Envis Centre, Ministry of Environment & Forest, Govt. of India

Printed Date: Saturday, January 29, 2022

Nagarjunakonda caves





 Nagarjunakonda, a small island on a man-made lake along the edge of the river Krishna in Guntur district of Seemandhra, was named after a Buddhist monk Nagarjuna who had set up a Buddhist learning centre here to preach the teachings of the Buddha in the valley. A home to ancient chaityas, viharas, monasteries and stupas, the Nagarjunakonda caves are the richest Buddhist sites in the southern India.

Dating back to 300 century CE, the Nagarjunakonda caves, which were excavated in the 1950's, reflects upon a major Mahayana learning centre in the early India. The representation of the Buddha in physical forms not only reveals the phases of the Buddha's life but also reflects a splendid architecture of these caves. The pictures of elephants and flowers on the accurately carved pillars, high images of the Buddha in the cave temples and the presence of the Mahachaitya a large structure which contains the sacred relics of Lord Buddha, are some of the add on's to the splendid architecture of the Nagarjunakonda caves.