad near Ellora. The festival features dance & musical evenings in the presence of some of the most distinguished singers and dancers of India.

Take a trip to the mystical caves of Ajanta & Ellora.

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Posted by on July 22, 2011 in Travel India


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