4 Caves In Mumbai To Explore When In The Maximum City

Beyond the regular tourist destinations like the Gateway Of India, and museums, these caves in Mumbai offer an unparalleled view into the history and heritage of the city.

Published On Nov 23, 2023 | Updated On Feb 21, 2024

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The city of dreams, Mumbai, is a beautiful tourist destination. The city is perfect for a vacation with its authentic Maharashtrian cuisine, beaches, the Gateway of India, and other attractions. However, the sea and beaches are not all that Mumbai offers. Multiple caves in Mumbai have stood tall for hundreds of years and now welcome visitors to witness the grandeur of times gone by. With intricate carvings and paintings, Mumbai caves are a rich reserve of artistic, historical, cultural, and natural marvels.

Some of these caves in the Mumbai Sea and in and around the city have been declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites. These majestic caves with complex structures also serve as trekking spots for adventure seekers. Here is a detailed account of caves in Mumbai that you cannot miss.

Here are some Mumbai caves you must add to your itinerary 

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The Elephanta Caves Gharapuri, Mumbai are a known UNESCO World Heritage Site boasting of rock-cut art and architecture from the Indian medieval era. Located on the Gharapuri island, the Elephanta Caves that we know today are but ruins of once celebrated and elaborately painted artworks. The caves are accessible via an hour-long ferry ride from the Gate of India and give an excellent view of the Mumbai skyline. The caves are open for visitors on all days except Mondays.
Location: Gharapuri, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra
Entry fee: Rs 10 per person for SAARC, Myanmar, and Thailand citizens, Rs 250 for foreigners
Timings: 9:00 am to 5:30 pm
How to reach: Take the hour-long ferry ride from the Gateway of India, Mumbai, to reach Elephanta Caves

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The hundreds of years old Mahakali Caves or Kondivita Caves are in Andheri, Mumbai. A total of 19 rock-cut monuments comprise these majestic caves. Built between the 1st and 6th centuries, the Mahakali Caves house figures and stupas of the Buddha figures and stupas along with Buddha carvings on the rocks. An archaeological treasure, these caves are very well-maintained and serene. Although the caves are prone to weathering (owing to the volcanic rocks forming the cave) and have decayed over time, the walls still preserve parts of scriptures engraved in Pali that are a testament to ancient Buddhist mythology.
Location: Sunder Nagar, Andheri East, Mumbai, Maharashtra
Entry fee: Rs 10 per person for Indian, SAARC, Myanmar, Thailand citizens, and Rs 250 for foreigners
Timings: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
How to reach: Take a train to Andheri; the caves are 6 km from the station. From Andheri, take the line bus no 333 to reach Mahakali Caves

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Situated within the Sanjay Gandhi National Park in Borivali, Mumbai, the Kanheri Caves are a group of grand rock-cut monuments. The Buddhist influence on Indian culture and art is prominent in the paintings at the Kanheri Caves. The ancient carvings, sculptures, inscriptions (dating back to the 1st-10th centuries), and the 109 special entrances make these caves stand out. The intricate work in the Borivali Kanheri Caves hints at the years of strenuous craftsmanship it must have taken to erect these beautiful rock-cut caves that are now a beautiful tourist attraction.
Location: Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Mumbai, Maharashtra
Entry fee: Rs 5 per person for Indians, and Rs 250 for foreigners
Timings: 7:30 am to 5:00 pm
How to reach: Take a train to Borivali, and then the Kanheri Caves are a 10-minute walk away

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Jogeshwari Caves are located in the heart of Mumbai and can be reached easily from the Jogeshwari or Goregaon stations. These caves are among the oldest and largest Indian cave temples and date back to the 6th century. The Jogeshwari Caves contain several Hindu and Buddhist sculptures. The caves also house temples of deities such as Lord Shiva, Lord Hanuman, Lord Ganesha, and Goddess Jogeshwari. The pristine architectural beauty and rich history of the caves instantly fascinate spectators. Owing to the tropical weather, the best time to visit the Jogeshwari Caves is from October to mid-April.
Location: Gupha Tekdi, Jogeshwari West, Mumbai, Maharashtra
Entry fee: Rs 15 per person for Indians, and Rs 200 for foreigners
Timings: 6:00 am to 6:00 pm
How to reach: Take a train to either Jogeshwari or Goregaon. The Jogeshwari Caves are 3 km from Jogeshwari station & 4 km from Goregaon Station.

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While not in Mumbai, the renowned Ellora Caves in Maharashtra are a treasured UNESCO heritage site and a must-visit if you’re in the state. The caves fall under the Aurangabad district, 350 km from Mumbai city. It takes about 8-10 hours by road to reach Aurangabad from Mumbai; you could also take a flight or train to Aurangabad. Ellora Caves is known for its sheer artistic brilliance that beautifully captures the essence of the guiding principles of three religions: Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism. Standing strong from centuries on a 2 km stretch, these caves exhibit intricate carvings on rock. One of the world’s largest ancient rock-cut cave temples, Ellora is a true testament to the creative spirit and deep religious sentiments ingrained in the rulers and artisans of ancient India. If you enjoy nature trails that let you witness the grandeur of the past, visiting the Ellora Caves will delight you.
Location: Ellora Cave Road, Ellora, Aurangabad, Maharashtra
Entry fee: Rs 40 per person for Indian, SAARC & BIMSTEC citizens & Rs 600 for foreigners
Timings: 8:00 am to 5:30 pm
How to reach: Take a flight or train to Aurangabad. The Ellora Caves are 27 km from the Aurangabad bus stand and 35 km from the airport. Buses ply on the route, so you can easily take a bus to the caves


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