One of the destinations which you come across during in your luxury train journey on board Deccan Odyssey is the 31 rock cut cave monuments collectively known as Ajanta Caves situated in Aurangabad district of Maharashtra. Nestled in an inner fold of the Sahyadri hills, 100 km from Aurangabad lie the world-famous rock-hewn caves of Ajanta. One of the prime reasons for the preservation of these ancient caves has been attributed to their isolation from people and world at large till discovered in early 1800s.
The caves were discovered by John Smith during a hunting trip in 1819. There are total 30 caves in Ajanta, out of which 1, 2, 16 and 17 caves are equipped with ancient paintings. The paintings show heavy religious influence and are centered about Buddha, Bodhisattvas, incidents from the life of Buddha and Jatakas. The caves 9, 10, 19, 26 and 29 are chaitya-grihas and the rest are monasteries. These caves were discovered in 1819 and were built up in the earlier 2nd century.
The most incredible thing about these caves is that they are crafted by hand, with only hammers and chisels. Declared as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO since 1983, the paintings and sculptures of Ajanta, considered masterpieces of Buddhist religious art, have had a great influence in the development of art in India.
For those tourists looking to explore the beauty and heritage of these caves independent of the luxury train journey there are ample provisions to do so. Away from the din of city of Aurangabad and a veritable urban oasis away from the confounding megalopolis Mumbai are nestled luxury 5 star hotel Taj Residency and Lemon Tree. These exclusive properties act as the gateway to the caves of Ajanta and offer a serene refuge in their swish interiors. These and other plush hotels in the vicinity are an ideal launching point for those looking forward to have a pleasant experience of discovering the antiquated jewel of Buddhist architecture.
The gourmet cuisines, graceful interiors fusing together the best of modernity and classical decadence and avant-garde amenities which include fitness centre, rejuvenating spas and business centers equipped with state of the art amenities these hotels are ideal to explore the Ajanta caves. Explore the best of antiquity during your journey to the Ajanta Caves which gracefully convey the aspects of nobility, grace and serenity reminiscent of Buddha himself and his teachings. Visit the website of Indian Luxury Trains to select from an array of package tours to Ajanta and Ellora Caves.