Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta
Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta is located in the Chamarajanagar district of the state of Karnataka, It is one of those remote yet accessible tourist destinations in Karnataka.The popular Himavad Gopalaswamy Temple is located on top of a hill. The place is known for its scenic beauty, religious significance and also as a mini adventurous picnic spot. This is the highest peak in the Bandipur National Park. Due to the heavy fog which predominates and covers the hills around the year and thus it got the name Himavad.
The original temple is around 700 years old and is generally attributed to the local king Chola Ballala of Terakanambi and dedicated to Gopalaswamy, which is one of the names of the Hindu God Krishna.This temple was built by the Hoysala King Ballala during AD 1315.The wodeyar dynasty of mysore were ardent devotees of lord venugopala and displayed keen interest in maintaining the temple.A flag pillar and a balipeedam is present in the inner porch.The parapet wall of the façade of the mukha mantapa contains the sculpture of dashavatara.There is a shikhara tower over the garbha griha.The gopuram of the temple is single-tiered and rests on the compound wall of the enclosure.Lord Gopalaswamy’s idol is flanked by his consorts, Rukmini and Satyabhama. Cows and cowherds are featured towards the right side of the panel.According to the legends,Sage agasthya performed intense penance and as a result lord Vishnu blessed this place and promised to reside here.The place is also known for its picturesque views of the surrounding hills, valleys and visitors may also see the spectacular sunrise and sunset from the top.Being a part of the Bandipur National Park, the hills are frequented by grazing wild elephants.
Numerous temple and tanks were built in this area by various kings who ruled the region. The region later fallen in the domains of Hoysalas, Vijayanagara and finally under the rulers of Mysore by 17th century. You can spot the borders of the three mordern states, kerala, karnataka and Tamilnadu. You can also spot the Nilgiri biosphere which is part of the Western Ghats. Being a part of the Bandipur National Park, the hills are frequented by grazing wild elephants. The place is also known for its picturesque views of the surrounding hills, valleys and visitors may also see the spectacular sunrise and sunset from the top.
How to reach :
Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta is approximately 220 km from Bangalore and 75 km from Mysore on the Mysore Ooty road, Gundlupete is 10 km away. The entry fee for bikes is Rs 25, for car/jeep its Rs 50, LMV is rs 100 and for buses its 200. Visitors are allowed from around 8:30am till 4pm.