Dhondase [hermitage/monastery?], (near) Raigad, Maharashtra, IN

Raw data

A group of two recently discovered caves near the village of Dhondse (Taluka Pali, District Raigad) (Long. 73 deg. 19 min. E x Lat. 18 deg. 33 min N). Two caves were residences; the chaitya hall was never finished. Cave 1 consists of a verandah and and originally had a running bench around the interior. Later, two cells (with benches) were added by cutting through the running bench. Cave 2 is an unfinished chaitya hall. Water seepage (which still continues) may have been responsible for the abandonment of this cave. The area is densely forested and may contain more unknown Buddhist caves. Two nearby caves were begun but abandoned probably because the rock was unsuitable. Though these caves today seem isolated the once were on an ancient trade route to Junnar and Nasik. Their placement suggests that they were used by travelers and monks as way stations, rather than as a permanent monastery. The caves date from the middle of the second century and are quite stylistically similar to those at Junnar.
About 3km northeast of Dhondse is the another group of two Buddhist residence caves and three unfinished caves. The site is named Bahirampada.
See Shrikant Ganvir, "Recently Discovered Buddhist Caves in Konkan: Some Observations" in Bodhisiri: A Festschrift to Annapareddy Venkateswara Reddy (eds. Prof. P. Chenna Reddy and Prof. E. Siva Nagi Reddy (New Delhi: Research India Press, 2014) 55-61.
Input by: Stewart Gordon 17 Mar 2015

"The present study wishes to find its very probable continuity of forest monks in Western Indian Buddhist milieu with a suggestion of widening of  academic focus on religious landscape in regard to Buddhism in Western India. […R]ecent discovery of caves, for an example at Dhondase, Konkan region, tells about the remote places chosen as retreat by the monks."
Tribedy, Ellora. 2012. Between Aesthetic and Ascetic: A Study On The Buddhist Mendicants of Western India. Department of Archaeology, Deccan College, Pune .http://www.academia.edu/6598895/Between_Aesthetic_and_Ascetic_A_Study_On_The_Buddhist_Mendicants_of_Western_India_in_Workshop_on_Archaeology_of_Western_India
Input by: tmciolek, 19 May 2015

Final data (and their sources)

Last updated: 18 Jun 2015

Lat/Long coordinates' accuracy:
The monastery in question is assumed to be situated actually no farther than 2 km from the point defined by the coordinates below.

Location of Dhondase hermitage/monastery(?), IN.

General location of the Dhondase hermitage/monastery(?), IN.
Lat 18.55 Long 73.3166
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (http://www.fallingrain.com), 2014.

Google Map link:


Final data - explanatory notes

1. Monastery's name

  • Dhondase hermitage/monastery(?)

2. Monastery's modern country & province

  • India:Maharashtra

3. Monastery's alternative/historical names

  • [missing data]

4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates

  • Approx. Lat 18 deg 33 min N Long 73 deg 19 min E = Lat 18.55 Long 73.3166 (after Ganvir 2014:55-61), tmciolek, 20 May 2015

5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries

6. Modern name of the known nearest city, town, or village

7. The settlement's alternative/historical names

8. The settlement's coordinates

9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition

  • Theravada

10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition

  • [missing data]

11. Date-early

  • middle second century CE. Based on stylistic similarities to Junnar

12. Date-intermediate

  • [missing data]

13. Date-late

  • [missing data]

14. Details of contacts with other monasteries

  • [missing data]

15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery

  • Archaeological

16. Additional notes

  • The facilities could only have housed five-six monks at a time.

17. Corrections & addenda to this page were kindly provided by

  • [missing data]

18. Known monks and nuns associated with this monastery

19. Available Printed Literature

  • Shrikant Ganvir, 2014. "Recently Discovered Buddhist Caves in Konkan: Some Observations" in Bodhisiri: A Festschrift to Annapareddy Venkateswara Reddy (eds. Prof. P. Chenna Reddy and Prof. E. Siva Nagi Reddy (New Delhi: Research India Press, 2014) 55-61.
  • Shrikant Ganvir & Prashantha Shetty. 2008. Recent discovery of early Buddhist caves at Dhondase in Konkan. Bulletin of the Deccan College Research Institute, 2008, Vol.68/69, pp.177-178.
  • [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 3]

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