Places to visit around Bangalore/ ಬೆಂಗಳೂರು/ Bengaluru - Anniversary Post

   It is time to celebrate! The journey of Team G Square's blog for the last one year has been successful and we are extremely delighted. We started to blog with our major objective being able" to compile places we have visited  in and around Bangalore". And we are happy to know that since the time we have put our best foot forward in this direction, apart from having shared knowledge, we have also learned much from it and continue to do so. We celebrate by sharing our anniversary post which is a brief compilation featuring places to visit around Bangalore. On this occasion, we would like to wholeheartedly thank all our readers, bloggers, supporters and well wishers for having given us the much needed encouragement and good wishes.We also thank you for sharing such wonderful posts which help us learn more about our rich Indian heritage. We are very grateful to all of you. The places  listed below are already presented  in detail in our older posts (Click on the name of the place for more details).

A) Hill Forts: 
1   Savanadurga (45 kms) 

Water Pond (Savanadurga Hill)

 2   Nijagal Betta (50 kms) 

Nijagal Fort

3   Skandagiri (50kms) 

Skandagiri Sunrise

4   Makalidurga (55kms)

Makalidurga Fort Entrance

5   Devarayanadurga (55kms)

Devarayanadurga

6   Huthridurga (65kms)

Rock Cut Steps - Huthridurga Fort

7   Gudibande (75 kms)

Gudibande Fort

8   Varlakonda (80 kms)

Lord Rama Temple Atop Varlakonda Hill

9   Kabbaladurga (80 kms)

Kabbaladurga Fort Ruins

10 Channarayanadurga (95kms) 

Channarayanadurga


 11 Gummanayakanapalya (140 kms) 

G N Kote

B) Hill Temples: 

1   Akkayamma Betta (25 kms) 

Goddess Durga inside a ruined Temple on Akkayamma Betta

2   Narsapura Betta (40kms)

  Agama spotted in Narsapura Betta

3   Mahimapura (45 kms) 

Beautifully Carved Pillar (Mahimapura Temple)

4   Aladahalli (50 kms) 

Lord Ranganatha Swamy Temple, Aladahalli

5   Bilikal Ranganatha Swamy Betta (50 kms) 

Common Jezebel Spotted on Bilikal Rangaswamy Betta

6   Mandharagiri (55 kms) 

Mandharagiri Hill

7   Heggunda (60 kms)

Heggunda Ramdevara Betta

8   Antaragange (60 kms)

Antaragange

9   Hadinakal (110 kms)

Lord Hanuman Pillar, Hadinakal

10 Hatyal (115 kms) 

Entrance to Narasimhaswamy Temple, Hatyal

11 Adichunchanagiri (120 kms)


Adichunchanagiri Temple

12 Shravanabelagola (150 kms) 

Lord Gomateshwara, Shravanabelagola

C) Hoysala Temples: 

1 Kaidala (80 kms) 

Chennakeshava Temple, Kaidala

2 Hosa Budanur (100 kms)

Kasi Visveswara Temple, Hosa Budanur 

Anantha Padmanabha Temple

3 Aralaguppe (120 kms)

Ceiling Carving, Kalleshwara Temple, Aralaguppe
Chennakeshava Temple, Aralaguppe

4 Tandaga (125 kms)

Sculptor, Chennakeshava Temple, Tandaga 

5 Basaralu (130 kms) 

 Hoysala Emblem, Mallikarjuna Temple, Basaralu

6 Hariharapura (135 kms)

Ruined Temple, Hariharapura

7 Machalaghatta (135 kms) 

Nandi, Malleshwara Temple, Machalaghatta

8 Hosaholalu (140 kms)

Venugopala Temple, Hosaholalu

9 Somanathpuram (140 kms)

Mahisasuramardini, Keshava Temple, Somanathpuram

D) Water Falls / Dams and Reservoirs: 

T G Halli reservoir (30 kms) 

Peacock Pansy spotted at T G Halli Reservoir

Manchinbele Dam (40 kms)

Ashy Prinia spotted near Machinbele Dam



Kanva Reservoir (65 kms)

Kanva Reservoir


Jaramadagu Waterfalls (70 kms) 

Jaramadagu Falls

Chunchi Falls (75 kms)

Chunchi Falls

Sangama and Mekedatu (75 kms)

Sunset, Sangama

Vani Vilas Sagar Dam (140 kms) 

Vani Vilas Sagar Dam

E) Temples:


Binnamangala (35 kms)

Lord Shiva, Binnamngala
Gulur (80 kms)

Lord Ganesha, Gulur

Seebi (100 kms)

Gopura, Narashimaswamy Temple, Seebi

Kurudumale (110 kms)

Ganesha Temple Complex, Kurudumale

Melukote (140 kms) 


Kalyani and Yoga Narashima Temple, Melukote

F) Parks :


1 Bannerghatta National Park (25 kms) 

Red Eared Turtle, Banneraghatta National Park 

2 Ramohalli (30 kms)

Black Shouldered  Kite spotted near Ramohalli

3 Innovative Film City (35 kms)

Innovative Film City

4 Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary (125 kms) 

Black Headed Ibis Family, Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary

5 Kaundinya Wildlife Sanctuary(130 kms) 


KWLS
6 Horsely Hills (140 kms)

Jacaranda  Avenue, Horsely Hills
Dancing Peacock, Horsely Hills
   We feel that our travel experience is only 'a drop in the ocean' and there is much more to see and explore. A life time may not be enough! Nature is vast, beautiful and is the most unselfish. It reminds us of the quote "the best things in life are free and worth every penny". Nature has been very kind to man and it is our duty to conserve and preserve the same. If not, we're afraid that the beauty it holds can be lost forever. Nature commands respect after all. The signboard below rightfully says it all I guess.

True. Isn't  it?

Ravana Phadi Cave Temple, Aihole

     "Ravana Phadi" is the most interesting rock cut cave shrine in Aihole. This rock cut cave shrine belongs to the 6th century AD.  The cave consists of a hall with two pillars in the front and an antechamber behind. On either side of the hall are two chambers containing beautiful life size sculptures.
Ravana Phadi Cave Shrine
     It was late evening when we were walking back to our shelter after exploring Aihole. This cave from far looked very intriguing and since it was already dark and we had no energy left in us we were in doubt whether or not to find out what's in this cave. We met a person walking in the opposite direction to us and on inquiring he felt sorry for us telling the cave might be closed at this time but it is very beautiful inside. As a matter of chance, looking back and seeing the gate keeper just about to lock the gate to the cave he told us to rush over and shouted loud to the keeper making him aware of our presence and wanting to see the cave.  Luckily, the gate keeper cheerfully waved at us (meaning we are welcomed) and there we were, as though destined to see this place. Though we were very tired, our efforts were worth while and for sure, this turned out to be one of the most beautiful cave temples we had ever seen. 
Shiva Linga
     The inner sanctum houses a Shiva Linga. There are many life size carvings of Lord Shiva in  his various forms.  The most beautiful of them all is the ten armed Shiva in a dancing posture and to  his left is a small figure standing, which we thought could be of Lord Shanmuga (Shiva's Son). Next to him stands Goddess Parvathi  and on the right side of Lord Shiva is an interesting short figure of Lord Ganapathi engaged with his favorite food , 'the modakas'.
Ten Armed Dancing Shiva and his Family 
   The other side of the hall has figures of 'Harihara - the combined  form of Lords Vishnu  and Shiva'. There is a wonderful carving on the ceiling. The small vacant room on the side of Sanctum could have been the kitchen. The drainage system also seemed to have been well developed inside the cave. Carvings of many dwarf  musicians are also seen on the raised platform. 
Harihara
Ceiling Carving
Varaha
Sage Agasthiyar, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi
The Kitchen
Dwarf Musicians
Another Set of Dwarf Musicians
Lord Vishnu with his Consorts
Water Drainage System
 'The ASI has done a fair job in restoration of this place though they can never the match the original work. But that's not their mistake either, we have to blame our ancestors for building so complicatedly' says the watchman with an ironic smile on his face. Our ancestors were the true geniuses in every aspect of life.
The Pillars - Old and New Look


To read more about Aihole, click here

Related Posts:
1. Melgudi Jaina temple, Hallur
2. Meguti Jain Temple, Aihole
3. 100 temples of Karnataka