Friday, February 27, 2009

Chitradurga Trip : Chitradurga Fort Chandravalli Caves

Chitradurga, a historical town is 200 kms away from Bangalore. Around 5 hours, would be the journey duration to reach the place. With NH4 covering most of the route, it is a pleasant drive. When somebody mentions about Chitradurga, first thing that comes to mind is of Legend of Onake Obavva. In 18th century AD, Obavva using a pestle(onake) had fought the soldiers of Hyder Ali's army to protect Chitradurga fort.Carving of Naagarahaavu or King Cobra
Naagarahaavu or King Cobra
Chitradurga Fort inside the town, is the prime attraction and is declared a national monument by Archaeological Survey of India. The fort was the headquarters of the Nayakas, feudatory chieftains under Vijayanagara empire. Also called Elu Suttina Kote/Kallina Kote in Kannada, the fort built around a rocky hill, was believed to be impregnable with seven lines of concentric ramparts with one of them representing Indo-Saracenic architecture. 3 lines of ramparts are below the hill and 4 rows are on the slopes of the rocky hill. Inside the fort, there are 14 temples. Some of the temples have Shikharas in Chalukyan style.Indo-Saracenic Entrance
Indo-Saracenic Entrance in the fort
Chitradurga or Chittaradurga name is apt for the place, since some of the rocks here form shapes of animals/things like that of frog, elephant, ship etc.(Chitra/Chittara in Kannada means picture). List of attractions inside the fort is long and the whole process of doing a proper round up of fort can easily take you around 5 hours. Here is a small list of what you can visit - Ekanatheshwari Temple, Hidimbeshwara Temple, Jodu Batheri & Jhanda Batheri (flag posts), mint & office of paleygaras, Muruga Matha, Gaali Gopuras, Thuppada Kola (pond of ghee),Gaali Gopuras
Gaali Gopuras
palace complex, Onake Obbavva Kindi, Barns & ponds, Sampige Siddheshwara Temple, Gopalaswamy Temple, Bombe Mantapa, Akka Thangiyara Kola and so on. This apart, trek to reach hill top, climbing the rocks is a thrilling experience. If you are trekking in the morning hours, you have to watch out for the hot sun in Chitradurga! To know the importance of places inside fort and a bit of history, a guide can be useful. He charges around Rs.250 for servicing a group. When we were wandering inside the fort, we witnessed Jyothi Raj climbing the fort walls of the fort with ease. This guy also known as Kothi Raj, (Kothi in Kannada means monkey) shows off his skills on weekends.Birds view from Chitradurga fort
Birds view from hill top
Chandravalli is another attraction in Chitradurga. 2 kms away from the town, this pre-historic site, which is semilunar in shape is located between 3 hills, Chitradurga, Cholagudda and Kirubanakallu. Excavations here have shown that this place was inhabited since Iron age. Surrounded by hills with a lake in the middle, makes it a beautiful location. Chandravalli Lake
Chandravalli Lake
Nearby are the Chandravalli Caves, also called Ankali Math. These were once inhabited by the Saints of Ankali Math from Belgaum. These are underground caves where one gets around 80 feet down from ground level. Better to reach out to this place with a guide as you can easily get lost inside the caves, which has a different exit route. Completely dark at any time of the day, one has to carry a source of light like torch/candle while exploring the place.One of the entrances in Chandravalli Caves
One of the entrances in Chandravalli Caves
Caves though dark have outlets for ventilation and comprises of anything a math could have like a place of worship with Shiva linga, visitor room, rooms for Sadhus, carvings in the wall to keep belongings, carvings and paintings on the walls(with natural colours made of herbs). This is a must visit place if you are in Chitradurga. We spent some 3 hours exploring the place. More places to visit in Chitradurga in next post.Rocky Hill, Chitradurga
Rocky Hill, Chitradurga

Muruga Math
Muruga Math

Pond Inside Chitradurga Fort
Pond inside Chitradurga Fort

Obavvana Kindi
Obavvana Kindi

Rock resembling a ship
Rock resembling a ship

Rock resembling a frog
Rock resembling a frog

Jyothi Raj climbing fort walls
Jyothi Raj climbing fort walls

Paintings in Chandravalli Caves
Paintings in Chandravalli Caves

Inside Chandravalli caves
Inside Chandravalli Caves

carvings in cave walls
Carvings in cave walls

Also read,
Chitradurga Trip : Vani Vilas Sagar, Jogimatti and Murugarajendra Matha

4 comments:

  1. hi...

    Very nice photos.. yaaar..

    Raghavendra. R
    www.chitharadurga.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Beautiful photographs..very well captured..its an amazing place indeed....

    ReplyDelete

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails