I recently saw a mini Doco on this and it was new to me. I thought I would pass it along. Following is taken from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kailasa_temple,_Ellora
“The Kailasa Temple is notable for its vertical excavation—carvers started at the top of the original rock and excavated downward. The traditional methods were rigidly followed by the master architect which could not have been achieved by excavating from the front.”
Partial Interior View:
The construction has been dated to the late 8th century AD. Most experts believe that the construction effort would have taken many thousands of man years using methods that would have been available at the time!
“According to this legend, the local king suffered from a severe disease. His queen prayed to the god Ghrishneshwar (Shiva) at Elapura to cure her husband. She vowed to construct a temple if her wish was granted, and promised to observe a fast until she could see the shikhara (top) of this temple. After the king was cured, she requested him to build a temple immediately, but multiple architects declared that it would take months to build a temple complete with a shikhara. One architect named Kokasa assured the king that the queen would be able to see the shikhara of a temple within a week’s time. He started building the temple from the top, by carving a rock. He was able to finish the shikhara within a week’s time, enabling the queen to give up her fast.”