Wednesday, April 26, 2017

MP Diaries - Jain Temple, Budhi Chanderi, The Lost World

Every other artifact present at the ASI Museum of Chanderi was associated with the place of Budhi Chanderi, which increased our curiosity about the historical significance of this place. As Budhi Chanderi was only about 16 km from Chanderi, we decided to explore this place post lunch. Being much older than the town of Chanderi, Budhi Chanderi (Old Chanderi) is believed to be the town of Chaidnagar which finds its mention in the Puranas, signifying its antiqueness. The Old Chanderi lies inside the forested area and is believed to house more than 55 Jain and Hindu temples, most of which are in ruins. The ASI has collected more than 2500 artifacts from Budhi Chanderi and its surrounding areas, most of which are preserved at the Chanderi Museum. The temples here are believed to have been built between 9th - 11th centuries by the Pratihara kings. 
The Jain Temple Complex, Budhi Chanderi
The Jain Temple Complex, Budhi Chanderi 
The drive to this place was pleasant and the winding roads only added to our excitement. We had enough company on the roads as it was the first day of New Year. We were welcomed by the ruins of fort walls and as we continued our drive, we reached a temple which seemed to be functional. We drove further to investigate the surroundings and found an ancient temple complex. My wife took the lead to check if this was the site we are on the lookout for. A flight of steps led to the entrance of the temple complex. On entering the complex, she noticed the presence of numerous temples enclosed inside the compound wall and very excitingly invited me and our little to come and witness the same.
Inside Jain Temple Complex, Budhi Chanderi 
Beauty in Ruins 
 The guide at the complex confirmed it to be Jain temple complex and the same was evident from the images and sculptures here. The architecture is similar to that of the Badoh Pathari Jain temple. Sadly, the ASI has repeated its shoddy restoration work here, with the walls resembling a jigsaw puzzle. Nevertheless, it has been successful in bringing back the temple complex to shape, for us to at least realize its grandeur. We thoroughly enjoyed exploring this temple complex. All the five temples here are dedicated to Jain Tirthankaras. After spending a good time, we decided to head on to our next destination after thanking and bidding a good bye to the care taker. He handed us a register in which we were supposed to enter the details of our visit and as we did it, we realized that we were the first registered visitors of the year 2017 to this place!
Intricately Carved Door Jamb 
Jain Tirthankara Parsvanatha
Jain Tirthankara Parsvanatha 
 PS: A new page has been added to our blog, which has a collection of our Vlogs. Click here to view.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

MP Diaries - Chanderi, Ashoknagar, A Backpacker's Paradise

The last day of 2016 was quite eventful, long and hectic. A few places we visited around Bhopal and Vidisha were that of Sanchi, Udaygiri, Gyaraspur, Badoh - Pathari and Udaipur. Hereon, our next destination was Chanderi and as we were done for that day, we had to drive to Chanderi and halt for the night. Chanderi will always remain close to our hearts for various reasons which will become evident as the story progresses. After a light evening snack at Ganj Basoda, we were on our way to Chanderi which was about 130 km from here. Our quiet and uneventful ride was interrupted by a fox crossing the road! What a sight it was! Sadly, it didn't stay long and gave us no chance of capturing it on camera. We continued with our journey hoping to sight more wild life and lo! we spotted a Jackal couple enjoying their private moments on the road only to be disturbed by us. We stopped our vehicle in an effort to let them be and tried not to disturb them. This great moment lasted for a few minutes with the jackals vanishing into thick woods.  We reached Chanderi and found a room to settle down for that night. However, we had to drive ahead to Hotel Tana Bana maintained by MPSTDC for dinner. The hotel was booked priorly and decked up for the new year celebrations. We had our buffet dinner which was a part of the new year feast and rested for the night.
Chanderi Town
Our next morning began with a hunt for a place to have break fast and as we finalised on one, we had to reverse our vehicle to stop by that place. While doing so, a biker collided with our vehicle's rear end. Though not much damage occurred, the biker began to exaggerate the situation. Luckily, since it was not our mistake, many locals gathered around and began to assess the situation. They told the biker to check for any physical injuries or damage to the two wheeler and when they realised it was nothing major, they adviced us to leave the place immediately. The biker had no choice but to leave silently. We proceeded further in search of another place for break fast and thought that we were lucky to have overcome this situation rather easily as such instances are known to be an easy mode of exhorting money, with the victims falling prey to it.
Chanderi is a small town located in Ashoknagar district of Madhya Pradesh and famous for its sarees. The Chanderi saree also finds its mention in the great epic of Mahabharata, thus proving its antiqueness. There are many weaving centers across Chanderi today producing these sarees. The Bundela Rajputs built the existing Chanderi city in 11th century AD. There are various temples, Jain temples, Baolis and other structures here. Later in 13th century AD, the Malwa Sultans captured Chanderi from the Rajputs and refined and rebuilt the city, its forts and palaces. It changed hands many times between the Mughals, the Rajputs and the Marathas before finally falling into the hands of the British after which  the  Sindhias ruled till Indian Independence.
Bird's Eye View of Chanderi Town
Badal Mahal Darwaza: This beautiful gateway to the hill fort was built in 1460 by the Sultans of Malwa as a memorial to commemorate their victory over the Bundela Rajputs. The gateway consists of an arched entrance above which is another arch comprising of intricately carved Jali of geometrical designs and two gradually tapering circular towers. This place is very serene, thanks to the well maintained gardens surrounding it.
Badal Mahal Darwaza, Chanderi
Badal Mahal Darwaza 
Jama Masjid: This huge Friday mosque built around 15th Century has a spacious open court with a sanctuary in its west and arched cloisters in the north and south, with the eastern portion being damaged. The mosque is not associated with any minarets, making the structute quite unique. The entrance to the mosque has a few delicate carvings.
Jama Masjid, Chanderi
Jama Masjid 
ASI Museum: The museum is a big and modern building, housing various collections found during excavations in and around Chanderi. Photography is prohibited inside the Museum.
Chanderi Museum 
Koshak Mahal: This beautiful monument was built during the 15th century AD by the Sultans of Malwa. Only 3 storeys of this palace survive today,  which originally was a 7 storey palace. Built in Afghani style in the shape of the Greek Plus, it has four symmetrical divisions. The grandness of this place is limited to our imagination. The balconies in all directions adds to its grandeur.
Koshak Mahal, Chanderi
Koshak Mahal 
Jain Temple, Khandaragiri: This place has a beautiful 45 feet tall rock cut murti of the first Jain Tirthankara Rishabhnath, popularly known as Adinath. There are many cave temples in the surroundings.
Rock Cut Murti of Jain Tirthankara Rishabhnath
Kati Gati: This is the southern gateway to the city of Chanderi built by cutting solid rock, thus the name Kati Gati. There are a few inscriptions here that tell us about the construction of this gateway by the order of Jiman Khan in 1490 AD.
Kati Gati 
Chakla Baoli: It is believed that around 1200 stepped wells were built in Chanderi by the Chandela Rajputs and the Sultans of Malwa. Chakla Baoli is one such, built during 15th century by the Sultans and later additions to these were the two Chhatris built  by the Rajputs in end of 17th century.
Chakla Baoli, Chanderi
Chakla Baoli 
Purani Adalat (Old court): The Haveli of Bundela kings built in 17th century was later converted into a temple of justice, which was under use till independence.
Purani Adalat 
Madrasa (School): An old Madrasa here was built during 15th century by the Sultans to impart Islamic education to children.
Madrasa 
Chanderi Fort: The major tourist attraction here is the Chanderi fort built by Kirttipala, a Pratihara king in 11th century, due to which this place gets the name Kirttidurga. There are two tombs here, one dedicated to the renowned musician Baiju Bhawara who probably was the only singer to defeat Tansen, one of the greatest musicians in Akbar's court and the second is the Johar tomb dedicated to all the Rajput ladies who scarified their lives rather than being captured by Babur's Army.
Khooni Darwaza
Chanderi Fort
Chanderi Fort 
Other places of Interest: Jageshwari Temple, Parameshwar Lake, Shahzadi Ka Rauza, Shahi Madrasa, Singhpur Palace, Battisi Baoli, and many more.
Entrance fee: Entry is free
Distance from nearby town: 36 km from Lalitpur, 60 km from Ashoknagar.
Accommodation: We stayed at Hotel Shri Kunj which was quite a decent place for stay having various option for all types of travelers. This apart, there is a Hotel Tana Bana maintained by MPSTDC which  is also an equally good option and a PWD rest house.
Where to eat: Hotel Tana Bana is the only decent option along with various other road side eateries.
References:
1. The Guide to the Architecture of the Indian subcontinent by Takeo Kamiya.
2. RBS Visitors Guide India - Madhya Pradesh.
3. Chanderi.org

PS: A new page has been added to our blog, which has a collection of our Vlogs. Click here to view.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Top 50 Must Visit Lesser Known Temples of Karnataka

Various dynasties such as the Ganga, Kadamba, Chalukya, Rashtrakuta, Hoysala, Vijayanagara, Yadava, Wodeyar, Nayaka and the Keladi have contributed immensely in building innumerable great temples across the length and breadth of the state of Karnataka. The temple architecture of Karnataka holds a prominent place in the history of Indian temple architecture. The grandness of these temples has always mesmerized us and these temples have been an integral part of our travel journeys all the time. Though there are a multitude of temples spread across different parts of the state, popular ones like those at Badami, Aihole, Pattadakal, Hampi, Belur, Halebidu, Shravanabelagola, Gokarna, Belavadi, Itagi and many such are major tourist attractions, while a majority of them still remain lesser known. Here is our personal list of the top 50 must visit lesser known temples of Karnataka. Though this is a comprehensive list, there are many other temples outside this list and many that we are yet to visit. However, these temples are surely worth finding a place in the list of everyone interested in architectural, historical and pilgrim travel.

    Taluk: Tarikere, Chikmagalur
    Dynasty: Gangas in 8th century and Hoysalas in 12th century
    About: This trikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) in the main western garbhagriha with Lords Keshava and Surya in the other two cells. The ceiling carvings here are exemplary and typical of Hoysala architecture. Read More.
Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Hirenallur
Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Hirenallur 
2. Sri Kalleshwara Temple, Bagali
    Taluk: Harapanahalli, Davangere
    Dynasty: Rashtrakutas in 9th century and Kalyana Chalukyas in 10th century
   About: This trikuta temple (though not typical in layout) is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) in the main eastern garbhagriha with Lords Narasimha and Surya in the other two cells. This temple is considered to be Karnataka's Khajuraho owing to the presence of various erotic carvings on the outer walls of the temple. Read more.
Sri Kalleswara Temple, Bagali
Sri Kalleswara Temple, Bagali 
3. Sri Galageshwara temple, Galaganatha
     Taluk:  Haveri
     Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century
    About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). The temple has a unique pyramidal structure which has helped it survive the wrath of floods by the river Tungabhadra. Read more.
Sri Galageshwara Temple, Galaganatha
Sri Galageshwara Temple, Galaganatha 
4. Sri Kalleshwara Temple, Hire Hadagali
    Taluk:  Hoovina Hadagali, Bellary
    Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 10th century
   About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) with a small shrine dedicated to Lord Surya. Art critic Alexander Rea has summarized this temple in his book stating "every detail of carved work is as minutely finished as jewelry". Read more.
Sri Kalleshwara Temple, Hire Hadagali
Sri Kalleshwara Temple, Hire Hadagali 
5. Sri Mukteshwara Temple, Chaudayyadanapura
    Taluk:  Haveri
    Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century
    About: This dwikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) in the main eastern garbhagriha with Lord Surya in the opposite cell. Read more.
Sri Mukteshwara Temple, Chaudayyadanapura
Sri Mukteshwara Temple, Chaudayyadanapura 
6. Sri Chandramouleswara Temple, Arsikere
    Taluk: Arsikere, Hassan
    Dynasty: Hoysalas in 11th century
   About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). This temple has a unique dome shaped mukhamantapa supported by 21 pillars. Read more.
Sri Chandramouleswara Temple, Arsikere
Sri Chandramouleswara Temple, Arsikere 
7. Naganatha Temple, Naganathapura
    Taluk: Badami, Bagalkot
    Dynasty: Badami Chalukyas in 6th Century
   About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). This temple belongs to an era which is considered to be the cradle of temple architecture in Karnataka.
Naganatha Temple, Naganathapura
Naganatha Temple, Naganathapura
8. Sri Chandramouleshwara Temple, Unkal
    Taluk: Hubli, Dharwad
    Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century
   About: This unique 12 doored temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and houses two lingas, one of which is plain and the other is a Chaturmukha (four-faced) linga.  
Sri Chandramouleswara Temple, Unkal
Sri Chandramouleshwara Temple, Unkal 
9. Bandalike Temple Complex, Bandalike
    Taluk: Shikaripura, Shimoga
    Dynasty: Rashtrakutas in 8th century, Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century and Hoysalas in 12th century
   About: This temple complex spread across a large area is home to 5 temples including a Jain Basadi. Each temple here is unique resembling different styles of architecture. The front panels of Someshwara temple has stories carved from the epics of Mahabharata and Ramayana.
Trimurti Narayana Temple, Bandalike
Trimurti Narayana Temple, Bandalike 
10. Sri Kedareshwara Temple, Balligavi
      Taluk: Shikaripura, Shimoga
      Dynasty:  Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century, Hoysalas in 12th century
      About: This trikuta temple has Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) in two of its cells and Lord Keshava in the other cell. There are many temples here built by the Chalukyas. There is a beautiful sculpture of Gandabherunda (seen here as a mythical bird with two heads and human body) at Bherundeshvara temple.
Sri Kedareshwara Temple, Balligavi
Sri Kedareshwara Temple, Balligavi
11. Panchakuta Basadi, Kambadahalli
      Taluk: Nagamangala, Mandya
      Dynasty: Gangas in 9th century
     About: There are two basadis (one dwikuta and another trikuta) here which together form Panchakuta basadi dedicated to Jain Tirthankaras. This type of Panchakuta temple is a rarity; the ceilings of the temples are exquisitely carved.
Panchakuta Basadi, Kambadahalli
Panchakuta Basadi, Kambadahalli 
12. Kedareshwara Temple, Nagalapura
      Taluk: Turuvekere, Tumkur
      Dynasty: Hoysala in 12th century
     About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). The outer walls of this temple have fine carvings of the Hoysala period. There is another temple dedicated to Lord Chennakeshava, also built during the same period though smaller in size with similar plan. Read More.
Sri Kedareshwara Temple, Nagalapura
Sri Kedareshwara Temple, Nagalapura 
13. Sri Amrutheshwara Temple, Annigeri
      Taluk: Navalgunda, Dharwad
      Dynasty: Badami Chalukyas in 7th century, Kalyana Chalukyas in 10th century
      About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). Probably this must have been the first temple built in black soapstone by Kalyana Chalukyas. There are many ancient and modern water tanks in this town.
Sri Amrutheshwara Temple, Annigeri
Sri Amrutheshwara Temple, Annigeri
14. Sri Someshwara Temple, Lakshmeshwara
      Taluk: Shirahatti, Gadag
      Dynasty: Badami Chalukyas in 7th century, Kalyana Chalukyas in 10th century
      About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and his consort Goddess Parvathi and houses a unique and beautiful idol of Shiva and Parvathi seated on their vehicle Nandi (the bull). There are many Jain temples in the town and a tomb built during the period of Adil Shah.
Sri Someshwara Temple, Lakshmeshwara
Sri Someshwara Temple, Lakshmeshwara 
15. Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Arakere
      Taluk: Arsikere, Hassan
      Dynasty: Hoysala in 13th century
    About: This trikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Keshava in the main western garbhagriha with Lords Venugopala and Lakshmi Narasimha in the other two cells. The outer walls of this temple have some fine carvings of the Hoysala period. There is another temple dedicated to Lord Rameshwara built during the same period.
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Arakere
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Arakere
16. Sangameshwara - Jangameshwara Temple, Sindaghatta
      Taluk: K R Pete, Mandya
      Dynasty: Hoysala in 12th century
   About: This dwikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) who is worshiped as Sangameshwara and Jangameshwara. This is a unique dwikuta with two antarala’s opening into a common Navaranga. There is another temple here dedicated to Lord Lakshmi Naryana built by the Hoysalas. Read more.
Sangameshwara - Jangameshwara Temple, Sindaghatta
Sangameshwara - Jangameshwara Temple, Sindaghatta 
17. Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Tandaga
      Taluk: Turuvekere, Tumkur
      Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
   About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Chennakeshava. This temple has an interesting legend associated with it. Read more.
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Tandaga
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Tandaga 
18. Lakshmi Devi Temple, Doddagaddavahalli
      Taluk: Hassan
      Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
    About: This is a unique Chaturkuta (four shrined) temple dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi in the main eastern garbhagriha with Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) and Goddess Kali in the other cells. One cell is devoid of any idol.
Lakshmi Devi Temple, Doddagaddavahalli
Lakshmi Devi Temple, Doddagaddavahalli 
19. Sri Shantinatha Basadi, Jinanathapura
     Taluk: C R Patna, Hassan
     Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
     About: This ekakuta Jain basadi is dedicated to the Jain Tirthankara Shantinatha. The outer wall of this temple has rich decorations of various tirthankaras and other sculptures.
Sri Shantinatha Basadi, Jinanathapura
Sri Shantinatha Basadi, Jinanathapura 
20. Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Aralaguppe
      Taluk: Tiptur, Tumkur
      Dynasty: Nolambas in 9th century, Hoysalas in 12th century
    About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Chennakeshava. The outer walls of this temple have rich carvings of various gods and goddesses. There is another small temple in this town dedicated to Lord Kalleshwara; there is an exquisitely carved Tandaveshwara (dancing Shiva) on the central ceiling surrounded by asthadikpalakas and flying gandharvas. Read more.
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Aralaguppe
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Aralaguppe
21. Navalingeshwara Temple, Kuknur
      Taluk: Yelburga, Koppal
      Dynasty: Rashtrakutas in 9th century, Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century
     About: This is a Navakuta (nine shrined) temple housing Shiva-lingas in all of its cells and probably the only one of its kind surviving.
Sri Navalingeshwara Temple, Kuknur
Sri Navalingeshwara Temple, Kuknur 
22. Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Basaralu
     Taluk: Mandya
     Dynasty: Hoysalas in 13th century
     About: This trikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) in the main western garbhagriha with Lord Surya and the couple deity of Naga-Nagini in the other cells. This is also our most favorite temple. Read more.
Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Basaralu
Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Basaralu 
23. Sri Kadambeshwara Temple, Rattihalli
      Taluk: Hirekerur, Haveri
      Dynasty: Kadambas in 5th Century, Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century, Hoysalas in 13th century.
      About: This trikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and has linga in all the three cells. This temple was built by the Kadambas in 5th century and underwent subsequent renovation in 11th century by the Kalyana Chalukyas.
Sri Kadambeshwara Temple, Rattihalli
Sri Kadambeshwara Temple, Rattihalli 
24. Sri Ranganatha Swamy Temple, Rangasthala
     Taluk: Chikkaballapur
     Dynasty: Vijayanagaras in 15th century
    About: Lord Ranganatha Swamy temple here was built along the lines of Srirangapatna and Srirangam (Tamil Nadu). The idol of Lord Ranganatha Swamy is very beautiful and the entire temple complex is grand.  
Sri Ranganatha Swamy Temple, Rangasthala
Sri Ranganatha Swamy Temple, Rangasthala 
25. Sri Virupaksheshwara Temple, Virupakshi
      Taluk: Mulbagal, Kolar
      Dynasty: Vijayanagar in 15th century
     About: This grand temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva with the linga possessing a unique feature of  changing color with the time of day.
Sri Virupaksheshwara Temple complex, Virupakshi
Sri Virupaksheshwara Temple complex, Virupakshi 
26. Sri Tarakeshwara Temple, Hangal
      Taluk: Hangal, Haveri
      Dynasty: Kadambas in 5th century, Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century
     About: This grand temple dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) is one among the earliest temples of Karnataka built around 5th century. The beautiful navaranga here is built in the style of Chalukyan architecture.
Sri Tarakeshwara Temple, Hangal
Sri Tarakeshwara Temple, Hangal
27. Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple, Vignasanthe
      Taluk: Turuvekere, Tumkur
      Dynasty: Hoysala in 13th century
    About: This trikuta temple is dedicated to Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy in the main western garbhagriha with Lords Chennakeshava and Venugopala in the other two cells. The Shikara here has some fine carvings.
Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple, Vignasanthe
Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple, Vignasanthe 
28. Sri Mukthanatheshwara Temple, Binnamangala
      Taluk: Nelamangala, Bangalore
      Dynasty: Cholas in 10th century
   About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) and the temple style exhibits Dravidian architecture. The outer walls have carvings of the various forms of Shiva and his family. Read more.
Sri Mukthanatheshwara Temple, Binnamangala
Sri Mukthanatheshwara Temple, Binnamangala
29. Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy temple, Kuruvatti
     Taluk: Hoovina Hadagali, Bellary
     Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 12th century
    About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). The unique feature of this temple is carving of Apsaras on the pillar tops of the front porch and the numerous Nagabandha carvings on its door frames. Read more.
Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Kuruvatti
Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Kuruvatti
30. Sri Kamaleshwara Temple, Jalasangi
      Taluk: Humnabad, Bidar
      Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century
    About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). This small temple has many beautiful carvings of shilabalike’s on its outer walls.
Sri Kamaleshwara Temple, Jalasangi
Sri Kamaleshwara Temple, Jalasangi 
31. Sri Nagareshwara Temple, Bankapura
     Taluk: Haveri
     Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 12th century
     About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). Due to the presence of 60 beautiful pillars, this temple is popularly called as Aravattukhambada Gudi in kannada.
Sri Nagareshwara Temple, Bankapura
Sri Nagareshwara Temple, Bankapura
32. Banashankari Temple, Amargol
     Taluk: Hubli, Dharwad
     Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 12th century
    About: This dwikuta temple is dedicated to Goddess Banashankari with Lord Shankar in the other cell. Read more.
Banashankari Temple, Amargol
Banashankari Temple, Amargol 
33. Sri Kalleshwara Temple, Ambali
     Taluk: Hagaribommanahalli, Bellary
     Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 10th century
   About: This Ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga), the dwarapalakas here are attended by Rathi and Manmatha (goddess and god of love). Read more.
Sri Kalleshwara Temple, Ambali
Sri Kalleshwara Temple, Ambali
34. Sri Arkeshwara Temple, Hale Alur
      Taluk: Chamarajanagar
      Dynasty: Gangas in 9th century
     About: This Ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga), the pillars of Nandi Mandapa and navaranga here are beautifully carved with depictions of stories from the Ramayana and the Mahabharata.
Sri Arkeshwara Temple, Hale Alur
Sri Arkeshwara Temple, Hale Alur 
35. Sri Ramalingeshwara Temple, Avani
     Taluk: Mulbagal, Kolar
     Dynasty: Gangas in 10th century
    About: The group of four temples here houses a Shiva-linga each and are believed to have been installed by Lord Rama and his brothers. Hence they are called by the names of Ramalingeshwara, Lakshmanlingeshwara, Bharatalingeshwara  and Shatrugnalingeshwara. It is believed that goddess Sita gave birth to Lava and Kush in a cave nearby to this temple.
Sri Ramalingeshwara Temple Complex, Avani
Sri Ramalingeshwara Temple Complex, Avani 
36. Sri Gaurishvara Temple, Yelandur
     Taluk: Yelandur, Chamarajanagar
     Dynasty: Gangas in 9th century, Vijayanagar in 15th century
    About: This temple like many temples built by the Gangas is a Panchalingeshwara temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. It has a beautiful Mahadwara also called as the BaLe Mandapa due to the presence of a set of stone rings (resembling bangles) beautiful carved out of a single stone. Click here to view the video of this temple. 
BaLe Mantapa, Yelandur
BaLe Mantapa, Yelandur
37. Sri Malleswara Temple, Aghalaya
      Taluk: K R Pete, Mandya
      Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
     About: This unusual trikuta temple has three garbhagrihas housing a Shiva-linga each. There are lots of small carvings on the outer walls of this temple. Read more.
Sri Malleswara Temple, Aghalaya
Sri Malleswara Temple, Aghalaya
38. Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Hullekere
      Taluk: Arsikere, Hassan
      Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
    About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Chennakeshava and is small yet grand. There is also a beautiful pillared hall surrounding this temple.
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Hullekere
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Hullekere
39. Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Anekere
     Taluk: Channarayapatna, Hassan
     Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
     About: This beautiful ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Chennakeshava. The Kalasa on top of the Shikara is considered to be biggest of all. Read more.
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Anekere
Sri Chennakeshava Temple, Anekere
40. Sri Lakshmi Narayana Temple, Adagur
      Taluk: Hassan
      Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
     About:  This trikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Lakshmi Narayana in the main western garbhagriha with Lords Chennakeshava and Venugopala in the other two cells.
Sri Lakshmi Narayana Temple, Adagur
Sri Lakshmi Narayana Temple, Adagur 
41. Sri Lakshmikantha Swamy Temple, Hedathale
      Taluk: Mysore
      Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
    About: This trikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Lakshmikantha in the main western garbhagriha with Lords Chennakeshava and Venugopala in the other two cells.
Sri Lakshmikantha Temple, Hedathale
Sri Lakshmikantha Temple, Hedathale 
42. Sri Chatteshwara Temple, Chatachattahalli
     Taluk: Belur, Hassan
     Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
     About:  This trikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga) in the main western garbhagriha with Lords Chennakeshava and Surya in the other two cells.
Sri Chatteshwara Temple, Chatachattahalli
Sri Chatteshwara Temple, Chatachattahalli
43. Sri Kanakachalapathi Temple, Kanakagiri
     Taluk: Koppal
     Dynasty: Nayakas in 17th century
    About: This dwikuta temple is dedicated to Lord Kanakachalapathi (Vishnu) with Goddess Lakshmi in the other cell. Read more.
Sri Kanakachalapathi Temple, Kanakagiri
Sri Kanakachalapathi Temple, Kanakagiri
44. Sri Panchalingeshwara Temple, Sedam
     Taluk: Sedam, Gulbarga
     Dynasty: Rashtrakutas in 9th century, Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century
    About: This is a Panchakuta temple with five garbhagrihas housing a Shiva-linga each. There are 2 life-sized Saiva dwarapalas at the entrance followed by two female dwarapalas at the entrance of the navaranga. Read more.
Sri Panchalingeshwara Temple, Sedam
Sri Panchalingeshwara Temple, Sedam
45. Sri Bhutanatha Temple, Torgal
     Taluk: Ramdurga, Belgaum
     Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 12th century
    About:  This temple complex has nine temples altogether with most of them being dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). Only the main temple of Bhutanatha has some carvings on its outer walls while the others are plain and simple.
Bhutanatha Temple, Torgal
Bhutanatha Temple, Torgal
46. Sri Chandranatheshwara Basadi, Bhatkal
     Taluk: Bhatkal, Uttara Kannada
     Dynasty: Vijayanagaras in 14th century
    About: This Basadi is the biggest of the all the basadis here and is a two storey structure dedicated to various Jain Tirthankaras. There are many small yet beautiful temples in the nearby village of Mood Bhatkal.
Sri Chandranatheshwara Basadi, Bhatkal
Sri Chandranatheshwara Basadi, Bhatkal 
47. Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Temple, Horakeredevapura
      Taluk: Holalkere, Chitradurga
      Dynasty: Vijayanagar in 15th century
     About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Lakshmi Narasimha. The 5 storey Rajagopuram of this temple is quite unique and rare. Read more.
Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Temple, Horakeredevapura
Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Temple, Horakeredevapura 
48. Sri Panchalingeshwara temple, Hooli
      Taluk: Parasgad, Belgaum
      Dynasty: Kalyana Chalukyas in 11th century
      About: This is a Panchakuta temple with five garbhagrihas housing a Shiva-linga each. This was an erstwhile Jaina basadi which later was converted into a temple. This town had 101 temples and stepped wells, most of which are in ruins today.
Panchalingeshwara Temple, Hooli
Panchalingeshwara Temple, Hooli 
49. Ishwara Temple, Udri
     Taluk: Shikaripura, Shimoga
     Dynasty: Hoysalas in 12th century
     About: This ekakuta temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (in the form of linga). This was an erstwhile Jaina basadi which later was converted into a temple. There are many sati stones in the temple. Read more.
Ishwara Temple, Udri
Ishwara Temple, Udri
50. Bahubali Gomateshwara Temple, Venur
     Taluk: Belthangadi, Dakshina Kannada
     Dynasty: Ajila in 16th century
  About: This lesser known statue of Gomateshwara is 38 feet tall and sculpted out of a single stone.
Gomateshwara Temple, Venur
Gomateshwara, Venur 

The commitment of Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to the cause of conservation, preservation, maintenance, repair and restoration of archaeological sites and historical monuments is highly commendable. Kudos also to the combined efforts by the State  Archaeology Department and Sri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara Dharmothana Trust (SDMDT) under the public-private partnership model in restoration of heritage structures. Trusts such as SDMDT and the like, including local authorities and citizens must come forward and take up many such restoration works of ancient temples and monuments that are unprotected and lie in a dilapidated condition, in order to save our rich heritage. There are many other lesser known beautiful temples in Karnataka which we have visited and will be compiled in the next series. The list will be updated accordingly as and when we visit other lesser known places.


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