Pattadakal is a town in Karnataka famous for its group of monuments that are the culmination of earliest experiments in vesara style of Hindu temple architecture. The temples were built in the 8th century CE. The uniqueness of this place derives from the presence of both the Dravidian or the Southern and the Nagara or the Northern (Indo-Aryan) styles of temple architecture!!
Pattadakal is 22 km from Badami, the capital of the Chalukya dynasty of Southern India, who built the temples in the seventh and eighth centuries. There are ten temples including a Jain sanctuary surrounded by numerous small shrines and plinths. Four temples were built in Dravidian style, four in nagara style of Northern India and the Papanatha temple in mixed style.
The group of monuments in Pattadakal was designated a World Heritage Site in 1987.
The best known is the Virupaksha temple, built by Queen Lokamahadevi in 745 to commemorate her husband's victory (Vikramaditya II) over the Pallavas of Kanchi. The temple closely resembles the Kailashnatha temple in Kanchi which served as a model for this temple. The Virupakhsa temple in turn served as an inspiration for the Kailashnatha temple built by the Rashtrakuta dynasty in Ellora. The Virupaksha temple is rich in sculptures like those of lingodbhava, Nataraja, Ravananugraha and Ugranarasimha.
Sangameshvara Temple built by King Vijayaditya Satyashraya is incomplete, yet attractive.
Kashivisvanatha temple was built by the Rashtrakutas in the 8th century.
Mallikarjuna Temple is a smaller version of the Virupaksha temple and was built by Vikramadiyta's second queen Trilokyamahadevi in 745.
Galganatha temple contains a sculpture of Lord Shiva killing the demon Andhakasura, Kadasiddeshvara temple which has a sculpture of Shiva holding a Trident or Trishul in his hands and its twin temple, the Jambulinga Temple are all built in nagara style and resemble the Hucchimalli' Guddi at Aihole.
Jain Temple located on the Pattadakal-Badami Road, is built in the Dravidian style by the Rashtrakutas of Manyakheta. It has some very beautiful sculptures & probably dates from the 9th century and was built by either King Amoghavarsha I or his son Krishna II
Papanatha temple is built in the vesara style dated to 680. The temple was started in nagara style but later changed to a more balanced Dravidian style. Sculptures here speak of scenes from Ramayana and Mahabharatha. This temple has many similarities with the Navabrahma temples in Alampur, Andhra Pradesh, which were also built by the same dynasty.
Museum of the Plains and Sculpture gallery is maintained by the Archeological Survey of India on the Bhutanatha temple road.
Other important monuments here are the monolithic stone pillar bearing inscriptions, Naganatha temple, Chandrashekara temple and inscriptions in the Mahakuteshwara temple.
Temples in Pattadakal
Pattadakallu is the second capital of the chalukyan kingdom.There are ten temples including a Jaina basadi of Rashtrakuta times and also surrounded by numerous small shrines and plinths.