Destinations Magazine

Photo Essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a Hidden Architectural Gem

By Rashmi Gopal Rao

Karnataka is home to several ancient and Hoysala temples that are well known for their architectural splendour and ornate sculptures.  But the very mention of Hoysala temples conjures images of the spectacular monuments in Belur and Halebid.  While the temples mentioned therein are examples of architectural brilliance, Karnataka has several other temples built by the Hoysala dynasty that are probably not so well known or “touristy”.  The Brahmeshvara temple in Kikkeri in Mandya district of the state is one such hidden gem.

Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gemBrahmeshvara temple in Kikkeri

Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem

The temple is located about 11 km from K R Pete.

Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem

Entrance to Brahmeshvara temple at KikkeriDedicated to Lord Shiva who is present in the form of a Linga, the temple faces the eastern direction and hosts the holy bull aka “Nandi” at the entrance.   The bull is intricately carved and the attention to detail is just awe inspiring.

Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem
Holy bull at the entrance of Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri
Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem
Carvings on the holy bull

The “garbha griha” or sanctum sanctorum has an elaborately carved ceiling along with pillars and the characteristic “Mandakini” which is a lady in a dancing position.

Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem
Pillars in the interior of the temple
Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem
Carvings on the interior panels

The temple’s exterior facade that hosts some of the most elaborate sculptures and carvings is typical of Hoysala architecture.  There are images of Gods, Goddesses and animals that represent superior craftsmanship, maling the stone work on the exterior walls truly magnificent.

Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem
Carvings on the external walls

Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem

Photo essay: Brahmeshvara Temple, Kikkeri: a hidden architectural gem

Kikkeri lies aboout 160 km from Bangalore and is easily accessible by road.  Click here and here to read about other famous temples in Karnataka.


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