February 09, 2007

Somnathpura and Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary

Starring : Me & Arvind
Total Cost : 1400 INR
Start Time : 4:30am, 4th February, 2007
End Time : 6:30pm, 4th February, 2007
Somnathpura pics Photos here
Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary pics Photos here

Bitten by the "no-more-weekends-in-Bangalore" syndrome myself and Arvind decided to ride to Somnathpura and Ranganthittu on SUnday.

Somnathpura is situated on the left bank of the Cauvery river. The keshava temple was built in 1268AD by Somnatha Dandanyaka, an illustrious General of the Hoysala king Narasimha III(1254-1291 AD) and named after him.

This temple is a perfect example of the Hoysala style of architecture. It has three sanctums on the West,South and North to Keshava, Venugopala and Janardhana, all connected. It is an ornately carved temple of magnificient craftmanship depicting Vishnu, Lakshmi, Saraswati, Ganesha, Rathi-manmatha and mahishasura. The ceilings and door jambs leading to the sanctum sactorium are exquisitely carved.

There are inscriptions engraved on a slab standing at the entrance,inside temple , dated from 1269 to 1550 AD that detail the consrtuction of the temple and grants made to it.

The temple stands on a raised platform in the center of a spacious enclosure having 64 cells. This three celled (trikutachala) structure consists of three garbhagrihas, three antaralas and a navarang. It has a mahadwara standing on the east.

The basement of the outerwall is highly ornamented with friezes of elephants, scrolls, epic and puranic scenes, small images with intervening turrets and columns with fugures in between , number of gods and goddesses and their attendants adron the walls. The lathe turned pillars and delicately carved 16 different types of ceilings are the characteristic feature of the hoysala art. The names of a number of sculptors are carved on the pedestal of the images. It is observed that Mallithamma has not only carved the maximum number of images but also carved the northern sikhara that of Janardhana cell.

Inscriptions engraved on a huge slab standing in the mahadwara and on the beams of the navaranga ranging in date from 1269-1550 AD give the details of the construction of the temple and several grants for the upkeep of the temple.

Ranganthittu was ok...not many birds though. I could spot only around 3-4 varieties.

Costs:
Petrol = 850 INR
Breakfast = 110 INR
Lunch = 130 INR
Misc = 40 INR

At Ranganthittu
Entry = 20 INR
Bike parking = 10 INR
Camera Charges = 20 INR
Boating = 20 INR
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