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Location : Near Bangalore, Karnataka
Languages : Kannada, English
Major Attraction : Temples, Churches
Best Visiting Time : Through out the year
Annigeri or Dharwad is located 75 kilometers from Belgaum. Laden with the charming beauty of ancient architecture, it is a fine place to be visited by tourists. A part of Navalgund district, this place is associated with the birth of Pampa, one of the greatest poets of his time.
Historical Significance :
Annigeri was the center of art and culture and was ruled by many dynasties including Hoysalas and Chalukyas. In the 12th century, it came under the annexation of Kalachuris who captured it for about 20 years. As far as education is concerned, the place had centers of learning called Brahmpuris that delivered education of Vedas.
Amruteshwara Temple :
It is one of the major attraction of the place; built in Dravidian style, the temple earns the distinction of being built in soapstone. There are 76 pillars that act as supporting structures of the temple's roof. Look for the carved figures that have been depicted on the walls.
Arrive at the rail head at Yalavigi that lies about 30 kilometers from Hubli and go just 20 kilometers from there; here you will see a ruined fort and a few temples that lie nearby. A temple called Ranganatha Nagareshwara is known for a set of 60 pillars of grey stone. The ceiling of the temple is intricately carved with magnificent designs.
At Annigeri, you can also pay a visit to Dambala that is laced with a number of fine temples. Devoted to Lord Shiva, the temple of Dodda Basappa is one such example. Belonging to the rein of Kalyani Chalukyas, this temple is built in multigonal shape. Another striking feature that will catch your fancy is the presence of carved doorsteps that are etched with rosettes. You can also visit a Buddhist structure meant for the worship of Taradevi.
Here you can see a magnificent temple of Vita Narayan and Trikuteshwar. At Trikuteshwar, you will see three lingams that have been constructed on a single stone. Gadag has remained a center of art and culture and is reachable from Dharwad.
Gudda Guddappara :
Another tourist attraction that you can include in your list is the nice village of Gudda Guddappara. It is better to visit this place in November when a large fair is held at its premises. The fair is dedicated to one of the incinerations of Lord Shiva.
Other places that will interest you are temples of Puradhireshwar, Hire Hanuman, Banashankari etc.
Car Festival :
If you happen to visit Annigeri in the month of either December or January, you can get opportunity to have a glimpse of the Car Festival that takes place at the premises of Amruteshwara Temple.
Apart from the temples, there are many churches that form part of the destination. Roman Catholic Church and Basel Mission are among the famous ones.
Significant Incidents :
Apart from the temples and monuments, there is much more to Annigeri. It is the place where a biography of the Kannada poet Pampa was written by Benjamin Loirice in 1882. Adi Purana, written by S. Narasimhachar , came into light in the year 1900. Pampa Foundation, a building dedicated to a poet was set up by the government of Karnataka here.
Amongst lodges that interest tourists are Vyshali and Brindavan. A rest house by PWD can also be booked by you.
Annigeri can be chosen as the destination for spending your vacation . Its numerous temples and churches will keep you engaged most of the time.