Ajanta Cave Temple is the marvelous architectural wonder that depicts the rich legacy of India. Acknowledged as the world heritage site, Ajanta Caves are renowned throughout the Globe. Located near Aurangabad, Ajanta Cave Temple can be reached easily from anywhere in Maharashtra by means of regular tourist buses or by hiring taxis. The nearest airport is located at Aurangabad that lies at a distance of 99 kms from the temples. The charisma, of these caves, attracts millions of visitors each and every year.
In the early 19th century, the long buried Ajanta Caves were discovered
unknowingly by a British Army Officer. At this juncture, the beautiful
sculpted caves that were lying deep within the Sahyadri Hills, above the
Waghora River, came into the sight. The cave temples are sited in a
horse-shoe shaped cliff, where Wagura is flowing at the bottom. Wagura
River falls from a height of 200 feet, consequently making a series of
waterfalls. The thud of these waterfalls can be easily noticed in the
Cut out of rocks, Ajanta Caves trace their origin between 2nd century BC
and 6th century AD. Ajanta Cave Temples are dedicated to Lord Buddha.
Not less than 30 in number, these caves used to make the lodging of
followers and students of Buddhism. During the time of their stay, they
adorned the caves with their outstanding architectural skills and
artistic paintings. Generally, the carvings and the paintings illustrate
the life stories of Lord Buddha. In conjunction with this, numerous
styles of human and animal figures are also engraved in the rocks.
The pictorial carvings and murals at Ajanta depict the modern society of
those times. The artistic sculptures presented every kind of populace
from kings to slaves, from men to women, from children to beasts along
with flowers plants, fruits and birds. There are some figures that
portray the inhabitants like 'Yakshas', 'Kinneras' (half human and half
bird), 'Gandharvas' (divine musicians) and 'Apsaras' (heavenly dancers).
All the thirty caves are divided into 'Chaitya-Grihas' (stupa halls) and
'Viharas' (dwelling halls). In order to reach each cave, one has to
flight of steps that are preserved in their original structure. The Cave
9, 10, 19, 26 and 29 are known as 'Chaitya-Grihas', which were used for
the worship of the Lord. The remaining caves are 'Sangharamas' or
'Viharas' that were used for the housing purpose of the followers and
students of Buddhism.
The caves are numbered as per their present access from the main
entrance and were not erected in the same order. From artistic point of
view, Cave 1, 2, 16 and 17 are really important and possess remarkable
pieces of art that can certainly beat art of the modern world. The walls
of these caves are adorned with murals that are maintained to provide
the same charm and vibrancy of the bygone era.
The wall paintings of the caves are made with the Tempera technique.
This technique involves painting on a dry surface, after the wall is
coated with 1 cm thick layer of a mixture made of clay, cow dung and
rice husks. The painting is coated with a coat of lime on completion. In
those times, the colors used to be natural.
As per the facts revealed by Archeological department, the caves were
carved out in two different segments, with a gap of more or less four
centuries. The caves made in the first segment, date back to 2nd century
BC whereas the caves of the second segment are said to have been made by
the Vakatakas and the Guptas. Each cave comprises carvings and paintings
representing the incidents of Buddha's life, Bodhisattvas and the
Ajanta Cave Temples near Aurangabad are regarded as the World Heritage Site. Know more about Ajanta Cave Temple in Maharashtra, India.
Ajanta Cave Temple
|Location:||Near Aurangabad, Maharashtra|
|Built in:||During 2nd century BC - 6th century AD|
|Dedicated to:||Lord Buddha|
|Significance:||Listed as World Heritage Site|
|Attraction:||Cave temples cut out of rocks|
|How to reach:||One can easily reach Ajanta Cave Temple by taking regular Buses or by hiring Taxis from anywhere in Maharashtra|