Bedse Caves are a group of Buddhist rock-cut monuments that date back to the 1st century BCE. They are located near the village of Bedse in Maval taluka, Pune district, Maharashtra. They are one of the oldest and finest examples of Buddhist architecture in India, along with other caves in the region such as Karla Caves, Bhaja Caves and Patan Caves.
They are known for their exquisite carvings, sculptures and paintings that depict the life and teachings of Buddha and his followers. They are also known for their serene and peaceful atmosphere that attracts many visitors and pilgrims. Visit during Mumbai to Kamshet One day Trip by cab
Location of Bedse Caves
Bedse Caves are situated about 10 kilometers from Kamshet, a popular hill station and tourist attraction in Maharashtra. They are about 110 kilometers from Mumbai and 58 kilometers from Pune by road. The nearest railway station is Kamshet, which is about 10 kilometers away. The nearest airport is Pune International Airport, which is about 65 kilometers away.
Timing / Entry Fees Bedse Caves
Bedse Caves are open for visitors throughout the year, but the best time to visit is from October to February, when the weather is pleasant and dry. The monsoon season (June to September) can also be a good time to enjoy the lush greenery and waterfalls around the caves, but the caves may be slippery and muddy.
There is no entry fee for visiting Bedse Caves, but visitors have to climb about 400 steps to reach the caves from the base. There are no shops or restaurants near the caves, so visitors are advised to carry their own food and water.
How to Reach Bedse Caves
Bedse Caves can be reached by road from Mumbai or Pune via the Mumbai-Pune Expressway or the old Mumbai-Pune Highway. One has to take a diversion at Kamshet and follow the signs for Bedse Caves or Bedse Gaon Road. The road condition is good for most of the way, except for some patches near the caves.
Alternatively, one can take a train to Kamshet station from Mumbai or Pune and then hire a taxi or an auto-rickshaw to reach Bedse Caves. The distance from Kamshet station to Bedse Caves is about 10 kilometers and the fare is around Rs. 300 to Rs. 400.
Things to Do / Must See Bedse Caves
Bedse Caves offer a variety of things to do and see for visitors of all ages and interests. Some of the popular activities and attractions are:
- Exploring: Exploring is one of the most popular activities at Bedse Caves, as it allows visitors to admire the beauty and history of the caves. There are two main caves – one is a chaitya (prayer hall) and the other is a vihara (monastery). The chaitya cave (Cave 7) has a large stupa at its center, surrounded by octagonal pillars that support a vaulted roof. The walls and pillars are decorated with carvings of elephants, horses, lions, humans and floral motifs. The ceiling has wooden ribs that resemble a bamboo mat. The entrance of the chaitya cave has four ornate columns with animal capitals that lead to a verandah with two cells on each side. The vihara cave (Cave 11) has nine cells around a central hall that has a vaulted roof with wooden ribs. The cells have stone beds and pillows for monks to rest. The entrance of the vihara cave has two pillars with animal capitals that lead to a verandah with four more cells.
- Meditating: Meditating is another activity that can be done at Bedse Caves, as it provides a peaceful and spiritual environment for visitors. The caves have a calm and quiet atmosphere that helps visitors to relax, focus and connect with themselves and their surroundings. The caves also have a positive energy that enhances the meditation experience.
- Photography: Photography is another activity that can be done at Bedse Caves, as it offers many opportunities for capturing stunning pictures of the caves and their surroundings. The caves have a natural light that illuminates their carvings, sculptures and paintings. The caves also have a scenic view of the valley, hills and forests that add to their charm.
- Picnicking: Picnicking is another fun activity that can be enjoyed at Bedse Caves. There are many spots around the caves where visitors can spread a mat, have some snacks and drinks, play games and relax. The sound of birds, waterfalls and wind create a soothing atmosphere for picnickers.
Significance of Bedse Caves
Bedse Caves are not only a tourist destination, but also a source of cultural and historical heritage for India. The caves are one of the oldest examples of Buddhist art and architecture in India, and reflect the influence of the Satavahana dynasty that ruled the region in the 1st century BCE. The caves also showcase the life and teachings of Buddha and his followers, and their contribution to the development of Buddhism in India and beyond. The caves also have a religious significance, as they are a place of worship and pilgrimage for Buddhists and other faiths.
Q: Is Bedse Caves safe for visitors?
A: Yes, the Caves are safe for visitors, but they have to be careful while climbing the steps and walking inside the caves, as they may be slippery and uneven. Visitors are also advised to avoid touching or damaging the carvings, sculptures and paintings in the caves, as they are precious and fragile.
Q: What are the timings for visiting Bedse Caves?
A: The timings for visiting Bedse Caves are from 7 am to 6 pm. However, visitors are advised to avoid visiting the caves during dark hours or bad weather.
Q: What are the things to carry for visiting Bedse Caves?
A: Some of the things to carry for visiting Bedse Caves are:
Raincoat or umbrella
Bedse Caves are a hidden gem of Buddhist heritage in Maharashtra. They offer a mesmerizing view of the caves, a fascinating glimpse of the history, a serene experience of the meditation and a delightful time of the picnicking. They are a place where one can enjoy the beauty of art, the thrill of adventure and the charm of culture. They are a place where one can create memories that last a lifetime.