September 5, 2011

 ***** Ajanta Caves (Ajintha leni) ***** 

Quote of the Post: "Sacred sounds in stone have gained international fame and re-designated as World Heritage Sites". - Quote about 'Ajanta and Ellora' - Sachin Kumar Gupta

Since 1983, The Ajanta Caves have been world's greatest historical monument recognised by UNESCO located just 40kms from Jalgaon city of Maharashtra, India. It is 100 Km from Ellora Caves, and 110 Km from Aurangabad. After covering Ellora caves, We follow the route from Pune as: 
Pune - Ahmadnagar - Shani Shingnapur - Aurangabad - Daultabad - Ellora - Sillod - Ajanta.
The same can be covered by the path directly from Pune as: Pune - Ahmadnagar - Aurangabad - Sillod - Ajanta 

Ajanta Caves Timings:
9:00 am to 5:30 pm; Note: Ajanta Caves are closed on Monday. 


Ajanta Caves Ticket Charges:
1. For Indians below 15 years : FREE of Charge
2. For Indians above 15 years : Rs. 10/- per head 
3. For Foreigners : US $5 or equivalent in Indian rupees per head 
4. For Photo Camera/ Video Camera: Rs. 5/- (Camera to be used without flash)



Some points about Ajanta Caves:

1. Why name Ajanta? As the place was unknown to the public (Janta) since long time, so as the name, A-Janta.
2. Ajanta Caves, excavated between the 2nd century B.C. and the 6th century A.D. are renowned for Buddhist paintings. 
3. Ajanta represents the most perfect example of Indian wall paintings. 
4. For a thousand years, Ajanta lay buried in the jungle-clad slopes of the western mountain range, until in 1819, It was discovered accidentally. 
5. Ajanta Caves made an ideal site of horse-shoe shaped rock rising over a ravine alongwith the "Waghora river". 
6. There are 30 caves, some of them are uncompleted and negligible. Best work can be found in caves 1, 2, 16, 17 and 19. The best sculptures are in caves 1, 4, 17, 19, 24 and 26. [Info consolidated through various sites, and after own interpretation] 
7. Cave No 9, 10, 19, 26 and 29 are chaitya halls and rest monesteries are vihars. 
8. Caves 1, 2, 16 and 17 are fitted with spotlights, available for use on payment. 
9. The central theme on the walls comes under two heads - narrative scenes from the Buddha's life and illustrations of Jataka fobles pertaining to Buddha's previous incarnation.
10. The paintings inside the caves, include geometric designs, floral and ornamental motifs, flying figures of celestial beings, animals, birds, plants. 

  
Some Tips to Enjoy/Note about Ajanta Caves as per our experience:
  • 1. To start early in the morning, stay nearby Ajanta caves area, and reach at night to Ajanta village. 
  • 2. Try to start early in the day, so that It wouldn't be exaustive. 
  • 3. During peak season, There is long queue for tickets, also for the bus drop from Ajanta Parking place to the base of Ajanta caves. 
  • So try to be early in the morning, We got our bus sharp 9 A.M. 
  • 4. Bring ample snacks and water before starting for the Ajanta caves, as you wouldn't get anything up the hills. 
  • 5. There are some small waterfalls during monsoon season, that can be enjoyed. 
  • 6. When you finish all the caves, explore another little big waterfall, follow the path that connects to the bridge.  
  • 7. To have different views of the Ajanta caves, You have to follow bridge root, not the same root while coming back. 
  • 8. You can have a guide for the whole Ajanta caves visit, or you can choose to have different guides at some specific caves, and pay some small tokens to them. 
  • 9. It will take 4-5 hrs to cover all the caves, depending on how you are traversing the caves from the base area.  
  • 10. Nearby Ajanta parking area, There is an ATM, and many shops that have been commercialized. Bargain as much as you can, while purchasing the souvenirs.



Thanks to all my amdocs friends - Tarachand, Anish Bapna, Dhiraj Masodgi, Jatin Wadhwa, Avnish Garg, Sagar Ambastha to make this trip more happening and enjoyable.


Visit other World Heritage Site - "Ellora Caves" [100 Km away from Ajanta Caves] in Maharashtra. 
***** Ellora Caves (Ellora leni) ***** 

Quote of the Post: "Sacred sounds in stone have gained international fame and re-designated as World Heritage Sites". - Quote about 'Ajanta and Ellora' - Sachin Kumar Gupta

Ellora caves are 30 Km away from Aurangabad. The road passes by the base of the Daultabad Fort, We follow the route from Pune after visiting Shani Shignapur:
Pune - Ahmadnagar - Shani Shingnapur - Aurangabad - Daultabad - Ellora. 

Ellora Caves Timings:
6:00 am to 6:00 pm; Note: Ellora Caves are closed on Tuesday.
Jain Caves
Our Group near Cave 29 - Ellora Waterfall
Some points about Ellora Caves:
  1. Ellora Caves, spanning during the period 5th and 11th A.D. comprise Buddhist monasteries, and temples of the Hindu and Jain faiths.
  2. Ellora, is famous for its architectural design and outstanding sculptures. 
  3. The 34 "caves" – The 12 Buddhist (caves 1–12), 17 Hindu (caves 13–29) and 5 Jain (caves 30–34) caves, built in proximity, demonstrate the religious harmony prevalent during this period of Indian history.
  4. Among these, the most notable ones are cave 5, 10, 15, 16, 21, 29, 32. 
  5. Most famous of the Buddhist caves is cave 10, a chaitya hall (chandrashala) or 'Vishvakarma cave', popularly known as the "Carpenter's Cave".
  6. Kailasha (Cave 16) is designed to recall Mount Kailash, is a splendid artwork, not to miss. 
  7. In the brahmanical excavations, the imagination and poetry of the various concepts was reflected in artwork which attained a new visual grace, power and fame.
  8. All Jain caves [30-34] belongs to Digambara sect. Jain caves reveal specific dimensions of Jain philosophy and tradition.
  9. Many of the structures had rich paintings in the ceilings – fragments of which are still visible.
  10. One aspect a typical visitor overlooks is the geological background of Ellora. In fact the most defining factor why Ellora was ever made and that too at this location is the geological peculiarity of the place. 

12 Buddhist Excavations: [1-12]
Caves 1-9 are monasteries.
Cave 10: Most famous one, A Chaitya hall(chandrashala) or Vishvakarma cave, also known as "Carpenter's Cave"
Cave 11 - Do Tal
Cave 12 - Tin Tal (Three stories)

17 Brahmanical Excavations: [13-29]
Cave 14 - Ravan ki Khai
Cave 15 - Dashavatara [Ten avatars of lord Vishnu]
Cave 16 - Kailasanatha Temple, the center masterpiece of Ellora. Multi storeyed temple complex.
Cave 21 - Rameshvara
Cave 22 - Nilkantha
Cave 29 - Dhumar Lena [Impressive]
Inside Cave No - 29

Caves Pillar at no 24
Ellora Waterfall: The waterfall can be enjoyed during monsoon season in full flow. It can be seen easily in between caves 28 and 29. There is a bridge that connects between caves 28 and 29. You can reach just below the waterfall through the bridge. During high monsoon season, It remains closed due to rock sliding.
Inside Cave No - 21

Ellora Caves View
5 Jain Excavations: [30-34]
Cave 30 - Chota Kailash
Cave 32 - Indra Sabha
Cave 33 - Jagannath Sabha
In front of Kailashnath Temple - Cave 16

Near Cave 1-2

Some Tips to Enjoy/Note about Ellora Caves trip as per our experience:
  • 1. To start early in the morning, stay nearby Ellora caves area, or Aurangabad.
  • 2. The best time to visit Ellora caves is, in the winter months October to February. But During monsoon season, It can be enjoyed more, caves covered with lush greens. Ellora waterfall and some more small waterfalls can be enjoyed. 
  • 3. Try to start early in the day, so that It wouldn't be exaustive.
  • 4. The taxi parking ground faces Cave 16, and visitors are used to make this their starting point. But, It is advisable to walk down, and begin with Cave 1, if you are by foot. If you own the vehicle, Start with to take the vehicle 1.5 Km up the road to another part of the hillside to visit the last 5 Jain caves [30 - 34]. It will save the time, then the middle series Hindu caves [13-29], and at the last finish the buddhist caves [1-12].
  • 5. Bus and vehicle can go to caves no. 21, 29, 34 only. Save your time reaching these points by your vehicle.
  • 6. Bring ample snacks and water before starting for the Ellora caves, as you wouldn't get anything up the hills.
  • 7. It will take 4-6 hrs to cover all the caves, depending on how you are traversing the caves. 
  • 8. There are many meditation halls to sit calm and relax for some time. 
  • 9. Just opposite cave 16, A big garden can be enjoyed from top of Kailasha. 
  • 10. If you have very short time, Cover the most notable one caves - 5, 10, 15, 16, 21, 29, 32.
Thanks to all my amdocs friends - Tarachand, Anish Bapna, Dhiraj Masodgi, Jatin Wadhwa, Avnish Garg, Sagar Ambastha to make this trip more happening and enjoyable. 

Visit other World Heritage Site - "Ajanta Caves" [100 Km away from Ellora Caves] in Maharashtra.

August 16, 2011

First of all a very Happy I-Day (Independence day) to all my readers and loved ones.

It was the long weekend, and we decided to go to Lavasa, India's first planned hill station. The city is still yet to complete. This hill city has been controversial for many reasons as: danger to environment, quarrying, procurement of land etc. Not going into these details, lets start our trip to Lavasa.

We decided to go by car. Abhishek, Ajay, Pardeep, Raunak, Tarachand were finally in, Off-cource including me. Thanks to Raunak who managed to get all of us in his car. Enjoying the scenic beauty and full time rain was a pleasure during monsoon season. We choose the path from Magarpatta City - Chandni Chowk - Pirangut - Paud Road - Temghar Lavasa Road - Temghar Dam - Lavasa. We stopped at various points shortly to enjoy the rain, and for some time at Temghar dam. Temghar dam is in the valley of Sahyadri hills near Pune, This was almost full of monsoon water.


It started raining heavily as we entered the gates of Lavasa. Throughout the trip, It keep on raining, and various waterfalls can be enjoyed. The street name is itself the waterfall st. People were enjoying these water streams stopping their vehicles. We reached at Ekaant lodge, at the top of hill. From the parking place, the panoramic view of the lake and the Lavasa cityscape is awesome and adorable. As per the plans, four-five towns will be built on seven hills. So far, Dasve is one of them, and the other town is Mugaon.



In Lavasa, people can enjoy various water-sports as well, But at this high mansoon season these were closed. There are some adventure sports with X-thrill (sign-boards can be seen at the road-sides) and activities like rock climbing, paint ball, rappelling, camping, and trekking to the nature trails can be done at different times throughout the year.



We had our lunch just near the bridge crossing points. We managed to get standing food at this place, where we ate like dogs. [everyone getting too much hungry] From this point, people can enjoy train-shaped vehicle drive to Lavasa city for 20 mins, cost INR 50. After that we drive down the city, crossed the lovely bridge, stopped at a pictsquare place for some colorful designing Villas and the waterfront buildings.


During our trip, we enjoyed the tea and the sweet-corn at the road-side. Lavasa could be the good option for one day trip from Pune or Mumbai. If you have dream of living in Lavasa hill city villa, or need any more info, you can visit: lavasa.com

Other one day trip from Pune:

An eve at Mulshi Lake
Sinhgad - The Lion Fort

July 23, 2011

**************************************
We have a long way to go...
**************************************

All loved ones' blessings are with us,
Thanks and Please will always be with us.
Yeah, we have only just begun..

It seems like, just two of us,
& the idea of dim lights and soft music.
We have a long way to go...


I will be your habit and you would be mine,
We have this commitment until the end of our life.
Yeah, we have only just begun..

We will keep on promoting each other at time to time,
We will keep giving grace to each other.
We have a long way to go...


We will learn from each other,
We will always be together.
Yeah, we have only just begun..

We are very close to each other,
We will always trust each other.
We have a long way to go...


We will keep on sharing and loving each other throughout life,
I would be your caring husband & you will be my beloved wife.
Yeah, we have only just begun..

We have started a painting, just being immature painter,
Rays of warmth and love would be in the center.
We have a long way to go...


We have just started weaving dreams,
It will be like a slow flowing stream.
Yeah, we have only just begun..

We will have our days and nights full of kisses,
And will never let each other miss.
We have a long way to go...


We will get drenched in this waterfall all the time,
Holding hands in hands at the cloud number nine.
Yeah, we have only just begun..

We will share our happy moments and tragic,
You and me together, can make magic.
We have a long way to go...


You are my lovely poem, and I am your pen,
We will sing the song together.
Yeah, we have only just begun..

- Sachin Kumar Gupta (Sach)
**************************************

May 15, 2011


*****************************************************
I love the way ...
*****************************************************

I love the way, you drive me crazy.
I love the way, you move your body.
I love the way, you smell all the times.
I love the way, you sleep all night.

I love the way, you make me laugh.
I love the way, you cuddle and hug.
I love the way, you look into my eyes.
I love the way, you whisper in my ears.

I love the way, you wave your hand.
I love the way, you yawn sometimes.
I love the way, you finger your hairs.
I love the way, you close your eyes.

I love the way, you talk with me so much.
I love the way, you walk with me so much.
I love the way, you rock with me so much.
I love the way, you dance with me so much.

I love the way, you hold me in your arms.
I love the way, you echo my name on your lips.
I love the way, you touch my body elegantly.
I love the way, you kiss me gently.

I love the way, you think about me.
I love the way, you sulk and persuade me.
I love the way, you do something stupid.
I love the way, you patch-up after silly fights.

I love the way, you dream about me.
I love the way, you kept the promise.
I love the way, you have the smile at your face.
I love the way, you dress yourself.

I love the way, you woke me up in the morning.
I love the way, you take care of me.
I love the way, you sing a song.
I love the way, you just say those three magic words.

I love the way, you treasure all my gifts.
I love the way, you feel and heel me.
I love the way, you color my life.
I love the way, you love me and say "I Love you".

- Sachin Kumar Gupta (Sach)
*****************************************************

March 30, 2011

******************************************************************

If You Just Say Those Three Magic Words

******************************************************************

I would do anything,
I will do everything for you,
If you just say those three magic words.

Like a thirsty needs the water,
like a hungry needs the food.

I would give anything,
my love, my life, my heart,
If you just say those three magic words.

Like a blackbee loves the flower,
like an insect loves the light,
like a potter loves the chalk.


I promise,
I'd hold your hand, I'd please you,
I just need you,
If you just say those three magic words.

Like a rainbow during the rain,
like a poet needs the pain.

I commit, I'd love you,
I'd hold you, I'd kiss you,
If you just say those three magic words.

Like a day touch another night,
and the morning touch another eve, right.

I know, You are just mine, and I am only yours,
I would be around you all the times,
If you just say those three magic words.

Like the earth encircles the sun,
and the moon encircles the earth.

- Sachin Kumar Gupta (Sach)

******************************************************************

February 20, 2011

Previous day visit at Goa: Water-Sports and nightlife at Calangute Beach

Part2-Day2: Old Goa:
The Bom Jesus Church: We started almost as per bus timings. What could be the better place than remembering God as to start the day. This church houses St.Francis Xavier's mortal remains and is the tourist destination. The place is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The church is located in Old Goa, which was the capital of Goa in the early days of Portuguese rule. Interior view of the church is amazing and the church also holds paintings of scenes taken from the life of St. Francis Xavier. The body of St. Francis Xavier is kept in a well-decorated casket. After that we move towards spice garden.

Tropical Spice Plantation:
The place address is: "A-14, Arla Bazar, Keri, Ponda"
As we entry to this spice plantation cottage, a sweet lady welcome us with a garland. We had special tea within its own spices from garden. After that we stared with the guided tour of the spice garden. The guide showed us various trees and plants of spices like: cardamom (Elaichi), turmeric (Haldi), Thyme Seed (Ajwain), Almond (Badam), Cinnamon (Daalchini), Coriander (Dhania), Nutmeg (Jaiphal), Cumin seed (Jeera), Cashewnut (Kaju), Saffron (Kesar), Chilli (Mirchi), Cloves (Lavang), Peppercorns (Kali Mirch), Holy Basil (Tulsi) etc etc. At the end monkey man showed a technique to climbing the tree, and hopping from one to another. After that we had some drops of water under our back as per the ritual. At the end we headed towards our group lunch. There was a bridge to reach this cottage, and both sides of this, there were various water plants, fish and snakes roaming around. You can also enjoy elephant bath, elephant ride and elephant banana feeding here. People enjoyed and spend some time amidst pure nature.

Shree Mangesh Prashanna: Om namah Sivaya!!! The temple is dedicated to lord Shiva. Nearby market is full of local stuff, and various fruit chhat can be enjoyed here. After that our bus moved towards the capital city of Goa, Panaji.

Dona Paula, Panaji: This place have both romantic and mythical flavours. At the apex, enigmatic scenes can be enjoyed along with Arabian sea. Another most important attraction of this beach is the water sport facilities available here.

Princesa Cruise: A cruise on the high waves of Arabian Sea, what could be a better eve than this. As soon as we boarded at the cruise, party started, and local dances also performed. After that our group come back to Anup holiday homes. At the night, some of us went to Saturday night market. Market was quite good and enlighting and having local items. I enjoyed some of the Beatles songs, and many more. Luckily we also get the chance to watch dance and fire show by the acrobats.

Part2-Day3:
Third day again, We been to beach for sea bath, and being more tan. We had the walk of calingute beach from one end to another. We relaxed & tanned there till noon, then move to the hotel. Its time to back to Pune, We got our bus to drop at Vasco-Da-Gama railway station.


Both ways train journey was superb, we enjoyed our dinner/snacks together. Tambola and playing cards was full on throughout our journey. Most of us bring cashew, fenny(feni), local wine from Goa for their family and friends. Overall the project event was well organized and planned. Thanks to all the organizers and volunteers to make this event successful and great outing.
Quote of the Post- "Let's Go A" - Quote about trip to Goa - Sachin Kumar Gupta

Part1-Day1:

We reached Margaon (Moddganv) railway station early in the morning, and then to the Anup holiday homes near Calingute beach. We had some time to refresh and breakfast, and then rush towards the beach.

It was a sunny day, as we came here at the start of Feb. The day was dedicated to fun-filled water-sports and beach time. We had sea-water biking, banana ride, para-sailing etc. All the groups participated in this sporty event.


Nightlife and entertainment at Calangute:
First at the eve, we had a cup of cardamom and ginger tea, then walked towards a temple near the crossroads. Calangute's nightlife is surprisingly tamed and provide a nice break for party lovers. At the beach itself, We had candle-light with the whole group, and enjoyed chat with all.
Beach walk at night remind me the days of Cyprus. For sometime, we shake our body, move our legs at the dance floor. After that we roam around the places to enjoy Calingute night market and have dinner. At least Zabi bought the specs for his eyes security. Now it was the time to go to bed, as another packed day was scheduled.

Enjoy the next day - Trip to old Goa and Panaji.

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