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Special Interest Tour of India

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Sanjay Sen
Address: 54/2 Sevagram
Khajuraho-471606 (M.P) India


Ajanta & Ellora Tour

Duration: 5 Night / 6 Days
Destinations: Mumabi - Aurngabad - Ajanta - Ellora - Mumabai

Day 01 Mumabai

On arrival you will be met by our representative & transferred to hotel, where we will be holding the rooms on ready occupancy basis. After traditional welcome check in into hotel.
Overnight stay at Hotel.

Day 02 - Mumabai

Enjoy a full day sightseeing of the city of the dreams. Start your day from the Gateway of India -one of Mumbai's most famous monuments designed by George Wittett in the Indo-Saracenic style with Gujarati and Islamic elements; watch the devotees pay their respects at the Mahalaxmi temple, Sidhi Vinayak Temple , Jain temple and at the tomb of the Muslim saint Haji Ali; see the magic of Indian history and heritage explode at the Prince of Wales Museum; take a undersea walk at the Taraporewala Aquarium and see the magic of the marine life unfold before your eyes. Learn about the Zoroastrian burial rites at the Tower of Silence and see the Christians celebrate their faith at the innumerable churches and cathedrals across the city; important ones being Mount St Mary’s, Aloysius Church, Mahim Church and St Thomas’ Cathedral.
Overnight stay at Hotel.

Day 03: Mumbai/Aurangabad

In the morning, after breakfast we drive to Aurangabad. After checking in the hotel, we visit the Daulatabad Fort - an old Hindu Fort that later became the capital of the Delhi Sultanate and also of many successive dynasties in the Deccan. Important monuments within the fort include the Jami Masjid - now the Bharat Mata Mandir, the Chand Minar, Elephant Tank and Chini Mahal or Chinese Palace; the 18th century Ghrishneshwar Temple- made of spotted red sandstone, decorative friezes and sculpture depict a pantheon of Indian gods including Bhrama, Vishnu, Ganesh, the marriage of Shiva and Parvati, celestial beings, and even Maratha heroes. The temple is an important pilgrimage site for the savities as enshrines a jyotirlinga. We then go on to visit the tomb of Aurangzeb- the last great Mogul, in the village of Khuldabad. His simple tomb remains an eloquent testament to his staunch faith and Spartan lifestyle. As per his instructions, the tomb was built only with the few rupees he had earned by stitching cloth caps! On his tombstone is inscribed in elegant Persian calligraphy: "No marble sheets should shield me from the sky as I lie there one with the earth.” However the most noteworthy is the Bibi-Ka-Maqbara, built by Aurangzeb as a mausoleum to his wife Rabia-ud-Durrani. Similar in style to the Taj Mahal, it is also known as the "Mini Taj" and "The Taj of the Deccan”. Though not as opulent and majestic as the Taj, the Maqbara is nonetheless a living testimony of another king’s love for his wife. The Maqbara stands in the middle of a spacious and formally planned Mughal garden with axial ponds, fountains, water channels, broad pathways and pavilions. and evening back to Hotel.
Overnight stay at Hotel.

Day 04  Ajanta Caves

After breakfast  Ajanta Sightseeing
These monuments dating back from 2nd century BC containing paintings and sculptures are considered masterpieces of the Buddhist Religious arts. The monastic composites of Ajanta consist of Vihara (monastery), Chaitya (worshiping hall) and Stupa (monuments built upon relics of Buddha). The Ajanta caves can be distinguished into two architectural phases, separated from each other by almost four hundred years. The first phase coincides with the older Hinayana school of Buddhist thought where the Buddha was represented in symbols like a throne, a set of footprints or the Stupa. Later, Mahayana sect gave Buddha a human form.

The ancient artists of Ajanta covered the wall with a layer of mud and cow dung mixed with straw as a binding medium. This layer was smoothened by plaster of lime or gypsum. It was upon this that the painters created their worlds of colour. The paintings of Ajanta are different from frescoes. In fresco, paintings were done on moist wall while in Ajanta, the painting were done on dry walls. Another amazing fact about the painting is that they were done in extremely poor light conditions in the caves.

Cave 1:
This was the earliest discovered cave and has no relation to the chronological sequence of the caves. This cave has one of the most elaborate carvings on the facade with relief sculptures on entablature and fridges. There are scenes carved from the life of the Buddha as well as a number of decorative motifs. The sidewalls antechambers are painted with murals showing two important episodes from the Buddha's life. The left wall narrates the story of Gautama being tempted by Mara just before he became the Buddha. The right wall depicts the miracle of Sravasti.

Cave 2:
This cave is the adjoining cave. It is in a better state of preservation though looks similar as Cave. It is known specifically for the paintings that have been preserved on its walls, ceilings, and pillars.

Cave 9:
This cave is one of the oldest and dated back to 1st century BC. This Chaitya has a vaulted ceiling that was originally supported by wooden beams. Some of the paintings have similarities with those of Sanchi, the largest Stupa in India.

Cave 16:
It is one of the most beautiful caves of Ajanta dating back to 475 to 500AD. Its antecedents are recorded on an inscription on the left outer wall. The cave was made for the use ascetic. Varahadeva, a minister of the Vakataka king, Harisena, funded the cave.

Cave 17:
Apart from an elaborately- carved doorway, this cave is especially remarkable for the number of survived murals. The masterpiece is a panel just behind gateway depicting seven Buddhas including Maitreya or the Future Buddha. Directly below the row of Buddhas, is a line of eight couples in different poses of lovemaking. Perhaps the most beautiful of all the paintings of Ajanta is the figure of the dark-skinned apsaras with a turban like headgear.

Cave 26: This cave is larger than cave 17 but is similar in decoration and arrangement. The main attraction is the figure of the Buddha seated in the pralambha-pada position under a pavilion. And Evening Back hotel
Overnight stay at  hotel.

Day 05 : Ellora

After Breakfast Full Day Ellora Sightseeing.

Ellora consists of 34 monasteries and temples, extending over more than 2 km. These monuments date back to 600 to 1000 AD. The 12 Buddhist (caves 1-12), 17 Hindu (caves 13-29) and 5 Jain caves (caves 30-34), built in close proximity, demonstrate the religious tolerance prevalent during this period of Indian history.

The Buddhist caves were the earliest structures, created between the fifth and seventh centuries. These consist mostly of Viharas or monasteries. A few of these caves have shrines and statuettes of Buddha, Bodhisattvas and saints. In many of these caves, sculptors had endeavoured to give the stone the look of wood.

Buddhist Cave 12 or Tin Tala has a relatively plain structure with austere pillars and the sculptured panels are only on the inner walls. Its historical value lies in the fact that human hands shaped a three- storied structure from solid rock with such meticulous skill that even the floors and the ceiling are even and levelled.

Further 2 Kms along the rock-face are the Jain caves, the most recent of the lot, having been excavated between 800-1100AD. Of this Cave 30, the Chhota Kailasa and Cave 32, the Indrasabha cave is the most striking. Chhota Kailasa is a miniaturized version of the stupendous Hindu Kailasa Temple. However, the masterpiece of the Jain caves is the two-storied Indrasabha temple having a huge dhwajastambha (flag cliff) and an elephant statue.
and evening back to Hotel , Overnight stay at  hotel.

Day 06 :  Ellora to Mumbai

After breakfast we drive back to Mumbai