Explore the Ancient paintings at Pitalkhora caves and all the information about the Timings, History

Pitalkhora caves

Aurangabad is a historical city that is full of tourist places, there are just not the world-famous Ellora and Ajanta caves. The city has many more things to explore. Let me take you on the adventure of the Pitalkhora caves. The caves made by cutting the rocks consist of the 14 cave monuments that are situated on the western Ghats of Maharashtra in the Satamala Range.  They are located in Kannad, Aurangabad.

Well, the Pitalkhora caves are located in the Gautala Sanctuary, Aurangabad. The meaning of the word Pitalkhora is the Valley of Brass. It is said that the caves got this name because of the yellowish sunrise covering the valley every morning. The breezing waterfalls and the beautiful valley give an unforgettable experience.

As these caves are cut out of different types of basalt rocks and some of the caves have worsened over time. Out of the 14 rock-cut caves, four of them are chaityas which mean Buddhist prayer halls, and the rest of the caves are called Viharas means residential areas. The caves are divided into two groups. One group consists of ten caves and the second group consists of 4 caves. The complex flaunts statues of soldiers, elephants, a destroyed Gaja Lakshmi icon, and also a very old harvesting system of rainwater. These caves are located at a distance of 40 km from the Ellora Temple. The caves can be reached by a flight of concrete steps, there is a small beautiful cascade of waterfalls located beside the caves. The caves are houses of unusual sculptures. The complex also consists of a chaitya hall, a cluster of viharas, and small caves in the gorge consisting of several stupas.

If we dig into the history, these Pitalkhora Caves are mentioned in Buddhist chronicles, such as Pitangalya of the Mahamayuri and Ptolemy’s Petrigala. The inscriptions on these caves are dated back from the 250 century B.C. to the 3rd-4th centuries. The historical importance of these caves is that they have been built in the Theravada or Hinayana period of Buddhism and some of the preserved paintings of these caves belongs to the Mahayana Period.

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Cave no.3 has the main Chaitya; it is the shape of an arched roof. Inside a semi-rock-cut and partially constructed stupa in the Chaitya Griha, 5 stupa-shaped crystal containers of relics were found in the meantime. Today, the rock-cut base of the stupa has remained there, its pillars have beautiful eye-catching/attractive paintings, that look similar to the Ajanta paintings. At the entrance of cave 4 stands an amazing sculpture of two Dwarpals means gatekeepers. The carvings of the five-headed Naga, the nine elephants, and the horse with a male figurine strike achievement and the high-level advancement of imagination and architectural skills. Apart from these, many sculptural panels represent the life story of the Lord Buddha, a panel of Gaja Lakshmi, and an image of a guardian Yaksha was found here.

The best time to visit Pitalkhora Caves is between October and February because the hills look splendid after heavy downpours in the monsoon season.

Pitalkhora Caves are located in the town of Kannad, Aurangabad-Chalisgaon Road, and around 50 km away from the world-famous Ellora Caves. They can be reached by the government state buses from major cities. Or instead, you can hire a taxi. The caves are accessible from Bhamarwadi village which is 9 km far. From here, one can hire buses and private taxis. You have to trek for a short distance to reach the caves.

The opening and closing timings of the caves are, caves are open all days between 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

ENTRY FEE- The entry ticket fee is Rs.10/- for Indian tourists and Rs.100/- for the foreign tourists.

Hope you like the article, stay tuned for more such kind of informations.

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