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Old 20th February 2008, 18:54   #1
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Default Help for Ajanta Ellora Trip

hi friends

i am planning a trip to Ajanta/Ellora. can you please guide me about the decent places of accomodatiom. my criteria would be a decent ac room and some place where i can get vegetarian meals.

also if you could help me with nearby places to visit.

Help would be highly appreciated.

Thanks

Mansi
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Old 20th February 2008, 21:55   #2
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I visited Ajantha/ Ellora 2 years back. Stayed at Aurangabad and visited the places from there. Dont remember the hotel name, It was near bus stand and there are decent Veg hotels around.
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Old 20th February 2008, 22:57   #3
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Ideal circuit would be Aurangabad-Daulatabad-Ellora-Grishneshwar-Aurangabad-Ajanta-Aurangabad.

From Bombay, you have 2 routes: the first is via Nashik, Niphad, Kopargaon to Aurangabad. The second (preferred if you leave early by, say, 5 am) is via Pune Expressway till Talegaon, Chakan, Ranjangaon, Ahmedanagar and Aurangabad.

Either route, it should take you 6-8 hours without counting time for stops.

Both roads are good although the second route may be faster, and you do not have teh tension of driving on teh high-traffic Bombay-Nashik road. Plus, since you live in New Bombay, it is easier for you to get onto Pune Expressway than come all the way to Thane to join NH3 to Nashik.

I would prefer to stay at Aurangabad (100 kms from Ajanta) because you have a wider choice of accomodation. My favourite is MTDC which is very close to the railway station. I think there is another MTDC at Ajanta also. Allow for 1 day trip to Ajanta and back/. You can cover Daulatabad, Ellora and Grishneshwar in 1 day, plus you will still have time to spare to look around Aurangabad (Bibi ka Maqbool).

In case you have one more day to spare, or prefer to stay at Ajanta, you could drive to Lonar Lake (largest meteorite lake in India, and world's biggest on basalt rock) which is closer to Ajanta via Buldhana (you can return to Aurangabad via Sindkhed Raja and Jalna). There is also another MTDC at Lonar Lake which is an excellent place to stay.
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Old 20th February 2008, 23:17   #4
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At Aurangabad, please avoid Hotel President Park. That is the worst hotel I ever stayed at, their service was worse than the facilities and food.
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Old 1st March 2008, 16:46   #5
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Default hi again

hi all , this time we have finalised our trip for ganapati pule and so can i please get your help to plan to route. which is the best route to take. what would be the approximate time to travel from mumbai to ganapatipule and how r the road conditions.

your help would be appreciated . btw we are leaving on march 7th. so i need to prepare the route beforehand.

Thanks

Mansi

P.s Mods can you pls change the title of the thread.
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Old 1st March 2008, 18:02   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manaa45 View Post
hi all , this time we have finalised our trip for ganapati pule and so can i please get your help to plan to route. which is the best route to take. what would be the approximate time to travel from mumbai to ganapatipule and how r the road conditions.

.
Mansi,

From New Bombay, take the road to Panvel and turn off into the Goa road (NH17) and go via Pen, Vadgal Phata, Kolad, Managaon, Mahad, Khed, Chiplun.

It is 308 kms from Kalamboli (where the Pune expressway begins) to Nevali, where you have to turn off NH17, this spot is 79 kms after Chiplun, and 4 kms before Hathkamba, turn right (there are sign boards at this point). From Nevali, Ganapatipule is 31 kms. Please remember to turn off left on this road at Chafe which is 20 kms from Nevali.

Road conditions are excellent, facilities good. Assuming that you are able to cruise consistently at 100 kmph, you should reach 6-7 hours, add time for halts. If you leave Bombat by 6 am, you should be there by tea time after 1 hour break for lunch. Chiplun is an ideal place to stop for lunch.
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Old 15th October 2009, 12:11   #7
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Default Trip to Ajanta and Ellora from Mumbai

Guys!

I'm planning for a trip to Ajanta and Ellora from Mumbai. Could anybody suggest me a comfortable rout to drive and interesting places to visit. I'm planning to start on Saturday early morning and comeback by Monday evening.

Last edited by Jaggu : 15th October 2009 at 12:22. Reason: Please use search before opening a new thread, Thanks
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Old 15th October 2009, 13:54   #8
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Best route is Bombay-Pune Expressway-Somathane Exit-Talegaon-Chakan-Shikarpur-Ahmednagar-Aurangabad, which is 375 kms from New Bombay Vashi.

You can trace this return (in reverse order) in the following log book:
H V Kumar - Driving Log Books - KUMAR's DRIVING LOG BOOKS, Bombay to Chattisgarh via Bangalore & Hyderabad, Sep 2008

You can check out a Aurangabad trip profile in the following log book:
H V Kumar - Driving Log Books - KUMAR'S DRIVING LOG BOOKS Bombay to Shivneri, Aurangabad, Ellora, Ajanta, Lonar, Aug 2003

During the above trip, I went via Kalyan, Malshej Ghat, Shivneri to Aurangabad. From Aurangabad, I covered Ellora, Grishneshwar, Ajanta and Lonar.

I returned via Nashik, which is also an alternative route, especially since Nashik-Bombay road is also mostly 4-laned.
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Old 16th October 2009, 12:53   #9
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Just some info from my side:

For Ajanta & Ellora trip, best thing is to stay in Aurangabad. HVKUMAR Sir has already provided the details. I might just add a tiny bit.

Stay:
Aurangabad: One can stay at MTDC resort at Station road. It is not fantastic but for the price, its a decent place. Bathrooms are very clean. Geysers for hot water. Booking can be made online too (but I received error many times). But you can check out room rates and other details at MAHARASHTRA TOURISM, The Official Website of Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation, Govt. of India.

Eat:
The MTDC resort has an in-house restaurant. It is not that good. Rates are not VFM. I HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend Hotel Swad (if you step out of MTDC resort gate, with your back to the resort, Hotel Swad is on the left hand side. 5 or 10 mins walk). They have fixed Thali food. Rs.100. Trust me, it is UNBELIEVABLY good. The food is unlimited and totally a must visit place.

There is a restaurant at Ajanta that is run by MTDC. Though food is average, the staff there are unbelievably rude. But there is no other option but to have lunch there as there are no other good restaurants.

Visit:
Ajanta Caves are closed on Mondays and Ellora caves are closed on Tuesdays. So plan your visit accordingly.

Ajanta: Regular vehicles are not allowed near Ajanta caves. One has to take the designated Government bus from parking lot till the caves (5 minutes ride) You have to park your vehicle at a parking lot and ask for bus stop. It is a few minutes walk through a pathway (either side of pathway filled with shops selling souvenirs and snacks). At the bus stop, one has to purchase tickets for the bus (they are shuttle buses so very frequent). A/c and Non-A/c buses are available. Once you get down near the caves, there is a ticket counter on the right hand side. Get tickets for yourself and any camera. Then you have to climb a few steps till you reach the caves itself. Use of Flash light is prohibited inside the caves. They have arranged Fibre optic lighting but unless you have a tripod, photos will be blur. If opting for a guide, chose someone who can speak legibly. Carry of plenty of water and wear a hat. Once you have visited all the caves, you can check out the stream of water (is it a river?) below the caves. There are chances of waste fellows hanging around so be careful.

Ellora: On the way to Ellora, you can visit Daulatabad Fort. And Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga temple is just ahead of Ellora. At the entrance gate, you can take tickets for yourself. No fee for taking vehicles inside (if driver is not visiting the caves, no need of ticket for him). Unlike Ajanta, the caves in Ellora or not next to each other but spread across a considerable distance. So you either need a vehicle or you can take the Autorickshaw guides. I think in Cave 25 or something, there is an amazing waterfall. If you are carefull, you can trek on-top of the cave to the mouth of the waterfall. It is amazing. And highlight is the Kailash Temple.

After visiting Ellora caves, you can visit Bibi Ka Maqbara, which is in Aurangabad city itself. You need half an hour or less at Bibi Ka Maqbara.

Enjoy!
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Old 16th October 2009, 13:01   #10
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In addition to the excellent info from Ashwin, I may add that you must visit the Ajanta View Point, which is just before you reach Ajanta. It is a small detour off the main road and has a panoramic view of the caves (same place from where they were rediscovered several decades ago).

Daulatabad Fort is quite a steep climb!
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Old 16th October 2009, 14:42   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashwinsid View Post
They have arranged Fibre optic lighting but unless you have a tripod, photos will be blur.
Ashwinsid,

Are tripods allowed in the caves? I thought they were banned. I'd been to elephanta caves (near mumbai) and was forced by the officers there to leave my tripod outside. I managed to take some long exposure handheld to compensate for not using flash.

I'm eager to know whether tripods are allowed in Ajanta and Ellora. Please help!
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Old 16th October 2009, 21:35   #12
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Hmmmm. I had not observed any tripods when I was there (though some Japanese researchers were having loads of tripods among other equipment). I made that tripod comment because all the photos I took are of average quality.

After MX6s post, I did some checking and indeed TRIPODS ARE NOT ALLOWED in the caves. Though if you can get written permission from MTDC / ASI, then it is allowed. Sorry for posting that comment without cross checking.
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Old 16th October 2009, 22:24   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashwinsid View Post
Hmmmm. I had not observed any tripods when I was there (though some Japanese researchers were having loads of tripods among other equipment). I made that tripod comment because all the photos I took are of average quality.

After MX6s post, I did some checking and indeed TRIPODS ARE NOT ALLOWED in the caves. Though if you can get written permission from MTDC / ASI, then it is allowed. Sorry for posting that comment without cross checking.
Thanks for clarifying. I had a tough time in Ellora caves. It wasn't that easy getting permission from MTDC as well. There were all kinds of rules and I gave up chasing for permission. The japanese researchers would have gone through the embassy to get all necessary clearances. Ordinary photo enthusiasts like me have to do without a tripod. Can anyone throw light on how to get permission to carry a tripod inside Maharashtra's great caves? I find absolutely no reason in these stupid rules...
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Old 16th October 2009, 23:18   #14
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For History buffs, near Ellora is Khuldabad which has the very modest tomb of Aurangzeb, built as per the desire of the Emperor. Daulatabd was an impregnable fort and worth a visit if you can climb it. the dark bhulbhulaiya inside can be seen on paying the guards who take a burning torch to show it to you. The ceiling is full of bats, which do not bother you however. Do go right up till the flag mast and the cannon on top. it has a nice view. The rock scarp at the moat crossing is also breath taking. Start early as the fort opens at sunrise.
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Old 27th December 2013, 15:57   #15
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Default Re: Help for Ajanta Ellora Trip

Hi friends,

I plan to visit Ajanta and Ellora caves starting tomorrow from Pune. How long will the drive to Aurangabad take if I start from Pune by say 7 AM? I plan to stay at Aurangabad, will it be possible to do Ellora on the same day I reach?

Or will I need two full days for Ajanta and Ellora each?

What I had in my mind was to do Ellora tomorrow itself and take sunday full day for Ajanta and possibly Lonar. Start back to Pune on Monday and do the other places in Aurangabad on the way.

Is it feasible?
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