The Best of Ellora Caves – Kailash or Cave # 16

After visiting Ellora, the first thing you will see is cave number 16. It is also know by the name Kailash. It is located diagonally opposite to the parking lot.

Entrance fees:

Indian, SAARC and BIMSTEC countries: Rs 10

Others: US $ 5 or Rs 250 INR

Children upto 15 years free

At the entrance

After buying tickets, walked around a small garden and reached the entrance of Kailash. It was wonder to see how people then carved such a beautifully designed temple
out of a single rock. Cave # 16 was caved upside down and it was no less an engineering feat. Both sides of the wall had beautifully carved idols. Following the entrance, if you take left or right you will come out under the sky. Yes, they have kept openings so that sunlight can reach. On the right side, the first thing you will see is a majestic elephant whose trunk is missing now. Likewise, I saw many items which were disfigured. This could be as a result of various invasions during the medieval period. The next item, my eyes moved on to was a small tower (jajasstambha). It is carved with intricate design.

At the center of the cave is the temple of lord Shiva. Around it is a U shaped opening towards the sky. On the face of the rock inside, a nice walkway has been created. The walkway has nicely carved pillars on one side and beautifully carved idols on the other side. The walls of the rock has some hollow spaces at some places.

Description of Ramayana

To see the temple, one has to reach the opening from the entrance and now walk on the other side. One has to climb some steps. The temple is located on the first floor. I saw a lit lamp and some flowers which lead me to think that, here still prayers are offered to lord Shiva. Please note, one has to open their shoes to enter the temple sanctum. On the side, if you walk, you will see a big opening in the rock, which is more like a window. On both side, if you go, you will reach out to a terrace. This two beautiful places gives a nice view of the cave and its design. I would suggest, if you can climb the rock and you see the temple from the top. That is an amazing view!

Cave # 16 is the best of Ellora caves. This is Indian stone art exemplified! Words are probably not crafted enough to describe it.

Read more about the intricate details of cave # 16 at ASI website.

To view more picture of Ellora caves visit, Travelingbeats Photo Gallery.

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