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Ellora Caves are an impressive complex of rock shrines, representing the three different faiths of Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism, that were excavated between the 5th to the 13th centuries CE. The complex is in Maharashtra State, about 24 km from Aurangabad.
The nearest airport (which is a domestic airport) from these caves is situated in Aurangabad (15 km) and can be reached directly from Delhi, Mumbai, Jaipur and Udaipur.
How to Reach Ajanta by Air: Aurangabad, which is about 99 km from Ajanta and 30 km from Ellora, can be reached directly from Delhi, Mumbai, Jaipur and Udaipur airports.
How to Reach Ajanta by Rail: Jalgaon (59 km from Ajanta) is the nearest station where you should alight while coming from Delhi or Mumbai. Two trains Tapovan Express and Devgiri Express depart daily from Mumbai to Aurangabad.
How to Reach Ajanta by Road: Ajanta Caves are connected to a network of excellent roadways with Mumbai, Pune, Ahmednagar, Jalgaon, Shirdi, Nasik, Dhule, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, Indore, Bijapur, and Aurangabad.
Jalgaon (59 km from Ajanta) is the nearest station where you should alight while coming from Delhi or Mumbai.
9.00AM to 17.30PM Indian Standard Time (IST) Ellora Caves remain closed on Tuesday. BOTH CAVES REMAIN OPEN ON ALL NATIONAL HOLIDAYS
The tourist attractions in Ajanta are undoubtedly the Ajanta and Ellora (link to Ellora page) caves, located near the city of Aurangabad in Maharashtra and about 300km northeast of the city of Mumbai. The 34 caves at Ellora and the 29 caves at Ajanta remained in obscurity for over a millennium, till John Smith, a British Army Officer, accidentally stumbled upon them while on a hunting expedition in 1819. Ajanta and Ellora are protected monument sites under the Archaeological Survey of India and has been included in the World Heritage list of monuments.
Visitors who can not visit all the caves should visit atleast Cave 6, 10,11,12,14,15,16,21,29,30,30A,31,32,33,34. Inscriptions were found at Cave 15,21, 31
These murals and frescoes adorning the walls of these structures depict the story of Buddhism, spanning the period from 200 BC to 650 AD. Many of the caves have panels depicting stories from the Jatakas, a treasure trove of stories about the several incarnations of the Buddha. This makes the Ajanta caves a fascinating spiritual tourist attraction for Buddhists and scholars and researchers of Buddhism.
Cave number 1 houses some of the best-preserved wall paintings here, which include two impressive Bodhisattvas, Padmapani and Avalokiteshvara. Caves 2, 16, and 17 also contain amazing paintings, while caves 1, 4, 17, 19, 24, and 26 boast of some of the most divine sculptures. The flying apsara painting in Cave 17, and the image of the Buddha preaching, also in cave 17, are two unforgettable works of art in Ajanta. The Ajanta caves and the treasures they house are a landmark in the overall development of Buddhism in India and in general.
Buy Archaeological Survey of India Book - World Heritage Series "ELLORA" [ Rs. 99 ]
The entry fees Rs. 10 for Indians, Rs. 250 for Foreigners. Free entry for children below 15 years. Still Photography : Free, Video Photography : Rs. 25
Hotel Kailash is an older hotel and has an attached Beer Bar. Hotel Manor, Hotel Ambience and several other Indian restaurants are along the road to Aurangabad from Ellora. Hygiene and spice level may be an issue for some.