After our visit to the Ramakrishna mission museum the next location that we headed towards was the Borra Caves located in the Borra Village in the Ananthagiri hills of the Eastern Ghats. These caves are also
colloquially known as the “Borra Guhalu” which is a Telugu word. “Borra” means something that is dug into the ground and “Guhalu” refers to caves. These caves are one of the largest caves in
India and are located at an elevation of about 705 meters from the sea level.
As we entered the caves we saw beautiful stalactites and stalagmites that have been pictured by natural forces over a time span of several years. There are a variety of shapes and sizes of these structures ranging from big, small to irregular. These caves are nothing but structures formed of Karstic limestone and are one of the deepest caves in the country that extend to the depth of 80 meters below ground level. The Borra caves were discovered long back in the year 1807 by William King who was an official of the Geological Survey of India.
According to the legends associated with these dungeons, the localites narrate that once a cow went missing as it dropped down about 60 feet inside the caves. When the tribal people came searching for the animal they found a stone inside these caves which they called the lingam.
The lingam was considered as an embodiment of Lord Shiva who according to them was the protector of the cow. After this event the village folk set up a small temple outside the caves. Many people
flock to this temple for worshipping lord Shiva who is established as the Lingam in this temple. The caves are also source of the Gosthani River which is the source of water supply to the city of
These caves have great significance in the ecological cycle. The flora of the caves comprise of brown to green algae and mosses. Many of the species found in this region are endangered and hence, mining operations are prohibited according to the Environment Protection Act of the Government of India.
The Borra caves are surrounded by lush forests that consist of semi- evergreen deciduous trees and such greenery is a delight to the eyes of people residing in the busy urban areas. Visit to this site was a very different and soothing experience for me and I was feeling quite close to nature as I visited this part of Visakhapatnam.