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. The inner sanctum houses a Shivalinga. The walls of sabhamandapa are accompanied by artistic lattice windows.
The roof has a small mandapa with an image of Surya. A nagara style sikhara was later added to the temple which collapsed at later point.
Complex Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM
Entrance: Rs. 5, Rs. 25 for camera.