India

Ancient Archeological Temples of Aihole and Charismatic Monuments of Pattadakal

Ancient temple town of Aihole

Our next destination post Banashankari temple was Aihole. Its located around 35 kms from Badami. Aihole was the cultural capital during the period of Western Chalukya dynasty of Badami. Main attraction here is the archeological park. This tiny village is located on the banks of River Malaprabha.

Long Shot of Durga Devi Temple

According to the local guides, Aihole was a primary school for all who wanted to learn sculpture. Pattadakallu is high school and Badami is University. Since me and husband are not archeological structure lovers we found it hard to appreciate the half done practice carvings.

The most impressive and prominent attraction in Aihole is the Durga Devi temple.it invites lot of tourists and scholars. It’s been told that, Indian parliament house building took the aspiration from this temple. Our current parliament house structure does resemble this. Durga Devi temple is dedicated to “Surya”.  I loved the shape of temple and the outstanding intricate carvings crowding the colonnaded passageway around the sanctuary. Another intricate carving can be found in Lad Khan Temple. It showcases iconography from Shaiva, Vaishnava and Shakti traditions of Hinduism.

The whole village is covered by temples and it’s a nice walk to discover them all. It’s a delight to visit for those who love archaeology, ancient temples and history.

Inner Sanctum

Destination Facts

Reach – Nearest railway and bus stand is in Badami or Bagalkot. Its `35 kms from both places. Lot of local autos are available from both places.

Timings: 9 AM to 5.30 PM

Languages spoken: Kannada

Best attraction – Durga Devi Temple & Lad Khan Temple

Best time to Visit- Throughout the year (Avoid visiting in summer as it will be too hot)

Temperature: Summer 30 to 45°C degree, Winter 20 to 30°C

Eating Around: Best place to eat is Badami or Bagalkot. You can find some local Khanavali and other small Coffee/Tea and snacks vendors near Archeological temple.

Stay – Best place to stay is in Badami. There are several hotels available for reasonable fare.

Charismatic Monuments of Pattadakal

Pattadakal, formerly known as Raktapura, is a small town in the Bagalkot district of Karnataka, India. This place is at the proximity of 14kms from Aihole. It is famous for its UNESCO world heritage site. Pattadakal means “place of coronation”, it was considered a holy place and used as a coronation venue for Chalukya kings. This town contains a lot of 7th and 8th century temples built by the Chalukya dynasty.  It is located on the banks of the Malaprabha River. One can reach Malaprabha river from this ASI Site.

There are lot of Hindu temples and one Jain temple, along with smaller shrines and plinths. The Hindu temples are connected by a paved walkway and are dedicated to Shiva. Each enshrines a stone lingam in its inner sanctum. Though each construction looks similar, every temple is unique with carved pillars and towers. The outer walls are adorned with reliefs and derelict figurines, representing a god or a goddess. All temples share a common layout design, each with the main temple and an outer sanctum. 

The most significant temples of Pattadakal are the temples of Galaganatha, Virupaksha and Mallikarjuna. You can see some more beautiful intricate carvings in Kashi Vishwanath, Papanatha, Sangameshwara, Galaganatha and Jambulinga temples.

The Pattadakal world heritage site is protected and managed by the Archeological Survey of India. After spending an ample amount of time wandering here, we went to the banks of Malaprabha river. The small pathway to that isn’t maintained well.  The location of the temples is said to be holy, since the river flows as Uttarabhimukhi(flowing from south to north), unlike most rivers that tend to flow east to west or west to east.

Destination Facts

Reach – Nearest railway and bus stand is in Badami or Bagalkot. Its `25 kms from Badami. Lot of local autos are available from both places.

Timings: 9 AM to 5.30 PM

Languages spoken: Kannada

Best attraction – Galaganath, Virupaksha, Mallikarjuna, Jambulinga, Kadasiddeshwara, Sangameshwara, Vishwantha, Papanatha Temple

Entry fee–  Rs. 30 per head for Indians and citizens of SAARC Asian countries, and Rs. 500 per head for other foreigners.

Best time to Visit– Throughout the year (Avoid visiting in summer as it will be too hot)

Temperature: Summer 30 to 45°C degree, Winter 20 to 30°C

Eating Around: Best place to eat is Badami or Bagalkot. You can find some local Khanavali and other small Coffee/Tea and snacks vendors near Archeological temple.

Stay – Best place to stay is in Badami. There are several hotels available for reasonable fare.

Other tourist spots near by – Shivayogi mandira, Mahakoota, Sai Baba Mandira

If you are a person who would appreciate archeological monuments the do plan a visit to these places.

Have you been here? What are your thoughts?. Do let me know by commenting here.

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