Visiting the Batu Caves – Malayasia

One of the few places worth visiting in Malaysia, during my trip, I think is the Batu Caves- an iconic and popular tourist outing. A steep 272 steps climb, Batu Caves is a limestone hill that has a series of caves and Hindu Shrines. Situated 8KM, north of Kuala Lampur, the cave is one of the most recognized Hindu shrine abroad, the caves houses a 140 feet tall Murugan statue. In Hinduism, Lord Murugan or Kartikeya as he is known otherwise, is cited to be the eldest son of Lord Shiva and Lordess Parvati. He is the big brother of Lord Ganesha. Incidentally, the statue is also the tallest statue of Lord Murugan in the world.

The temples inside the Batu caves are designed and styled in typical Dravidian architecture. At the base of the hill, at the ground level, there are three caves with statuary and mural depictions of scenes from the Ramayana, Mahabharat and the lives of renowned Tamil poets. The 400 million year old monument, also shelters a variety of fauna and flora.

The caves are also host to Thaipussam festival in Malayasia. Thaipusam is grandiose affair! It attracts about a million worshipers and tourists from within the country and abroad over three days of festivities.  Thaipusam is annual affair starting from the full- moon day in the Tamil month of Thai which occurs between January 14th and February 15th. The day also marks the day on which Lord Siva danced with His Consort Uma and the day on which Karttikeya (Murugan, Subramaniam and, the numerous other names by which is known to His devotees) received the divine spear, Vel, from His Mother.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 The 140 feet high Murugan statue at the entrance of the caves

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe 272 steps towards the caves

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe city skyline from the top of the cave

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe opening inside the cave, that lets the light in

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe natural wonder

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe deity with his two wives, inside the cave. Contrary to the Hindu mythology, which dictates that Lord Ganesha had two wives and his brother Murugan remained unmarried for life, the cave and its believers tell another story. In this case, Murugan was married to two beautiful wives and Ganesha his brother remained unmarried.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMurugan statue in the evening lights. I would argue it looks better during the day time.

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