Chennakesava Temple, Somanathapura

Chennakesava Temple, Somanathapura

Chennakesava Temple, Somanathapura
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Chennakesava Temple, Somanathapura: i modi migliori per scoprire questo luogo di interesse e le attrazioni nelle vicinanze

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4.5
Punteggio 4,5 su 533 recensioni
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23
Molto buono
9
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Christine D
17 contributi
Punteggio 5,0 su 5
mar 2024 • Coppie
This temple
Is breathtaking. The intricate carvings are exquisite, the detail are minute! Not to be missed if you are in the area
Scritta in data 1 marzo 2024
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

eliza248
Great Missenden, UK101 contributi
Punteggio 5,0 su 5
nov 2023 • Amici
A really interesting temple. Went in the morning and apart from a couple of school trips was very quiet and peaceful. We also had a great guide who explained the history and the carvings. Impressive.
Scritta in data 3 dicembre 2023
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

ARVIND K
Bangalore, India670 contributi
Punteggio 5,0 su 5
feb 2022
An architectural masterpiece of a Temple dedicated to Lord Chennakesava (meaning “handsome Keshava”), is located on the banks of River Cauvery at Somanathapura, near Mysore. Being nominated for the UNESCO World Heritage tag, recently, the site is a big draw among tourists.

Though located 130 kms from Bangalore, I decided against making a day trip, that may do injustice to the marvellous Temple. Instead I travelled to Mysore, stayed overnight so that I can start early in the morning to be the first one to enter the Temple and thereby avoid the crowd and the harsh sun. The distance of 35 kms from Mysore to Somanathapura village can be covered in about 45 minutes and the road is simply superb with less traffic. However there are not enough signboards on the way to help us reach the site, except a small one located close to the village. I also booked the Entrance tickets online a day in advance, since I heard stories from people who struggled to get network connectivity in the sleepy town of Somanathapura, to book tickets online using the QR code displayed prominently near the entrance.

I reached the Temple at 9:00am, when it was time to open the gates. There was no tourist and the sun was not too harsh either. First thing I did was to hire a Guide, who was found inside the Temple premises and surprisingly not near the gate. He was the only guide available, seemed knowledgeable and I had no other choice. He was hired and I was very impressed with the way he explained the story behind the Temple, details about every sculpture and idol, both outside and inside the Temple premises.

The Chennakesava Temple was consecrated in 1258 CE by Somanatha Dandanayaka, a general of the Hoysala King Narasimha III and hence the name Somanathapura given to the place. Interestingly the Temples at Belur and HalebIdu were consecrated about 100 years earlier while the Temples of Hampi came up 100 to 300 years after Somanathapura. It was fascinating to hear that it took 58 years to construct the Temple by more than 500 sculptors.

The Temple is a classic example of the famous Hoysala architecture and is one of the three Temples from India to be nominated for the UNESCO world heritage list for 2022-23, in addition to Belur and HalebIdu. The building material used in the Chennakesava is soapstone, which is soft when quarried and allows artists to carve details more easily. There are several other Temples of Lord Chennakesava made during the Hoysala empire in this region and each Temple deserves a word of praise.

Unfortunately the Temple is no longer used as a place of worship because the idols have been broken and desecrated by the invading Muslim armies led by Mallik Kafur, the General of Allaudin Khilji in 1311 and later in 1326 by Muhammad Bin Tughlaq. There is not a single sculpture, that is not chipped off either at the nose or the arms or legs except the statues of two “dwarpals” or door-men. What did they gain by spoiling the beautiful sculptures, is beyond apprehension!!

The base of the Temple is a typical star shape foundation, which is the signature style of the Hoysala architecture. The carving of the pillars, sealing, plinth and dome are awe inspiring. The plinth area is designed with shapes of animals like elephants, horses. Every sculpture and pose is unique and different from the other. The pillars at the entrance and inside the Temple were carved by lathe machines of the ancient times with manual rotary axis, which was interesting thing to know. The guide also showed how the pillars were joined from the base to the top, using gridlock or inter-locking technology for easy installation.

At the main entrance, there is a huge stone slab which has inscription in old Kannada script which describes the entire story behind the Temple right from the construction to consecration. It has names of the sculptors and detailed description of each sculpture and idols. Just outside the Temple entrance is a tall pillar apparently used to light lamps during the festivals. The outer walls of the Temple have elephants, horses, army contingent, scrolls and stories depicted from Ramayana, Mahabharata and Bhagwat Purana. Some of the stories relate to the birth of Rama, the games played by Pandavas and Kauravas, Krishna stealing butter, holding the Govardhan mountain, fighting Kaliya the Cobra etc. Some of the idols of Hindu Gods and Goddesses that caught my attention – Vishnu with Lakshmi, whose feet are resting on the lotus supported by an elephant, Durga killing Mahishasura who takes up human from from a buffalo, Indra seated on Airavatha, Brahma, Shiva, Ganesha, Saraswati, Krishna and Lakshmi in dancing pose, etc. Interestingly the chief architect and the sculptors were devotees of Lord Shiva, yet they built such a wonderful Temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu.

The interiors of the Temple has beautifully lathe carved pillars and idols of Venugopala and Janardhana though the original idol of Keshava at the centre of the Temple is missing, where a replica now stands. Apparently the original idol can be found in the London museum. The ceiling is studded with carvings of Banana and Lotus flower buds and other design patterns. Even a square inch of the structure is not left unsculpted. The pillars are round and smooth and makes one wonder the technological advancement of people 1,000 years ago. The raised platform on which the Temple is built is one of its kind among all Temples of India. This is a “Trikuta” Temple complex housing three "garbha-grihas" for Keshava, Venugopala and Janardhana. You can also see micro arts on the pillars, the ceiling and in the “Gopura” as well.

The guide was happy to showcase the intricately drilled holes in the pillars made of soapstone, inside the Temple premises. It was bit dark and hence easy to see how light passes through these holes.

The Somnathpura Temple has intricate carvings which are out of this world. The statues and carvings in the Temple have to be seen to be believed. This is one of the best places to admire the example of Hoyasala architecture. It’s so intricate that you can even see the finger nails, rings on all fingers of each carvings. This state of the art is something that every Indian should be proud of – for it's history and culture. Every corner of this Temple is made with utmost accuracy and beauty that will hold your attention. It took me around 90 minutes to see the entire place as we tend to spend more time taking photos and videos.

The place is very well maintained especially the green lawns around the Temple. However the Toilets are in pathetic condition, which the Management should seriously look into. There are few small joints around the place serving tea/coffee, cold drinks but there is no Restaurant nearby. Since I visited on a weekday, the crowd was thin but as per the guide, the crowd is much more on weekends and holidays and foreign tourists have not visited this place for the last 2 years. Now that the Temple is soon to be declared a UNESCO World Heritage site, it has garnered lot of interest among tourists visiting Mysore.

Yet the beauty of the Temple still charms thousands of tourists, who visit the site to witness the magnificent artistic and engineering achievements of the era, to seek the Lord's blessing and admire the delicate carvings and sculptures, whose beauty is unequal and as unique as the God that it houses.

Important information:

• Timings : 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM (all days of the week)
• Ticket: Very nominal fee of INR 20 per person. Need to be booked online using QR code
• Time Required : 1-2 hrs
• Parking: Ample parking available for INR 30 per vehicle
• Cleanliness: 4 out of 5 stars (Clean and well maintained surrounding); 1 star deducted for badly maintained Toilets
• Food: No restaurant except for few small shops
• Guide: Hire a guide since he will explain the history of the Temple, details of all the sculptures, carvings and the idols. Mr Sannegowda MC is a knowledgeable guide, who charges Rs 350
• Important tips: Better to visit on a weekday to avoid the crowd and also avoid visiting post 12noon upto 3pm, since you have to remove shoes and walk around the place, when the sun is harsh; Wear a hat or cap to protect your head from hot sun and ofcourse a good camera to shoot pictures and videos.
Scritta in data 1 marzo 2022
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

Milind Kshirsagar
Nagpur, India336 contributi
Punteggio 5,0 su 5
gen 2020
Marvellous architecture and intricate sand stone carvings. About 30 km from Mysore. Go to Bannur from Mysore and then to Somnathpura.
Scritta in data 11 gennaio 2020
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

Dinesh B
Chennai (Madras), India45 contributi
Punteggio 4,0 su 5
dic 2019 • Coppie
Visited the temple on the way to mysore after seeing the Shivasamudra waterfall.Amazing Architecture intricate carvings. How much painstakeing work would have gone into it.The stone pillars look as if turned in a lathe.Well maintained by ASI.Worth visiting.
Scritta in data 17 dicembre 2019
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

Marc L
Tiel, Paesi Bassi4 contributi
Punteggio 5,0 su 5
nov 2019 • Coppie
Beautiful temple. Very well preserved. It is worth taking the guide as there is a story about every single ornament
Scritta in data 1 dicembre 2019
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

Ramachandran R
Cleveland, OH72 contributi
Punteggio 5,0 su 5
set 2019 • Famiglia
Can debris be beautiful?
Yes. Architecture and archeological lovers, this place is a feast for you. Watch the precision in each and every minute state.
Worth spending half a day here.
If you come from Bangalore, visit this and proceed to Mysore. Please have your food and visit the place. There’s no good restaurants here.
Scritta in data 26 novembre 2019
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

Cris H
Pittsburgh, PA544 contributi
Punteggio 3,0 su 5
ott 2019
We visited as a group of four on our way down to Bandipur and spent about 30 minutes wandering around the site. The temple is beautiful, really well maintained and very clean inside. The detail on some of the stone carvings were gorgeous even after so many years. The only down side was a rude "government guide" who kept following us around telling us we don't understand anything and we need to have him tell us about the site. Even after four rebuttals be still followed us which was super annoying and ruined the experience.
Scritta in data 12 novembre 2019
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

Michaël
Londerzeel, Belgio794 contributi
Punteggio 4,0 su 5
ott 2019
The Keshava temple isn't the biggest, but it's collection of soap stone carvings is breath taking. both the inside of the temple as well as the architecture are worth a look.
Scritta in data 21 ottobre 2019
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

Ria1104
Calcutta, India663 contributi
Punteggio 4,0 su 5
ago 2019 • Famiglia
It is one of the best example of Hoysala architecture and trust me one of the most amazing piece of art that I have seen. Its walls were so intricately decorated that it could take days if someone wanted to inspect them carefully. Also if you look at the temple from certain angles then looking at the sculptures at the base you will get a feel that an army with cavalry is marching for the war. Inside there is a stone idol of Lord Krishna but I am not sure if this was the original idol that used to be worshipped during those times. It hurt me to see that a place this beautiful and full of history is so less appreciated by people. People from Bangalore go to Hampi to get a taste of history but don't come to Somenathapura which is just at an hour's distance from Mysore.
Scritta in data 17 agosto 2019
Questa recensione rappresenta l'opinione personale di un utente di Tripadvisor e non di Tripadvisor LLC. Le recensioni vengono sottoposte a verifica da Tripadvisor.

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CHENNAKESAVA TEMPLE, SOMANATHAPURA: Tutto quello che c'è da sapere (AGGIORNATO 2024) - Tripadvisor

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