Just outside the city, lie the Aurangabad caves, excavated between the 2nd and 6th century AD. Tantric influences can be discerned in their architecture and iconography. There are twelve caves in all, a major chunk of which are viharas, of which Caves 3 and 7, are the most fascinating ones. Cave 3 stands supported by 12 finely carved columns, and sports sculptures portraying scenes from the Jataka tales. Cave 7 houses an imposing sculpture of a Boddhisattva, praying for deliverance.
Some of the chaityas are constructed on a mandala plan for the circumambulation of the Buddha who is depicted here seated on an intricately carved throne. One is also treated to a panoramic view of the city as well as the imposing Maqbara from this point.