Trikuteshwara Temple, a popular Saivite temple, is in the town of Gadag in northern Karnataka. A unique sight in this temple is the three Shivalings mounted on a single stone. On the eastern side of this temple are three lingas representing Lord Brahma, Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu.
Trikuteshwara Temple is mostly referred to as a temple complex as there are other temples inside it. The famous Saraswati Temple inside the Trikuteshwara Temple houses shrines of Goddess Sharada, Goddess Gayathri and Goddess Saraswathi. There is also a Someshwara Temple inside this temple complex.
As any other ancient temple built during Chalukya dynasty, Trikuteshwara Temple is also known for carved figurines and chiseled stone walls. This falls among the fifty temples founded by Kalyani Chalukyas.
Gadag town is about 50 kilometres from Hubli-Dharwad line. There is a railway station in Gadag and now many trains stop here. Local transportation by bus is also available from nearby towns.
Dodda Basappa (Dambala Temple), well known for its polygonal stellar shape, includes a group of shrines located at Dambala. This temple has a Shivalinga, the mark of Lord Shiva, the regional deity. This complex is suggested to all travellers passing through Gadag for its intricate carvings and beauty. According to historians, this temple was built by the rulers of Kalyani Chalukyan dynasty.
Its interiors have a standard structure for temples, including a sanctum (cella), a vestibule (antarala) and mantapa (navaranga or hall). The images of five-headed Brahma; his vahana, the goose; and twin images of Surya are present in the mantapa. At the entrance of the temple, there are beautiful doorsteps that are carved with festoons and rosettes. The pillars and walls of the temple have been crafted beautifully with paintings and figures of numerous gods and goddesses. A Buddhist temple that is devoted to Goddess Tara Devi is located in proximity of this temple.
Built in the 11th century, Veeranarayana Temple is one of the most prominent shrines located in Gadag. Dedicated to Maha Vishnu or Narayan, the idol present in the temple displays the warrior form of the deity. A statue of Veeranarayana, wearing dhoti, is present in battle-ready position holding chakra, shankh, gada and padma in his four hands. Tourists can see smaller idols of Lakshmi and Garuda on both sides of the main deity.
This temple is suggested to all tourists who are inclined towards history and religion. It is believed that this temple is one of the Pancha Narayana Kshetras and was built by the Hoysala king, Bittideva, in 1117 A.D. The king built the temple, changed his name to Vishnuvardhana and converted to Vaishnavism from Jainism after getting influenced by Sri Ramanujacharya, a Vaishnava saint. Kumaravyasa is said to have written the Mahabharata in Kannada language at this temple.
Veeranarayana Temple showcases various styles of architectures, such as Chalukya, Hoysala and Vijayanagara. The entrance of the temple that leads towards Ranga Mandapa is in the Vijayanagara style, while the Garuda Sthamba reflects Hoysala style. Its inner mandapa, sanctum and main tower exhibit the Chalukya style of architecture.
Nargund Fort is the main attraction of the town of Nargund, Gadag district, Karnataka. It is one of the two forts constructed by Chhatrapati Shivaji circa 1675, the other being Ramdurg Fort. In 1691-92 it was captured by Aurangzeb and but then retaken in 1706-07 by Ramrao Dadaji Bhave. In 1778, it was conquered by Hyder Ali, the king of Mysore of that time, though it was captured by Tipu Sultan in 1784. In 1857, it was the site of a revolt against the British who ruled India; Baba Saheb (Bhaskar Rao Bhave) participated in this rebellion.
Tourists can visit Magadi Bird Sanctuary that has been established on the Magadi Tank or Magade Kere, which is located 26 km from Gadag. Magadi Tank is sprawled over an area of 134 acre and has 900 hectare of catchment area. From the sides of the tank, a branch of river Kaveri flows, where tourists can view various beautiful birds. This sanctuary is popular for the bar-headed goose, a migratory bird that feeds on agriculture instead of amphibians.
For the past 10 years, many Central Asian migratory birds and more than 134 species of birds have been seen at this sanctuary. Some of the birds species spotted at this sanctuary are purple heron, grey heron, oriental ibis, comb duck and greater flamingo. White-breasted waterhen, black-winged stilt, painted stork, woolly-necked stork, ruddy shed duck or brahminy duck and Eurasian spoonbill are also seen at this sanctuary. Presently, this sanctuary is under the supervision of Department of Fisheries, Karnataka state government and Village Panchayat of Magadi.
Venkateshwara Temple, devoted to Lord Venkatesh, is situated in the small village of Venkatapura. According to a legend, Lord Venkatesh manifested in a rock placed inside cow dung for a devotee, who could not go to pay tribute to him at Tirupati. It is suggested that tourists should visit this temple, which is located 15 km from Gadag, in search of tranquillity and the blessings of Lord Venkatesh.
Gajendragad is a small pilgrim town that is surrounded by hills on all sides. The town is known as one of the historical places of the region, where Shivaji Fort and Kalakaleshwara Temple are located. Shivaji Fort is situated amidst Western Chalukya monuments that hold historical importance. The fort was constructed and rebuilt by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Kalakaleshwara Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is also known as Dakshina Kashi. At this temple Lord Shiva is worshipped in Kalakaleshwara form; an Udhbhava Lingu is present at this site as well. Tourists can reach this ancient temple conveniently with the help of large steps that lead them directly to the structure.
In the premises, there is a temple of Lord Virabhadra. According to stories behind the temple, it is believed that Anthargange, a small, evergreen water reservoir, runs via the roots of a peepal tree and falls in the pond round the year. As per locals, it is also believed that this reservoir falls during the summer through an undiscovered root. This temple is not famous among tourists, but travellers going through Gadag can visit the shrine if time permits.
Harti, known for numerous ancient and modern temples, is a small town located in Gadag district of Karnataka. An ancient temple located in this town is Parvati Parameshwara Temple (also known as Sri Uma Maheshwara Temple), which was built during the rule of Chalukya dynasty.
Harti is also known for a notable Shri Basaveshwara Temple. In the month of Shravana Masa, on the last Monday, the annual festival, Jatra, is held in this temple. Tourists can enjoy the momentous procession of Dhyamamma idol on this day, which is a sight to behold, thus, making Harti a must-visit place for all tourists.
There is a small mosque in this town, where Muslims celebrate the occasion of Muharram on the last day of the year. Harmony prevails between the Hindu and Muslim communities in this town and the residents of the two religions gather together to celebrate all festivals.
Ron, known for its historical importance, is one of the well-known towns of Gadag district. It is believed that in ancient times, Ron was named Dronapur and the temples of the town were built by Dronacharya, the renowned ancient architect and warrior-priest. Some of the prominent historical monuments located in the town are Ananthashayana Temple, Ishvara Temple, Kalla Gudi (stone temple), Lokanatha Temple, Mallikarjuna Temple, Parshvanatha Jain Temple and Somlingeshvara Temple. Due to the presence so many temples, Ron is popular among many pilgrims.
Lakshmeshwara, an agricultural trading town, is located in a Gadag district of Karnataka. This town is also known for its religious background, where the followers of Jain religion and Lord Shiva are now settled. Someshwar Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is located in this town; this temple has a beautifully sculpted stone shrine. Sannabasadi and Shankabasadi are the two famous Jain temples present in this town.
A dargah, Jama Masjid, the Mukha Basavanna shrine, the Kodiyellamma Temple and a large idol of Suryanarayana are also some of the main attractions of the town. This town, which is also known for its rich culture and literary background, is a must-visit site for those planning to travel to Gadag district. Since its establishment, it has changed names many times; some the names that it previously held are Purigere, Porigere, Purikanagar, Pulikanagar and Puligere.
Narayana Temple, also known as Padmabbarasi basadi, is a Jain temple constructed in 950 AD during the period of Krishna III. It was sanctioned by Queen Padmabbarasi, the ruler of Ganga Permadi Bhutayya. This temple is considered as one of the biggest Rashtrakuta temples present in Karnataka. It is suggested that people who are planning to visit Gadag should stop by this temple, which holds the distinction of being the largest Rashtrakuta temple of Karnataka.
In this temple, a Dravida-Vimana type sikhara has been mounted above the garbhagriha; this shikhara is a trikuta. There are three garbhagrihas at this temple, out of which the main one is square in shape and was supposed to be a Jina. However, the other two are rectangular in shape, with rectangular pedestals that run from wall to wall. These two have a total of twenty-four holes, which signify that the two garbhagrihas were to be used for creating twenty-four individual Tirthankara sculptures.
Saraswathi Temple is situated at Trikuteshwara Temple Complex in Gadag, Karnataka. This temple, which boasts of ancient Chalukyan art, possesses ornately decorated pillars and beautifully carved porches and columns. Due to some antisocial elements, the original idol of Saraswathi Devi had been spoiled, though a newly carved deity was later placed in the premises, adjacent to the shrine. An idol of Adi Shankaracharya can also be seen here. Apart from Saraswathi Temple, there are several other temples located within the complex. Due to the exquisite carvings present here, Saraswathi Temple is counted amongst the must-visit sites of Gadag.
Tourists planning to embark on a trip to Gadag can visit Shri Jagadguru Budimahaswamigala Sanstan Math. This math is situated in Antur Bentur, a town where most residents practise agriculture. It is believed that Shri Jagadguru Budimahaswamigalu stayed at the math for about 775 years. Muslims and Hindus live in harmony in this village and looked after this math in peace.
Shri Rama Temple is located at the Beladhadi village, Gadag district, Karnataka. The temple enshrines beautiful statues of Sri Rama, Lakshmana and Sita; all of these idols were placed here by one of the most revered saints, Shree Brahmananda Maharaj. Every year, during the eve of Ugadi to Ram Navami, there is a huge celebration at the temple. Located just 10 km from the town of Gadag, this temple should be on the itinerary of all tourists if time permits.
Kurtakoti is a village situated in the Gadag district that is best known among tourists for the temples situated here. Sri Ugra Narasimha Temple, Virupakhshalinga Temple and Dattatreya Temple are some of the prominent Hindu places of worship present in this village. Along with these, Rama Temple and Allam Prabhu Mutt are also located here. At the Rama Temple, there are statues of Sri Rama, Lakshmana and Sita, which are known to be placed by a saint named Shree Brahma Chaitanya Maharaj. Owing to its religious relevance, it is heavily suggested to religiously-inclined tourists.