Rock Paintings of Bhimbetka

A lot of paintings are found in the caves and rock shelters of Bhimbetka. Some oldest paintings are believed to be around 30000 years old. But they are estimated to be from medieval period as per some geometric figures. They used vegetable colors for paintings and drawings and they are made deep on the inner walls or inside a niche. The paintings and drawings over here are believed to be from 7 individual periods.

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Bhimbetka - a UNESCO World Heritage site

Upper Paleolithic (Period 1)

In dark red and green, the linear symbols of animals like tigers, bison and rhinoceroses are from Upper Paleolithic Period.

Mesolithic (Period II)

The stylized figurines are quite smaller in size. These human figures represent the linear decorations. These figures exhibit the hunting scenes and give clear insight of weapons used in Mesolithic period, such as pointed sticks, barbed spears, arrows and bows. You can find rhythmic actions in the form of portrayal of birds, communal dances, children and mothers, musical instruments, men lifting heavy and dead animals, pregnant women etc.

Chalcolithic (Period III) : The Chalcolithic paintings exhibit the relationship between cave dwellers and agriculture-based communities during that period in the Malwa regions. In these paintings, they are bartering goods with each other.

Early Historic (Period IV and V) : In this group, the figures have a decorative and systematic style. They are basically painted in white, red and yellow. They depict the cultural symbols, riders, tunic dresses and scripts from several periods. These figures are believed to be of tree gods, yakshas, and enchanted sky chariots.

Medieval (Period VI and VII) : These paintings are schematic and geometrically linear. They exhibit crudeness and degeneration in artistic manner. The cave dwellers were mixed hematite, manganese and wooden coal to prepare colors to use in these paintings.

The Zoo Rock exhibits several animals like sambar, elephants, deer and bison. On another rock, the paintings of a snake, peacock, deer and the sun were made. In these medieval paintings, some of the structures of arrows, bows, swords, and shield carried by hunters while hunting are depicted.
For Indians, the entry fee is INR 25 & for foreigners, it’s INR 50.
The Bhibhetka Rock Shelters are open from 6.30 am till 5.30 pm.
MP Tourism has a highway motel Highway Treat closeby where one can have lunch or refreshments.