Aurangabad, The City of Gates

This time I thought of traveling unplanned so I had no checklist for places to visit in Aurangabad. I had a rough idea about places in Aurangabad through my friends, other than this I wanted to explore this city by myself. I haven’t searched for any pictures on google or read any blog for Ajanta-Ellora caves. No return tickets, no itinerary!

I boarded a bus from Pune at 9:45 pm and reached Aurangabad at 3:30 am. Zostel is 1.5 km away from the drop point so I decided to walk. I ate breakfast at CCD and then went to Zostel. At Zostel, I met a couple who asked me if I want to join them. They booked a cab for 2 days and from here I was not traveling solo.

Day 1 Ajanta

We started early from Aurangabad and reached Ajanta in 3 hrs approximately via private cab. Due to rains, the roads were damaged which made that 3 hrs ride quite bumpy but the unending greens on both sides of the roads neutralized it πŸ˜‰ After completing half journey, we stopped at a Dhaba for a tea break.

After a few more hours, we reached Ajanta. All private vehicles are supposed to be parked at the Ajanta caves complex. Thereon, it took another 30 minutes by government tourist transport to reach Ajanta Caves.

There are approximately 30 caves in Ajanta and it would take around 4-5 hrs to explore them. Without hiring a guide, we went straight into cave 1 and cave no. 2, and guess what happened! We were unable to decode paintings and rock-cut sculptures so we hired a guide to help us on the same.

Don’t worry if you could not walk, We are always there for you πŸ™‚
Caves that are older than time or millennia

There are some important caves which one should visit – 1, 2, 16, 17, 19, and 26.

Cave no. 26
Rock-cut sculptures

Our guide narrated stories behind colorful paintings, ceiling designs, rock-cut sculptures, and John Smith’s signature, who was the founder of the caves during the British rule of India in the 18th century. Ajanta is mostly famous for its age-old paintings and rock-cut sculptures but one should not miss witnessing the ceilings of the caves which represent a lot of stories like a day at the sea, and tents installed during celebrations.

Reclining Buddha
Take care of your belongings πŸ™‚

Once we have visited all the caves, we crossed the bridge and started exploring the opposite side of the caves. At this time, we were a little exhausted so we bought and ate some Kheera. Now we were all charged up to explore more! After a little hike, we reached the Saptakund waterfall, the waterfall and the view of Ajanta from the top were breathtaking. It is known as Saptakund because the water dives 7 times before meeting the Waghora River.

Saptakund waterfall
Enroute Ajanta to Aurangabad

We reached Zostel at 8:30 PM approximately. We went out for dinner and attended karaoke night at our stay arranged by Zostel. I had a good night’s sleep and my legs said Thank you

Day 2 – Ellora, Chand Minar, Daulatabad fort, and Grishneshwar Temple

Ellora caves

Cave no. 16 which is Kailash Temple is the biggest cave in Ellora, We spent around 2 hours exploring this unbelievable megalithΒ carved out of one single rock from all angles.

Cave no. 16 – Kailash Temple
Ramayana on walls of Kailash Temple

After exploring Kailash temple we decided to explore cave no. 1-15 followed by caves no. 17 to 34. Both ranges of caves have beautiful waterfalls.

Cave no. 34, the last cave of Ellora
Waterfall in-between cave no 17-34

We grabbed some snacks and were all set to hike Daultabad fort. This was the best part of the trip! The gardens are well maintained and the fort is clean. Once you reach the top you can see endless greens with mountains on one side and Daulatabad city on the other side. We were lucky that we visited this place in the monsoon and it was not raining πŸ™‚ Dark clouds, cool breeze, lush green everywhere, mountains, and no rains.

Daulatabad fort entry gates
About to reach the top
Reaching the top of the Daulatabad fort
A kid posing for a photo
Daultabad Fort
Daulatabad City
Sharing some love ❀
Chand Minar

Day 3 Bibi ka Maqbara, Prozone

It was a public holiday on day 3 so most of the places were closed. We visited Bibi ka Maqbara in the morning. It is also known as the Taj of the Deccan due to its resemblance to the Taj Mahal. We spent almost 2 hrs strolling around Mini Taj and captured some moments.

Bibi ka Maqbara
Blues and whites
The backside of Bibi ka Maqbara
Doors at Bibi ka Maqbara

At 11 am, we booked a cab for Prozone mall. We ate lunch and some friends from Instagram here. We had great conversations and it was amazing meeting all of them in real.

At 3:45 PM, we bid goodbye to Aurangabad for Pune. By 10 PM, we were back in Pune and all prepared to head back to work.

How to reach Aurangabad

Aurangabad is a major railway station so it is well connected with other cities. It has an airport which is 10 km far from the station. It has good bus connectivity as well from Pune and Mumbai. It takes around 5-6 hours by road from Pune, I preferred the bus from Pune.

Accommodation in Aurangabad

For solo travelers, the best place to stay is Zostel. It’s very close to the central bus stand and it’s very clean. In Aurangabad, unmarried couples are not allowed in Oyo rooms but you might get some good Oyo rooms outside the city.

Best time to visit Aurangabad

I visited this place during the monsoon (August end), the weather was good and we were able to explore all places. Aurangabad is very humid in summers, and the best time to visit this place is in winter.

Bye-bye πŸ™‚

Published by Shilpa Mandara

Exploring heavenly earth :)

9 thoughts on “Aurangabad, The City of Gates

  1. Really wonderful blog. Described the entire tour really well with the pics. Very informative for the travellers who want to take this tour. Keep travelling more and keep sharing more Curly Girly Traveller πŸ™‚


  2. It’s good to see another friend’s travel blogging website 😊 All the Best πŸ‘ n keep updated all of us with ur new visits.


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