Welcome to Markanda Caves, near Nagpur - Historic Tourist Attractions
Located in Gadchiroli district, Markanda Temple Complex is situated on the east banks of Wainganga River, at a spot, where the river flowing from the North makes a U turn to flow North again and then south on its way to meet the Pranhita and then the mighty Godavari. Such locations are considered holy by Hindus, and Temples of great importance are built there.
This temple complex, it is believed, had 24 temples, spread over an area of 196 x 168 Meter. At present, however, there are only 18 temples existing, out of which 4 temples are in good condition. The main temple of Markanda was struck by lightning, 300 years ago.
Rich in architecture, exquisite quality of carvings on the outer walls, depicting various Gods and Godesses from Hindu Pantheon, celestial nymphs and erotic sculptures, Markanda is reminiscent of the famous Khajuraho temples.
On the basis of its architecture and art, it is believed to have been built during the reign of Rashtrakuta Dynasty between 9th and 11th Century A.D. However, some inscriptions indicate that the temples were built in the 8th century and renovated in the 1th century.
Every image adorns intricately carved ornaments. The posture and gesture of the image is very becoming and attractive. At the base of every image of the God and Goddess, is its vehicle, typically an animal or a bird. Therefore it is easy to identify the image .The total number of images counted so far are said to be 409.
A big religious fair is held here on the occasion of Mahashivratri, every year. Thousands of devotees gather at the place, during the month of Feb-March, to pay obeisance, perform rituals, including shaving off their head as a token of respect to their departed parents. Some visitors worship God Shiva, to seek his blessings for the long life of their son.