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Badami Cave Temple in Badami Karnataka

Here is Some Information aabout Badami Cave Temple in Badami Karnataka India.

Location: In Badami, Bagalkot District, Karnataka
Built in:  540 to 757 AD.
Dedicated to:  Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu and Lord Mahavira
Attraction: Exquisite carvings and sculptures
Photography: Allow
Entry: Free
Known for : Rock Cut Cave Temples
Visiting Timing:  1Hour
Best time to visit: July to Feb
Nearest Airport: Dabolim (Goa)  
Nearest Railway Station: Hubli

Badami is truly famous for its Cave Temples that date back to the 6th and 7th centuries. Located at Badami in Bagalkot district of Karnataka, Cave Temples represent the fine architectural style of the ancient times. The nearest airport to Badami is located in Belgaum. Belgaum lies at a distance of 150 kms from Badami and one can easily reach the cave temples by hiring taxis. Various tourist buses and coaches are also available throughout the state of Karnataka. Badami is sited at the orifice of a gorge that is fringed by two rocky hills.

Caves Temples
The first and the foremost cave is known to be built in 578 A.D. One can reach the cave by taking a flight of 40 steps. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the cave adorns not less than 81 sculptures of Lord Shiva in the form of 'Nataraj' having 18 arms. Made out in Red sandstone, the cave has an open verandah, a hall with numerous columns and a sanctum. The ceilings and pillars are festooned with paintings of amorous couples.

The second cave can be sited at the summit of a sandstone hill. This Cave Temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the Universe as per the Hindu beliefs. Here, Lord Vishnu is presented in the form of a 'Trivikrama' (dwarf) where his one foot is commanding the Earth and with the other he is mastering the sky.

Perched on the hill, the third Cave Temple traces its origin in 578 A.D. The front elevation of the cave is approximately 70 ft wide. The platform is carved with the images of 'ganas'. The structure of the temple rejuvenates the memoirs of Deccan style of architecture. This temple is a fine example of the artistic quality and sculptural genius. The sculpture of Lord Vishnu in the company of a serpent captures the major attention. Here, Lord Vishnu is represented in his various incarnations including Narsimha, Varaha, Harihara (Shiva-Vishnu) and Trivikarma.

The fourth Cave Temple is accredited for being dedicated to the Lord Mahavira, the 24th Tirthankara of the Jains. The cave is believed to be the latest amongst all the four caves. It finds its origin in the 7th century, near about 100 years after the construction of earlier three caves. In this shrine, one can see the image of Lord Mahavira in a sitting posture.

The artistic quality and sculptural grandeur mark the very sight of these cave temples at Badami. The rich traditions of India are depicted through these monuments of heritage. People from all over the World come to visit these shrines of architectural radiance and religious significance.

Cave 1
Carved out of red sandstone, Cave 1 was probably the first one to be constructed, dating back to around 578 AD. A climb of around 40 steps leads to the columned verandah and a hall with numerous pillars with intricately carved and decorated walls. The roof is adorned with murals of Hindu deities including a giant painting of Lord Shiva along with his consort and a looped serpent. The dancing statue of Nataraja in 81 poses can also be seen here.

Cave 2
Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the cave depicts Vishnu as a dwarf measuring the earth and sky with his feet. The cave is built atop a sandstone hill and can be easily accessed by a short trek.

Cave 3
A further climb leads to cave 3, another masterpiece dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The sculptures and carvings on the walls provide a deep insight into the culture and lifestyle of the 6th century such as costume, jewellery, hairstyle etc.

Cave 4
The only natural cave around the area is also the only Jain temple at Badami. A statue of the 24th Tirthankara, Lord Mahavira can be seen here, seated in a comfortable pose against a cushion in the inner sanctum.


Badami is acknowledged for being the ancient kingdom of Chalukyas. In the 6th century, Badami was established by Pulakesin I; however the architectural expansion was observed by the Chalukyas. The sect constructed numerous temples and monuments, marking the instigation of the Hindu architectural style. Badami Cave Temple is the best example of Chalukyan style of architecture. Made out of Sandstone hills, Badami Cave Temples boast of rock-cut architecture.

In totality, there are four cave temples in Badami. All these temples enclose brilliant carvings with the sculptures of Gods from the Hindu pantheon. The structure of these temples is a perfect fusion of North Indian Nagara style and South Indian Dravidian style of architecture. Each cave embraces a sanctum, a hall, a verandah and pillars. Beautiful carvings and exquisite sculptures adore the site of Cave Temples. At the cutting edge, one can see a reservoir that makes a perfect foreground to these architectural structures.

The rich past of Badami is closely linked with the ancient Kingdom of Chalukyas. It was first founded by Pulakesin I in the 6th century A.D. The Chalukyas are to be credited with pioneering a new architectural style, examples of which can be seen in Aihole, Pattadakal ( one comes across Banashankari, the goddess the village is named after) and other neighbouring areas. It was also ruled by the Chalukyas of Kalyan (a separate branch of Chalukyas), the Kalachuryas, Yadavas of Devangiri and the Vijaynagar Empire. In the latter medieval period, Adil Shahi rulers of Bijapur and the Marathas ruled it. Badami was finally taken over by the British, who made it a part of the erstwhile Bombay Presidency. They built a number of temples, and other monuments that marked the beginning of the Hindu style of architecture. This new style combined the best of two distinct styles - the North Indian, Indo-Aryan Nagara style and the South Indian Dravidian style. Known as the Chalukyan style, this style is manifested in many cave temples, dedicated to Brahmanical deities, as well as the many Buddhist and Jain monasteries in the region.

How to Rich Badami Cave Temple 

By Air : The nearest airport is situated at Belgaum, though not very well connected to the rest of the Indian cities.

By Rail : Badami has its own railway station, however the trains halting here are mostly 2nd class passenger trains. It is advisable, therefore, to travel to Gadag from where you can easily get a connection to Haspet, Hubli and Bijapur.

By Road : The city is well connected to other parts of the country through a well built network of roads. Regular buses are available to and from Bijapur, Bangalore, Hubli, Gadag and Ilkal.

Local Transport : Local Buses, Taxis, auto rickshaws and tongas are the popular local means of transport. Bicycles are also available for hire from numerous shops on the station road. Local buses ply frequently to Pattadakal and Aihole while a private cab can also be hired to visit these historical destinations. Starting early in the morning will ensure that you get to visit both these sites in a single day.

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