Saturday, April 04, 2015

Ancient Bhaja Caves near Lonavala

After visiting Lohgad fort, I had an hour to spare before my Paragliding activity. As the map suggested that Bhaja caves are nearby, I proceeded to explore it.

Bhaja caves is about 2 kms from Lohgad fort and driving till there was sheer fun. Road got very narrow with hairpin bends, so I was happy to drive. If you're driving in this area be careful about random bikers suddenly appearing from nowhere. Do honk at the turns.

Bhaja caves was visible from a distance, but one has to go closer to get full sense of the beauty of the cave complex. Going closer involves climbing over 100+ steps. It tests your stamina on a hot summer afternoon, particularly if you're coming here after climbing up Lohgad fort.

Bhaja caves is maintained by ASI. There is a Rs 5 ticket per person. No extra charges for camera. Some vendors sell juices and fruits adjacent to the steps. Otherwise, there's no refreshments or washroom facilities around Bhaja caves.

This second century BC cave complex had a main area that housed a Stupa and around it were many smaller caves, which appeared to be sleeping barracks. Most of the caves had rocks carved out in a bed like design.

Below are some pictures of the main attraction at Bhaja caves- The Chaityagrha stupa.

 It is a lot cooler to be inside the caves. It also seem to have fresh water source. There are few other smaller Stupas around the cave, relics of Buddist monks who died here. Wikipedia has more details 

Bhaja caves and Lohgad fort are located amidst very green nature. This should make a very ideal trekking spot post monsoon. Should visit here again. During our visit to this area spotted many individuals asking for lift. Apparently public transportation is very very poor here.  Visit with your vehicles.

Similar: Belum caves * Visiting Lonavala in summer


indu chhibber said...

hese pics are simply stupefying,i must visit this place.Thank you.

R Niranjan Das said...

Nice shots of the caves. Nice to know more about these caves.

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Thanks Indu and Niranjan

ladyfi said...

Lovely shots of this amazing place!

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Thank You!

Indrani said...

I stayed in Poona for 4 months but missed going to Lonavala. Regret it a lot now.
Great pics.

Shrinidhi Hande said...

@indrani: Do visit next time