Virupaksha Temple, Pattadakal

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Virupaksha Temple was built circa 740 AD by the Queen Lokamahadevi (Trilokyamahadevi) after her husband Vikramaditya II defeated the Pallavas. This ancient structure was constructed during the 8th century and is regarded as one of the oldest temples of Karnataka. The architectural style of the Virupaksha Temple has striking resemblance to that of the Kailasanathar Temple situated in Kanchi.

On visiting this temple, devotees would find sculptures of Hindu gods like Ugranarasimha, Nataraja, Ravananugraha and Lingodhbhava. The interior structure had been decorated with intricate carvings and ornately crafter sculptures. Important events from epics like Ramayana, Bhagavata, Mahabharata and Kiratarjuniya have been recreated on the pillars of the sabha-mandapa. Other parts of the temple have been embellished with numerous geometrical patterns, flora and fauna.

To the east of the Virupaksha Temple, devotees will find the Nandi-mandapa, a pavilion that is open from all four sides. The Nandi-mandapa enshrines a large figure of Nandi, the ride of Lord Shiva, on an elevated platform. Inscriptions found at the entrance of the eastern gateway depict how Vikramaditya II seized Kanchipuram. Due to its importance in the annals of history, it is suggested to all tourists who are crossing Pattadakal.

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