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Arjuna's Penance, Mahabalipuram

(4.6/5 based on 460+ reviews on the web)
Named after one of the Pandava brothers, Arjuna's Penance is an enormous ancient relief carving etched on two huge boulders that dates back to the 7th century. The inscription describes scenes from Hindu mythology and daily happenings from South Indian life at the time, with an artificial waterfall pouring from the carved hands of male and female "nagas." In addition to numerous other carved animals, you can't miss the life-sized carvings of elephants, shown protecting their young. The longer you look at this impressive sight, the more new details you will notice, right down to the small mice around the elephants' feet. For Arjuna's Penance and beyond, use our Mahabalipuram trip itinerary maker to get the most from your Mahabalipuram vacation.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Great artistic monument with a relief long about 26m...breathe taking beauty surrounded by nature and amazing landscape .  more »
  • At a height of 43 feet, the monolith was carved on the face of two huge adjoining boulders and should be appreciated for its archaeological significance.  more »
  • The composition of the relief includes scenes of the natural & celestial worlds. A natural cleft populated by snakes separates the two halves of the relief. Just above the shrine, Arjuna or Bhagiratha...  more »
Google
  • You cannot afford to miss this place. A sheer sculptural treat is awaiting you there. Also, don't miss the wonder "Krishna's Butter Ball" a rock which doesn't roll down, defying the gravitational theories.
  • Masterpiece. The details are unreal. As a kid I read about Bakeetathan Thavam in my books, to see it in real was amazing. There is this two moneys sculpture next to it. Its really funny.
  • Great sculptures finest curvings on rock but not maintained properly left open to weather which is causing wear and tear...
  • Simply comparable to Ajanta & Ellore. A must visit place who throw a visit to Mahabalipuram
  • Another great piece of architecture. If you are in the vicinity take five mins out and visit it as these places are located next to each other and offers a great insight into India's earlier architectural marvel era.