Let me tell you that though I love to travel for leisure, it is my work trips into the rural, semi-urban and sometimes remote parts of India which really have given me some of the best life experiences. Every time, I am on field (due to my work projects) in India, I am mesmerised by the rich heritage and culture of my country. One of my best work travel experiences have been to South Indian state of Karnataka. In many parts of South India (of which modern Karnataka is one state) the Hoysala empire ruled between 10th and 14th centures, left behind a rich heritage of temples. In present times, the hoysala temple architecture is famous for exquisite detail and skilled craftsmanship.
During my last trip to Karnataka, I came across two superb (but smaller) temples of Hoysala period. I originally though to write about both in one post, beauty of these temples made me write one post each dedicated to the temples.
I visited Kaitabeshvara Temple in Kubatur, Shimoga district (Karnataka, India) first and it was such a beautiful experience.
Having only heard about the beauty of hoysala temples, my expectations were high. However, my colleagues accompanying me on the road said this is a small temple. I thought to myself, well, better to start small. The temple is located adjacent to the road, which is part of my project, so we had to visit it as part of our official work.
Note: Any development work within 500 meters of any heritage structure protected by Archaeological Survey of India requires prior permission and has to adhere to very stringent regulations during construction.
As I stepped inside the temple complex, it was mid-morning and the sunlight falling on the temple gave it a golden hue. I was awe struck by the intricate sculptures, carvings and the quality of the stonework.
I told my colleague – if this is what a small Hoysala Temple looks like, I cannot begin to imagine the grander ones!
The temple has polished pillars which glimmered in the daylight. We took off our shoes and went inside. The temple has shiva as the deity in lingam form and there were 2 devotees offering their prayers.
The photograph below describes the architecture of the temple in detail.
We spent around 10 minutes in the temple complex and then it was time again to hit the road. The images of the temple still on my mind many days after I came back from the trip, I searched on google information and what I get are 2 detailed posts by fellow travel bloggers (read here and here all about Kaitbheshvara Temple, Kubatur).
As a traveller, I have got hooked to Hoysala Temple architecture and now my to-travel list includes a temple tour of South India.