Elephanta is an island off the Mumbai (Bombay) coast. So the first point is to get to Mumbai city. This is one of the most connected cities in India.

A large number of daily flights are operated to Mumbai (BOM) from the rest of the main cities in India. So are the international connections to Mumbai.

Once in Mumbai head for the Gateway of India. This is prime landmark of Mumbai. It is from this point the ferry to Elephanta Island operate.

Though heavily crowded during the peak hours, Mumbai has an excellent suburban local rail network. From wherever you are in Mumbai, catch a local train to Churchgate or CST.

Both are terminal stations, so it is a bit easy to get out and get in. By the way CST (Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus) railway station itself is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Ferry point Elephanta

Ferry point Elephanta

Ferry to Elephanta at the Gateway of India (seen on left). Seen in the backdrop is the Taj Mahal Hotel. Partially seen on the left is the Gateway of India

Everything about Elephanta!

Museum in Elephanta

Elephanta Museum

Elephanta has a small site museum.The museum resembles more of an old house with terracotta roof.

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Ardhanari image at Elephanta

Mythical Themes at Elephanta

The choice of the themes in Elephanta's panels is an interesting mix... anything from love to contemplation to violence to performing arts to yoga. In Elephanta you'll see some of the highest watermarks of medieval India's sculptural art.

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elephanta-island-during-low-tide

Elephanta Island

Elephanta Island, locally called Gharapuri island is off the Mumbai coast.The cave temples of Elephanta is located on the hillocks of Elephanta Island.
 

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Mahayogi Shiva of Elephanta

Mahayogi Shiva at Elephanta

Mahayogi Shiva is located as you enter the main cave, opposite to the panel of Nataraja at Elephanta .This is an unusual posture of Shiva portrayed as sitting on a lotus flower in meditating attitude.

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Entrance to the cave 3 in Elephanta

Elephanta Caves

The name, Elephanta was given by the Portuguese as there was a large elephant sculpture in the island, when it was held by them as a naval outpost.Otherwise this island was known as Gharapuri.

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Elephanta Cave 4

This cave has a large open verandah with a massive unsupported rock formation overhanging above.There is a beautiful doorjamb carved around the entrance to the main shrine at the center.

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Ardhanari view from Parvati side

Ardhanarishvara at Elephanta

Ardhanarishvara, literally translates into the god (Siva) half female.For its artistic excellence , this image is arguably the second best image, after the three headed Mahesh Murthy (also sometimes referred as Trimurthy ) at Elephanta.

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