You will be picked up from your hotel in Aurangabad by our driver in an air-conditioned vehicle and driven to Ellora Caves. Your English speaking guide will give a tour of the Ellora group of rock cut caves. The site features over 100 caves, of which 34 caves are open to the public. These caves were excavated out of the vertical basalt cliff in the Charanandri hills and extend for more than a mile. They consist of 12 Buddhist (caves 1–12), 17 Hindu (caves 13–29) and 5 Jain (caves 30–34) caves. Each group of caves presents the respective deities and mythologies prevalent in the 1st millennium. The associated monasteries were built in proximity and illustrate the religious harmony and spirit of tolerance that was characteristic of ancient India. Cave 5 is an architecturally important Buddhist cave. It was designed as a hall with two parallel refectory benches in the center with a Buddha statue in the rear. The most famous of the Buddhist caves is Cave 10, a worship hall called the 'Vishvakarma Cave' (literally the cave of one who accomplishes everything). It is also known as the "Carpenter's Cave", because the artistic finish gives the rock an appearance of wooden beams. Beyond its multi-storeyed entry is a cathedral-like stupa hall also known as chaitya-griha (prayer house). At the heart of this cave is a 15-foot statue of Buddha seated in a preaching pose. It was likely built around 650 AD. The most magnificent cave is the Kailashanatha Temple (Cave 16), a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This temple features the largest single monolithic rock excavation in the world. It is a chariot shaped monument which depicts Mount Kailasa (the sacred abode of Lord Shiva). The Kailasha temple excavation also presents the gods, goddesses and mythologies found in Vaishnavism, Shaktism and relief panels summarizing the two major Hindu Epics. You will also have a chance to view the channels near Cave 32 through which volcanic lava once flowed.
After the tour, you will be transferred back to your hotel in Aurangabad