Looking for day trips from Bangalore ? Look no further then LEPAKSHI
We are a sucker for road trips and every time we get an opportunity to escape, we escape, no questions asked. At times, we plan to go somewhere and end up somewhere else. This trip was one such impromptu one.
It was a long weekend and my Facebook timeline was filled with check-ins by my friends in all different locations and countries possible. My itchy soul would not see any more of it, so we decided to go to Nandi hills to watch the sunrise and Grover Zampa vineyard. But nothing like that happened, we watched our favorite TV series and slept off to wake up at 9:00 AM the next morning.
As soon as we woke up, we knew we could not do anything as planned. Phew, after all, the planning the entire day looked wasted. But a traveler always has a backup plan 😉 We started brainstorming about places in and around Bangalore and zeroed down on Lepakshi.
The distance from Bangalore to Lepakshi is just 120 km. Voila !!!
We started our journey around 10:30 AM from Whitefield and by 12:30 PM we were standing in front of the temple.
Lepakshi is a small village in Mandal in the Anantapur District of Andhra. Legend has it that during the age of Ramayan, Jattayu was badly injured while saving Sita from Ravana. Wounded it fell at this place and Lord Ram healed the bird and said – Le Pakshi in the local language that translates to “Rise Bird”.
The temple has been built by brothers Viranna and Virupanna. The brothers used the king’s treasure while he was away fighting a war. When the King returned he saw that all the treasure was used up to build the temple. He got furious and ordered the two brothers to be punished by having their eyes gorged out. The temple is exemplary of the finest architectural style reflecting the Vijayanagar architectural style.
A huge monolithic Nandi structure made out of single granite is another highlight, but urbanization around the temple makes it a little disconnected from the main temple.
As we entered the temple, in front of us were long corridors flanked by vertical pillars each one with unique exquisite carving depicting stories of wars, marriage, and fascinating tales of the bygone era.
The sun rays peeping from the vertical pillars added a unique charm to the place and the huge courtyard bathed in the midday sun looked stunning and mesmerizing.
Unlike major tourist destinations in Southern India which are swamped with people, we could hardly find any tourists apart from a bunch of college kids with a guide.
The ceiling of the main temple is filled with beautiful murals and the highlight is the pier or open-air Kalyan Mantapa which is believed to be the place where Lord Shiva and Parvati were married.
There is a total of 70 pillars and one out of them is the hanging pillar which is believed to support the entire structure of the temple. We could find few curious students busy doing the paper test i.e. passing a paper under the pillar so that it slides from the base. 🙂
( Dress – FabAlley )
Another highlight of the temple was the five-headed serpent providing shade to the Shiva linga and a huge stone with the carving of bathing of Shiva linga by Sri, Kala ( Serpent King), and Hasthi ( Elephant).
The only temple in the world where you can find a hanging pillar.
The monolithic Nandi statue is the largest monolithic statue in India. It is 4.5m high and 8.23m long.
The temple was never completed and the brothers who built it were punished with their eyes being gorged out.
Hire a local guide to learn more about the temple.
Don’t forget to grab something to eat from your home.There are very few restaurants around the temple apart from some shops selling cold drinks, water, and ice cream.
You can spend 1-2 hours in the temple depending on your interest.
You can club Lepakshi with Nandi Hills and Grover Zampa vineyard.
Train: Nearest Railway Station : Hindupur
Buses : Hindupur or Anantpur are nearest villages from where you can hire an auto rickshaw to reach the temple
Flight : Bangalore International Airport
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Perfect day trip from Bangalore.