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Old 31st May 2014, 19:30   #1
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Default Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola

We did a 2 day trip from Bangalore this week clubbing multiple heritage destinations like Belur, Halebeedu and Shravanabalagola coupled with some relaxing time in Chikmangalur at Thippanahalli home stay

First, about the road condition which would be the most useful information:

Bangalore Hassan is in very good condition. There is a bypass at Channarayapatna town. If you use Google maps, it will route you through the town instead of the bypass. Be aware of this.

From Hassan, the route till Belur and further to Chikmangalur is in good shape.

Belur to Halebeedu is in bad condition. You are advised to go to Hagare and then proceed to Halebeedu. Hagare - Halebeedu road is single lane but in very good condition as of this writing. Some of the older travelogues would advise you not to try the Hagare route.

Channarayapattana - Hassan route is also in good condition throughout.

Last edited by GTO : 1st June 2014 at 13:02. Reason: Merging back to back posts
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Old 31st May 2014, 19:48   #2
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Default re: Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola

Belur temple is a must see place. It talks volumes about our history. Do not forget to hire a guide or else you may be loosing a wonderful experience. There are guides to hire who are trained by Archaeological survey of India. They are not employees of ASI though.
Attached Thumbnails
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Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0786.jpg  

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Old 31st May 2014, 20:14   #3
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Default Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmangalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabalagola

We started from Bangalore at 5:15 and went to Belur temple. From Belur, we proceeded to Thippanahalli home stay in Chikmangalur. Reached there by 12:30.

Thippanahalli home stay is a nice place to relax, away from the bustle of a city. It is a coffee estate where they have constructed couple of cottages for home stay. The main bungalow was constructed by British and architecture is very similar to the bungalow what we see in the Amir khan movie 'Dil' which is in Ooty.
Attached Thumbnails
Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0787.jpg  

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0788.jpg  

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0792.jpg  

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Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0812.jpg  


Last edited by B103 : 31st May 2014 at 20:26.
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Old 31st May 2014, 20:41   #4
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Default re: Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola

Next day, checked out from home stay and proceeded to Chikmangalur town to do some purchasing. If you want to buy coffee powder then in MG road, there is a shop named 'Panduranga' which is the ideal place.

Opp to that is another shop 'Saravana' where you can buy stuff like honey, dry fruits and nuts etc. From Chikmangalur town, we travelled to Belur and from there to Halebeed. Belur - Halebeed road was the worst strech of road in our trip.

Both Belur and Halebeed temples are built by the Hoysala dynasty. Belur is Vishu temple Halebeed is Shiva temple. You can see magnificent stone sculptures in both these temples. From the ASI guide, I learnt that Allaudin Khiji and other invaders had defaced the Halebeed temple considerably. Archaeology department had tried some restoration but with mixed results.
Attached Thumbnails
Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0824.jpg  

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Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0849.jpg  

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Old 31st May 2014, 20:48   #5
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Default re: Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola

At Halebeed, we ate lunch at the KSTDC hotel on the other side of the temple. It is a small restaurant and serves descent food. Not costly either.

From Halebeed, we drove to Hassan and checked into Candy Southern Star hotel. I had made the booking earlier via makemytrip. It is a descent hotel with 2 star facilities and ideal for families. Breakfast is complimentary. Rooms are neat and clean. TV and bath room size is tad small compared to other hotels. Three parking spots are available inside the hotel and another 3-4 available on the road adjacent to the hotel's compound wall.
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Old 31st May 2014, 21:01   #6
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Default Shravanabalagola

Stayed overnight in the hotel, checked out after the breakfast next day and proceeded to Shravanabalagola at 9:30. From Hassan, you will come to Channarayapatna and then turn right to Shravanabalagola.It is a jain pilgrimage center but anybody can visit the place. We applied some sun screen, bought caps to wear and started climbing in the blistering sun at 10:30 AM.

There are close to 620+ steps to climb but is worth it in my personal opinion. If you are feeling exhausted then stop and take some breaths before proceeding again.

The 18 meter tall statue of lord Bahubali is a glorious thing to see. It was carved out of a single piece of granite. Here are some photos
Attached Thumbnails
Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0854.jpg  

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0855.jpg  

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Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0873.jpg  

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-dscn0859.jpg  

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Old 31st May 2014, 21:24   #7
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Default Nightmare in the NICE street

Finally, back to Bangalore. We took NICE road to go up and down. Back from Shravanabalagola, we hit NICE road at noon 1:30 and the road I should say was infested with trucks of all kinds of size, shape and length travelling in all kinds of speeds. They were aplenty and have hijacked the road so that a car will have to wriggle through them.

I had 2 narrow misses at my windshield -- first a 3 feet long wooden twig lying on the road was fired like a rocket to the sky by the tire of a passing truck. Luckily, I was late by a fraction of a second and so missed the rocket. In another incident, a clay tile (used for roofing) fell off a Swaraj Mazda right into the lane of my car. Thank God, I was late by a fraction of a second this time also.

I saw all kind of bizarre incidents in NICE road. I saw multiple accident vehicles, a very big boulder which probably would have fallen off a truck on to the cabin of another? Scary stuff !! Not sure if I should pay such hefty money next time to drive on a road which is dominated by trucks and where nobody follows rules !!

Reached Hosur road by 2 PM, went to Lemon Tree hotel in Electronic city and ate a late lunch. Reached home at 4 PM after an eventful day. Next, a brief nap and then switched on the laptop to complete the travelogue with this line. Hope you had a nice time reading this. Take care and enjoy

Last edited by B103 : 31st May 2014 at 21:29.
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Old 31st May 2014, 23:58   #8
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Default Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmangalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabalagola

Great TL. Thanks for the info shared. How is the road condition between Halebeedu to Hassan ?

While going to Halebeedu from Belur you suggested to take Hagare - Halebeedu. Which route did you take for Halebeedu to Hassan ? Did you come back to Hagare or you took SH21 Halebeedu to Hassan ?

Last edited by pgupta : 1st June 2014 at 00:06.
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Old 1st June 2014, 09:48   #9
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Default Halebeedu -> Hagare -> Hassan route

Quote:
Originally Posted by pgupta View Post
Great TL. Thanks for the info shared. How is the road condition between Halebeedu to Hassan ?
Take the road in between Halebeed temple and KSTDC hotel -> Hagare -> Left turn at main road of highway 57 junction -> Hassan. This road is in very good condition.

I drove Belur -> Halebeed ( bad road ) which was the suggested route as per some older travelogues and was even planning to go back in the same way. Luckily, I checked with the ASI guide and reconfirmed the same with the people in KSTDC hotel and both of them advised me to go via Hagare to Hassan.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pgupta View Post
While going to Halebeedu from Belur you suggested to take Hagare - Halebeedu. Which route did you take for Halebeedu to Hassan ? Did you come back to Hagare or you took SH21 Halebeedu to Hassan ?
This is the route via Hagare:
https://www.google.co.in/maps/dir/Ha...13.0068142!3e0


On the right side ( almost parallel ) is the route from Halebeedu via Salagame to Hassan ( highway 21) which you are inquiring about. I have not tried this but previous posts in other travelogues are saying 'no' to this route. On the top, you can see the road through Chikmangalur -> Belur -> Halebeed which is the one I took to go to Halebeed, but it is in bad shape. May be better to avoid it until and unless you love taking your car through bad roads.

Last edited by B103 : 1st June 2014 at 09:51.
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Old 1st June 2014, 17:10   #10
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Default

Thank you B103. Following your advise I took the Hagare -Halebiddu route and the road was butter smooth. And while returning also I took the same route back to Hagare then took SH 57.
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Old 1st June 2014, 17:59   #11
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Default Re: Shravanabalagola

Quote:
Originally Posted by B103 View Post
Stayed overnight in the hotel, checked out after the breakfast next day and proceeded to Shravanabalagola at 9:30. From Hassan, you will come to Channarayapatna and then turn right to Shravanabalagola.It is a jain pilgrimage center but anybody can visit the place. We applied some sun screen, bought caps to wear and started climbing in the blistering sun at 10:30 AM.

There are close to 620+ steps to climb but is worth it in my personal opinion. If you are feeling exhausted then stop and take some breaths before proceeding again.

The 18 meter tall statue of lord Bahubali is a glorious thing to see. It was carved out of a single piece of granite. Here are some photos
Great TL and quite a lot of useful information.

For climbing the 620+ steps, what is the time taken generally?
For elderly folks, is there a option?
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Old 1st June 2014, 19:23   #12
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Default Steps at Shravanabalagola

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDP View Post
Great TL and quite a lot of useful information.
For climbing the 620+ steps, what is the time taken generally?
Depends on the climber's health and stamina. First series of steps leads to the entrance of the temple at the hill top. This is the longest climb and you are completely exposed to sun.

There are further steps to climb once you are the hill top but you are some what better off as there is a better cover on the top and more options to sit by the side.

I did not time the climb but a healthy man can reach the hill top in 20 - 30 mins. Add another 15 - 20 mins to reach the sanctum sanctorum. Overweight or elderly would definitely take more time.

I recommend buying caps and socks sold by road side vendors to escape from scorching sun over the top and blistering rock under the feet. Carrying some water would also not be a bad idea though there are drinking taps at the temple top. Don't forget to apply sun screen if you are climbing under the sun.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDP View Post
For elderly folks, is there a option?
One can stop intermittently and climb if they do not have heart problems or other major joint issues. Also 'doli' is available at a cost to hire.

Other information: At the bottom of the hill, chappal stand and toilet options are available at nominal cost. A guy issued a yellow parking charge coupon for my car from the panchayat for Rs 30. I ended up paying but did not have any clue if he is authorized to collect it or not.
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Old 3rd June 2014, 10:39   #13
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Default Re: Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelago

Hi B103,

This is a good TL and with a lot of useful information.
I had been to this Belur Chennakeshava Temple and would tell that this is a must visit place.
After looking at those solid carved pillars and all that carvings on the temple walls and on the roofs I doubt if this was a work of humans from this planet. If we stand inside the temple it feels as if it has been carved out of a solid metal structure. The sharp edges on the pillars and the carvings are very precise and seem to be done via a laser. Also the temple's circumference is in a shape of a star. The Gods hold weapons that don't resemble a Gada or a bow or even a sword. As per Wikipedia the temple's structure is made up of chloritic schist, soapstone or potstone. I doubt if man could construct such a structure in those days.

Did you not visit the Yagachi Dam? It has some boating activities.
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Old 3rd June 2014, 11:13   #14
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Default Re: Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelago

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Did you not visit the Yagachi Dam? It has some boating activities.
The boating activities is 4 kms ahead of the Dam on the way to Chikmagalur just before the makeshift village of Kanayakanahalli. This of course is a private venture making good business ever since it was started.

Just to add few bits to this Travelogue, the Belur temple is referred to as jeevantha devalaya due to the fact that there is regular managalaarti performed every morning and evening and every year there is an annual event for 2 weeks with Rathotsava being the major event that attracts a huge crowd from all over the state.

Attaching from pics from this year's event. Most of those who visit Belur may have seen this Chariot peacefully parked inside the shed made of stone. The pics below will depict its actual use.

Belur that many of the weekenders may not have seen:
Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140412_100917.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140412_100937.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140412_101408.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140412_101507.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140412_103217.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140412_104343.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140412_104407.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140413_135328.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140413_142827.jpg

Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelagola-20140413_144256.jpg
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Old 3rd June 2014, 17:55   #15
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Default Re: Driving Holiday: Bangalore -> Belur -> Chikmagalur -> Halebeedu -> Shravanabelago

Quote:
Originally Posted by paragsachania View Post
Just to add few bits to this Travelogue, the Belur temple is referred to as jeevantha devalaya due to the fact that there is regular managalaarti performed every morning and evening and every year there is an annual event for 2 weeks with Rathotsava being the major event that attracts a huge crowd from all over the state
Thank you paragsachania. Unfortunately, the sanctum sanctorum was closed at Belur on the day we were there because somebody who is related to the temple had passed away.

I had been to Lepakshi temple which is 120 KMs from Bangalore in Hyderabad road ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lepakshi ). This temple is also made entirely in stone. There is a big Nandi statue in Lepakshi also.

In comparison, I felt Belur and Halebeed had more smaller, intricate and delicate sculptures compared to Lepakshi esp on the walls and roofs. A peculiar thing that I noticed is that in Belur, queen ShanthalaDevi had been given lot of significance and representation in sculptures. Also, there are many stone pillars in the temple but no two are the same.

Last edited by B103 : 3rd June 2014 at 17:58.
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