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Pattadakal Temple: Group of Monuments at Pattadakal

The Pattadakal temples are one of the most popular historical tourist attractions of Karnataka. The history of the place goes back a long time in the past when the area was called Kisuvolal or the valley of red soil. Mention of this place has even been found in the records of Plotemy which dates back to the 2nd century CE. As per the current geographical layout Pattadakal is an area which falls within the district of Bagalkot in the state of Karnataka.

The complex of the temple we are talking about consists of both Hindu and Jain constructions. It is located in the northern part of Karnataka and dates back to 7th and 8th century CE. The UNESCO World Heritage site falls on the Western banks of the Malaprabha River in Bagalkot. It was back in the year 1987 when the area was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Pattadakal Monuments Built by

The pattadakal temple is located about 14 miles from Badami and is about 6 miles from Aihole. Historically both these areas were significant epicenters of the Chalukya Dynasty. It is the Chalukya Dynasty and their kings who have been credited with the construction of these temple complexes. Pattadakal became one of the main cultural centers and epicenter of religious activities. The area received for the attention and development during the Gupta Empire in the fifth century. After the downfall of the Chalukya Empire the area came under the control of the Rashtrakuta dynasty. In the 11th and the 12th centuries the region against came under the Western Chalukya Empire or the chalukyas of Kalyani. Some of the constructions of the region reflect Jain, Hindu and Buddhist temple features which were in fashion during the 9th and the twelfth centuries.

Virupaksha Temple Pattadakal Timing 

The Pattadakal temples are open all round the week you can visit the temples anytime of the week and even on weekends. They are open for the tourist and the visitors even on holidays. However to explore the temple and their architecture and art in full details it is mandatory you visit them during the daylight hours. Officially the temples are open from morning 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the evening. However you must and sure that you visit this temple in broad daylight hours to experience their beauty and into the Heritage to the fullest.

Pattadakal Information

UNESCO in its records has clearly described that Pattadakal strike an unforeseen harmony between the architectural patterns followed in southern and northern India. These temples illustrate eclectic art at its best. Although the Hindu temples are generally dedicated to Lord Shiva you can also find prominent references of shaktism and vaishnavism. The carving and the sculptures found on these Hindu temples exhibits a number of puranic and Vedic mythology and folklore. The carvings depict stories from Bhagwat purana, the Mahabharata and Ramayana. You can also find stories from kiratarjuniya and Panchatantra.

The Jain temple was however commemorated to a single Jina. The Virupaksha Temple is however and active temple which is still used for Hindu worship and other religious devotional activities. A careful look at the architecture of these temples clearly indicates that there had separate and definite sections within the temple. The Garbha Griha, the Antarala, the Pitha are some of the definite section you can find within the temple. An elaborate pillared Mandapa which was a common hall, a shikhara or the superstructure that grows on top of a Garba Griha along with the Kalash and the Amala were are some of the inevitable parts of these temples. These parts, sections or features gave a rather characteristic identity to the architecture of this period.

Pattadakal Tourism & How to Reach:

Pattadakal memorial is situated in the Indian state of Karnataka. It is easily accessible through the road network from places like Belgaum, Bangalore and Badami. This in turn is connected with other parts of India. This mean people from all over the nation can reach the pattadakal temples through networks of flight, railways and definitely by the national highway. The nearest airport is the one at Belgaum which is about 180 km away from Pattadakal. You can get direct flight to Belgaum from cities like Chennai and Mumbai. Bangalore is the nearest international airport from pattadakal.

The railway station of Badami is the nearest one which is about 22 km from pattadakal. Direct train come down to Badami from places like Ahmadabad and Solapur. Once you get down at Badami railway station you can easily hire a local taxi or a private cab and can reach pattadakal in no time. As mentioned earlier pattadakal is well connected to other parts of Karnataka like Bijapur Bengaluru Belgaum and Hubli through safe and convenient network of roads and highways.

The Temple at Pattadakal Entrance Fee:

Tourists and visitors from any part of the nation of the world is a whole must play Rs. 30 the entrance fee. If you are planning to carry camera, an extra payment will be needed for that as well. The temple promises other facilities like grass lawns, bathroom, sitting benchers, lush parks, availability of shops offering snack, fruits, cold drink, local food, etc. The place does not have a proper car parking area. Most cars are parked just outside the temple entrance.

Pattadakal Monuments & Important Structures

The temple complex at Pattadakal has 10 major temples. Nine temples are Hindu and one happens to be Jain. Apart from these temples you can also find several small plinths and shrines. Eight temples are formed in a cluster together where as the ninth one is about half a kilometer south of this group. The 10th Temple which is the Jain temple is located about one kilometer to the west of the main collection of temple. There is a walkway that connects the entire Hindu temple and the Jain temple has an access to the main road. The following are some of the important temples you must visit when in Pattadakal.

  • The Kadasiddeshwara temple
  • The Jambu lingeshwara Temple
  • The galaganatha temple
  • The Chandrashekhar Temple
  • The sangameshwara temple
  • The Kashi Vishwanath Temple
  • The Mallikarjuna temple
  • The Virupaksha Temple
  • The papanatha temple
  • The Jain Narayana Temple

Best time to visit Pattadakal Temple

The best time to visit pattadakal is during the months from October to March. These are the best months when the weather is very pleasant and you can easily say outdoors to explore the temple complexes to its fullest details. Since you need to visit the place during the daylight hours you need to select months when staying outdoors is comfortable and fun. The months from October to March offers low temperatures as this is the time of autumn winter and spring giving you enough opportunity to explore the large religious and cultural complex. The monsoon season from July to September is also a good time to explore the complex. This is a time when Nature is at its beautiful best and you can enjoy wonderful photography in and around the temple complex.

Pattadakal Temple History

Pattadakal the name originally means place of coronation. This was a highly holy place where the river Malaprabha moved northwards in the direction of the Himalayas and the Kailash mountain. The place was used during the Chalukya Dynasty for hosting different coronation ceremony for example Vinayaditya was crowned in this place in 7th century C.  This place was also known as Kisuvolal or the valley of red soil. The name – the city of red was also given to this place. This region was mentioned in the text of Sri Vijaya and also the record of Plotemy. Pattadakal became a centre which exercised cultural, religious and architectural experimentation.

During the 13th century the pattadakal region and the nearby Deccan area was looted and plundered several times by the army of the Delhi sultanate. This period of loot and plunder came to an end with the Rise of the famous Vijayanagara empire. During the time impressive forts were constructed in the area as a way of protecting the area from foreign ravages. During the 17th century the Mughal Empire under the leadership of Aurangzeb gained control of the pattadakal area. Soon after the fall of the Mughal Empire the Maratha supremacy claimed this region. Later on the region passed into the hands of Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan. Finally it was the British who took over the authority of the region.

Attractions Nearby Pattadakal Temple

Once you are done with the exploration of the Pattadakal temples you must check out some other attractions which lies nearby to the place. They are the Badami Fort, The Agastya Lake, The Badami Cave temples, Aihole, Bhutanatha temples, Archaeological Museum Badami, Akka Tangi Falls, Malegitti Shivalaya Fort and temple, Lower Sivalaya, Upper Shivalaya, Mahakuteshwara Temple, Ravana Pahad, Banashankarai Amma Temple.  All these places offers a deep insight I to the socio cultural history of the place. They give us a deep insight into the life as it existed in the ancient times. Visiting these places can enrich you culturally, religiously and from the point of view of history.

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