9 Caves in India That Every History Buff Should Visit

Are you a history buff or a traveler who loves to explore what lies deep within the mysteries of ancient structures? India is considered to be one of the most ancient civilizations in the world and is thus filled to the brim with archaic wonders. A considerable part of these ancient wonders is caves and temples. The caves in India indicate back to either the Buddhist, Jain, or Hindu cave temples. 

The man-made caves of India as well as the natural caves in India emanate an aura of their own, one that is mysterious, calming, and has a tinge of mythology. Once you visit a cave in India you will end up wanting to know more and that curiosity of yours may be left unattended. Because there are many questions and mysteries that are left unanswered as these caves date back to pre-historic times. 

Caves in India

You can plan a trip to a few of the famous caves in India to quench your thirst for adventure. The best part of it all is that some of the caves have intricate details on their walls which were hand-carved by artisans back then. Here we have shortlisted a few of the caves in India that are worth visiting. So, some of the fascinating caves in India are:- 

Ajanta Ellora Caves, Maharashtra:

Ajanta Ellora Caves, Maharashtra

One of the most famous caves in Maharashtra, situated in the Jalgaon city is the Ajanta Ellora caves. These majestic rock-cut caves in India have various religious paintings as well as ancient sculptures. These caves have been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The caves will give you an amazing venture. Ajanta has 29 caves which are the epitome of Buddhism whereas Ellora has 34 caves and the caves there signify a unique blend of Buddhism, Jainism, and Hinduism. 

The Kailasha temple also considered to be the largest cave temple is visited by anyone who comes to see the caves, it is situated in Ellora caves. The fine artwork of these caves will leave you mesmerized, the intricate carvings, the wall paintings, and the best sculptures can all be found here. Here you can spot an idol of Maitreya Buddha along with intricate designs of birds, devils, and humans. 

You can visit these caves from Mumbai via Nashik, the caves are just 345.8km away from Mumbai. However, if you plan on visiting the Ajanta Ellora caves from Pune then you will have to cover a distance of 258.1 km. 

Mentioned below are some of the hotels in Pune that you can book if you wish to stay and visit the place. The hotels are: 

Badami Cave, Karnatak:

Badami Cave, Karnatak

These caves in India date back to the 6th century AD. The Badami Cave consists of 4 caves altogether, in these caves one can get a glimpse of three Brahmanical temples as well as Jain temples. Located in Badami, Karnataka, these ancient caves have temples of Lord Vishnu, Lord Ganesha with two hands, and dancing Shiva with 18 arms (Natraj) too. 

Many people who visit Hampi end up visiting these caves. These caves are made of red sandstone and situated on a hill. The architecture is a classy specimen of the Chalukya dynasty architectural style. Once you start walking around Badami the history buff in you will fall in love with the place as there are many ruins left behind by Chalukya Empire that one can see while exploring the town. 

Bhimbetka Caves, Madhya Pradesh:

Bhimbetka Caves, Madhya Pradesh

The Bhimbetka Caves are situated amidst the rocky terrains and flora of a Wildlife Sanctuary named Ratpani. These caves are recognized as a World Heritage Site and are known for intricate rock carvings. It is believed to have been the place where Pandavas took shelter during their time in exile. In the famous cave of Madhya Pradesh, the wall paintings showcase the lifestyle of the prehistoric Stone Age. If observed closely you will be taken aback by the earliest artworks of mankind. 

Borra Caves, Visakhapatnam

Borra Caves, Visakhapatnam

The fascinating caves in India, the Bora caves of Vishakhapatnam are situated in the Anantagiri Hills. These caves stand out as here resides the Shiva Lingam, which makes it a huge tourist destination in Araku Valley. The Lingam is highly respected and worshipped by the villagers as well as the tribals. The Shiva Lingam formed naturally and made its presence felt to the villagers. Other than the Lingam a few more formations occurred here naturally, like the human brain, the figure of a crocodile, and the mother and child. These structures will raise a lot of questions in your mind and will keep wanting to know more. 

The Borra caves aren’t long and resemble the Belum Caves, they are also easily accessible. There is a train named Kirandul Passenger Train that runs directly to the caves from Vizag. This train journey will make you fall in love with the place.  This natural cave in India showcases amazing features of limestone terrain like pillars, stalactite, halite, and stalagmite.

Elephanta Caves, Maharashtra

Elephanta Caves, Maharashtra

You must have heard of these caves, the famous caves in India Elephant Caves. These caves in Maharashtra are a UNESCO World Heritage Site and they hold a lot of historical importance. The Elephanta Caves are 7km away from Mumbai situated on an Island, they are believed to be dating back to the 6th century AD. This cave has a huge idol of Lord Shiva in three forms. The three of Shiva here depict the Aghora, Vamadeva, and Tatpurusha. These finely carved and intricately designed caves are a sight to behold. 

The fascinating caves of India cover Gun Hill and also have panels that signify the stages of life. One can reach the caves through a ferry. You can get yourself a ticket for the ferry ride from the Gateway of India, in Colaba. The caves are closed on Monday and they welcome visitors six days a week. It is best to avoid visiting the caves during the Monsoon season. 

Khandagiri and Udayagiri Caves, Odisha

Khandagiri and Udayagiri Caves, Odisha

In Bhubaneshwar reside one of the most fascinating caves in India. Khandagiri caves are a cluster of 15 caves that are known to be one of the ancient Jain rock-cut caves. Back then these caves acted as the residence of Jain monks, this was under the reign of King Kharavela. These caves were navigated in the 19th century AD and they dated around to the 2nd century BC.  

The rock caves on the twin hills are a sight to behold for history buffs.  It is said that back then there were a hundred and seventeen caves out of which only thirty-three survived. The upper sections of the caves were utilized as meditation rooms. The references from the Kalinga war can be seen here, hidden in the carving and architecture of the caves.

Karla Caves, Lonavala:

Karla Caves, Lonavala

The Karla caves are located near Lonavala, in a village named Karla. The fascinating caves of India are considered to be one of the most ancient and largest  Buddhist temples in the country. It is believed that these caves date back to 200 BC. These beautiful caves in India are recognized for their unique architecture which is slightly similar to that of a wooden structure. The curved entrance of the caves will catch your eye, along with the vaulted interiors and the Ashoka Pillar in the facade, it has a toran and a face made of stone. 

If you are observant enough the designs around the caves will leave you awestruck, the caves are said to have the largest prayer halls in the nation. The premise has a total of fifteen other caves that were assumed to be used as mini prayer halls back then. The architecture of the caves which were built in close proximity to the Karla Caves have slightly similar architecture but the Karla has something unique in its aura that makes it stand out. 

You can plan a trip to the Karla caves from Mumbai itself. The caves are just two hours’ drive away. You can book hotels in Mumbai and then plan a single-day trip to the Karla caves. Some of the hotels that you can book in Mumbai are:

5 Star Hotels in Mumbai

4 Star Hotels in Mumbai

3 Star Hotels in Mumbai

Budget Hotels in Mumbai

Resorts in Mumbai

Pataleshwar Caves, Pune:

Pataleshwar Caves, Pune

The Pataleshwar caves date back to the 8th century AD and hold a resemblance with the Ellora caves. The famous caves of Pune are dedicated to Lord Shiva and also house sculptures of various Hindu deities like Lord Rama, Sita, and Laxman. The caves are really simple and elegant, they do not have a fancy entrance or any such thing. The caves are said to have a very calming effect on the visitors. An amazing fact about the caves is that they are carved out of a single stone, it would be hard to believe once you see the caves with your own eyes. If you plan to stay a bit longer and explore the tourist places in Pune then you should go through a travel guide and also book a hotel in Pune. Some of the hotels in Pune are mentioned below:

5 Star Hotels in Pune

4 Star Hotels in Pune

3 Star Hotels in Pune

Budget Hotels in Pune

Resorts in Pune

Varaha Caves, Tamil Nadu:

Varaha Caves, Tamil Nadu

The Varaha Caves were constructed around the 7th century under the reign of the Pallava Dynasty. The caves are known to be named after an incarnation of Lord Vishnu- ‘Varaha’. In the caves is a magnificent rock-cut Hindu cave temple in which resides Lord Vishnu. One of the top tourist attractions in South India, these caves are built along the lines of Dravidian and Buddhist architecture. The temple has a panel on which the third incarnation of Lord Vishnu in the form of a boar is depicted. There are more instances from the Hindu mythology carved on the walls. The Varaha caves act as a famous tourist attraction in Tamil Nadu

Caves in India have always attracted tourists from around the world be it historians, explorers, or whosoever. If there is a cave in the city that they are planning to visit then they will make it their priority to visit the cave. The caves do have something mystical about them. It is amazing to see how the people back then could create and think of such architectural marvels when they weren’t equipped with modern tools and equipment. Most of the famous caves in India are UNESCO World Heritage sites. If you ever wish to book a hotel for one of these trips do let us know. At HotelDekho.com we offer great deals and offers on hotel booking. 

So which one are you planning to visit next? Do share your experience with us.

Happy exploring you lovely readers!!

Leave a Comment

Subscribe to our creative news & articles We will be emailing you the updates.
Subscribe to our newsletter.