Belur is located in Hassan district of the State of Karnataka. It is one of the major tourist’s destinations of Karnataka. It was the capital of Hoysala Empire and referred as “Dakshina Varanasi” in the inscriptions. Belur is renowned for the intricate sculpture of Hoysala Architecture. The best time to visit Belur is November to March.
Belur is in the west of Bengaluru, and the distance is about 200 kilometres. The nearest airport is Mangalore airport (174 km). Hassan Railway Station (40 km) is the nearest railway station. There are regular bus services from Bengaluru, Mysore and other nearby cities.
The Places to visit are:
Belur is famous for Chennakeshava Temple or Vijayanarayana Temple. The Hoysala king Vishnuvardhana built this temple. The architecture, sculptures and reliefs of the temple is the example of the most beautiful craftsmanship of Hoysala dynasty. This temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The temple complex has been proposed to be listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Yagachi Dam is a beautiful dam of Karnataka. The River Yagachi is the tributary of the River Kaveri. The Yagachi Dam was built to meet the demand of water for irrigation and drinking purposes. The beautiful view of the dam and its surroundings mesmerise the tourists. The Adventure Sports centre for the sports like the speedboat, banana boat ride, cruise boat, jet skiing, kayaking, etc. has been set up in the backwaters of the dam to attract tourists.
This is a 30 feet stone pillar located inside the Chennakeshava Temple complex. It is built out of soapstone. The Sculptures of the Chennakeshava Temple is carved on the pillar in the miniature form. It is said that once this pillar used to rotate on its axis.
There are 42 Bracket Figures known as Madanikas, or Celestial Nymphs are placed in different corners of the Chennakeshava Temple. These are carved out of the soapstone. All the Madanikas are carved in the different postures of the Bharata Natyam. These are the example of the real beauty of the Hoysala sculpture. The four out of these 42 which are placed inside the ornate ceiling of the Temple, is very famous. These are known as The Beauty with a mirror, The Bhasma Mohini, The lady with the parrot and The Huntress.
Doddagaddavalli village is situated between Hassan and Belur. This village is famous for the Lakshmi Devi Temple built by the Hoysala with the soapstone during the time of King Vishnuvardhana. There are four shrines in the temple. In the main shrine there is the idol of Lakshmi Devi, and in the other shrines, there are idols of Shiva, Vishnu and Kali.
Shravanabelagola is a famous Jain Pilgrimage Centre in South India and also a significant historical site in Karnataka. Here you can see the 58 feet high Bahubali Statue. This is the tallest monolithic stone statue in the World. It is carved out of the single block of the Granite. There is Gomateswara temple built on the top of the Vindhyagiri Hill. The Vindhyagiri and the Chandragiri are two famous hills in Sravanabelagola where you can find most of the monuments. There are around 14 shrines in Chandragiri. The ‘Mahamastakabhisheka Festival’ held one in twelve years in Shravanabelagola attracts thousands of visitors. More than 800 inscriptions of 6th to the 19th century are preserved with utmost care in Sravanabelagola.
Halebidu was the royal capital of Hoysala Dynasty. It is famous for the Hoysala Temples of Hoysaleswara and Kedareswara. This temple is nominated for UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a popular tourist attraction in Karnataka.
Belavadi is famous for the Veera Narayana Temple. This temple is constructed in Hoysala Architectural Style. It is dedicated to three forms of Lord Vishnu, Sri Veera Narayana, Sri Venugopala and Sri Yoganarasimha.
The items to buy in Belur are Panchaloha statues of deities. The Panchaloha is an alloy of Gold, Silver, Copper, Bronze and Zinc. The statues are made with utmost precision.
There are hotels to stay in Belur along with restaurants and bars. When it comes to food, it is better to go for the North Indian, Continental, other Indian dishes and the vegetarian thalis.
The best hotel deals in Belur are listed below: