Places to Visit Around Bangalore/ ಬೆಂಗಳೂರು/ Bengaluru Part -11

Continued from here..

Type: Hill, Fort, Temple Town 
Distance from Bangalore: 110 km
Trek Distance: 1.5 km (One Way)
Directions from Bangalore: Bangalore - Old Madras Road - Till Mulbagal 
About: Mulbagal forms the eastern gateway to Karnataka and is popular for its Anjaneya temple and Namkeens (Savories). The fort is supposed to have been built during the Vijayanagar period which later underwent renovations during Tippu's rule. There are 2 big boulders on the peak of the hill known as Mahadeva Gundu and Babaiah Gundu. More
Mulbagal
Mulbagal Fort 
57. Hulukudi 
Type: Hill, Fort, Temple Town 
Distance from Bangalore: 80 km
Trek Distance: 1.5 km (One Way)
Directions from Bangalore: Bangalore - Doddaballapura - Right turn towards Devanahalli -  Right turn after 6 km - about 4 km to reach the hill base
About: Hulukudi is an erstwhile town of the Cholas. There are many inscriptions here belonging to this period. There are also many temples on the hill and in the village - Veerabhadraswamy temple, Narashima temple, Mukaneshwara Temple, Anjaneya temple and others. There is no much history known about the fort . More
Hulukudi
Nandi Enclosure, Hulukudi Fort
58. Lepakshi 
Type: Temple Town 
Distance from Bangalore: 110 km
Directions from Bangalore: A) Bangalore - Doddaballapura - Gauribidnaur - Hindupur - Lepakshi
                                           B) Bangalore - Devanahalli - Chikkaballapura - Bagepalli - Lepakshi 
About: The Vijayanagar King Virupanna is known to have built the Veerabhadra temple here. Though it has passed through the hands of many kingdoms, the  contribution of the Vijayanagar Kings is vast. This place is also associated with the Ramayana and the Mahabharata. The fresco paintings on the ceilings are remarkable, leaving one to only wonder about the immense skills people possessed during those times. The statue of Nandi situated at about 600 meters from the temple is another excellent piece of artwork of the Vijayanagar period. More
Lepakshi
Veerabhadra Swamy Temple, Lepakshi 

Type: Hoysala Temples
Distance from Bangalore: 120 km
Directions from Bangalore: A) Bangalore - NH 48 - Right turn at Nayakanahalli - Santhe Bachalli
About: The Mahalingeshwara Temple here serves as a very good example of Hoysala architecture that flourished during the 12th century. The temple interiors are beautifully executed. The Veeranarayana temple is supposed to have be built during the Vijayanagara period. More
Hoysala Temple
Mahalingeshwara Temple Santhe Bachalli
60. Kendatti Madivala 
Type: Prehistoric Site 
Distance from Bangalore: 50 km
Directions from Bangalore: Bangalore - NH 7 - Left turn at Kendatti - Kendatti Madivala
About: The standing stones/Menhirs here tell a wonderful story about the skills of these prehistoric people. This site is spread across a few acres and one can witness the various prehistoric burials. More 
Pre historic Site
Stone Circle, Kendatti Madival


Hampi Unseen Part 6 - Cave Paintings of Mosalayyana Gudda

"Such a place does not exist here, I have been working here for the past thirty years and never have I heard of a hill named Mosalayyana Gudda", these were the words of a lady in response to the query of the whereabouts of Mosalayyana Gudda (Gudda-Hill)! These words were totally out of sync with  the book I was referring to with regards to Mosalayyana Gudda. My friend  gave me a puzzled look after which we decided to continue towards the much known Vijaya Vittala temple. Surprisingly, the information board put up opposite the temple entrance gave us the exact location of the hill we were in search of! Wasting no time, we walked curiously towards the hill and reached its base.
Cave Paintings Hampi
Mosalayyana Gudda
While we were anxious about finding the cave paintings, a local shepherd boy came to our rescue and confirmed about the presence of paintings on a few rocks. After further discussion with him, we realized we were close to the site of cave paintings. The boy was bound to his duty of taking care of sheep and hence was unable to guide us to the caves personally. We thanked him and as we climbed the hill, we began to examine every rock that we came across for paintings. We looked around for quite sometime, yet there were no signs of any paintings. Walking along, we reached a reasonably plain stretch of land  surrounded by heaps of rock, making it difficult to find the cave paintings.
Hampi Cave painting
Pile of Rocks which housed the Paintings
Musical Rock Hampi
Musical Rock 
After a small break, our hunt continued. While we checked every rock carefully, a red color paint on the rock caught our eye and we reached that pile of rock straight away and eureka! We had found it. There they were! We had to climb a big boulder to have a closer look at the paintings. We were so thrilled and my friend admitted that he had never seen anything like this before. We carefully examined the cave paintings and spent a good time admiring the skills of the pre-historic people.
Cave Paintings Karnataka
First Look @ Cave Paintings
Line Paintings of Humans
Bull Painted 
Bull Rock Carving 
I revisited this site with my wife and four of my best friends. Everybody was equally excited to witness these pre-historic paintings. Further climb led us to the peak of the hill from where the views were amazing, giving us a chance to click some great shots.
Vijaya Vittala Temple, Hampi
Vijaya Vittala Temple
Related Posts:
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The Lord Garuda Temple, Koladevi, Mulabagal Kolar

  Witnessing a temple dedicated to Garuda is quite intriguing and fascinating, since not many temples are dedicated to Garuda as the principal deity. While travelling to Kurudumale (Mulbagal taluk, Kolar district), we noticed a board that read " Way to world's only temple dedicated to Lord Garuda". Without a second thought, we followed the directions and reached this temple. Koladevi is one of the few temples dedicated to Lord Garuda, the vahana (mount/vehicle) of Lord Vishnu. At first glance though it seems to be a modern temple, the idol of the main deity Lord Garuda is ancient having legends associated with the epic Ramayana.
Lord Garuda Temple, Koladevi
The Lord Garuda Temple, Koladevi 
Garuda, the king of birds is generally associated with Lord Vishnu but very rarely seen as being worshiped as a principal deity. The beautiful Garuda idol of this temple caught our attention at once as we entered the temple. It became obvious that the idol was sculpted during the Vijayanagar period. Simple in its outlook, Lord Garuda is seen kneeling on one knee while carrying Lord Vishnu and his consort Goddess Lakshmi in his right and left hands respectively. A close observation of the idol shows Lakshmi Devi seated at a higher position than Lord Vishnu, thus signifying prosperity. 
Lord Garuda Koladevi, Mulabagal, Kolar
The Lord Garuda 
Lord Garuda Temple
Decked Up for Puja 


One of the Puranas (ancient hindu texts) is also dedicated to Garuda, by the name Garuda Purana which speaks about his genesis and propagation and also enlists the various punishments given, specific to the type of sin committed.
Garuda Purana
There is another idol here dedicated to Lord Anjaneya (Hanuman/Monkey God), an ardent devotee of Lord Rama, known for his strength and valor. The idol is carved and positioned in such a way that the eyes of Garuda and Hanuman are in perfect alignment, as if staring into each other.
Lord Anjaneya Swamy Mulabagal
Lord Anjaneya Swamy 
Though not known much to the outside world, this temple of Garuda is vastly popular among the locals who strongly believe in and worship the deity regularly. There are also people coming from far off places who learnt about its popularity by word of mouth to witness the miracles of Lord Garuda.
The Hero 
We had a chance to witness one such instance of a family who paid visit to the temple for offering a prayer of thanks.  They were facing difficulty in finding a match in marriage for their daughter and decided to pay a visit and pray to Garudaswamy, a few days after-which she found a suitable match and hence their belief grew stronger. The temple priest also quoted a few instances of such kind and mentioned about how powerful the god here is.

The Sulfur Springs of Kalagi, Gulbarga.

Kalagi was on our travel wish list as it was a noted center of political, religious and educational activities of the Kalyani Chalukyan era. While I was travelling across the Chincholi town of Gulbarga district, a passer-by referred me to witness the bubbling waters of Kalagi. As I was unaware of the existence of such a place, I became more inquisitive and boarded a bus right away to Kalagi. In an hour's time I reached the town of Kalagi, a dusty and bustling town owing to its connectivity between Gulbarga and Chincholi. When I inquired about the Kalleshwara temple, I was directed towards the other side of the town and was told that the temple was at a walkable distance. As I walked along, I was surprised to see the numerous old temples that adorned Kalagi's narrow lanes.
Kalagi, Gulbarga
Entrance to Kalleshwara Temple
Kagli, Gulbarga
Lord Shiva 
On reaching the temple, I found its in ruins, besides which was the restored temple with minor modifications, both dedicated to  Kalleshwara. This time, I decided to visit the restored temple at first which is now renamed as the Neelakantha Kalleshwara Temple. Adjacent to the temple is a huge water pond. As I stared at the waters of the pond, it took me some time to realize it was indeed a spring. On seeing through the clear waters of this pond and tasting it, I became sure of it being a Sulfur spring. I spent a good time observing the spring with the bubbles rising in the water.
Sulfur Springs Karnataka
water Pond
Sulphur Springs Karnataka
The Bubbles
The Ripples

My next stop was at the Narashima temple that was situated on the opposite lane. Quickly walking towards it, I sighted  an old temple present right at the center of an another water pond! Intriguingly, a close observation confirmed the waters of this pond to be a Sulfur spring too. The water from this pond is currently being used for supply by the local municipality and hence the entry to this place is restricted.

Lord Narashima Temple
Lord Narashima Temple Kagali

The Standing Stones of Nilaskal, Shimoga

After visiting the prehistoric site of Byse, while driving back on the highway connecting Nagara with Nittur, a PWD board that read Nilaskal caught our eye. Nilaskal, a pre-historic site was on our to- explore list from quite sometime and now was our chance to find out what was in store here. On inquiring at a local general store on the other side of the road, we were told to take the immediate right turn and drive until we reached a school,besides which was a field, the site of Nilaskal. Nilaskal in Kannada means a standing stone, and this village is rightfully named so due to the presence of these stones. In no time we were in front of the school and parked the vehicle by the side. As we got down, we immediately spotted a big stone fallen near the school compound while a bigger one stood erect inside the school premises. Our search for  more such stones began and without much difficulty we entered the field that housed Menhirs of various sizes, standing tall and proud, many had fallen. They were spread far and wide across the field. While the scientists believe that these stones are aligned in a way that the rays when the sun rises and sets during the solar solstice fall in between these stones, the alignment pattern still remains a mystery even today. Sad to know this site remains neglected.
Pre Historic Site Nilaskal
Menhir Inside School Premises 

Pre Historic Site Shimoga
Tallest Menhir Found Here


Related Post:
1. Rock Art of Usgalimal