The industrial town of Bhadravathi has a surprise nestled in the old town area, the Lakshmi Narasimha Temple which is a good example of the late Hoysala temple architecture. This temple was constructed in 1224 AD by the Hoysala King Veera Narasimha. It is a trikutachala temple, it has three shrines each with a vimana which is rare (usually only the main shrine has a vimana). The main god worshipped here is Lakshmi Narasimha and the other two are Venugopala and Purushottama. In typical Hoysala style, the east facing temple is built on a star-shaped platform called jagati. The outer walls are adorned with sculptures though they are not very intricate and most of them have been vandalised and ravaged by the elements. The entrance to the temple is through an open pillared hall or porch (mukhamantapa) followed by a closed hall (mantapa or navaranga). The closed central hall which has no windows connects to the three sanctums via a vestibule.

The Lakshmi Narasimha Temple at Bhadravathi as seen from the east

The town of Bhadravathi is mythologically described to have formed when Lord Vishnu, took the form of Varaha to rescue Bhudevi from under the sea where she was inthe clutches of the demon Hiranyaksha. When Varaha lifted the earth supported by his sharp tusks, two trenches formed giving birth to the rivers Tunga and Bhadra. Also, the town of Bhadravathi was for long known as “Vankipura”, named after the sage Vanki who had performed penance and had worshipped lord Lakshmi Narasimha in this region for a long time.

Bhadravathi is well connected by road and rail.

The outer wall of the temple

Plan a day trip from Shimoga –

Shimoga – Lakshmi Narasimha Temple, Bhadravathi – Amruteshwara Temple, Tarikere – Shivappa Nayaka Palace, Shimoga

Read my articles on the Amruteshwara Temple and Shivappa Nayaka Palace.

This article was published in Spectrum, Deccan Herald on 28th May, 2013. DH Article


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