Kanheri Caves: The Hidden Gem Near Mumbai

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By Aapt Dubey

Kanheri Caves: The Hidden Gem Near Mumbai

Kanheri Caves is a green and airy tourist site located on the outskirts of Mumbai, away from the bustle of the city. This tranquil cave complex is located on a hill and is accessible through steps carved out of the rock. Over time, the Kanheri Caves complex was constructed. There are 109 caves in this complex, the earliest of which dates to the first century BC. Compared to the subsequent caves, they are rather plain.

The Architecture of Kanheri Caves:

The Kanheri caves’ architecture is not exceptionally ornate. It is very obvious. However, the characteristics of every cave are unique. An incomplete chaitya-griha is Cave 1. It has two floors. The shape of Cave 2 resembles a big assembly hall. Buddha images are carved into the walls, and it has three stupas.

The largest and most famous of the Kanheri caves is Cave 3. The entrance and courtyard are separated by a skillfully constructed screen. In addition to a sizable Buddha statue at the entrance, this chaitya-griha contains tall pillars, a stupa, and a stupa at one end. The Buddhist monastery once included these three caves and several neighboring caves.

Most of the caverns also have drains that may collect and hold rainfall. There are several Brahmi, Devanagari, and Pahlavi inscriptions in the caverns.

History of Kanheri Caves:

The newest caverns were discovered around the eleventh century BC. For the most part, these were Buddhist monasteries. A stone platform may be found inside each cave, despite the fact that the caves are constructed in a variety of designs.

In the past, the Kanheri Caves served as a Buddhist monastery as well as a place of worship, learning, and meditation. You must go through the lush, green forests of the Sanjay Gandhi National Park to get to the caves, which are situated there.

Although the majority of the inscriptions are still unintelligible, it is thought that the earliest excavations started in the first or second century BCE. The stupas’ vast hall suggests that the caves were significant as Buddhist temples and that the location was crucial in the development of Buddhism throughout India.

Kanheri Caves Entry Fee:

Within the boundaries of Sanjay Gandhi National Park is the cave complex. Tourists can visit it every day but Monday. Kanheri Caves are open for admission from 7:30 am to 5:00 pm. Kanheri Caves’ entrance price is Rs. 15, Rs. 200 for foreign visitors.

Best time to visit Kanheri Caves:

Despite the fact that Kanheri Caverns are open all year, just cold weather conditions is great for a little while. Subsequently, the best chance to visit this vacation spot is throughout the colder time of year, from November to February. The path is adequately dry and the temperature is cool for you to stroll around the caves easily.

You can likewise go during the rainstorm season, from July to September, when temperatures in Mumbai are moderate. The scene is at its lushest, and little springs close by are overflowing with water. Yet, even shakes can be tricky. In this way, it probably won’t be the best plan to investigate Kanheri Caverns during the stormy season.

Kanheri Caves Visiting Timings:

You should plan on spending two to three hours seeing this collection of Buddhist caves. However, it would take you an additional two to three hours to hike from the national park’s entrance to the caverns. You would need an hour to walk to Kanheri Caves and an additional hour to walk back.