Holxo Tours in Badami
Badami, now a somewhat obscure village, lies in north Karnataka’s Bagalkot District. Between the 6th and 12th centuries CE, one of the most influential and powerful dynasties to rule the region were the Chalukyas, who contributed greatly to the legacy of the state. Badami was the splendid capital of the great Chalukya kingdom. You can see evidence of its former glory in its spectacular cave temples and fort.
Carved out of sandstone rocks, and built over a period of time, the set of four cave temples stand on the precipice of a hill, overlooking the surrounding valley. Blending two different styles, the cave temples are the legacy of a golden age of building styles. They were the earliest examples of a temple architecture style that would be celebrated across South India over the next few centuries. The first three cave temples are dedicated to Hindu deities such as Siva, Vishnu, Brahma, Indra, and Parvati, and displays exquisite sculptures. Cave four is a Jain shrine with stunning sculptures of Jain saints. The temples are connected to each other by flights of stairs. When you finish with the caves, you will see the Bhuthanatha Temple on the opposite hill, across from the tank.
In the 18th century, Tipu Sultan, the legendary ruler of the Deccan, built a fort on top of the Badami Hills. Apparently magnificent cannons were placed at vantage points. It’s a steep climb up but you’ll be rewarded with superb views of Badami. The Archaeological Museum here is a repository of some fine sculptures, perfectly preserved panels, and sculpted panels depicting scenes from Hindu mythology.
Badami is typically visited as part of a heritage itinerary combining Hampi and Bijapur.