Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Lepakshi


Lepakshi is on the Bangalore-Hyderabad highway, 100kms from the Bangalore International Airport. There are 2 major places to visit in Lepakshi. The first one is the monolithic Nandi and other one is the Veerabhadra Temple and its surrounding incomplete temple complex. The temple architecture is of the Vijayanagara empire style so if you have not visited Hampi then this would be a preview and if you have visited then this would be kind off a quick recap.

We started the trip from my friends place in Banashankari. We had our breakfast at 7am at SLV and left for Lepakshi.
 


The easiest way to reach is to travel on NH-44 via Chikkaballapur all the way to cross Karnataka border and then take the Lepakshi road from Kodikonda. The road is good all the way.
We reached Lepakshi at around 10:30am and went near the temple first. There was street side parking. It is a historic site but it is also a temple so be respectful around the place. Each pillar has a different architecture which also means it has stories to tell. There are tourist guides if you wish to opt for one.

You will see a lot of unfinished work around the temple but that also makes for good photographs

The temple complex is pretty large. If you want to see things up close and walk all over the place then it will take you around 1-2hrs.

There a lot of large sculptures too. Some stand alone one and and some carved on the pillars and rocks.
 
 

There are a few paintings on the ceiling of the temple and if you do not have a guide to make sense of the painings then wait around for sometime and some group with a guide will definitely show up (Yeah, we are budget travelers)

We were done with the temple by noon and we walked towards the the monolithic Nandi statue.

It was almost 1pm so we head out to AP tourism guest house for the nice Andhra Meal (they just call it meals and I don’t have the pic of the lunch, I know, I am shocked too)

By 2pm we were done and wondering what next. Looking at the maps we saw that Puttaparthi Sai Baba temple was around 65kms so we head out there but it was like a ghost town when compared to Sai Baba temple in Shirdi. We took a quick tour around the place and started heading back to Bangalore.

Since there are only 2 places to visit in Lepakshi it will take you 3 hours at max to see everything. So you can start early in the morning and choose to include Avalabetta or Nandi hills for sunrise and then head towards Lepakshi later in the day. The other interesting place if you are planning to make it a day's itinerary is Gudibande fort. You can shuffle these 4 places in the order convenient to you and also on how the weather is.

You might also be interested to read: Avalabetta & Gudibande Fort, Hampi

The interesting thing about Lepakshi is that the first time we planned the trip in November 2014, our car broke down near Chikkaballapur and we spent the whole day in the garage. So when my friend Vikram bought his new car, we vowed that the first trip would be to Lepakshi. Hence the second attempt at the trip in March 2015 was the first of the many trips in his car :)

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