Anandway.com

Roadmaps to joy :-)

Bhimbetka caves and Mesolithic rock paintings, Photo journal

Anisha Sharma
Views: 9112


Bhimbetaka has 243 caves. We couldn't see them all in a day, but what we did see was amazing…

At home in caves…

Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

Bhimbetka rocks!

Rock shelter, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

This cave shelter at Bhimbetka got my imagination flowing… How could anyone live here given the sloping floor and the high, slippery wall one needed to climb in order to reach this cave otherwise made welcome by wall paintings some millennia old!

Bhimbetka caves: a UNESCO World heritage site

My imagination seemed stunted in this prehistoric cave colony which is a UNESCO World heritage site. On our way to Bhopal from Pachmarhi hill-station in Madhya Pradesh, we stopped at Bhimbetka, about 45 km from Bhopal.

While Pachmarhi had Pandav caves, Bhimbetka is also said to get its name from the third Pandav brother Bhim. Bhim was a huge man, it is said, and some caves at Bhimbetka are large enough to accommodate giants. In the local dialect, Bhimbetka means, 'Bhim's drawing room'.

The Auditorium

Auditorium cave, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

The entrance cave, named 'auditorium' is where research scholars like to camp. It can hold a hundred visitors in one go. Well, our group of 100 was not enough to fill the massive cave.

Auditorium cave, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

Finding our way around Bhimbetka cave shelters

Jungle at Bhimbetka Madhya Pradesh, India

Bhimbetka caves lie in district Raisen of Madhya Pradesh, at the southern edge of the forested Vindhya range. The site has 243 caves. We couldn't see them all in a day, but what we did see was amazing…

Exploring pathways in the Bhimbetka jungle

Forest around Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India 

Tourists to Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

A cave colony!

People lived here, since Paleolithic times it is said, but the paintings are from the Mesolithic period and later.

Cave shelter, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

Here's our guide introducing us to a protected cave. We weren't allowed to touch the rocks. The place is some thousands of years old and time has played its part :-( 

Rock shelters, Bhimbetka

Rock shelter, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

Cave at Bhimbetaka

Time to see the paintings :-)

Hunting scene, Bhimbetaka paintings, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

Deer in wall painting, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

Bhimbetka shelter paintings

Hores painting, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

The earliest paintings on the cave walls are believed to be of the Mesolithic period. Hunting scenes, community scenes, animals such as bison, deer, rhino, and horse (horse is considered a more recent addition) painted in vegetable colours blended with animal fat, wood coal, etc. give a glimpse of the aesthetic sensibilities of Bhimbetka's inhabitants.

That's a tortoise formation rock, a petroform?

Tortoise rock, Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

This rock looks like a tortoise perched as security guard overlooking the heritage caves. Do you see the expanse of sky and earth behind the tortoise? This is the heritage site's buffer zone!

Incidentally, the toilets here are true to the stone age. Check them out when you get there ;-)

Bhimbetka caves, Madhya Pradesh, India

How to reach Bhimbetka

Bhimbetka map


View Larger Map

By Air
Bhopal airport is 40 km from Bhimbetka.

By Rail
Bhopal's railway station is on the Delhi-Chennai and Delhi-Mumbai mainline and easy to reach.

By Road
Bhimbetka is connected by bus with Bhopal, and other destination in Madhya Pradesh.

Photo credits: Anisha Sharma




blog comments powered by Disqus



New Year message

Spiritual Nainital, Kumaon Himalaya Photo Journal

Follow on Twitter

Find us on Facebook

Anandway.com Roadmaps to Joy :) | Copyright@2008 to 2014 | Contact Us | A Fruition Infocom Initiative