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Krishna Mandapam Caves

The Krishna Cave Temple also known as the Krishna Mandapam Caves is located in Mahabalipuram along the Coromandel Coast. To be precise, this temple is placed in the Kancheepuram district. This rock cut temple is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and features a hollow portico. Tracing its existence to the 7th century, the monument displays a row of columns taking you to a hall. The sculpted panels depict the myth of Lord Krishna when he lifted the Govardhana Hill to protect the entire village from heavy flooding and rainfall.


Providing you the perfect example of an ancient Indian rock cut art and architecture in the Pallava era, this temple reflects the unique and original styles of the antiquarian Vishwakarma Sthapathis or sculptors. This structure came to be encased into a mandapa in the 16th century. It was an 'open air bas relief' structure since origin. This mandapa with pillars has a simple layout and architecture features very nominal decoration. This is among the ten caves and among the oldest ones to be cut out. Chisel is one of the basic instruments used in cutting, excavating and creating the structures through the rocks. There are nine prominent relief forms describing different incidences of Lord Krishna's life. Another fresco shows Lord Krishna indulging in fun and frolic with the gopis and portraying a double role as a divine being. Some other fresco shows Krishna playing the flute. The carvings are known to be realistic interpretations of various Hindu mythological events and themes.

Visitor's Information

Offering a huge collection of Pallava art, sculpture and architecture, Mahabalipuram has a number of other attractions to feast your eyes on. Among the rock sculptures, Arjuna's Penance is a must see attraction, with the engravings done on a huge whale shaped rock. The Tiger's Caves dedicated to Devi Durga, is one of the important attractions where people come for religious purposes.

The best time to visit Mahabalipuram for holidays is between October to March when the climate is not too hot or too cold. It's just perfect for family vacations.

How to Reach

You will get buses easily from Kancheepuram, Pudducherry, Chennai, Chengalapattu to reach Mahabalipuram by bus or private vehicles. You can book seats in AC buses from Chennai to Mahabalipuram for a scenic journey of one hour fifteen minutes.

By Air

You can reach through the Chennai airport placed 58 kms from Mahabalipuram. This airport connects Chennai through countless domestic flights and international flights as well.

By Train

You can travel from different locations to both Chengalapattu (29km) and Chennai (58km), the nearest railway stations. From Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad, you get express trains and super fast trains to Chennai from where you can take private vehicles or bus to reach Mahabalipuram.

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