The Ellora caves, locally known as ‘Verul Leni’ is located on the Aurangabad-Chalisgaon road at a distance of 30 km north-northwest of Aurangabad, the district headquarters. The name Ellora itself inspires everyone as it represents one of the largest rock-hewn monastic-temple complexes in the entire world. Ellora is also world famous for the largest single monolithic excavation in the world, the great Kailasa (Cave 16). The visit to these caves is enjoyed maximum during monsoon, when every stream is filled with rainwater, and the entire environ is lush green. The monsoon is not only a season of rains in this part, the local visitors are attracted to visit these ideal locations to have a glimpse of the mother nature in full bloom.
Just outside the city, lie the Aurangabad caves, excavated between the 2nd and 6th century AD. Tantric influences can be discerned in their architecture and iconography.There are twelve caves in all, a major chunk of which are viharas, of which Caves 3 and 7, are the most fascinating. Cave 3 stands supported by 12 finely carved columns, and sports sculptures portraying scenes from the Jataka tales. Cave 7 houses an imposing sculpture of a Boddhisattva, praying for deliverance.
Bibi ka Maqbara
The Bibi - Ka - Maqbara was built in 1679, by Aurangzeb's son, as a tribute to his mother Begum Rabia Durani. A replica of the Taj Mahal, this monument is the only specimen of Mughal architecture of its kind, in the Deccan plateau.
Daulatabad (Ruining Point)
Just 13 kms from Aurangabad , standing on a pyramid - shaped hill, is this impressive fortress, once known as 'Devgiri'. Built in the 12th century by Bhillama, the king of the Yadav dynasty, it was named Daulatabad, the city of fortune, by Mohammed Bin Tughlaq, Sultan of Delhi. The Sultan was so taken with this fortress, that he decided to shift his capital here. It is one of the world's best preserved forts of medieval times and also one of the few impregnable forts in Maharashtra with excellent architecture. A 5 km massive wall, artificial scarping, spiked gates, dungeons and a variety of complicated defence systems rendered Daulatabad impregnable. The 30 metre high Chand Minar, built by the Bahmani rulers is another famous landmark of the area.
Khuldabad, or heavenly abode, is a just a few kms away from Daulatabad, a walled city that is the Karbala town or holy shrine of the Deccan Muslims. It houses the tomb of Aurangzeb, the last Mughal emperor. Before his demise, the emperor himself had the crenellated wall built around the town, which was at that time, an important centre. The place has famous Bhadra Maruti Temple. People come from Aurangabad and nearby places by walk for offering puja on Hanuman Jayanti and on Saturdays in Marathi calendar month "Shravan (Sawan)".
Half a kilometre from Ellora (30 kms) lies this beautiful temple, one of the twelve 'Jyotirlingas' of India, where Lord Shiva is worshipped. The Ghrishneshwar temple, built by Rani Ahillyabai Holkar, a Maratha princess, is the most superb example of medieval temple architecture.