Aihole – A place of historical Significance
Aihole is located in Bagalkot district, Karnataka. The place is known for its stone temples and known for its chalukyan architecture. It is a popular tourist spot in north Karnataka .Aihole lies towards the east of pattadakal and has the potential to be included as a UNESCO world heritage site. The place was formerly known as ayyavoe or aryapura according to the inscriptions found .Aihole was established as the first capital of Chalukya kings, The place was known as a cradle of temple architecture. Inscriptions written in Sanskrit and old kannada script can be found inside the meguti temple. According to mythology, Aihole is the place where parashurama washed his axe after killing the kshatriyas. The first phase of construction of the temple building dates back to the 6th century and the second phase to the 12th century.
The early Chalukyas inherited architectural styles largely from their neighbours. The style of using curved towers decorated with blind arches came from north India. Plastered walls with panel insert was a south Indian style adopted. Also the Deccan style was used in the balcony seating with sloping roofs and angled eaves. The architectural styles adopted from neighbourhood can be seen largely in the temple constructions. Aihole has more than 70 temples. The artisans have worked on the rocks to create the earliest rock-cut shrines. Some of the important temples found here includes : Hucchappayya Math Complex, Kunti temples complex, Charantimath complex, Tryambakesvara group, Gauri temple, Jaina temples in the village, Rock-cut Jain Basadi, Ramlingesvara Temple Complex, Galaganatha Temple Complex, Durga temple complex, Lad Khan Temple, Ambigera Gudi complex, Mallikarjuna temple complex, Chikki temple, Rachi temple, Eniyar temples complex, Hucchimalli temple complex,Ravanaphadi rock-cut temple, Jain temple and Meguti temple.
How to reach :
Aihole is well connected by road to pattadakkal, which is 17 kms from aihole, Badami is 44 kms away and bangalore is 490 kms. Tourists can use the belgaum city via bagalkot route to reach aihole. The nearest railhead is bagalkot and the nearest airport is belgaum which is 189 kms away.