We had never planned on visiting Badami. In fact we were in Hampi and while returning, we decided to give Badami a quick look. But Badami turned out to better our expectations.
The capital of the 6th Century Chalukya Dynasty, Badami is famous for its rock cut temples in the cliffs of red sandstone that surrounds the Agastya Lake. There are evidences of megalithic dolmens, suggesting Badami was the site of a prehistoric human settlement.
According to the Puranas, it is here at Agastya Muni killed the wicked demon Vatapi. According to the Ramayana, Agastya Muni and Lopamudra are supposed to have lived in the southern slope of the Vindhyas, in the forests of Dandaka.
It is said that the Chalukya city of Badami was founded around 540 AD by King Pulakeshin. The Cave Temples of Badami were made between 6th and 8th Century AD. These are a mix of Hind, Jain and possibly Buddhist temples. Cave 3 has a carving which reads that it was created on Saka 500 or 578/579 AD/CE.
There are a total of 4 main caves. Cave 1, dedicated to Shiva and Parvati are the nearest to the ground level, the first Cave that you encounter as you start entering the complex. Cave 2 is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Cave 3 is also dedicated to Vishnu and is the earliest dated Hindu Temple in the Deccan region. Cave 4 is dedicated to the Jain Tirthankaras. Apart from these main caves, Badami has many other caves and medieval era temples. in 2013, another cave was disovered which has 27 rock carvings, only 500 meters from the main numbered caves.
Don’t miss these gorgeous caves and their amazing carvings if you are in the vicinity.
Badami requires more than a day’s stay to explore well. There are treks and many not-very well known monuments here to explore.
Where to stay in Badami : There aren’t too many inspiring options of hotels to stay in Badami. The Karnataka State Tourism Development Corp has a nice hotel called Maurya Chaukya Badami. Inside the town there is the Clark’s Inn. Then there is something called The Heritage Resort. Looks ok, but we haven’t stayed at any of these places.
10 thoughts on “Badami : The Marvelous Cave Temple Art”
Magnificent. The Red Sandstone seems to add additional magic to the wonderful sculpture there.
I always enjoy your exploration of India’s lesser known ancient sites. The good thing is now the e-visa application for Indonesians who wish to visit India is free of charge and we’re able to travel across the country for 60 days. I know one day I’ll return to India, but for now I’m happy enough to travel vicariously through your posts.
Such wonderful write up with all details. Even I have a plan to visit Hampi but now after reading this I even include Badami as well.
Hi Pamela! Badami, in my view, is a must visitl. I am sad we couldn’t do Aihole and Pattadakal in this trip…
But adami is absolutely worth it.
This is beautiful! I missed Badami. I have been to Hampi, but couldn’t go to Badami. Looking at your pictures, I think I shouldn’t have missed it.
yeah,. and it’s not that far from Hampi. We would have missed it too, but we decided to go and see it anyway, and loved it.
I have visited Badami and Pattadkal.
Aren’t they gorgeous?
Wow. Incredible photos. Thank You sharing them. Have a good day!
I visited the badami caves years ago while on a work trip. The sheer size and beauty of the sculptures is stunning. You have captured the beauty very well.