(Last Updated on : 24-11-2014)
Ruled from 6th to 8th century AD by the early Chalukyas, Badami in the state of Karnataka was their capital. Its ancient name was Vatapi, Vatapiadhistana and Vadavi. Today, in the successive century, Badami is a place of unique tourist destination. The place is beautifully decorated with excavated rock caves of Brahmanical, Buddhist and Jaina affinity, massive sculptures, and structural temples of Dravida Vimana type.
Near the famous Pallava Narasimhavarmman's inscription in the northern hill, the Archaeological Museum was established. It was set up with an intention to store explored materials, sculptures, inscriptions, pre-historic stone implements, hero stones, etc. Later in 1982, it was transformed to a full-fledged museum.
The museum mainly comprises of four galleries, an open gallery in the veranda and an open-air gallery in the front. There are various sculptures of Shiva in different forms, Ganapati, forms of Vishnu, panel narrating Bhagavata scenes, Lajjagauri, etc. Apart from these, there is a scaled model of a nearby pre-historic rock shelter, the Shidlaphadi Cave, with various stone artifacts, pre-historic art and their activities. Objects that have been displayed in the open veranda and the open-air gallery include hero stones, inscriptions, carved architectural members and pair of impressive dwarapalaka figures on pedestals. Epigraphy and architecture have been organized in a new gallery.
The most interesting pieces include Lajja Gouri, Makara Torana, narrative panel depicting Bhagavata, animal figurines like lion, elephants, Kalarimurthy, Tripurantaka Siva and Bhairavi.
The museum is kept open from 10am to 5pm everyday except Fridays. It charges an entrance fee of Rs 2 per head. Children up to the age of 15 are free to enter.