Sunday, 8 January 2012

Hassan, Karnataka

Hassan is the district headquarters of Hassan district. Hassan is known by the sobriquet "Poor Man's Ooty" for its scenic locales. The town derives its name from its presiding deity goddess 'Hasanamba', founded in the 11th century by Channa Krishnappa Naik. 

Though bereft of any major tourist attractions, Hassan district is home to some fabulous pilgrimages such as Belur, Halebid and Shravanabelagola. Belur is known for the famous Chennakeshava temple, an epitome of Hoysala temple architecture. The temple was constructed in 1117 AD by Hoysala king Vishnuvardhan to celebrate his victory over the Cholas at the battle of Talikad 

The sacred temple town of Halebid was the capital of the Hoysala dynasty. The Hoysaleshwara and Kedareshwara temples of Halebid are fine specimens of Hoysala temple architecture. Shravanabelagola is renowned for the colossal statue of Lord Gomateshwara and is a Jain pilgrimage.

Places to See:

Shravanabelagola is a pilgrimage destination for Jains in India. The site is at a distance of 50 kms from Hassan. The name 'Shravanabelagola' can be translated as the 'land of pond' in English. The town has a famous pond and is nestled by two lofty hills called Chandragiri and Indragiri. Shravanbelagola is most famous for a behemoth statue of Bahubali, which is the tallest monolithic statue in the word. Pilgrims flock this famous temple throughout the year. During 'Mahamastakabhisheka', a jain festival held every 12 years, the number of pilgrims shoot up dramatically. 

Belur is situated at a distance of 38 kms from Hassan and is renowned for some of the majestic 20th century temples. The most important temple among them is the Chennakasheva temple, the only one still in use constructed during the Hoysala reign. It took some twelve years to the architects to complete this temple. Every section of this ancient temple is carved with intricate patterns making the temple a splendid architectural beauty. Such awe-inspiring work of art can also be seen in Veeranarayana Temple, Kappe Chennigaraya, temples dedicated to Soumyanaki and Andal.

Another place where the tourists will get to see temples carved out of huge rocks is Halebid. Halebid was called Dwarasamudram when it was the capital of Hoysala rulers. The walls of the temples are engraved with pictorial descriptions of how many of the gods looked like. Images of dancers and animals are also carved in the temple. Built on a star shaped platform, the temple has a huge statue of Nandi Bull which is one of the major attractions in the temple............

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