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Stone age writing
Petroglyphs dating back to about 6000 BC
Look closely at ravine and see light shining through Edakkal caves

Edakkal Caves are two natural caves located 1000 metres high on Ambukutty Mala 25 km from Kalpetta in the Wayanad district of Kerala in India's Western Ghats. They lie on an ancient trade route connecting the high mountains of Mysore to the Malabar coast ports. Inside the caves are pictorical writings believed to be from neolithic man, evidence of the presence of a prehistoric civilisation existing in this region. Such stone age carvings are very rare and these are the only known examples in southern India.[1]

Contents

Petroglyphs

These are not technically caves but rather a cleft or rift approximately 96 feet by 22 feet, a 30 foot deep fissure caused by a piece of rock splitting away from the main body. On one side of the cleft a rock weighing several tons has fallen over the fissure forming a roof. The carvings are of human and animal figures, as well as of tools used by humans and symbols, suggesting they were created by a highly civilised prehistoric people.[2]

The petroglyphs inside the cave are of at least three distinct types. The oldest may date back over 8000 years ago. Evidence indicates that the Edakkal caves had been inhabited at several different times in history.[3]

The caves were accidentally discovered by Fred Fawcett in 1890 who immediately understood their anthropological and historical importance. He subsequently wrote an article about them, attracting the attention of scholars.[4]

Tourism information

To reach the Edakkal caves from Tellicherry take the following shortest bus route: Tellicherry>Koothuparamba>Mananthavady>Get down at Beenachi on the way to Sultanbathery>Take Ambalavayal route>Get down at Ayiramkolli> Take bus to Edakkal caves.

Approximate time required to climb till top of the hill and down: 3-4 hours.

Entry to the hill closes by 4 PM.

Departmental jeeps can be hired to travel the initial few km till the foot of the hill. A jeep can carry up to six passengers and there are separate rates for one way and return journeys.

Other nearby places - Soojippara water falls, Sultan Bathery, Mutanga Wildlife Sanctuary.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ "Edakkal Caves". Wayanad.nic. http://wayanad.nic.in/edakkalcave.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-07.  
  2. ^ "Edakkal Cave". Kerala gov. http://www.wyd.kerala.gov.in/places.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-07.  
  3. ^ "Edakkal Caves". Edakkal Caves Website. http://www.edakkal.com/. Retrieved 2007-04-07.  
  4. ^ "Throwing new light on Edakkal Caves". The Hindu. http://www.hindu.com/2006/04/06/stories/2006040602020200.htm. Retrieved 2007-04-07.  

External links

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