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Barabar Caves

The Barabar Caves are rock cut caves that can be found around 25 kilometers northeast of Gaya. They are located in the twin hills of Barabar, which has four caves, and Nagarjuni, which has three. Rock cut caves are made by the process of carving into solid rock and removing it until the shape of the structure has been formed. In the case of the Barabar Caves, it is then polished and decorated. The Barabar Caves have been carved out of granite and consist, mostly, of two chambers per cave.

The Barabar Caves are the oldest of their kind in India, dating back to the Mauryan Empire (322-185 B.C.). The four caves in Barabar Hill are named Lomas Rishi, Sudama, Karan Chaupar and Visva Zopri, while the caves at Nagarjuni are named Gopi, Vadithi and Vapiya. All the caves have a highly polished inner surface and are famous for their echoing effect. The Lomas Rishi possesses intricate carvings of elephants and stupas. The Sudama is dedicated to King Ashoka while the Gopi and Vapiya are dedicated to the followers of the Ajivika sect.

The Barabar Caves can be reached via Bela, a 30 minute journey from Gaya, from where it is a 45 minute journey by car to the caves.

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