15 Must Visit Caves in India

India is known for the ancient monuments and palaces that is a great tourist attraction for many all over the country and the world. It tells of the rich history and the art of the old times. The caves in India are significant in ancient history and depict various scenes thereby showing the history of India on caves.

Here are the top 15 must visit caves in India starting from highest popularity.

1. Ajanta And Ellora Caves, Maharashtra

Many domestic and international tourists visit these amazing caves with fine sculptures and carvings. This is approved as a UNESCO world heritage site. If you would like to see huge and massive images of carvings in the shape of birds, humans, and devils then visit the Buddhist caves where you can also find Kailash Temple and the Maitreya Buddha. These are Jain, Buddha and Hindu rock carvings in the caves. Here are the 5 Places to Visit in Maharashtra in November.

Visitor Information

Entry Fee: 

Domestic – 10/-
International – 250/-

Timings:

9.30 am – 5.30 pm
Closed on Monday

Duration:

1.5 – 3 hours

Other Info:

Cam Fee: Rs. 25/-

Ideal for Photo Enthusiast & History Buffs & Families

Ajanta and Ellora Caves

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2. Elephanta Caves, Maharashtra

These are some of the oldest caves in Western India situated less than 10 kilometers from the coast. You have to take a ferry ride for 20 – 30 min on the Arabian Sea water to reach the caves popularly known as Gharapuri Caves.

Find various forms of Shiva in Kalyanasundara, Vamadeva, Andhakasura Vadha, Nataraja, and Sapta Matrikas. The history and heritage is preserved in great aesthetics in the green environment. You have to visit this at least once in your lifetime and must see these caves if visiting Maharashtra.

If you are planning to visit Elephanta caves, travel through the luxury train of India such as Deccan Odyssey which start and end their journey from Mumbai.

Know more about the Deccan Odyssey:

Visitor Information

Entry Fee

Domestic – 10/-
International – 250/-

Timings:

9.00 am – 5.00 pm
Closed on Monday

Duration:

1.5 – 3 hours
Great place for Nature Enthusiast, History Buffs, Families & friends

Elephanta Caves

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3. Krem Liat Prah, Meghalaya

These dark and massive cave network situated in the Shnong Rim Ridge is very popular with trekkers, archaeological interested people and nature enthusiasts. Meghalaya Tourism holds camping accommodation and generally there are 2 – 3 weeks cave touring programs.

Even transport like taxi or bus pick up from Shillong is organized by them. The massive passage way that is famous among holidaymakers is the Airport Hanger here.

Krem Liat Prah

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4. Mawsmai Cave, Meghalaya

Cherrapunjee is a place in Meghalaya with interesting places for tourists and adventure seekers. Here, the natural caves called Mawsmai near the village has formations of limestone, stalagmite and stalactite formations naturally.

However, it is lighted up and people must walk on all fours (crawl on your knees) to go through such a narrow passage. If you’re searching for a new experience, then try exploring these caves!

Visitor Information

Entry Fee: Rs. 20/-

Timings:

9.30 am – 5.30 pm

Duration:

1.5 – 2.5 hours

Open all Days

Other Info:

  • Ideal for New Experience Seekers & History Buffs.
  • Timings different on Special Days & Important days
  • There is NO specific Fee or Entry Timings. Nominal Fee & Day Timings.

Mawsmai Cave, Meghalaya

5. Bhimbetka Caves, Madhya Pradesh

This world heritage site is approved by UNESCO and is situated in a very famous wildlife reserve called Ratapani Wildlife Sanctuary. So, if you’re in Madhya Pradesh then do visit the rocky Bhimbetka caves with huge and small wall carvings. These wall paintings show scenes from the ancient prehistoric times with habits and lifestyles dating back to the Stone Age.

Visitor Information

Entry Fee:

Varies from Rs. 10/- to Rs.100/-

Timings:

7:00 am – 6:00 pm

Duration:

1.5 – 2.5 hours
Open all Days

Other Info:

  • Mini Bus Fee: Varies from Rs.100/- to Rs.400/-
  • Ideal for New Experience Seekers, History Buffs, Families and friends.

Bhimbetka Caves

6. Koteshwar Temple Cave, Uttarakhand

This religious cave has a historic ancient significance. It is believed that Lord Shiv has stopped here to meditate when he was on pilgrimage to Kedarnath. The cave is complete with thick greenery and nature. It is also situated on a scenic place which is the river bank of Alaknanda of Rudra Prayag. There are other nearby Waterfalls to look out for when visiting this ancient Cave Temple in Uttarakhand.

Visitor Information

There is no entry fee & it is open from sunrise to sunset.

Koteshwar Temple Cave, Uttarakhand

7. Jogimara and Sita Bengra Caves

These caves are some of the oldest caves in India with carvings dating back to 4th – 5th century. The entrance is through a long passage in a thick jungle called ‘Hatipol’ and measures 55 meters long. It is said that the Sita Bengra Caves has huge rock carvings and looks like a rock art performance stage for the then rulers.

There is a seating arrangement for around roughly 50 people and there is something like a performance center below. The Jogimara also seems like a rest home for the visitors / workers in this theater place. Some visitors say it is known as a miracle place.

Jogimara and Sita Bengra Caves

8. Badami Caves, Karnataka

These huge caves with architecture of Badami Chalukya style dates back to rulers from Chalukya Dynasty. It is situated in a town called Badami and include Buddhist, Jain and Hindu caves.

This capital region of Chalukya Dynasty was once known as Vaatapi Badami and has rock carved inscriptions in Kannada language dating back to the sixth century. This is the most famous tourist sites in Karnataka.

Visitor Information:

Entry Fee:

Domestic – 10/-
International – 100/-

Timings:

9.00 am – 5.30 pm

Duration:

2 – 3 hours

Other Info:

  • Strictly NO Photography Permitted
  • Great place for History Buffs, Families & Spiritual Seekers

Badami Caves, Karnataka

9. Undavalli Caves, Andhra Pradesh

These caves have awe striking sculptures of various architecture including figures of Gods like Vishnu, Shiv, Brahma, and Buddhist sculptures done in sandstone. The Undavalli Caves are also famous for the massive sculpture of the reclined Lord Vishnu.

Most of these ancient caves are all significant to the Vishukundin Rule. Visitors see great craftsmanship and art with grace.

Visitor Information

Entry Fee:

Nominal Fee

Timings:

9.00 am – 6.00 pm
Open all Days

Duration:

2 – 3 hours

10. Varaha Caves, Tamil Nadu

These caves in the Southern region called Mamallapuram have intricate carvature of the Pallava rule. This is registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and have designs and depictions of both Buddhist and Dravidan sculptures.

There are extraordinary carvings of Lord Varaha and his wife Bhumi in these caves. The Varaha Caves are one of the top South Indian tourist spots with historical caves and is open for visiting from sunrise to sunset.

Varaha Caves

11. Belum Caves, Andhra Pradesh

These caves are one of the lengthy caves and largest caves in the whole country. They are made naturally by the flowing stream and hence it attracts many tourists. However, from the total 4 km long stretch of rock caves tourists can only go up to 1.5 km for visit.

These amazing underground caves are a must – see for anybody traveling to South India as it is situated in the Kurnool district.

Visitor Information

Entry Fee:

Varies from Rs. 50/- to Rs. 100/-

Timings:

10.00 am – 5.00 pm
Open all Days

Duration:

2 – 3 hours

Belum Caves, Andhra Pradesh

12. Udayagiri and Khandagiri Caves, Orissa

These ancient caves depict the great craftsmanship in the artistic rock carvings of Jainism heritage. They are situated on outskirts of Bhuvaneshwar and Udaygiri is on top of the Sunrise Hill. The point of attractions here are Tiger’s Mouth & Queen Palace caves.

The Khandagiri caves consist of shelters of Jains in 15 different sections. One of the most famous caves from this collection is the Cave -3 called Ananta Cave. Look out for various sculptures ranging from humans like athletes and women to animals & birds like elephants and Geese with Flowers.

Visitor Information

Entry Fee:

Varies from Rs. 15/- to Rs. 200/-

Timings:

8.00 am – 5.00 pm
Open all Days

Duration:

2 – 3 hours

Udayagiri and Khandagiri Caves, Orissa

13. Bagh Caves, Madhya Pradesh

These caves are situated on the Baghani river banks and the block Vindhyas Mountain Ranges in Dhar district of Madhya Pradesh. There are total nine caves of which five open. Dakata, the Buddhist monk started the caves with murals and paintings dating back to 4th – 6th cntury AD.

Lime priming was put over mud plaster ceiling and wall paintings. Other quick paint mix that dried fast is Tempera method. Entry fee is nominal but varies for various visitors and it is open 24 hrs. of the day.

Bagh Caves, Madhya Pradesh

14. Tabo Caves, Himachal Pradesh

These groups of caves are carved out of several smaller hills and it is situated in village of Tabo which is also a uprise hill type land. It is believed that Buddhist monks used these caves for spiritual reasons like meditation and also as a winter place in the caves.

It looks like dwelling place in the caves and meetings in the halls that still have flags of different colors. Tobo Caves over the Tabo Monastery in Spiti Valley with backdrop of picturesque Himalayan range and are a must – see in North India.

Visitor Information

Timings:

6.00 am – 6.00 pm
Open all Days

Duration:

1/2 – 2 hours

Tabo Caves, Himachal Pradesh

15. Trichy Rock Fort Temple, Tamil Nadu

This famous Rock Fort on top of the hill is a famous cave temple in Tamil Nadu. It consists of Lower Cave and Upper Cave temples and was first built by Pallavas and later got contribution from Chola, Nayaks Dynasty rulers, however unfinished. The eastern part of the temple has Shiva carved shrine and western has Vishnu shrine.

Although the rock cuttings resemble the carvings in Pechipalai cave temples and Perumal Temple at Thiruvellarai, the Lower Cave temple in Trichy Rock Fort have pillars that are not found in any other temple in Tamil Nadu. Entry fee is nominal and timings depends on temple puja.

Trichy Rock Fort Temple, Tamil Nadu

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