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Explore the Karla Caves near Lonavala

Written By: Brunda Nagaraj

Pune is one of the most happening places and a destination that hugs and kisses its travellers. With a list of attractions this place is an awesome get away for a rejuvenating experience. You name it and you get it; that's the charm of the city Pune and I bet it's not an exaggeration at all.

This city is known for some of the best forts and temples but, this place is also known for some of the mesmerizing caves that would leave you awe-stuck for sure.
Why don't we go and explore one of those caves in Pune when we plan our visit to the great "Land of Marathas".

Explore the Karla Caves near Lonavala

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Karla caves, located at an approximate distance of 59km from Pune is a must-visit site for every traveller. These caves are located near Lonavala in a place called Karli. These caves were built during 2nd to 5th century BC and the oldest cave here dates back to 160 BC. These rock-cut caves served as a complex of Indian-Buddhist shrines during that period.

These caves were initially said to have been associated with the Buddhism religion and later on with Hinduism. These caves also has a Buddhist monastery that dates back to 2nd century BC. That monastery that had two mt grand pillars then now only has one of them remaining and the other part being dedicated to the goddess Ekveera. The prime deity of the Koli sect of Mumbai.

Explore the Karla Caves near Lonavala

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Design and architecture of the caves

Built on a rocky hillside, there are large cut windows that serves as the source of the light within the interior. The major design elements that you get to see inside the caves are those of lions and elephants and the Chaityas present here are the largest rock-cut ones in India. There are also dwelling caves separately built for the monks within the caves and there are vaulted interiors which are part of the design element. You would also get to see the Ashoka Pillar and the central motif has a horseshoe arch.

You may not be allowed to explore the entire caves as landslides have been reported in the recent past. There is an entry fee of INR 5/- per person and the caves are opened from morning 9 AM to 5 PM on all days of the week.

Do not forget to visit this ancient caves during your next trip to Pune!

Read more about: travel, caves, pune, maharashtra
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