Monthly Archives for July 2014

9 Lighthouses of Peninsula India

Blog, Destinations - GoroadTrip - July 27, 2014

India being a peninsula naturally boasts of many lighthouses. To feast your eyes on miles of sea and experience stunning views and staggering sea breeze, you have to plan a lighthouse tour. Many of the lighthouses are open for public during the day. A list is run here:

Madras Lighthouse:

Reconstructed by the East Coast Constructions in 1976, the Madras Lighthouse on Marina Beach also runs the meteorological department. It is open to visitors from 2013 and is the only lighthouse in India and one of the few in the world to have an elevator.

Manapad Lighthouse:

Tucked away in the fishing village of Manapad in Tamil Nadu, the Manapad Lighthouse is a pretty vision in red and white. It is situated close to Holy Cross Church where a fragment from the True Cross of Jerusalem is believed to be present. You can enjoy moments of quiet and lovely views from this lighthouse.

Mahabalipuram Lighthouse:

The circular masonry tower, Mahabalipuram lighthouse has been open to tourists since 2011 to look out at the spellbinding Bay of Bengal Sea. It stands next to the oldest lighthouse of India built by the Pallavas around 640 AD which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Pamban Lighthouse:

One of the two lighthouses in Rameshwaram, the Pamban Lighthouse is a black and white striped monument with a bright red top. It is located on the Pambam Island. Encircled with greenery, the lighthouse offers fabulous views of the ocean.

Vizhinjam Lighthouse:

The beach in Kovalam earns its name Lighthouse Beach from this candy striped structure. Called Vizhinjam Lighthouse it is an ancient lighthouse on Kurumkal Hill overlooking rocky terrains, lush greenery and the waves of the Arabian Sea.

Kaup Lighthouse:

Located in Kaup, a small village near Udupi, the Kaup Lighthouse was built in 1901. You can climb up the winding staircase wondering at the marvellous architecture and be greeted by the stunning views of the Arabian Sea and the surrounding landscapes.

Aguada Fort/ Lighthouse:

The Aguada Fort in Goa doubles up as a lighthouse. Built by the Portuguese in the 17th century, the monument holds the lighthouse in its upper segment but is now in disrepair. Still tourists can have their fill of stunning views of the Sinquerim Beach and the Arabian Sea from the top of the fort.

Dwarka Lighthouse:

Located around four kilometres from Dwarka town, the Dwarka Lighthouse is in Rupen Creek. The lighthouse is an uncharacteristic cubical structure with black and white stripes. The captivating panoramic views of Arabian Sea and Dwarka from top make it a must visit.

Minicoy Island Lighthouse:

Built in 1885, this is one of the oldest lighthouses on Minicoy Island, Lakshadweep. It stands at 300 feet and knocks the wind off the tourists with its mesmerizing views. The island can be visited only by Indians.

Do not miss out on these tall monuments whenever you are in coastal India.

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14 Caves of Maharashtra

Blog, Destinations, Heritage & Culture - GoroadTrip - July 13, 2014

Cushioned in the Sahayadri Mountains, Maharashtra is a natural home to numerous rock-cut caves. The caves of Maharashtra are known for their natural formations, exquisite sculpture and splendid architecture. Some of the caves that are popular tourist destinations in Maharashtra are:

Ajanta Caves:

Located in Aurangabad district, the Ajanta Caves are popular for their Buddhists monasteries and temples. These caves are a group of about 30 Buddhist rock-cut caves with magnificent sculptures and wall paintings.

Ellora Caves:

Also in Aurangabad district, the Ellora Caves are monumental. There are about 34 caves with 12 having Buddhist temples, 17 having Hindu temples and 5 Jain. One of the caves with Kailasanatha Temple is revered as the abode of Shiva, Mount Kailash.

Bhaja Caves:

Located near Lonavala near Pune, the Bhaja Caves are a group of about 22 rock cut caves 400 feet above the Bhaja village. A large shrine of Chaityagriha in these caves impresses tourists along with a stupa.

Karla Caves:

The Karla caves on the Pune- Mumbai Highroad near Lonavala are around 40 kilometres from Pune. The caves are one of the earliest examples of rock-cut architecture in Maharashtra.

Lenyadri Caves:

Housing the Ashtavinayak shrine, one of the eight important shrines of Ganesha in Maharashtra, the Lenyadri caves are in Junnar near Pune. The caves are a network of about 30 rock-cut Buddhist caves.

Bedse Caves:

Close to Karla and Bhaja Caves, the Bedse Caves have two main caves called monastery and chaitya. The caves look best in the monsoon with the surrounding lush greenery.

Pataleshwar Caves:

Situated next to the Jangli Maharaj Mandir on Jangli Maharaj Pune Road, the Pataleshwar Caves has the Pataleshwar Temple. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva.

Pandavleni Caves:

Also known as Trirashmi Caves, the Pandavleni Caves are located near Nashik. They are a group of 24 caves representing the Hinayana Buddhist Caves discovered to have been carved in between 3rd century BC and 2nd century AD.

Pithalkhora Caves:

Rooted in the Satamala valley of the Western Ghats, the Pitalkhora Caves are 14 rock-cut caves depicting the earliest example of rock-cut architecture of India.

Elephanta Caves:

Located on the Elephanta Island in Mumbai, The Elephanta Caves are grouped into Buddhists caves and Hindu caves. The rock cut stone sculptures in the caves are simply awesome.

Mahakali Caves:

The Mahakali Caves in Mumbai city are located in the suburbs of Andheri East. They are a group of 19 rock-cut Buddhist monuments.

Kanheri Caves:

Located in Mumbai city in Borivali, the Borivali Caves are within the forests of Sanjay Gandhi National Park. They depict the Buddhist form of art and culture.

Mandapeshwar Caves:

Set in Mumbai city, the Madapeshwar Caves have an 8th century rock-cut shrine for Lord Shiva. The caves are near Mount Poinsur in Borivali suburb.

Jogeshwari Caves:

Yet another Mumbai cave, the Jogeshwari Caves are located in the suburbs of Jogeshwari. The Jogeshwari temple here is one of the earliest and largest Hindu cave temples.

Set out to explore the many caves of Maharashtra within Mumbai and out of it. They interest and fascinate at the same time.

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