Udaygiri N Khandagiri Caves

By Sanjeev Nayyar [email protected] | 2013

3139 Views
Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to Google Plus Share to Google Plus Share to Google Plus Add to Favourites
  • 1
  • /
  • 1

View of Udaygiri (hill of sunrise) caves from top of hill where are Khandagiri (broken hills) caves. The former 18 in nos are main caves, the latter 15 in nos not impressive. Caves primarily used by Jaina Ascetics. Caves were excavated starting 1st century B.C continued till 10-11th century A.D. The caves are essentially dwelling retreats or cells of Jain ascetics.

Board that tells you about caves. Place is about 20 minutes drive from Bhubaneswar. Attracts lots of tourists and many young couples as well.

Udaygiri cave - as you enter there are steps that take you right up, if you go right you see these two caves. Area well maintained with lots of monkeys. Caves are double storey. The majority of these caves originated during the period of Kharvel, when Jaina Dharma was the state religion of Kalinga.

Relief inside Jaya Vijaya Gumpa. In centre of relief is a Bodhi tree. The high sanctity of the tree is represented by an umbrella over it and worshipped by a couple on either side.

Close to it is Chhota Hathi Gumpa - u see elephants adorn entrance to cave on either side.

I now proceeded to top of the hill. Huge open area there full of monkeys, tourists enjoyed feeding the monkeys.

Hathigumpa inscription of Kharewala. There were 3 stone inscriptions, you see part 1 the other two were not readable. Close by is an excavated Apsidal Jaina shrine (2nd century BC).

Next I walked into Ganesha Gumpa. I think the carving tells the story of the development of Basavadatta (a Princess of Ujjayini) with King Udayan of Kausambi in the company of Vasantaka.

In same gumpa warriors on elephant ka relief. Take a Guide better, I did not and perhaps missed a few caves. Went at peak tourist time of 3.30 pm so guide rate was very high Rs 300/ for half an hour.

External view of I think Ganesha gumpa. Notice elephants.

Note entrance to staying area of cave.

We now enter the biggest and popular Rani Gumpa.

Another relief in Rani Gumpa.

External view of Rani Gumpa.

Relief in Rani gumpa. Left image is that of Hanuman. To see pics of Shanti Stupa and 64 Yogini Mandir Click here

Relief - in centre looks like warriors. To see pics of Temples of Bhubaneswar Click here

Warriors with bow and arrow and on horse. To see pics of Sun Temple Konarak Click here

A view of one corner of Rani gumpa - note the young boys and girls. Damaged image on right of pic is that of a Dvarpala. To see pics of Mukteswar Temple Click here

Entrance to dormitory in Rani gumpa. There are two levels one is what you see, the second is what the man is trying to see. To see pics of Ratnagiri Monastery Click here

A sadhu on steps enroute to Khandagiri caves. To see pics of Pattachitra Paintings at Raghurajpur near Puri Click here