The Ellora caves will take your breath away. The technical brilliance and aesthetic beauty of this Unesco World Heritage site undeniably put the caves among the world’s finest rock-cut temples and make them a reference point for all Indian art.
Visitors heading for the Ellora and Ajanta caves generally stay in Aurangabad. Ellora is 30km from there.
The 34 caves carved out of the rock along a 2km stretch of Charanandri Hill contain magnificent Hindu, Jain and Buddhist temples.
They were made between the 5th and 10th centuries CE under the Kalachuri, Chalukya and Rashtrakuta dynasties and are evidence of the harmony and religious tolerance that prevailed in India in those days.
The Kailasha temple (cave 16) is particularly striking. It was started in the 7th century by the king Krishna I. Did the architects aim to rival the grandeur of Mount Kailash, Shiva’s mountain, from which the temple takes its name? If so they succeeded, because this immense temple carved out of the cliff shows incredible technical prowess and the effect is truly grandiose.