Elephanta, a small island 10kms away from the Mumbai harbour, is a favoured destination for culture lovers during the festival held in March. The Elephanta island is known for its great cave shrine, excavated in the 6th century. Elephanta caves, earlier known as Gharapuri, is the tranquil abode of Lord Shiva. This land was renamed, Elephanta by the Portuguese, after the majestic carved elephant on this island.
The temple here has large pillars and nine marvelous sculptured panels, set on the wall which are awe-inspiring. The sculptures display the changing moods of Lord Shiva, with the magical interplay of light and shade intensifying the overall effect.
The festival of Music and Dance is being organised by the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) since 1989. The main highlight of the festival is the illuminated Maheshmurti (Shiva-idol), in the main cave of the island. Folk dances by the local fisher folk, ethnic local food varieties add to the ambiance. Over the years, the festival has become a major tourist attraction for Mumbaites and for incoming domestic and foreign tourists.
Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation
Opp. LIC (Yogakshema) Building
Madame Cama Road, Mumbai- 400 020
Ph: 022 - 22044040, 22845678, Toll Free- 1800 229930
Fax : 022 - 2222024521 / 22852182
How To Get There
This Island is in the middle of Mumbai Harbour, 10 Km north-east of the Gateway of India. Regular launch services leave from the wharf, next to the Gate way of India, from 8 am to 3 pm.
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