How many Buddhist monuments are there in Maharashtra

Aurangabad

Famous for:Ajanta Ellora caves
Shop:Fabrics, silver, semi-precious stones and much more
History of:500 years
Population:11.60 Lac

The ancient city of Aurangabad is in the northern part of the state of Maharashtra in the western region of India. It is 403 kilometers away from Mumbai and is encircled by hills. Situated on the banks of the Kham River, this historic city is famous for its medieval monuments and cultural heritage.

Aurangabad was an important seat of the Mughal Empire for a short period of time. So the city has many monuments, volumes to speak of the grandeur of Mughal architecture. Take a travel trip to the important monument sites at Aurangabad, Bibi-Ka-Maqbara, Panchakki, Himroo Factory and Aurangabad Caves are most important among them. There are many Buddhist, Jain and Hindu temples that are also located in this region. Apart from these historical structures, the city is also famous for its close proximity with world heritage sites of Ajanta and Ellora and for its silk and cotton fabrics.

Main attractions

 

Aurangabad caves
There are 12 Buddhist caves snuggled in the middle of the hills and probably dating back to the 1 A.D. The most important ones are those with tantric influences, which is reflected in the iconography and architectural designs of the caves. Some of these caves show Lord Buddha seated on an intricately carved throne. You can also get beautiful views of the city as well as the imposing Maqbara from this point.

Bibi-Ka-Maqbara
Bibi-Ka-Maqbara was built by Aurangzeb in memory of his wife Rabia-ud-Daurani Begum. This tomb bears some resemblance to the Taj Mahal, which is a major attraction for the tourists who come to this place. The architecture of this tomb, which is surrounded by a garden, is magnificent. You need to purchase an insignificant amount of entry card to enter the Maqbara.

Panchakki
Panchakki is a major attraction of Aurangabad and its literal meaning is water mill. This mill receives its share of the water that travels through an underground canal from a source 6 kilometers away in the mountains. The water is then discharged on to the wheel creating a fascinating waterfall. There is also a garden and fountain with fish-filled tanks adding to the charm of the entire area. Panchakki also has a tomb of the cake of Shah Muzaffar, a Sufi saint who was spiritual advisor to Aurangzeb.

 

Excursions nearby

 

Ajanta caves
The World Heritage Ajanta Caves are one of the few historical and architectural wonders of India. It was accidentally discovered during the 19th century by a group of British officers who were on a tiger hunt. These caves are located deep in the Sahyadri Hills above Waghora. They describe the history of the Lord Buddha religion and Buddhism that prevailed here during 200 BC to 650 AD.

Ellora caves
The Ellora cave temples are regarded as the world heritage sites of India. They are situated just 30 km northwest of Aurangabad. It can be easily reached from the nearby major cities. There are nearly 34 monasteries and temples dating back from 600 to 1000 AD. The temples of Ellora are dedicated to Brahmanism, Jainism and Buddhism. The cave temples here have some superior carvings on the stone depicting legends related to Lord Shiva.

Daulatabad Fort
The exquisite Daulatabad Fort is located just 13 km from Aurangabad on the way to Ellora, makes an excellent travel excursion from Aurangabad. The fort was built during the 12th century by King Bhillama of the Yadav Dynasty. It is situated on a pyramid shaped hill, which here makes it a major attraction. According to the locals here, the Daulatabad fortress was earlier known as "Devgiri". Later the name was changed to Daulatabad by Mohamed Bin Tughlaq, Sultan of Delhi.

Fun festives

 

Ajanta and Ellora festivals

It is the festival of classical dance and music under the backdrop of the Ellora Caves. The festival usually falls in March. The festival showcases best talent from across India. Maharashtra government organizes the festival.

Aurangabad Festival

Aurangabad Festival promotes the rich local culture, talent, arts and heritage of the city. The festival is organized to explore the hidden talents and add vibrancy to this historic city. The festival generally falls in December. The Aurangabad Festival Committee organizes it. The festival has programs that highlight local art, culture and heritage, through classical dance performances, popular songs, folk dances, mushaira, qawalli and ghazals. The festival also features local handlooms and handicrafts such as Paithani Himroo, Bidri, and paperwork. Other attractions include, erotics for senior citizens, traditional ox-cart racing, marathons, inter-school and inter-college competitions, etc.

Paithan appropriate
This festival is celebrated in the months of March or April every year. Pilgrims gather to pay homage to Saint Eknath Maharaj at Paithan on the banks of the Godavari River. The fair runs for 10 days with great enthusiasm.

 

Distance from major cities

Mumbai403 Kms
Pune248 Kms
Nasik237 Kms

 

How to get there

Aurangabad Airport is well connected with Delhi, Mumbai & many major cities of India.
Aurangabad Railway Station is well connected with Hydrabad, Mumbai, Delhi and all the major states & cities of India.
Aurangabad is well connected with major cities of the state by a good network of roads.

Recommended restaurants

  • Windsor Castle Hotel, Aurangabad

  • Tandoor Restaurant & Bar, Aurangabad

  • Ambience Restaurant, Aurangabad

Hotels in Aurangabad

hh - heritage hotel; ph - palace hotel; bra - boutique hotel; gh - guest house; hs - home stay