After the photoshoot around Lonavala I had originally planned to go to Aurangabad for the cave sites there, but on reflection, I decided to also include the Sanchi sites, as the sculpted work there is intimately related to the work at the caves, and throws a lot of light on those sites. I thought it would also give a break from so many cave sites one after the other.
As it turned out this was both a good and a bad idea. In fact I am glad I went as some of the best photography was taken at Sanchi, but it is also where I missed the most opportunities because of being in too great a hurry.
I had allowed 4-5 days for being at the site, and thinking I had finished all the work, we left on the 4th day – only to find out almost immediately that I had missed photographing stūpa no 2 at Sanchi. Only when I was preparing the photographs back here did I find I had missed the main front architraves at the north gate also, which are some of the most important.
Further research later showed that there had been a couple of other sites in the area, Sonari and Bhojpur, which would have been worthwhile photographing as well. If only I hadn’t have felt so tight on time!
As it was I did manage to get really fine photos of the rest of the main site, much better than could have been expected from the two days principal photography at the site, and also managed to cover Satdhara and Udayagiri also.
As it is I have published over 320 photographs from the main site, and 66 from other sites in the area. Not only the quantity, but also the quality is very high, and showed once again what a good decision it was to get the Sony A6000 before going on this trip.
Because of going to Sanchi it had become possible to stopover at Nashik on the way to Aurangabad. I most probably wouldn’t have gone if not for the Sanchi diversion, but it turned out to be one of the best sites we visited, and well worth the time and effort.
It was also at Nashik that I got some of the best 360° photographs of the trip, and I have managed to publish a dozen, more than from any other site. The site is well known locally, and had many visitors when we were there, and it should be on any itinerary for someone interested in the cave sites of India.