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Shravanabelagola

Shravanabelagola
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hravanabelagola located about 50 Km from hassan city centre is most famous for  58-feet tall monolithic statue of Gommateshvara Bahubali which is considered to be the world’s largest monolithic stone statue. It is central to Jainism and is more than 2000 years old. It is in absolutely pristine condition which is amazing considering the time that has passed.

Trip Itinerary
Shravanabelagola – BelurHalebidu are three famous tourist destinations in Karnataka which are ideally to be covered in single day if possible since the three spots are located quite close to each other. We booked the tour via Karnataka Tourism and State department which offers the single day trip from Bangalore and Mysore and covers all the three spots. It starts from the Badami house in Bangalore at 6.30 am and reaches Bangalore at 10.oo pm and costed 950 INR at the time of the blog.  

Starting from Bangalore
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he bus left badami house at around 6.40 am and it was full on early saturday morning. Parking is available within badami house for vehicles. The bus halted for half hour at Mayuri Restaurant located off the highway at around 8.30 am. The restaurant was very pleasant and the breakfast prepared fresh. KSTDC has sort of tie up with this restaurant since we were the only customers. The food was decently priced and it is the midst of a huge garden. It is almost a resort to be honest as evident from the pictures.

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Post a nice breakfast, the bus pushed off at around 9 am for Shravanabelagola. The route itself , being a highway , is very smooth.

Reaching Shravanabelagola & Getting Around Shravanabelagola
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assan is quite close and there are frequent to & from buses available. The overall distance from Bangalore (International Airport) is about 150 Kms. Autorickshaws can be used to go around Shravanabelagola. The road leading to Shravanbelagola passes is scenic with green fields on both the sides of the road and passes through many small isolated villages.

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At Shravanabelagola
The tour bus reached Shravanabelagola at around 10.30 am and we were provided only 1 hour to visit the  Gommateshvara Bahubali Statue and return which is actually not a lot if you are slow in the climb. There about 700 steps on a steep hill which lead you to the top. There aren’t any resting spots in the first phase. So it will be continuous climb. If the climb is done in the afternoon, it is very important to wear socks since the steps become hot. Shoes are not allowed. In case you forget to bring socks, there are vendors selling socks at 20 INR.

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There is catch though. The first phase of the climb dies not lead you to the statue. It leads to an intermediary temple on a plateau. Take the darshan and continue on to the right. There is another set of steps 100 steps or so which will take you the Gommateshvara statue. On route, you can have a scenic view of the town below and the surrounding hills. The rock bed on the plateau has all sorts of Sanskrit inscriptions which are protected by a transparent glass.

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The Walls around the steps leading to Bahubali statue are also sculpted with images of gods and goddesses of hindu mythology. The archaeology department has maintained the location in very good condition. Hopefully things don’t deteriorate with the increasing population of visitors, especially during the holy / festive seasons.

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Gommateshvara Bahubali Statue
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he entrance to the Bahubali statue passes through a entrance under a temple archway. There is a corridor surrounding the main corridor where the statue is present. So take walk in the corridors around the statue before entering the main corridor with the statue.

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The monolithic statue is magnificent, almost 60 feet high and more importantly in pristine condition even after 1000 years. Take the monks blessing and take a ten minute break here.
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There is another set of beautiful sculptures exactly opposite to the Bahubali statue.
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Get ready for the long climb down post now and keep encouraging the people on the way up. Of course with gravity assisting you, it will be relatively easier. At the town, there a number of vendors selling refreshments ; we just had some cucumber since it was a really hot day. The tour bus departed Shravanabelagola for Belur town at about 11.45 a.m.

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2 responses

  1. Pingback: Halebidu | travellers guide to the planet

  2. Pingback: Belur | travellers guide to the planet

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