All I wanted was to get out of my comfort zone and struck by wanderlust.
The answer came almost immediately – A bike ride.
In a city like Bengaluru,there is no shortage of places you can take a road trip to. And I am blessed to be here,where weekends can never be mundane or boring.Whether you got a thirst for history,art & culture or adventure,there is a place for you.
I always find our history to be fascinating.Our modern life is a continuation of our heritage.
We are only where we are now because of the thousands of years that lie behind us.
Finally my search ends and Lepakshi came into picture – A short day trip.
Early morning ride on the highway.
Oh,what can be the better way to start your Sunday ?
Lepakshi is regarded very important for its historical, archaeological and aesthetic value.
Located in a small town(safely you can call it a village) in Andhra Pradesh, 15 km from Hindupur and roughly 120 km from Bangalore in Anantapur District.
It is famous for Virabhadra temple built in 15th century by Vijayanagara kings. This temple is one of the most notable examples of the Vijayanagar architectural style. Also, it is famous for its sculptures.The temple is hailed as a delightful synthesis of architecture, sculpture and painting.
The largest monolith of Nandi,the mural paintings on the ceilings, the stone carvings, the innumerable pillars, the naga linga, the open air auditorium, all had their own stories to tell!
First attraction in Lepakshi:
The Monolithic Nandi- Basavanna in the local language.This sculpture is said to be the second largest monolithic structure in India after Gomateshwara in Shravanabelagola. It is 15 feet in height and 27 feet in length.
The Nandi statue is decorated with a necklace, muvvalahara, a bell chain with small horns. This big granite bull is situated on the main road beside AP Tourism Haritha resort. It has been positioned such that it faces the 18 ft Nagalinga in Veerabhadra Temple Complex.
A nice park is built up around this statue and is well maintained. You can spend some time in the park and capture the beauty.
Main attraction in Lepakshi:
The Veerabhadraswamy temple, which is 2kms further ahead .
According to folklore, When Sita was abducted by Ravana, the mythical birdJatayu fought with Ravana at this spot. Jatayu’s wings were cut off by Ravana and he lay here, injured. When Rama found Jatayu, he said “le,pakshi” (meaning ‘Rise, bird’ in Telugu) and the bird rose.
The name ‘Lepakshi’ was hence given to this area.
As you walk through the temple, you arrive at a pillar which does not rest on the ground fully.Out of the 70 magnificent and elaborate pillar this one is unique.
Then you can witness a spectacular Shivalinga ,popularly known as Nagalinga which is glorious.
Moving further , after crossing the Kalyan Mandapa, you will arrive at a huge footprint in the temple floor.This footprint is believed to be of Goddess Sita.
Few other area of interest can be a small temple dedicated to Lord Ganesha and a leafless tree that is believed to be standing since ages
Few more points of interest in the temple include a rock chain, Vastu Purusha, the Padmini race lady.
Another interesting aspect of this temple is that it is North facing unlike other temples in India.
Note for the Amazing photo hunters:
Photography is prohibited in the central shrine area where the deity is worshiped.but allowed outside the shrine area and there are no entry fees or camera fees.
(relief to the pocket,ain’t it?)
Best time to visit:
Winter is the best time to visit Lepakshi because the weather is perfect for exploring the attractions.Summer is too hot with burning sun and monsoon is humid.
- The highway is so good, it tempts you to over speed. Don’t do that.Drive safe on the highway.
- It’s get hotter during the day.So plan accordingly.
- Don’t forget to carry your camera. Lepakshi is a photographers delight.
- Carry bottle of water with you as you may not get many options
It is indeed an offbeat destination near to Bengaluru that many don’t seem to know about.Either pick a travel buddy or travel solo,you are never going to regret on your choice of destination.
Hi! I am Anushree Dash…
1 Part Entrepreneur
2 Parts Writer
3 Parts Social reformer
4 Parts explorer
5 Parts photographer, Too many Parts.
A free-spirited,non-conformist,,impenitent,independent,adventurous,boho soul and an admirer of life. Loves my Indian roots, Culture, Aesthetic Living, Saree, Poetry …