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Top 10 Best Famous Temples to Visit in Karnataka

Discover the spiritual legacy of Karnataka by visiting its top ten well-known temples, which enthrall with their striking architectural designs and profound religious importance. 

Offering distinct insights into the state’s rich cultural fabric, each location ranges from the grandiose Virupaksha Temple in Hampi, a symbol of Vijayanagara architecture, to the tranquil Chamundeshwari Temple perched atop Chamundi Hills in Mysore. 

Seek blessings at the historic Kollur Mookambika Temple, tucked away in the Western Ghats, or marvel at the exquisite sculptures at Belur’s Chennakesava Temple. 

Nestled amidst the lush hills of Karnataka sits the Kollur Mookambika Temple, a highly esteemed Hindu pilgrimage site devoted to Goddess Mookambika, who is an embodiment of Goddess Parvati. Nestled amidst the tranquil surroundings of the Western Ghats, the temple draws followers in search of blessings related to wisdom and wealth. 

Its opulent architecture and serene environs provide guests with a spiritual haven. For those who are discovering Karnataka’s natural and religious treasures, the temple is a must-visit because of its rich history and cultural significance.

List of Best Temples to Visit in Karnataka

  1. Durga Temple, Aihole
  2. Kotilingeshwara Temple, Kolar
  3. Keshava Temple, Somnathpur
  4. Banashankari Amma Temple, Bagalkot
  5. Vidyashankara Temple, Sringeri
  6. Badami Cave Temple, Bagalkot
  7. Murudeshwar Shiva Temple, Bhatkal
  8. Vitthala Temple, Hampi
  9. Gokarna Mahabaleshwar Temple, Gokarna
  10. Kollur Mookambika Temple, Kollur

1. Durga Temple, Aihole

Legends from the 12th century reverberate from Karnatakas sacred shrine, the Durga Temple. This architectural wonder, which was carved in stone by the Chalukya dynasty, radiates exquisite craftsmanship and heavenly charm. 

The temple’s mythological and legendary past reveals its importance as a place of spiritual comfort. The temple, which has withstood the test of time, is a monument to dedication and cultural legacy. 

Accompany us on a historical journey through the ages, discovering the story of the temple, its exquisite architecture, and its lasting influence on the cultural fabric of Karnataka.

  • Location: Aihole, Karnataka, India
  • Timings: 9AM – 5PM

2. Kotilingeshwara Temple, Kolar

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Among the most well-known temples in Karnataka is the Kotilingeshwara temple. The tallest and largest Shiva Linga statue in Asia is housed at the temple, which is located in the Kolar district’s Kammasandra tiny village. 

The Kotilingeshwara temple, which is located in the little village of Kammasandra, is well-known throughout the world as the most visited temple in Karnataka.

The temple is renowned for its traditional architecture and largest figure. Rare collections of archaeological artifacts, such as clay pottery, are also housed there. It makes sense that during Shivaratri approximately 3 lakh people attend this Kotilingeshwara temple annually.

  • Location: Kotilinga Temple Road, Ghattiragadahalli, Karnataka 
  • Timings: 6AM – 9PM

3. Keshava Temple, Somnathpur

The Keshava Temple, one of the most well-known in Karnataka, is situated in Somnathpur, Mysore, and was constructed in 1268 AD. With its full sculpture covering, it is one of the best surviving temples from the Hoysala dynasty. 

The elaborately sculpted three-star sanctuaries within this temple are its distinctive feature, and this temple is conveniently accessible from the Mysore Airport, being barely 40 kilometers away. You simply must not miss this Karnataka temple. 

  • Location: Somanathapura, Karnataka 
  • Timings: 9AM – 5:30 PM

4. Banashankari Amma Temple, Bagalkot

Situated in close proximity to Badami, the Banashankari Amma temple has to be high on your list of must-see Karnataka temples. The Goddess Banashankari Amma is the subject of this temple, which was built in the seventh century by the Chalukyas. Located in the heart of Karnatakas lush forests, this holy site pays homage to Banakshari Amma, who is known for her kindness and mystic abilities. 

The exquisite sculptures and spiritual attraction of the temple’s architecture, which combines Hoysala and Dravidian styles, enchant visitors. It is an homage to mythology and dedication, echoing old stories.

Despite its original similarity to Chalukya style, the contemporary edifice contains more Vijayanagara architectural characteristics. This shrine can also be easily accessed from Badami, as it is located close to the Belgaum airport.

  • Location: SH 57, Cholachagudda, Karnataka
  • Timings: 6 AM – 1PM; 4:30 PM – 8 PM

5. Vidyashankara Temple, Sringeri

Constructed in the memory of Guru Vidyashankara, the temple boasts of both Dravida and Hoysala styles of architecture. The temples contain ruby-images of Lord Srinivasa, Lord Venugopal and Nandi, constructed from a large pearl. 

Several inscriptions describing the Vijayanagar emperors are seen across the temple, and it is undoubtedly one of the best temples in Karnataka. The temple is easily accessible from all major cities via bus and train.

  • Location: Sringeri, Karnataka 
  • Timings: 6AM – 2PM; 4PM – 9:15PM

6. Badami Cave Temple, Bagalkot

One of Karnataka’s most well-known historic temples is the Badami Cave Temples, which is built in  578 AD. The four caves of the Chalukya-style Badami-temples are home to idols of Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu, with one cave dedicated to Jainism. 

With its breathtaking cave-temples, Badami Fort, and other lovely temples surrounding the Agastya-tank, Badami is a fantastic destination for tourists. Travelers can conveniently access the location via the closest airports in Belgaum and Hubli.

  • Location: Badami, Karnataka 
  • Timings: 9AM – 12PM; 4PM – 7PM (Monday to Friday) & 9AM – 7PM (Weekends & Holidays)

7. Murudeshwar Shiva Temple, Bhatkal

Situated in the Bhatkal district of Karnataka, the town of Murudeshwar is home to one of the best Shiva temples in the state. The temple boasts stunning views of the Arabian Sea in addition to being well-known for having the second-largest statue of Lord Shiva in the world.

The Murudeshwar Temple ought to be your first choice when it comes to visiting Shiva temples in Karnataka. It’s known to be the second-biggest Shiva statue, and the city might become much more appealing due to the lovely vista of the Murudeshwar temple around the Arabian Sea. 

You may just hop on a train that leaves from Mumbai or Mangalore to get to this temple. The city’s most important temple to visit is Murudeshwar Temple.

 

  1. Location: Murdeshwar, Karnataka.
  2. Timings: 3AM–1PM; 3PM–8PM

8. Vitthala Temple, Hampi

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The Vitthala Temple, which is located in Hampi, is among the oldest in Karnataka. Located amid the ruins of Hampi, this well-known temple is devoted to Lord Vishnu. The stone chariot and its melodic, monolithic pillars are the main draws of the Vitthala temple. Being a significant portion of the ruins, it is among Indias top UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The most fascinating old temple in Karnataka is the Vitthala Temple. The temple was constructed and given the name of King Vitalacharya, as the name suggests.

This temple is well-known across the city, and a lot of people frequent it in the summer and both Bangalore Airport and Hospet Railway Station provide access to the temple.

  • Location: Hampi, Karnataka
  • Timings: 8 AM – 5PM

9. Gokarna Mahabaleshwar Temple, Gokarna

Mahabaleshwar Temple is located in Gokarna, a well-known pilgrimage center and renowned tourist destination in the North Kannada District. 

The temple, sometimes called Dakshina Kashi, is devoted to Lord Shiva. The Temple is thought to be extremely powerful and holy. While traveling through Karnataka, you should definitely check out this temple.

  • Location: Koti Teertha Rd., Kotiteertha, Dandebagh, Gokarna, Karnataka
  • Timings: 6AM – 12:30 PM; 5PM – 8PM

10. Kollur Mookambika Temple, Kollur

The Kollur Mookambika Temple, one of the most well-known in India, is tucked away in the Western Ghats among the Kodachari Hills and is known for its incredibly gorgeous temple. 

The temple is said to be at least 1200 years old. An intriguing tale surrounds this temple, stating that Goddess Parvati slain the demon Kamasura, who was after her.

  • Location: Kollur, Udupi, Karnataka
  • Timings: 5AM – 1:30PM; 3PM – 9PM 

Frequently Asked Questions about the Karnataka Temple Tour

What are some must-visit temples in Karnataka?

Mookambika, Murudeshwara, Kukke Subramanya, Chamundeshwari, Belur and Halebidu temples are a few of the well-known temples.

To avoid severe weather, the best times are during festival seasons or from October to March.

clothing modestly is usually recommended. Certain temples may have dress requirements, such as shrouding shoulders or dressing traditionally.

Road and rail connections throughout Karnataka are excellent. Convenient choices include attending guided excursions, hailing a cab, and utilizing local transportation.

It’s crucial to act with respect, take off your shoes before entering, and to observe temple traditions. Viewing locals or consulting a guide might provide information about particular customs.

Yes, most temple towns offer a variety of lodging choices for visitors, from low-cost to high-end hotels and guesthouses.

Policies can differ; While some temples prohibit photography, others permit it in specific areas. Obtain consent before taking any photos, or seek out locations that have been approved.

Policies can differ; While some temples prohibit photography, others permit it in specific areas. Obtain consent before taking any photos, or seek out locations that have been approved.

Stay hydrated, heed COVID-19 advice (where relevant), show consideration for regional traditions, and steer clear of travel frauds.

The best places to learn about the background and significance of these temples are from guided tours, local guides, temple officials, and instructional brochures that are accessible on the premises.

We would like to emphasize that in order to fully appreciate the splendor of the temples, you might need to extend your visit beyond the allotted period, perhaps extending it to ten or even twelve days in Karnataka.

Conclusion

To sum up, a spiritual journey through the rich cultural diversity of Karnataka can be experienced through the temple visit and the Trip. It combines history, creativity, and devotion, from the historic wonders of Belur and Halebidu to the ethereal charm of Banashankari and Banakshari Amma Temples. 

Steeped in mythology, every temple provides an insight into the rich cultural legacy of Karnataka. The deep spirituality that pervades every stone is witnessed by tourists as they walk through these hallowed hallways, leaving an enduring impression on their hearts and minds in addition to the architectural beauty.

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