Descent of the Ganges

  • 4.6

    Location: J59V+43J, W Raja St, Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu 603104, India.

    Visiting time: 1-2 hours.

    Phone number not available
    Website not available

    The Descent of the Ganges is a monument in Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu, India, on the Bay of Bengal’s Coromandel Coast, in the Kancheepuram district. The Descent of the Ganges, one of the largest open-air sculptures carved on two solid granite boulders, is one of the most essential sights to view in Mahabalipuram. This is a fantastic place to spend time with your family while learning about history and seeing the beautiful sculptures and carvings.


    The bas-relief is more of a canvas of Indian rock-cut sculpture at its best, and it is unlike anything else in the country. It is part of the Mahabalipuram Group of Monuments, which has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1984.


    UNESCO World heritage site. Descent of the Ganges in Mahabalipuram.

    The 7th-century monolith Descent of the Ganges is a huge open-air bas-relief monolith. It is located in the town of Mahabalipuram, about 58 kilometers from Chennai, Tamil Nadu’s capital. Experts dispute the stories represented by  Descent of the Ganges, hence it is known by two titles. According to one interpretation, the colossal rock sculpture is named after one of Mahabharata’s heroes. It is thought to depict a scene from the Mahabharata in which Arjuna, one of the Pandavas, underwent severe penance in order to get Shiva’s sword and vanquish his adversaries. The second interpretation is that Arjuna’s Penance depicts the occurrence in which King Bhagiratha of India performed penance to send the Ganges River down from heaven to earth in order to purify the souls of his forefathers.

    Inside/Outside Views

    The Ganges’ Ascension is a story about the descent of the Ganges. The Mamallapuram monolith, which stands about 43 feet tall, was carved on the face of two massive neighboring stones sometime in the mid-7th century. The Arjuna relief is located in the heart of Mahabalipuram, overlooking the sea and just a short distance from the Shore Temple on the Coromandel Coast of the Bay of Bengal. It lies 36 miles (58 kilometers) to the west of Chennai city and 20 miles (32 kilometers) from Chengalpet.

    Opening Hours

    6 am to 6 pm every day.

    Entry & Others Fees

    INR 10 for Indian citizens; INR 250 for foreigners, no fee for visitors below age 15.

    How to Reach

    By Air: The closest airport to Descent of the Ganges is Chennai International Airport which is at a distance of about 58km.

    By Rail: The nearest railway station to the Descent of the Ganges is Chengalpattu Railway Station which is Chengalpattu Railway Station which is 29km away.

    By Road: The nearer bus stop from Descent of the Ganges is Chengalpattu Bus Stand which is 29 km away. From Chengalpattu, Chennai, Kanchipuram, and Pondicherry, regular buses, and private vehicles are available.

    Tips for Travellers

    • Mahabalipuram has a hot climate throughout the year. Cotton clothing and flat shoes are recommended.
    • Use the services of a licensed guide to fully comprehend the monument’s complexities.
    • Don’t forget to capture the mesmerizing monuments.


    Que: Is this place safe to visit?

    Ans: Yes, this place is safe to visit.

    Que: Is photography allowed in this place?

    Ans: Yes, photography is allowed.

    We wish you all the best for your journey. Happy Travel!!!

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