Fondly called as ‘Coffee Land of Karnataka’, Chikmagalur is a beautiful hill station perched at an altitude of 3,400 feet in the Western Ghats of Karnataka. it is one of the top hill stations in India, and among the must-include places in Karnataka tour packages. This pristine hill town is blessed with a serene environment, rolling hills, picturesque trekking trails, lush green forest, magnificent waterfalls, tall mountains, mystical temples, aromatic coffee plantations, and pleasant weather that draw thousands of vacationers and photographers throughout the year. Besides, there are several historical temples in and around Chikmagalur that allow you to explore the architectural beauty and history.
Here is the list of some ancient and beautiful temples in & around Chikmagalur.
Kodanda Rama Temple, Hiremagalur
Kodanda Rama Temple is an ancient shrine located in Hiremagalur, about 5 km from Chikmagalur. Built during Hoysala’s period, it is a popular heritage monument in Karnataka, and among the must include places in Chikmagalur tour packages. The temple is dedicated to Lord Rama and is believed to be the place where Lord Rama gave darshan to Parashrama along with Sita & Lakshmana. Though the main structure of the temple is built in the Hoysala style of architecture, the remaining portions such as Garbagriha and Sukanasi were added by subsequent rulers including Vijayanagar kings.
Also Read : Top Reasons to Visit Chikmagalur
Chennakesava Temple, Belur
Among the historical temples situated in & around Chikmagalur, Sri Chennakesava Temple at Belur is the most popular one. The temple is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and among the best places of heritage in Karnataka. Also referred to as Kesava or Vijayanarayana Temple of Belur, Chennakesava Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The temple was commissioned by King Vishnuvardhana of the Hoysala dynasty in 1117 CE and took 103 years to complete. Among the famous places to visit in Belur, the temple is very famous for its extensive carvings, stone sculptures, artwork, and its unique architecture. The major highlight of the temple is Darpana Sundari or The lady with the mirror. Besides, the beautiful sculpture of Shantaladevi is placed on the circular platform in front of the shrine which is unique for its hollow and movable jewelry that lures a huge number of tourists throughout the year.
Book Here : Belur Tour Packages
Javagal Lakshminarasimha Temple
About 40 km from Chikmagalur, the Lakshminarasimha Temple is an ancient Hindu temple located at Javagal. It is one of the historical temples near Chikmagalur, and among the top places to visit in Hassan. Dedicated to Narasimha, a form of the Hindu god Vishnu, the temple was built in 1250 AD by the Hoysala King Vira Someshwara. It is a trikuta temple (three shrines) type built on an elevated platform known as jagati. The external decoration is profuse but of a more relaxed character, when compared to Halebidu, one of the best heritage places near Bangalore. The outer walls are decorated with wall images that have decorative towers above them. There are 140 wall panel images, each made with attention to fine details. Notable among them are Rama and Lakshmana, Badrinarayana, and Ananthapadmanabha. Six friezes form the base of the outer wall. The epic frieze shows swans, makara, scenes from the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, horses, and elephants.
Must Read : Places that can be Visited along with Chikmagalur
Earlier called Dorasamudra or Dwarasamudra, Halebidu was the glorified royal capital of the Hoysala kingdom in the 12th Century. The Hoysaleswara, Kedareswara temples, and two Jain basadis are the prime places to visit in Halebid. Halebidu is one of the three Hoysala temples nominated for UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the other two being the Belur temple & Somnathpur temple. It is one of the popular temples to visit near Chikmagalur and among the top places to visit near Bangalore. Standing on a star-shaped platform, the Hoyasaleswara temple is made out of soapstone and the walls are covered with an endless variety of depictions from Hindu mythology, animals, birds, and dancing figures. The Kedareswara temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is another popular temple to visit in Halebidu, among the top places to visit near Bangalore. Decorated with sculptures and panels in typical Hoysala style, the basement shows the rows of elephants, horses, lions, and an imaginary animal called Makara.
Book Here : Halebidu Tour Packages
Sri Veera Narayana Temple, Belavadi
Located at Belavadi, Sri Veera Narayana Temple is one of the prominent ancient shrines near Chikmagalur, among the top hill stations in Karnataka. Built-in the 13th century by Hoysala King Veera Bhallala II, this temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu in three different forms. The entire temple is built out of soapstone and is believed that this temple was constructed in two phases. The temple is in trikuta style (three vimanas) with Sri Veera Narayana in the center facing east, Sri Venugopala facing north and Sri Yoganarasimha facing south. The outer walls of the temple have beautifully carved pilasters with decorative towers on top. Besides, the entrance to the temple is majestic and has two carved elephants on either side of the gateway. The main shrine has an 8 feet tall image of Veera Narayana with four hands which is considered one of the best examples of Hoysala art.
Must Visit : Hill Stations near Bangalore
Amruteshwara Temple, Amruthapura
Amruteshwara Temple at Amruthapura is another historical temple situated near Chikmagalur. The temple was built in 1196 AD by Amruteshwara Dandanayaka, a general of the Hoysala ruler Veera Ballala II. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, it is one of the best places to visit in Kemmanagundi. This medium-sized temple showcases the excellent craftsmanship of Hoysala architecture. This temple is in the ekakuta style, it has just one vimana, unlike other trikuta temples built by Hoysalas at Somnathpur and Belur. There are 140 panels depicting the Hindu epics on the outer parapet wall of the maha mantapa. The walls of the temple are carved with scenes from the Ramayana, the life of Lord Krishna and Mahabharata. This temple is situated near the Bhadra Reservoir in the Malnad region surrounded by coconut and palm plantations.
Book Here : Kemmanagundi Tour Packages
Sringeri is a pilgrimage center located in the Chikmagalur district of Karnataka. It is one of the important pilgrimage centers in South India, and among the most famous places to visit near Mangalore. Sringeri is well known for Sharada Peetham, the first and foremost of the 4 Peethams established by the renowned 8th-century saint Sri Adi Shankaracharya. Sringeri is also famous for the wonderful Vidyashankara Temple built in the 14th century. This temple is famous for its 12 pillars which are said to coincide with the zodiac signs. Chennakeshava Temple, Sharadamba Temple, and Sri Parswanath Jain Tirthankara Temple are the other prominent places to visit in Sringeri.
Book Here : Sringeri Tour Packages
Horanadu Annapurneshwari Temple
Amid the thick forests of the Western Ghats near Chikmagalur lies another famous temple – Horanadu Annapoorneswari Temple, one of the top places of pilgrimage in Karnataka. Also known as Sri Kshethra Horanadu, the temple is dedicated to Goddess Annapoorneswari, one of the incarnations of Goddess Durga. It is believed that this temple was established by Agasthya Maharishi. A new gold idol of the main deity was installed at the temple in 1973. The Goddess Annapoorneswari is seen standing on a peetha with four hands, each holding a Shanka, Chakra, Sri Chakra, and Gayathri Mantra. The name Annapoorneswari means feeding one and all. It is believed that a person who seeks Annapoorneswari’s blessing will never face a shortage of food in life. All who visit Annapoorneswari temple are provided with free breakfast, lunch, and dinner.