Nine kilometers by sea from the Gateway of
India, is situated the Elephanta
Island famous for its scenic beauty. A holiday
in Mumbai is never complete without a visit
to this incredible place. Also known as Gharapuri,
the island is home to the mystifying rock-cut
temples, which date back to the 7th century.
The chief attraction is the three-busted head
of Lord Shiva, providing an excellent example
of the craftsmanship in rock-cut structures.
The Elephanta caves are an
example of Hindu architecture at its best. Regular
ferry tours to the Elephanta Caves
are available from th Gateway of India.
Day 1: Mumbai
Arrive Mumbai in the morning. Meeting with our
representative and transfer to the hotel. After
lunch sightseeing of the city (Sightseeing tour
of Bombay includes a visit to Prince of Wales
museum (Monday closed). Set among verdant gardens,
it is a huge complex with a bronze statue of
George – V standing outside. The monument
designed in 1905- dominated by a huge tilted
concrete dome, comprises of three main sections,
Art, Archaeology and Natural history. The museum
contains an excellent collection of arms, works
of Lawrence, Gainsborough, Poussin and Titan
and fine examples of Indian silver and brass,
jade and tapestries. Also housed in this collection
is a superb 8th century ivory from Kashmir and
finely modelled figures of the infant Jesus.
One can witness the local washermen in action
Day 2: Elephanta
After breakfast visit the Gateway of India overlooking
the harbour. This symbolic national landmark,
the Marble arch of India, designed by George
Wittet to commemorate the visit of George V
and Queen Mary in 1911. It was also the point
of exit for the last British regiment to leave
India. Visit elephanta caves by motor launch
(Deriving its name from a stone elephant discovered
by the Portuguese, this beautiful green island
is about one hour’s boat ride from Bombay
harbour. The celebrated Hindu cave temple on
the island is excavated from a cliff high above
the water and is approached by long flight of
steps. These temples carved during the Golden
age of the Guptas have been inspired by the
worship of Shiva. The sculptures are beautifully
executed and the most outstanding of these is
the Maheshmurthy or Trimurthy, a 5m (18 ft )
high, three headed bust hewn from a single rock
representing the three aspects of Shiva viz.
The Creator, The Preserver and The Destroyer).
Evening back to the city and transfer to the
airport to connect onward flight.