Sunday, January 21, 2018

Sri Dattatreya Temple, Chattarki, Vijayapura

'Sri Dattatreya Temple' of Chattarki is one among the few Vaishnava temples built by the Kalyani Chalukyas. Chattarki is a small nondescript village in the Vijayapura/Bijapur district of Karnataka state. Vijayapura is a treasure trove of many lesser known temples built during the Kalyani Chalukya period, of which most are dedicated to Shaiva. Only 2 of the many temples built by the Kalyani Chalukyas in Vijayapura are dedicated to Vaishnava, the Sri Dattatreya Temple at Chattarki and the Sri Narasimha Swamy Temple at Vijayapura. The Dattatreya temple was built in the 12th century as per one of the inscriptions found here, which also refers this place to be an agrahara and a center for sculptural art and temple.
Sri Dattatreya Temple, Chattarki, Vijayapura
Sri Dattatreya Temple, Chattarki
Sri Dattatreya Temple, Chattarki, Bijapur
Full View of Sri Dattatreya Temple
Sri Dattatreya Temple, Chattarki, Bijapur
Skillfully Carved Mukhamandapa
Reaching Chattarki is not easy due to the limited availability of public transport. We had to hire an auto from Devara Hippargi to reach Chattarki. It is sad that the roads were devoid of any signage directing us to this temple and the final stretch of road too is in a  pretty bad condition. However on reaching, it felt good to see an enclosure in the form of a compound wall for protecting the temple. As I entered the temple complex, I wondered about how such a beautiful gem could lay hidden from the outside world. The temple is protected under the ASI, who have done a fair job in the temple's restoration and maintenance works. On interaction with the with the temple's priest cum caretaker, I  realized that not many people visit this temple which is why he was surprised that I came all the way from Bangalore. He went on to inquire if  I was involved in any research related to that temple and its architecture, for which I replied that my visit here was only out of personal interest!
Beautifully Decked Mukhamandapa
Navaranga Pillar of Sri Dattatreya Temple
One of the Pilasters of the Navaranga
Floral Carving on the Bhuvaneshwari
Madanikas Celestail Nymphs
 Celestial Scenes
Dancing Celestial Nymph
Dancing Madanikas Accompanying Lord Shiva 
Shilabalakis / Madanikas
The Mesmerizing Pose of Madanikas
Lord Vasudeva with Lord Brahma
Chalukyan Scultpures
A Hero Killing Lion
Goddess Chamundi
This temple consists of a garbhagriha, an antarala, and a sabhamandapa with mukhamandapa on three directions. The garbhagriha houses a murti of Lord Dattatreya on a high peetha, while the original murti of Lord Vishnu seems missing. The antarala is open, with two decorated circular pilasters. The sabhamandapa stands on four central pillars and twelve corresponding pilasters set against the walls. The central ceiling here has a beautiful carving of an inverted lotus bud with miniature sculptures. This temple has some fine carvings of sculptural beauty on its outer walls. Majority of these carvings depict Madanikas in different moods and action which are comparable to the Hoysalan style. There is a structure opposite to this temple that seems to belong to another temple about which the care taker had no idea. This temple too carries fine carvings similar to the Dattatreya temple.

Sri Dattatreya Temple, Chattarki
Ruined Temple with Damaged Carvings of Lord Vishnu and Madanikas

Places to Visit Around Chattarki: Vijayapura, Devara Hippargi, Indi, Sindigi, and many such.
How to reach Chattarki: Chattarki is about 35 km from Vijayapura, located off the Devara Hippargi - Indi Highway, about 13 km from D Hippargi.
Accommodation: There are no options for accommodation at Chattarki. It is better to treat Vijayapura as the base which offers various options to suit one's budget.
1. Book on 'Temples of Karnataka' by Dr K M Suresh
P.S: Nothing changes except our web address! We have moved from to


  1. Great writeup on Sri Dattatreya Temple. Amazing.
    Thanks for sharing beautiful pics.

  2. Glad to know about this temple. Seems like a well preserved one.

  3. Thank you so much for visit our village and researched and posted about this, still many people don't know baout this place .....

  4. This temple information send me , whatsapp 8792612036 iam also temple archak - Joshi Arun

  5. super information and keep it for future generation, Please join hands and try to clean plants grown on temples not only on these temples wherever our ancients monuments are there.