India is known for its historical heritage. The rock caves of India contribute a lot to the cultural and historical heritage of the region. It also shows the influence of religious practices in that particular region. But not all of the rock caves in India are known to the citizens.
We have heard of the Ellora and the Ajanta caves, the Bhimbetka caves, and the Badami caves, but there are more magnificent rock caves which can marvel any traveler with its architectural wonders.
- 1 Here is a list of lesser known yet beautiful rock caves in India:
- 1.1 1) Saspol Caves, Ladakh
- 1.2 2) Bedse Caves, Pune
- 1.3 3) Dungeshwari Cave Temples, Bihar
- 1.4 4) Mawsmai Caves, Meghalaya
- 1.5 5) Jogimara and Sita Bengra Caves, Chhattisgarh
- 1.6 The caves are adorned with the inscriptions and images from the ancient times.
- 1.7 The rock caves in India are the hidden gems for travelers who have a passion for history and archaeology. If you are an ardent traveler, do visit these caves the next time.
Here is a list of lesser known yet beautiful rock caves in India:
1) Saspol Caves, Ladakh
Located in the Saspol hills of Ladakh in Kashmir, the Saspol rock caves are on of the lesser known rock caves in India. These rock caves date back to 15th century AD and depicts Buddhist cave paintaings. The saspol caves have five temples, but only in two, we can explicitly see the Buddhist cave paintings depicting the tantric sect of Buddhism. The rest cave paintaings are in ruins. Currently, the caves are under restoration and under the adminstration of Likr Monastery.
2) Bedse Caves, Pune
Located in the Maval taluka of Pune district, the BEdse caves have been carved out of the hills in the Sahyadri range. The are the lesser known Buddhist rock caves in Maharashtra which dates back to the 1st century BC. The caves were built under the rule of the Satvahana dynasty. There are two main caves with 11 smaller caves.
The caves face the eastern side so that the beautiful sculptures are adorned with rays of the sun. THe 7th cave has the chaitya or the prayer hall. This has a verandah adorned with intricated columns of animal sculptures, while the walls are decorated with latic e work. THe vihara in cave 11 has vaulted roofs.
3) Dungeshwari Cave Temples, Bihar
Located 12 km from the sacred town of Bodh Gaya, the dungeshwari cave Temples are lesser known Buddhist shrines in India. In these cave temples, Buddha supposedly meditated, and while attaining enlightenment, he became fatigued and was offered food by a poor woman named Sujata.
After which he learnt that near extreme self-torture or self-indulgence leads the way to the path of enlightenment. there needs to be a balance, and this subtle balance is called nirvana. There are two shrines which showcase a golden statue of buddha in penance , and the other depicts a large Buddhist statue. The caves have a tranquil atmosphere and there is also a idol of the Hindu goddess Dungeshwari inside the cave.
4) Mawsmai Caves, Meghalaya
The rock caves are one ofthe natural caves located near the Bangladesh border. It is lesser known, but it is worth a visit as it offers adventure in its natural geographical location. The caves are lighted and the stalgamite formations add to its beauty. The caves are roomy with broad passages and entrances but has narrow and tiny exits where one has to crawl their way out.
5) Jogimara and Sita Bengra Caves, Chhattisgarh
Located in the Sarguja district in Chhattisgarh, these caves have a beautiful natural environment adjacent to its location. To reach the caves, one has to pass through a natural tunnel, known as Hathipol. According to mythologies, the caves became a residence for Ram, sita, and Lakxman during their period of exiles.