Bagalkot District, Karnataka

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Location: Bagalkot is located in the northern part of karnataka. It shares boundary with  Belgaum district in the west, Bijapur district in the north, Raichur district in the east, koppal district in the south and south east and Gadag district in the south.

District Headquarter: Bagalkot

Distance: Around 485 km from Bangalore, 141 km from Belgaum

Journey time: Around 8 hrs by bus from Bangalore.

How to reach there: By KSTRC bus from Bangalore, Mysore etc and by train.

Route: Bangalore – Tumkur – Chitradurga – Hospet  – Bagalkot

Where to stay:

1. Anugraha Deluxe Hotel
Near Bus Stand
Station Road
Karnataka – 587101

2. Hotel Mookambika Deluxe
Station Road,
Opposite KSRTC Bus Stand,
Bagalkot – 587 201
Tel: 08357-720067, 720637
Fax: 08357-720106

3. Shri Laxmi Vilas Hotel
Tonga Stand, Station Road,
Bagalkot – 587 201
Tel: 08357-720077

4. Hotel Badami Court
No. 17/1, Station Road, Badami,
Bagalkot – 587 201
Tel: 08357-720230 – 33
Fax: 08357-720207

5. Hotel Anand Deluxe
Near Bus Stand, Badami,
Bagalkot – 587 201
Tel: 08357-720074, 720904

6. KSTDC Mayura Chalukya
Ramdurg Road, Badami,
Bagalkot – 587 201
Tel: 08357-720046

Where to eat:

Language spoken:: Kannada, Hindi, Urdu

Bagalkot district was created as a new district by former CM of Karnataka out of Bijapur district in 1997. Earlier Bagalkot was ruled by Chalukya king, Rashtrakutas, sultans of Bijapur, Vijayanagar emperors, Hyder Ali/Tipu Sultan of Mysore, Maratha Peshwa rulers and finally the British in 1818 A.D.

After the construction of Almatti dam, most part of the old part of Bagalkot town is submerged. A new planed town called Navangar has been built nearby with planned layouts, parks etc.

What to see:

1. Badami: Badami was earlier known by the Vatapi. It was the capital of Badami Chalukyas. The area is of rocky terrains and has Agastya lake around. The earlier name Vatapi came from the legend of Ramayana. There were two demons by name Vatapi and Ilvala. Vatapi was killed by sage Agastya. There two hills in Badami which resembles two demons and people say they are Vatapi and Ilvala.

badami picture

It was founded in 540 A.D. by Pulakesi I(535-566 AD), an early ruler of the Chalukyas. His sons Kirthivarman (567-598 AD) and his brother Mangalesha I (598-610 AD) constructed the cave temples. The rock-cut Badami Cave Temples were sculpted mostly between the 6th and 8th centuries. The four cave temples represent the secular nature of the rulers then, with tolerance and a religious following that inclines towards Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. cave 1 is devoted to Shiva, and Caves 2 and 3 are dedicated to Vishnu, whereas cave 4 displays reliefs of Jain Tirthankaras. Various paintings and inscriptions can be found on the walls inside.

After the Chalukyas Badami was ruled by Hoysalas, Vijayanagara empire, Deccan Sultanates, The Marathas, Hyder Ali and finally the Britishers who merged Badami with the Bombay Presidency.

Places to for sightseeing are Mallikarjuna group of temples, Bhutanatha group of temples facing the Badami tank, Badami cave temples, forts, Banashankari temple near Badami, Dattatreya temple etc.

Badami is located around 30 km from Bagalkot, 128 km from Bijapur, 132 km Hubli and 500 km Bangalore.To reach Badami on a train you can take any train for the Hubli-Sholapur route.

Banashankari temple: Banashankari temple is located around 5 km away from Badami at Cholachagudd. Goddes Banashankari is also known by the name Shakambhari.

badami picture

2. Pattadakal: Pattadakal was the capital of Chalukya kingdom during later part of their rule. Pattadakal is a UNESCO recognized World Heritage Site since 1987. Aihole is considered a School of Architecture, Badami a Degree College, and The University of architecture is Pattadakal.

Pattadakal is located around 22 km from Badami and about 10 km from Aihole. The temple architectures are a mixture of Dravidian and Indo-Aryan style.


What to see:

1. Virupaksha Temple: After Chalukya king Vikramaditya II’s victory over Pallava ruler’s of kanchi, his wife Queen Lokamahadevi built the temple of Virupaksha to commemorate the victory.

2. Sangameshvara Temple: Built in Dravidian style Sangameshwara temple is oldest temple in Pattadakal, built by Chalukya King Vijayaditya Satyashraya ( 696-733 AD). It was earlier known by the name Vijayewara.

3. Mallikarjuna Temple: Mallikarjuna temple was built as a sample by Rani Trilokyamahadevi before building Virupaksha temple.


4. Kashivisvanatha Temple: Kashi Vishwanatha temple temple was built in Indo-aryan style. Kasivisvesvara temple was built by the Rashtrakutas and is one of the last temple to be built in Chalukyan style.

5. Galganatha temple: Galagantha temple is dedicated to lord Shiva and the idol is picture showing lord Shiva killing demon Andhakasura.

6. Jain Temple: Built by the Rashtrakuta kings either Amoghavarsha I or Krishna II. It is located on Pattadakal-Badami Road.


7. Papanatha temple: Built by the Badami Chalukyas is believed to have been built in 680 AD. Built in Dravidian style, it features drawings of Ramayana and Mahabharatha.

8. ASI Museum and Gallery: The museum and scalpture gallery is located on Bhutanatha temple road.

9. Kadasiddhesvara and Jambulingeswara temples

10. Naganatha temple and Chandrashekara temple

3. Aihole: Aihole has a collection of temples and are one of the best Hindu temple architectures in the world. Located along Malaprabha River, Aihole was earlier known by the name Ayyavole and Aryapura. Aihole was the first capital of Chalukyas and they built many temples here on an experimental basis to built the final model elsewhere. At Aihole you can find many inscription regarding Chalukya kings and their achievements.


Things to see:

1. Lad Khan temple

2. Huchimalli temple

3. Galaganatha group temples: It comprises of around 30 temples on the bank of River Malaprabha.. It is dedicated to lord Shiva.

aihole picture

4. Durga temple: Durga temple is located inside the fort.

5. Meguti Jain temple: This temple seems to incomplete for some reasons. Located on top of a hill, it is one of the oldest temple in Aihole. The temple has lot of inscriptions and drawings about Chalukya rule. From the top if the temple one can almost see all the temples of Aihole and surrounding.

6. Ravana Phadi cave: This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is the oldest rock cut temple in Aihole.

aihole picture

7. Gowda temple: This temple is dedicated to goddess Bhagavathi.

8. Suryanarayana temple

9. Museum & Art Gallery: The museum and art gallery is located in the Durga temple complex maintained by Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).

10. Huchappayya temple

4. Kudalasangama: Kudala Sangama is an important pilgrimage center for the Lingayat people. It is located at the confluence of river Krishna river and Ghataprabha around 15 km from Almatti dam. From here the river flows to Srisailam. The samadhi of Basavanna , the founder of the Lingayat sect is located here. The shiva linga here is said to be self created.

kudala sangama

Other things to see:

1. Sangamanatha Temple built in Chalukya style
2. Aikya linga of Basaveshwara
3. Basava Dharma Peetha’s Mahamane Campus
4. Poojavana .The Poojavana with neat paths amidst trees, a mini forest.
5. The colossal Sabha Bhavana
6. Tall Basava Gopur
7. Museum

Note: There is an ashram for visitors to stay.

5. Mahakuta: Mahakuta group of temples is located in the town Mahakuta of Bagalkot district. Among the temples prominent are Mahakutesvara temple and Mallikarjuna temple. Also, two important inscriptions are found here – Mahakuta Pillar inscription dated between 595–602 CE (written in the Sanskrit language and Kannada script) and an inscription of Vinapoti, a concubine of king Vijayaditya, dated between 696–733 CE and written in the Kannada language.

mahakuteshwara temple
Mahakuteshwara temple in white

6. Mudhol: Mudhol is located around 50 km from Bagalkot on the left bank of river Ghataprabha. Mudhol was princely state during the British rule and it was rules by Maratha kings. Here you can see one under ground Shiva temple called Nelagudi.

Mudhol is also famous for the Mudhol hound breed of dogs.

mudhol hound

Some lesser known places:

1. Ikkal: Ikkal is well known for its hand weaven sarees. It is located around 50 km from Bagalkot. The town has Vijayamahanteshaswami and Gurumahanta Shivayogishwara temple and the Hazarath Syed Murtaza-Sha-Khadri.

2. Bilagi: Places interest here are Aretthina Bhavi – the beautiful stone well, Siddeshwara temple and Hazrath Hassan Dargah.

3. Lokapur: The Lokeshwara temple built in Chalukyan style can be visited here.

4. Mahalingpur: The Mahalingeshwara temple is located in Mahalingpur around 19 Km away from Mudhol.

5 thoughts on “Bagalkot District, Karnataka

  1. Very useful information. We went to most of these places on a long pilgrimage tour 5 months ago. Really worth visiting them to know the heritage of Karnataka.

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