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Ajanta
Deep in the semi-arid hills of the Deccan, lie the rock-cut caves of AJANTA. It was only in the 19th century, that the Ajanta group of caves, lying deep within the Sahyadri hills, buried deep under a blanket of creepers and jungle, cut into the curved mountain side, above the Waghora river, were discovered.
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Many of the caves house panels depicting stories from the Jatakas, a rich mine of tales of the several incarnations of the Buddha. Images of nymphs and princesses amongst others, are also elaborately portrayed. The 29 caves were built as secluded retreats of the Buddhist monks, who taught and performed rituals in the Chaityas and Viharas. Using simple tools like hammer and chisel, the monks carved out the impressive figures adorning the walls of these structures. Exquisite wall paintings and sculptures speak volumes of the India of yore.
 
About Ajanta
Cave 1 houses some of the most well - preserved wall paintings which include two great Boddhisattvas, Padmapani and Avalokiteshvara. Caves 2 , 16 and 17 also contain amazing paintings, while Caves 1, 4, 17, 19, 24 and 26 boast of some of the most divine sculptures. The flying 'apsara' of Cave 17, and the image of Buddha preaching in Cave 17, are a couple of unforgettable works of art. The Ajanta caves and the treasures they house, are a landmark in the overall development of Buddhism as such.
 
The famous Ajanta and Ellora caves are located near the city of Aurangabad in Maharashtra. The cave shrines were all cut out of rock, by hand, and rank amongst some of the most outstanding specimens of ancient Indian architectural heritage. The 34 caves at Ellora and the 29 caves at Ajanta, were remained shrouded in obscurity for over a millennium, till John Smith, a British Army Officer, accidentally stumbled upon them while on a hunting expedition in 1819. The view point from where John Smith first glimpsed the caves, provides a magnificent sight of the U-Shaped gorge and its scenic surroundings.

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