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Ajanta Caves

Location of the site: 99-km From Aurangabad, Maharashtra
Significance: World Heritage Site
Total Caves: 30
Dates Back to: 2nd Century BC To 6th Century AD

Ajanta Caves in MaharashtraThe state of Maharashtra is blessed with a rich heritage of ancient monuments and exquisite architectural marvels representing different phases of development in the art and architectural style. The prime rock-cut architectural examples of the cave temples that are spread all over the state are the caves of Ajanta and Ellora.

Ajanta caves including the unfinished ones are thirty in number; of which five - 9, 10, 19, 26 and 29 are 'Chaitya-Grihas' and the rest are 'Sangharamas' or 'Viharas' (monasteries). After centuries of oblivion, these caves of Ajanta were discovered in AD 1819. They fall into two distinct phases with a break of nearly four centuries between them. All the caves of the earlier phase date between 2nd century BC - AD.

Ajanta caves of the second phase were excavated during the supremacy of the Vakatakas and Guptas. According to inscriptions, Varahadeva, the minister of the Vakataka king, Harishena (c. 475-500 AD), dedicated Cave 16 to the Buddhist Sangha while Cave 17 was the gift of the prince, a feudatory. An inscription records that - Buddha image in Cave 4 was the gift of some Abhayanandi who hailed from Mathura.

A few paintings, which survive on the walls of Caves 9, and 10 go back to the 2nd century BC-AD. The second group of the Ajanta cave paintings started in about the 5th century AD and continued for the next two centuries as, noticeable in later caves. The themes are intensely religious in tone and centre round Buddha, Bodhisattvas, incidents from the life of Buddha and the 'Jatakas'. Ajanta cave paintings are executed on a ground of mud-plaster in the tempera technique.

Tour Packages Of Ajanta Caves

1. Ajanta Ellora Tour - IMP-12
    5 Days / 4 Nights
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