The Batu Caves are situated thirteen kilometers (seven miles) north of the capital city Kuala Lumpur. They are the sacred place for the Hindu's in Malaysia. They consist of three main caves and a number of smaller ones. The caves are made of limestone and 400 meters long and 100 meter high. They were discovered in 1892. Temple Cave or Cathedral Cave is he best known and biggest of the caves.
It's visited by many devotees.
The ceiling is 100 m above the ground and this huge chamber is lighted by daylight from several holes in the ceiling.
At the end of the caves you can see the bright sky, when you look above you.
If the 272 steps to the caves in 35 deg C heat doesn't see you off then you reach the caves themselves. Within the caves are a number of Hindu shrines and apparently it is a very special place to followers of that religion.The Thaipusam festival is celebrated in the Batu Caves and apparently this is a great spectacle to watch should you be in the city at this time.
In the actual caves there are loads of monkeys running madly around and should you be insane enough to take bananas or nuts up there you will instantly have another 20 or so really good friend. Well at least until you run out.
All in all a great way to spend an hour or so when your in the city
Majestic limestone formation lies in the state of Selangor, on the outskirts of the city. There's 3 big caves including the main cave which is home to Hindu temple. Draws huge people from all over the world during festival. Climb the 272-step staircase to the cave. Nearby is Ramayana Cave with wall paintings of Hindu epics. Be careful of naughty & playful monkeys that chase people.
You definately have to do the Batu Caves. Be warned though ... it is hard work climbing all those stairs, especially with KL's weather! It is awesome though because there are monkey's running around everywhere and they are so cute ... unless they steal your hand bag of course, which did happen to one lady I saw. She certainly won't be getting those bananas back ...
The caves are amazing though, and there is also a wildlife bit aswell where they have giant gold fish, monkeys, super old turtles, and other reptiles. The wildlife bit cost about AU$5 each I think, but it's worth it, especially if you have kids.
I skip the historical information, because all the other users have written about it, just some tips:
1- be aware about the monkeys on the steps
2- don't hurry up when climbing the steps if you don't want your legs paralized
3- visit the little indian museum next to the statue and also the traditional indian dance
Batu Caves were discovered in 1892 and are located approx 13 kms north of Kuala Lumpur. The Caves are made of Limestone, 400 metres long, and 100metres high, huge! These caves are thought to be 400 million years old.
There are three of them altogether. The biggest cave is called Cathedral cave, and its here where you find a Hindu Temple.
This is a very sacred place for the Malay Hindus and is their focal point for the Thaipusam Festival, which attracts 1.5million people.
Be fit for the climb, 272 steps, and quite a few more inside. As you stop and have a rest on your climb up, have a look at the views, you can see for miles and miles.
The caves are easily reached by Bus or Taxi.
The Batu Caves is a limestone hill, which has a series of caves and cave temples, located in Gombak district1 mi) north of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It takes its name from the Sungai Batu or Batu River, which flows past the hill. Batu Caves is also the name of the nearby village.
The cave is one of the most popular Hindu shrines outside India, dedicated to Lord Murugan. It is the focal point of Hindu festival of Thaipusam in Malaysia
Rising almost 100 m above the ground, Batu Caves temple complex consists of three main caves and a few smaller ones. The biggest, referred to as Cathedral Cave or Temple Cave, has a 100 m-high ceiling, and features ornate Hindu shrines. To reach it, visitors have to climb a steep flight of 472 steps.
At the base of the hill are two more cave temples, Art Gallery Cave and Museum Cave, both of which are full of Hindu statues and paintings. This complex was renovated and opened as the Cave Villa in 2008. Many of the shrines relate the story of Lord Murugan's victory over the demon Soorapadam. An audio tour is available to visitors.
The Ramayana Cave is situated to the extreme left as one faces the sheer wall of the hill. On the way to the Ramayana Cave, there is a 50-foot (15 m) tall murti of Hanuman and a temple dedicated to Hanuman, the noble monkey devotee and aide of Lord Rama. The consecration ceremony of the temple was held in November 2001.
The Ramayana Cave depicts the story of Rama in a chronicle manner quite effectively. The cave is well lit and allows the visitor to stroll leisurely viewing the depictions along the irregular walls of the cave. One might experience the feeling that one is strolling through the giant intestines of the mighty demon, Kumbhakarann, brother of King Ravana of Lanka.
Batu caves is a cave intercepting a mountain in north Kuala lumpur, there is a gigantic golden statue of Lord Murugan standing at the foot of the cave. It has exactly 272 steps leading to Batu Cave. Thaipusam is a good time to visit as there is a chance to see 'kavadi' where devotees perform skin-piercing and walk-on-fire antics. On the day of the festival, devotees will shave their heads undertake a pilgrimage along a set route while engaging in various acts of devotion, notably carrying various types of kavadi (burdens). At its simplest this may entail carrying a pot of milk, but mortification of the flesh by piercing the skin, tongue or cheeks with vel skewers is also common. Thaipusam is a Hindu festival celebrated mostly by the Tamil community on the full moon in the Tamil month of Thai (Jan/Feb). In 2007, the festival attracted more than 1.5 million pilgrims, making it one of the largest gatherings in history.
There is also a large chameleon in the cave you can take a photo with if you pay the owner a token amount. The site is also well known for its numerous macaque monkeys, which visitors feed — sometimes involuntarily. These monkeys may also pose a biting hazard to tourists (especially small children) as they can be quite territorial.
Batu Caves is located to the North of Kuala Lumpur.
It's a limestone hill which is dated around 400 millions years.
Nowadays it's place of sacrifice of Hindu people and some Hindu festivals take place in here.
Everyday buses no.11 go from bus stop at Masjid Jamek direct to Batu caves taking your 40 minutes and bus fare is about 2.50 MYR p/p.
Caves entrance is free of charge.
Be prepared to climb 272 steps in order to enter the cave/shrine. At street level(to the left as you approach the site) there is a walkway through lower caves with displays of different Hindu gods. The monkeys that inhabit the area are not at all shy, so just be careful!
Batu caves have lots of caves and hindu temples which is really worth a visit. The 42m high gold statue of Murugan is incredible and is a focal point for the hindu festival of Thaipusam.
If you can manage the 272 steps to the top, don't forget to get some bannana's or nuts before your climb The macaque monkeys will thank you for it and they are not camera shy.
And talking of refreshments, take a bottle of water or something to drink for when you make it up those stairs.
We arranged for our taxi driver to wait for us at Batu caves and bring us back to our Hotel, it would be cheaper and easier than getting a taxi later. But he only gave us 1hr which wasn't enough time to see all the caves.
Yers, when in KL you must vist the Batu Cave. Well having done it I can say that 'I have visited Batu Caves' but all I saw was some dirty caves with religious paintings and statues places randomly around the place with a foul smell and dirty monkeys. As you may have guest my visit to the caves didn't impress me but then again I am not Hindu. The highlight was the realisation that my wife and I could actually reached the top of the 272 steps and take photo's of it. Worth a visit to say you have been there but unless you are VERY religious don't expect too much
Batu Caves in Selangor and north of Kuala Lumpur is world famous.
It is a limestone range where there is a famous Hindu cave temple. There are many hundred steps to climb to reach the caves.
During the Thaipusam festival (usually in January or February), it is a major pilgrimage with thousands of Hindus and tourists flocking to Batu Caves temple.
On other days, it is not crowded at all and a nice day trip out of Kuala Lumpur.
Batu Caves is said to be around 400 million years old. When the caves were in a pristine state before 1860, several of the 18 cave mouths were used by the indigenous Besisi people (also referred to as Orang Asli) as transit shelters when they went out hunting from their jungle hamlets.
As early as 1860, Chinese settlers began excavating guano for fertilising their vegetable patches. However, they became famous only after the limestone hills were found by American Naturalist, William Hornaday in 1878.
Batu Caves is said to have been discovered by K. Thamboosamy Pillai, an Indian trader, in the 1800s. He was inspired by the 'vel'-shaped entrance of the main cave and was inspired to dedicate a temple to Lord Muruga located within the caves.
In 1891, Pillai, who also founded the Sri Mahamariamman Temple, Kuala Lumpur, installed the murti (consecrated statue) of Sri Subramania Swamy in what is today known as the Temple Cave. Since 1892, the Thaipusam festival in the Tamil month of Thai (which falls in late January/early February) has been celebrated there.
Wooden steps up to the Temple Cave were built in 1920. Of the various cave temples that comprise the site, the largest and best known is the Temple or Cathedral Cave, so named because it houses several Hindu shrines beneath its 100 m vaulted ceiling.
To reach the Batu Caves, which were discovered in 1892, we decided to take the train from KLCC to Terminal Putra (Gombak) and from there take a short taxi ride for 6 ringgits. You can also take public buses from the Central Market area and Jalan Pudu (Chinatown).
At the bottom of the steep steps up to the caves, you will see the giant golden Hindu statue and lots of monkeys to take photos of.
You then begin the climb to the caves up 272 steps. At the top, on the right you can pay to do a tour of one of the caves (we didn't do it) or continue up to see the many stalagtites, Hindu shrines where people make offerings and receive blessings and there is also a gift shop and small cafe where you can drink coconut milk.
Arriving at the bottom of the steps again we decided to see the "Caves Villa" which is a cave that has been brightly painted and is filled with Hindu statues and religious scenes. Outside there are some wild birds to see and a small section of garden. A small entrance fee applies.
Batu Caves open from 7am - 9pm. Free general entry.
Every year in the tenth month of the Hindu calendar (usually the end of Jan.), the caves are busy with 800,000 Hindu worshippers celebrating the Thaipusam Festival where some pierce their skin, mouths , etc., with metal hooks and ask for favours from the Gods.