Aurangabad is a city in the Aurangabad district of Maharashtra, India. Aurangabad
(meaning "Built by the Throne") is named after the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. The city is a
tourist hub, surrounded with many historical monuments, including the Ajanta Caves and Ellora
Caves, which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, as well as Bibi Ka Maqbara. The administrative
headquarters of the Aurangabad Division or Marathwada region, Aurangabad is said to be a City of
Gates and the strong presence of these can be felt as one drives through the city. Recently,
Aurangabad has been declared as Tourism Capital of Maharashtra. It is also one of the fastest
growing cities in the world.
Bhadra Maruti Temple
Bibi Ka Maqbara
AJANTA is world's greatest historical monument recognised by UNESCO.There are 30 caves
There are 30 caves (official numbered by the Archaeological Survey of India).
These caves were discovered in AD 1819.
All paintings of Ajanta show heavy religious influence centre around Buddha, Bodhisattvas,
incidents from the life of Buddha & the Jatakas.
The paintings are executed on a ground of mud-plaster in the tempera technique.
The paintings on the walls, illustrate the events in the life of Prince Gautama Buddha,
the founder of Buddhism and in the more popular Jatakas stories pertaining to Buddha's
There are 34 caves, structures excavated out of the vertical face of the hills.
There are 12 Mahayana Buddhist caves (caves 1-12), 17 Hindu caves (caves 13-29)
and 5 caves of the Jain faith (caves 30-34), 22 more caves, dedicated to Lord Shiva,
were recently discovered. The Ellora Caves are not only a unique artistic creation
but also with its sanctuaries devoted to Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism, it illustrates the
spirit of tolerance that was characteristic of ancient India.
The central attraction at Ellora is Kailash Temple (cave16), is the most remarkable.
Shaped by hand from a single massive rock, it includes a gateway, exhibition area,
square, hall, hut, sanctorum and tower which bear testimony to the excellence of Dravidian art.
It is believed to have taken 7000 laborers, working in continuous shifts and 150 years to build.
Ever since the first European visitors in 18th Century, Ellora has attracted chroniclers,
antiquarians, scholars and in more recent years, ever- increasing number of tourists.
Daulatabad Fort magnificent 12th century fortress stands on a hill, Built by Raja Bhillamraj
once known as 'Devgiri', Initially a Yadav stronghold, it passed through the hands of several
dynasties in the Deccan. The ‘Daulatabad’ (city of fortune) name was give by Muhamad Tughlaq,
Sultan of Delhi.
When Muhammad Tughlak ascended the Delhi throne, he was so taken by the fortress that he
decided to move his court and capital there, renaming it Daulatabad, "the City of Fortune".
He ordered the entire population of Delhi to move out en masse to the new capital.
Daulatabad Fort, a rock-hewn fortress dominating the landscape, from a 600 feet high
mesa-like flat terrain, is 14 kilometer away from Aurangabad City. Daulatabad Fort is
one of the world's best preserved Fort, survived without being altered. Daulatabad Fort is
said to be only occupied by cheating. A series of secret, puzzled, endless passages
lounge curved like a python amidst the fort. Here blazing torches were push upon enemies.
Or hot oil poured down his path, as he deliberated in the maze. The Fort itself lies in the
body of an isolated hill; the steep hill - sides at the base falling so sharply to the moat
that no aggressive troops could scale the height. The moat, 40 feet deep with mechanical
drawbridges full with crocodiles.
Bibi Ka Maqbara
Bibi Ka Maqbara is situated about 5 kms from the Aurangabad city, the burial place of
Aurangzeb wife, Rabia-Durrani. Aurangzeb’s son built this monument in 1679 AD in memory
of his mother Rabia-Durrani. It is an imitation of the Taj Mahal (among 7 new wonders of world)
at Agra, it is also called as "poor man's Taj Mahal" owing to it being a poor replica of the
Taj. Behind the tomb is located a small archeological museum.
The comparison with the Agra monument has unfortunately somewhat degraded the Aurangabad
tomb which in itself displays a worthwhile architectural design, with much distinguished
surface ornamentation in the late Mughal style.
Ghrishneshwar Temple belongs to 18th century. It is just half a kilometer from Ellora Caves.
The marvelous architecture is awe-inspiring though you cannot hope to see the complete
ancient architecture here owing to the damage caused by Aurangazeb. A peaceful place and
it is frequented by tourists, as it is one of the twelve Siva temples.
Grishneshwar, also known as Ghushmeshwar, is a famous Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva
and is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, the sacred abodes of Shiva. The temple is located
eleven km from Daulatabad, near Aurangabad in Maharashtra India. The temple is located near
the famous Ellora Caves.
The Grishneswar temple was re-constructed by Maloji Raje Bhosale of Verul, (grandfather
of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj) in the 16th century and later by Ahilyabai Holkar
in 18th century, who also re-constructed the Kashi Vishwanath temple at Benares, and the
Vishnupad Mandir at Gaya.
The entire complex of the temple is constructed from marble and the statue of Lord Hanuman
is located in the centre of the temple. The temple is best visited during the festival of
Ram Navami and Hanuman Jayanti when the temple is decorated beautifully and special prayers
and aartis are conducted. The temple is usually very crowded on Saturdays, as this is the day
dedicated to Lord Hanuman. Long queues of devotees can be seen till outside the temple.
On other days the temple is less crowded and devotees do not have to wait for long to get a
glimpse of the Lord and offer their prayers.
How To Reach
The nearest airport is at Aurangabad, 30 kms away from Ellora Caves.
Aurangabad has a good national airport, which is well connected to major cities like Mumbai,
Delhi & Hyderabad.
Aurangabad Railway station is nearest to Ellora Caves, there are a plenty of private car
services you can hire or you can avail the bus service from railway station to the caves.
There are public & private buses from Aurangabad to Ellora Caves.
Alternative you can hire private car, there are plenty of tour operator you can choose from.
The drive from Aurangabad to Ellora takes 1-2 hours.
Best Time To Visit
June to September (monsoon season), these are the best time to visit Ellora Caves is
the best time to visit.