Ideal Trip Duration: Full Day

Base Station: Badami (34 Kms)

Nearest City to Aihole: Hubli (136 Kms)

Best Time to Visit Aihole: September to March

Peak Season: November to January & April

State: Karnataka | District: Bagalkot

Aihole Weather: Maximum-42°C
Minimum-14°C

At a distance of 443 Kms from Bangalore, 136 Kms from Hubli, 33 Kms from Bagalkot, 34 Kms from Badami & 13.5 Kms from Pattadakal, Aihole is a historical site in Bagalkot District of Karnataka situated on the banks of Malaprabha River. It is being considered for World Heritage Site status by UNESCO.

Aihole, along with Pattadakal, is considered as the cradle for South Indian Temple architecture. There are more than 125 temples in Aihole constructed between 5th and 8th centuries during Badami Chalukya's rule. Few temples were built during Rashtrakutas and Kalyani Chalukya's rule until 12th century. The temples are built in different architectural styles representing Dravidian, Nagara, Phamsana and Gajaprastha models.

Most of the temples are located within 2-3 km radius while the important monuments are situated within a secured compound. Main temples are well preserved by archeology department and several other sites are still being renovated.

The main monuments in Aihole are Durga Temple, Ladkhan Temple, Ravana Pahadi and Archeology Museum. Except Ravana Pahadi, all other sites are located in same compound.

It usually takes around 4-5 hours to visit all the monuments in Aihole. The road between Badami and Aihole was worse (as of Oct 2014) and the 34 Kms stretch took almost 1.5 hours.

OTHER INFO
Internet Availability: Internet Not Available
STD Code: 08351
Languages Spoken: Kannada, Hindi, English
Major Festivals: Chalukya Utsava / Badami Festival / Pattadakal Dance Festival (Dec), Banashankari Temple Festival (Jan/Feb), Virupaksha Temple Car Festival (Mar)
Notes/Tips:
None

HOW TO REACH AIHOLE


By Air

Nearest Airport: Hubli - Hubli Airport (140 Kms)

By Train

Nearest Train Station: Badami (33 Kms)
Bagalkot (34 Kms)
Gadag (92 Kms)

By Bus

Nearest Bus Station: Aihole Bus Stand (0 Kms)

17 PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN AIHOLE


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of less than 100 meters from Aihole Bus Stand, Durga Temple, also known as Fort Temple, is the most famous monument in Aihole with striking architecture and wonderful carvings. It is located inside the main enclosed complex of Aihole monuments. The name of temple is originated from a fortification (durgam) which existed around the temple earlier.

Build between 7th and 8th centuries by Chalukyas, the temple plan in U shape resembles that of Buddhist Chaitya halls. The temple has a mukha-mandapa, a sabha-mandapa and inner sanctum with Shiva linga. The unique part of the temple is the pillared corridor around the temple that allows pilgrims to take pradakshinas around the temple. This style of architecture is called Gajaprastha (back of an elephant). The temple tower is built in Nagara style, while the dome on the tower is missing.

The mukha-mandapa and the corridor have extensive carvings. Every corner of the pillar .....


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 200 meters from Aihole Bus Stand and 100 meters south of Durga Temple, Ladkhan Temple is the oldest temple in Aihole believed to be built in 5th century by first Chalukyan ruler Pulakesi I. It is located inside the main enclosed complex of Aihole monuments. The temple is built in Mandapa style with plan roof.

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple name is originated from Ladkhan, a Muslim general from Bijapur sultanate who stayed in the temple during their invasion of the region. Originally a Surya temple, the temple has a mukha-mandapa and a large sabha-mandapa. There is no separate garbhagriha in the temple and a stone booth is added to house the deity.

The large pillars in the mukhamandapa have beautiful carvings of gods along with floral designs. The outer walls are also exhibit extensive designs of early Chalukyas. The sabhamandapa has a big bull at the center. Large plain pillars support the sabhamandapa. .....


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 200 meters from Aihole Bus Stand and 100 meters east of Durga Temple, the Archaeological Museum inside the Durga Temple complex houses good collection of artifacts from Aihole, Pattadakal and Badami regions.

Planned as a sculpture shed in 1970, it was converted into a full-blown museum in 1987. The museum consists of 6 galleries and an open-air gallery. The artifacts in the museum are dated between 6th and 15th centuries. A variety of Ganesha sculptures, Saptamatrikas with archaic features, Nataraja, Ambika of Jaina affinity, attractive sculpture of Bodhisatva and a mutilated anthropomorphic figure of Megalithic period are some of the important exhibits.

One of the galleries accommodates bird's eye view model of Aihole and its environs (Malaprabha valley) with location of various monuments. The exhibits comprise of sculpture of Saiva, Vaishnava, Jaina and Buddhist affinity. The objects displayed reflect Chalukyan .....


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of about 500 meters from Aihole Bus Stand & Durga Temple Complex, Mallikarjuna Temples are a group of temples situated on the way to Meguti Jain Temple past Jyotirlinga Temple Complex.

The complex has several temples build in different styles ranging from small to medium. Some of these temples are preserved while a majority of them are still in ruins. Excavation and restoration work is going on for several temples.

The complex features few unique structures. One of the Phamsana style temples built on an elevated platform has a roof sliding down through the sikhara to entrance. One temple with collapsed sikhara has a small mukhamandapa which is closed on one side. The mukhamandapa and rangamandapa of the temple are separated by lattice design windows.

There is a wonderfully built gateway in the center of the complex. There are also several large pillars scattered around the complex. The complex also comprises a large stepped temple tank in great condition.

The .....


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of about 800 meters from Aihole Bus Stand & Durga Temple Complex, Ravanapahadi is a wonderful rock-cut cave temple situated towards north-east side of Durga Temple.

Built in 6th century, the cave temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The exterior of the cave is simple with 4 pillars and dwarapalakas. The inner part of the cave has a rectangular verandah followed by a square hall and a garbhagriha. The major attraction of the cave is a carving of Lord Shiva with 10 hands in different Bharatanatya postures (a similar figure with 18 hands can be seen in Cave 1 of Badami).

The other important carvings in the cave include Mahishasura Mardhini, Varaha carrying Bhudevi, Lord Shiva & Parvathi. The inner hall of the cave is mostly plain and the garbha-griha has a monolithic Shivalinga. Outside the cave, there is a platform with nicely carved Nandi. There are two stone mandapas outside the cave on both sides of the entrance.

This temple is open till 6 PM.


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 800 meters from Aihole Bus Stand & Durga Temple Complex, Meguti Jain Temple is situated inside the fortified walls of Aihole fort on a hillock (past Buddhist Temple) south-east of Durga Temple Complex.

Constructed in 634 AD, Meguti Jain Temple is the only dated monument in Aihole. The temple has very valuable inscription in the form of poetry from the reign of Pulakesi II. The temple has two levels, ground level with a large pillared mukhamandapa with empty inner sanctum and a small shrine on top of it which can be reached through steps. The temple has seated figures of Jain teerthankaras. The construction of the temple appears to be incomplete.

One can have a panoramic view of the entire Aihole village and all the monuments of Aihole from the hilltop. The hill is supposed to be the site of Aihole Fort, but except the walls, none of the structures survive today.

From main road, the temple can be reached .....


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of about 2.5 Kms from Aihole Bus Stand & Durga Temple Complex, Galaganatha Temples are a group of about 30 temples situated on the banks of Malaprabha River.

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the complex has several medium and small temples. Built in Dravidian and Nagara styles, some of the temples have a Shivalinga though no active poojas are done here. One of the temples has a large hall with Nandi and Shivalinga in the sanctum. Pillars in the hall are nicely carved in round shape with several wonderfully engraved images of gods at the bottom of pillars. The hall and sanctum are separated by richly designed lattice windows.

To reach Galaganatha Temple Complex from Aihole, you have to go towards Pattadakal for 2 km and take diversion to the right towards the river and driver for 500 meters.

The complex is open till 6 PM.


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of less than 100 meters from Aihole Bus Stand, Ambigera Gudi Complex is a group of three temples situated opposite to Durga Temple complex. The temple got its name from Ambiger (boatsmen) who used to live near the temple.

The complex has one main temple in ruined state with two small shrines. The main temple, believed to be a 10th century monument, has a nagara style sikhara with a mandapa and sanctum. The mandapa has two entrances and the ceiling of mandapa has a lotus image engraved. Built on elevated platform, the temple has a carved doorframe for the sanctum.

The second temple is a small one with broken images of Surya and Vishnu. The third temple is a small ordinary temple without any carvings and images.

This temple is open till 6 PM.


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 200 meters from Aihole Bus Stand and 100 meters south of Durga Temple, Goudaragudi Temple is one of the oldest temples in Aihole assigned to 5th century. It is situated beside Ladkhan Temple.

This temple is built in Madapa style on an elevated platform, few feet below the ground level of remaining temples. Dedicated to Mahalakshmi or Bhagavathi, the temple has a verandah supported by 16 pillars with slanting roof. The sanctum has circumambulatory path for pradakshinas. There are beautiful carvings of kalasha along the outer wall of the temple.

The entrance of the garbhagriha has image of Garuda and Gajalakshmi with four elephants above. The roof has a square platform, larger than the one seen on top of Ladkhan temple without any image.

Complex Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM

Entrance: Rs. 5, Rs. 25 for camera.


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 200 meters from Aihole Bus Stand and 100 meters south of Durga Temple, Suryanarayana Gudi 7th / 8th century temple situated opposite to Ladkhan Temple.

Dedicated to God Surya, this temple is built in Rekhanagara style with curvilinear tower. The temple consists of a small mandapa with four pillars, rangamandapa with four tall pillars and 12 half pillars followed by the garbhagriha. The doorframe of the sanctum has an image of Garuda holding two snakes, Ganga, Yamuna and an image of Surya in seated posture.

The sanctum has a statue of God Surya. The sanctum also has four pillars inside, which is a peculiar design. The sikhara is partially damaged.

Complex Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM

Entrance: Rs. 5, Rs. 25 for camera.


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 300 meters from Aihole Bus Stand and 200 meters south of Durga Temple, Chakra Gudi is a 9th century temple on southern end of Durga Temple Complex.

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple sikhara is built in Nagara style with a large mandapa of round pillars. The temple accompanies few good carvings on the doorway and the seating stones near entrance of the temple. The doorway has an image of Garuda holding two snakes. The temple sikhara is intact and attractive.

There is a pushkarini (temple tank) beside the Chakra Gudi.

Complex Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM

Entrance: Rs. 5, Rs. 25 for camera.


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 300 meters from Aihole Bus Stand & Durga Temple Complex, Jyotirlinga Temples are a group of monuments in ruined state. It is situated on the way to Meguti Jain Temple.

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the complex has several small to medium temples, most of them in ruined state. The complex also houses a large stepped temple tank. Several temples still have Shivalinga, though no active poojas are performed here.

The unique feature of this complex is a wonderful set of Nandi mandapas. The pillars of the mandapas are richly carved with images of different gods. There are several mandapas lined in different directions with images of Shiva, Ganesha, Karthikeya, Ardhanareeswara among others.

There are few small temples built in Phamsana style, probably constructed during Rashtrakutas rule of the region.

This temple is open till 6 PM.


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of about 600 meters from Aihole Bus Stand & Durga Temple, Huchchimalli Temple is a well preserved temple close to Ravanapahadi (200 meters).

Believed to have been built around 6th to 8th century, the temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is built on an elevated platform with a small mukhamandapa, a sabhamandapa and a gabha-griha. The doorframe has images of Garuda, Ganga, Yamuna, Elephant and amorous couple. The temple also has nice carvings of Brahma, Shiva, Vishnu and Gandharvas. The sabhamandapa has images of Indra, Yama and Kubera. The sabhamandapa and garbhagriha are separated by lattice window designs. The ceiling has an image of Karthikeya riding peacock.

The rekhanagara temple tower has images of Brahma and Surya and both sides. The temple also has a nice stepped temple tank. The walls of the tank have some beautiful images of Mahishasura Mardhini, Brahma, Vishnu, and scenes from the stories of Panchatantra.

There is a small temple in .....


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of about 700 meters from Aihole Bus Stand & Durga Temple Complex, Kunti Temple Complex consists of three temples. It is situated middle of Aihole village and not easily visible from the main road.

The temples believed to have built between 5th and 8th centuries have carved images of Shiva, Vishnu and Brahma on the ceiling. One of the temples is faced toward east while the remaining two are west facing. The west facing temples are connected by a portico.

To reach the complex, go past Mallikarjuna temple complex for about 100 meters and take right turn on the main road. Kunti complex is about 50 meters from the main road.

The complex is open till 6 PM.


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 439 Kms from Bangalore, 122 Kms from Hubli, 45 Kms from Bagalkot, 21 Kms from Badami & 13.5 Kms from Aihole, Pattadakal is a famous heritage site in Bagalkot District of Karnataka situated on the banks of Malaprabha River. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with Badami & Aihole known as Chalukyan Group of Monuments. Pattadakal is the place where coronation of Chalukyan kings took place. Pattadakal is among the popular Tourist places in Karnataka.

Pattadakal, along with Aihole, is considered as the cradle for South Indian Temple architecture. The main complex has about 10 temples and there are few more temples around the village of Pattadakal. The monuments were constructed between 6th and 9th centuries. The temples at Pattadakal are larger and grandeur with extensive art work compared to the early stage temples of Aihole.

It seems the Chalukyas enhanced their .....

Distance (From Aihole): 13.5 Kms
Trip Duration (From Aihole - Including Travel): 4 Hours/Half Day
.....


Historical & Heritage

At a distance of 36 Kms from Bagalkot, 104 Kms from Hubli & 457 Kms from Bangalore, Badami, also called as Vatapi is a historical place situated in Bagalkot district of Karnataka. Badami was the capital of mighty Chalukyas from 540 to 757 AD who ruled Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh & Maharashtra between 6th & 8th centuries. Badami is one of the top destinations of Karnataka Tourism.

Badami is famous for cave temples, fortresses, fine carvings, wonderful architecture and breathtaking views. It is located in a valley at the foot of a red sandstone rock formation that surrounds Agastya Lake. Overlooking the sandstone cave temples, Badami fort and several temples are lined up on the shores of Agastya Lake. Three of the cave temples belong to Vedic faith, the fourth cave is a Jain temple dedicated to Tirtankara Adinatha. Out of the three Hindu temples, two are dedicated to Lord Vishnu while one is dedicated .....

Distance (From Aihole): 34 Kms
Trip Duration (From Aihole - Including Travel): Full Day
.....


Pilgrimage

At a distance of 35 kms from Aihole, Kudalasangama is a popular pilgrimage site in Bagalkot district at the confluence of Krishna and Malaprabha Rivers.

Kudalasangama is famous for 850 years old Sangameswara temple, known as Kudala Sangameswara dedicated to Lord Shiva. Built in 12th century, the temple is situated on the banks of Krishna River and it was renovated several times. The temple is constructed in Dravidian style with large temple tower at the entrance, followed by main temple with a porch, navaranga and sanctum. The door frame of the garbhagriha is richly carved with floral designs and animal figures.

In front of the temple, in the midst of the river, is a small stone mandapa with a Shivalinga in it, and lofty cement concrete dry well has been built around it to protect it from submersion. The sikhara of the temple is a typical South Indian style structure. The temple has inscriptions dating back to 1160 AD and 1213 .....

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