New Delhi- Aurangabad (by air)
Early in the morning, having breakfast in Delhi hotel depart for airport to board flight for Aurangabad. On arrival at Aurangabad, you will
be transferred to the pre-booked hotel.
Ajanta & Ellora cave temples, located in Aurangabad district of Maharashtra, are specimen of the art & architectural zenith attained by Indian
craftsmen. The cave temples of Ajanta (2nd century BC) and Ellora, carved out of rocks Sahayadri hills and are the most outstanding specimens
of ancient Indian architectural heritage. Ajanta is older compared to Ellora. Ajanta is more renowned for Buddhist caves whereas Ellora for
Hindu cave temples. There are 29 caves in Ajanta and 34 caves in Ellora. These caves were engraved and sculptured to serve the purpose of
temple, chaitya (chapel) and monastery. These cave temples remained in obscurity for more than thousand years and thus remained protected
from the ravages of the Muslim invaders. John Smith, a British Army Officer, accidentally discovered these magnificent monuments of Ajanta
while on a hunting expedition in 1819. Keeping in view immense importance of this artistic legacy, Ajanta has been allocated the status of
a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The World Heritage Site status has been conferred to these marvelous cave temples to be preserved as an
artistic legacy that will come to inspire and enrich the lives of generations to come.
Today you will be visiting Ellora cave temples. Visit Ellora rock architecture which comprises Buddhist temple, chaityas and viharas; Hindu
and Jain temples. Although the chiseling out Sahyadri hills for carving out rock cut temples and chapels was started by the Buddhists during 450
to 650 AD, but later on, they didn't remain exclusively Buddhist. In toto, there are 34 cave architectures which have been dug into sloping side
of a low hill running north-south. Cave number 5 is the largest caves among the Buddhist caves with 24 pillared prayer hall. Cave number 6 houses
Gautam Buddha and Goddess Saraswati's statues. Dynamic architectural design, execution and embellishment of Hindu cave temples, especially Kailash
Temple, are worth watching. Have overnight stay in Aurangabad hotel.