images of kanheri caves

Kanheri Caves: Meditation Center of Buddhist Monks Near Mumbai!

Kanheri caves Mumbai is another set of Buddhist caves in Mumbai after Elephanta Caves. These caves display some of the rare sculptures unlike other caves in India.

Location: Inside Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Borivali East, Maharashtra (India) – 600 066.

Best Time To Visit: Tourists can visit Kanheri caves Mumbai at any time of the year. As these caves are there inside the national park, one can get beautiful views of surrounding greenery in monsoon season.

Formation: 1st century BC to 10th century BC.

Kanheri caves Mumbai Information

Kanheri caves are among the oldest caves in India and are located in Borivali part of Mumbai. These are rock-cut caves situated amidst beautiful Sanjay Gandhi National Park. Every cave is adorned with rock bed unlike other caves in India. The road to caves leads through the green forests of the national park. Kanheri caves Mumbai are about 6 kms away from the entrance of the national park.

images of kanheri caves
Great Panoramic Views!

©Natasha Iyer

This place is one of the famous tourist spots in Mumbai. It pulls large a number of people because of its splendid carvings, sculptures, historical importance, and serenity. Kanheri word literally means the black mountain. Various waterfalls also arise at this place in monsoon season!

Architecture of Kanheri Caves

These are the Buddhist caves which date back to times from 1st century BC to 10th century BC. It was a center of education for Buddhist monks. They used to stay in Kanheri caves Mumbai for meditation purpose. There are total 109 rock cut caves carved in the basalt rock. These caves are spread over a big area and a single monk used to stay in each cave. Due to its amazing architectural features, it is one of the best caves in Maharashtra.

The main hall was a place for common meditation and religious meetings or for group worship. The stupa at the entrance of caves greets tourists with elegance. There are various assembly halls with big stupa’s (Buddhist shrine), 34 unfinished paintings of Buddha and Vihara’s (the prayer hall) at Kanheri caves Mumbai. Various sculptures are carved very elegantly & skillfully. Different buildings of Buddhist monks (monasteries) gives an idea about their life, schedule & occupations!

kanheri caves images
Beautiful Carvings!

©Lady Ranveer Singh

History of Buddhist Monks

Archaeologists believe that these monks were very disciplined and had a strict life. These caves was an important center of Buddhists education as it has many Buddhists Viharas. The Viharas of Kanheri Caves Mumbai had trade links with Nashik, Sopara, Ujjain, Paithan and Kalyan. They used to have a simple life in order to achieve to attain the salvation. Chaitya Cave is the most attractive structure which has decorative woodwork. Many sculptured statues of Lord Buddha are worth watching.

Trek & Adventure

Few adventure agencies carry out different adventure activities like rappelling, Shilondha trail & treks around caves and the national park. So if you have time then you can enjoy these activities with the help of local guides. The mountain on which Kanheri caves Mumbai are carved is at a considerable height. So you can even enjoy magnificent expansive views of the Arabian sea.

You can even explore the Sanjay Gandhi National Park along with the caves. Being one of the most visited national parks in Maharashtra, you need to have a permission to roam alone inside the national park because there are wild animals like Tiger inside it.  So do take your time from your busy life schedule and get lost in the serenity of Kanheri caves. It is a great spot for a short weekend trip near Mumbai.

kanheri caves images photos

©Dipendra Chhetri


How To Reach Kanheri Caves Mumbai

As the caves are located near to the Mumbai city, you can easily reach here via various city transport options. Internet cabs, taxi’s, buses and auto-rickshaws are available from different part of cities. Bus number 188 LTD of BEST starts from Borivali Station (East) and ends at Kanheri Caves. From the entrance of the national park, authorities run paid vehicles till caves. Otherwise, you can also trek down till Caves along with your group.

  • Nearest Rail Station: Taking a train to the Borivali or Malad station is the easiest way to reach Caves. Buses, taxi’s & rickshaws ply between Station to National Park throughout the day.
  • Nearest Airport: Mumbai airport is the closest airport to these caves. Airport is just 22 kms away from Kanheri caves Mumbai.


Telephone: You can contact cave authorities on +91 22 2202 4482 or +91-98470-01491 or +91-94472-62570. (May change with time)

Timings: Kanheri caves Mumbai remain open for tourists between 07:30 am to 05:30 pm.

Ticket: Entry fee is Rs.5/- per Indian tourist and Rs.100/- per Foreign tourist.

Staying Options: There are a lot of hotels in Mumbai for accommodation purpose.

Eating Stuff

There are many eateries outside the National Park. They serve food like bhel, juices, chat items, baked crisps etc. Restaurants like Cascade, Aura restaurant, Greens Veg Restaurant and Bay View Restaurant serve great dishes. However, you have to carry your own food & water inside the park.  [Please do not throw the litter indiscriminately inside the park. Keep it with you and dump it in the dustbin.]

Nearby Attractions:

Kanheri Caves Mumbai Map:

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So if you are planning to visit Mumbai in future then try to check out this place. It is a good place to spend time with your family & friends away from the hustle-bustle of city!