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“A recommended half-day trip from Mumbai”
Review of Elephanta Caves

Elephanta Caves
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$61.00*
and up
Private Elephanta Caves Tour
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Attraction details
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Elephanta Caves are situated on Elephanta Island about 7 kms from Mumbai’s mainland shore. The caves can be reached by an approx. 1-hour boat ride from Gateway of India.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
179 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
“A recommended half-day trip from Mumbai”
Reviewed January 9, 2013

Created in the 6th century, the Elephanta caves are located about an hour away by boat from the Gateway of India. Boats start at 9 am going there, and return boats starts at 12 pm on the island until 5 pm. Boats take off whenever they are full, so there really is not a fixed schedule. The boat ride affords an excellent view of the Mumbai skyline, and probably the best vantage point to view the iconic Gateway of India and the nearby Taj Mahal Palace hotel. The island itself is not large, and one can cover caves #1-5 within an hour. The rest of the island doesn't have that much in terms of cave carvings. Pieces of art from the caves can be found in the Prince of Wales museum in Mumbai. There are many people selling trinkets on the island, and touts offering services as guides.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
Thank goodgenes5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level Contributor
75 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 125 helpful votes
“Nice Weekend Trip”
Reviewed December 30, 2012

Took my Son today (Sunday) morning to Elephanta Caves. We drove there and parked behind Regal Cinema. Had a quick bite at Le Pain Quotidien. Purchased 2 ferry tickets for Rs.150 each (return). The 1st Ferry leaves just before 9am (dont panic, there's one every hald hour) from #4 behind the Gateway. Boarding was easy, we paid Rs.10 extra to sit on the upper deck. The ride was pleasant with beautiful sights of the Navy, Middle Ground Island, Butcher Island and a different view of the Mumbai Skyline.
We landed appx 45 min later at the new jetty about 150m out into the sea from Elephanta Island. We bought Rs.10 tickets for the Toy train but would not recommend it unless you have disabilities.
We were next made to pay another Rs10 as municipal tax. to enter Elephanta Village/market place. The path is straight and steep. First passing thru sundry shops and then rapidly ascending. For those who are old and disabled, there a very convenient palanquins. The climb to the top was breathtaking! We then paid an additional Rs10 each as entrance fees.
Cave#1 is the only one worth visiting the others dont have much to see. Although all the carvings were excellent, just the Trimurti is worth the trip. It is grand and magnificent.
We did not have food there, got packed snacks from home so cannot comment on that.
When we got back to the gateway of India from Elephanta, we were exhausted and walked straight to my favorite Fresh Sugarcane juice Vendor next to Pizza Express, Gupta Sugarcane Juice for a Varanasi Glass. Very Hygienic and Refreshing!
All in All a Good Half Day Trip.
A few tips:
Buy your tickets early.
Try and go early as it gets very warm towards midday.
Unless it is very sunny, hot or humid, sit on the upper deck. The open breeze and the unhindered views are work the 10 bucks.
Unless the guides are too expensive, get a guide, the history behind the caves and the stories behind the statues are enchanting.
Be aware of the monkeys. The can get aggressive. Avoid looking at then, keep your belongings close and packed and don't try to get friendly with them.
Have a glass of Fresh Sugarcane Juice when you return, it'll give you the energy for the rest of the day.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
9 Thank bhaviksoni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kerala
Level Contributor
169 reviews
70 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 534 helpful votes
“Revisitng the past”
Reviewed December 28, 2012

A Boat ride of 40 mins + A trek of 15 mins + Climbing a lot of steps+ Majestic Caves with huge sculptures + Simple and tasty food in the island hotels.... This is what Elephanta offers for visitors.

The boat ride is quite good except in monsoons. On the left side you'll see Indian Naval Warships and Naval Coastal Battery. Clicking of photos of warships are prohibited. Many a times, naval patrol boats have stopped passenger boats and seized camera MEMORY CARDS. It'll be returned only after secure shredding of files and to collect it you have to go to naval headquarters and wait for a long time. So try avoiding these.

Once you land on the jetty, you'll get the kick of a humid and warm island. Don't worry. There are lots of COCONUT WATER BARS as well as hotels in the island to cool you off. The vendors on both sides have a display of usual handicrafts for foreigners as well as miniatures of Taj,Gateway, etc etc..

Nominal fee for Indian visitors, but for foreign tourists they charge Rupees 500/ head and for the camera. Once you reach the top, you'll take atleast 2 hours to stroll around the caves. Some are still under excavation. The mighty LORD SHIVA is sculpted here in his all forms.

A nice walk down and another boat ride will take you back to busy colaba street and back to mumbai..

ADVICE : BEWARE OF MONKEYS. THEY SNATCH CAMERAS AND BAGS. WHILE RESTING, KEEP YOUR BAG AND CAMERA INFRONT OF YOU AND HOLD IT..

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
5 Thank doctor-indyeah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hampshire, England
Level Contributor
649 reviews
116 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 323 helpful votes
“Nice half day trip”
Reviewed December 19, 2012

This is not a bad half day trip. The boat takes about 45 minutes to an hour each way and the walk around the caves about 1.5 hours. The only thing the guide books do not stress is the number of steps on the island up to the caves which is a bit of an effort particularly on a warm day.

You can take a sedan chair for 400 rupees up or 500 rupees round trip but no one did when we were there (sounds a bit hard on the poor indian porters!!). As you walk up you need to run the gauntlet of gift sellers but they are not too pushy

On the route there are a number of bars and restaurants and 2 or 3 sets of public toilets

There are a huge number of ticket touts at the Gateway of India. Boat cost 130 rupees each and access to the caves 500 rupees each. There is a nominal landing fee on the island (5 rupees i think). You can also get a small train from the boat jetty to the steps for 10 rupees

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank Mike48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai
1 review
“Elephanta Caves- A good weekend destnation”
Reviewed December 15, 2012

The 1- 1/4 hr drive from Gateway of India to Elephanta caves in Luxury boats is an sweet experience. Enjoy the toy train journey ( for Rs 10 bothways) is very interesting. Getting to the top of the caves is enjoyable if your knees are sound. Lots of shops, food stations,.Carry light luggage and good walking shoes. Carry cash. Enjoy the 4 -5 hour wekkend gateway

Reasonably good infrastructure build by Maharashtra Govt

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
Thank uaprabhu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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