(Last Updated on : 02/03/2015)
The temples of Shimoga district in Karnataka are famous in south India for their traditional style of architecture. Shimoga District is located centrally in Karnataka. 'Shimoga' means 'face of Shiva' and most of the temples of Shimoga district are dedicated to Lord Shiva. The district is blessed with nature's bounty, landscapes dotted with waterfalls, swaying palms, and lush paddy fields.
Major rivers such as Tunga, Bhadra, and Varada run through Shimoga thus making it a sacred land. Apart from the popular temples of Shimoga district, the tourist attractions are Jog Falls, Vanake-Abbey Falls, Achakanya Falls, Hidlamane Falls, Tunga Dam, B R P Dam, Kodachadri and many other spots. Aghoreshwara Temple is one of the most famous temples of Shimoga district. This is a symmetrical temple without any complicated decoration. This temple in Ikkeri is located in a field at a distance of 3 km from Sagar town. The presiding shrine deifies Lord Shiva. There is also an Amman shrine and a beautiful Nandi shrine inside the sanctum. The temple architecture is a blend of Hoysala and Dravida style. The entire temple along with Mukha mandapa and shrine is constructed of hard black basalt stone. The six-pillared mandapa, the entrance to the shrine is of the Vijayanagar style, and the sculptures on the outside entrance belong to the Hoysala style.
Rameshwara Temple is located at Keladi in Shimoga District of Karnataka. It is one of the well-known temples of Shimoga district that was built by Chaudappa Nayaka, the founder of the Keladi kingdom. Traits of Hoysala and Dravidian style of architecture can be witnessed in the construction of the temple. Veerbhadreshvara temple and Parvati temple are the two important temples of Shimoga district that stands in the vicinity of this shrine. Keladi Museum is also a tourist spot located nearby. Sangameshwar Temple is an ancient temple sited at Koodali, about 17 km from Shimoga. The place is also distinguished as the merging point of Tunga River and Bhadra River. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple enshrines the idol of Lord Narasimha (Chintamani Narasimha) that was installed by the legendary character Prahlad. This temple is popularly known as Narasimha Kshetra. Apart from the presiding deity, the temple also houses the images of Sri Brahmeshwar, Shankaracharya, Devi Sharada and Goddess Parvati. Harihar Temple is the nearby attraction.
Rameshwara Temple is located on the banks of Tunga River and is one of the major temples of Shimoga district, sited at Thrithahalli. According to myths, Sage Parashuram installed the idol or the lingam of Lord Rameshwara in this temple. He worshipped this idol to remove the curse of having killed his mother. Associated with the Pandavas, the temple houses the idols of Lord Ram, Lakshman and Devi Sita. Another attraction is the image of Lord Narasimha. Bheemannaghatta Mutt, an ancient Madhwa mutt, is the nearby attraction. Some other temples of Shimoga district are Aghoreshwara Temple, Rameshwar Temple ,Sangameshwar Temple, Kedareswara Temple and Rameshwara Temple.