Maharashtra is a the second-most populous state in India, located on the west coast of peninsular India. Capital is Mumbai, formerly known as Bombay, the most populous urban area in India and also India's financial and commercial hub. The official language of the state is Marathi. The state was actually formed in 1960 by splitting the bilingual Bombay State into Marathi-speaking Maharashtra and Gujarati-speaking Gujarat.

The state occupies a substantial portion of the Deccan Plateau. The so-called Deccan Trap is a series of basaltic rocks which were formed by an era of volcanic eruptions. In other words, the state has more or less only igneous rock, mostly basalt. There are no significant natural caves but numerous atrificial caves, mostly buddhist cave temples excavated more than a millennium ago. The state is home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Ajanta and Ellora caves.