Badami, formerly known as Vatapi, is a panchayat town in the Bagalkot District of Karnataka, India. Dramatically situated within a horseshoe of red sandstone cliffs, overlooking the green waters of a large lake, this historic town was the capital of the powerful early Chalukya kings, who ruled the Deccan during the 6th-7th centuries AD. These rulers also held sway at Pattadakal and Aihole. Among the rock-cut and structural monuments, the most richly decorated are the cave temples, which are carved into the cliff on the southern side. Of these, Cave 1 is dedicated to Shiva, Caves 2 and 3 to Vishnu, and Cave 4 to the Jain saints.
Badami Quick facts
Badami Geography and Climate
Geography : Badami is located at 15.92° N 75.68° E. It has an average elevation of 586 metres (1922 feet). It is located at the mouth of a ravine between two rocky hills and surrounds Agastya tirtha water reservoir on the three other sides. The total area of the town is 10.3 square kilometers. Climate : The temperature ranges from minimum 23 degrees to 45 degrees during summer and from 15 to 29 degrees in winter. The rainfall of the area is 50 centimeters. Best time to visit is between low humid season from November and March.
Best time to visit Badami
Best time to visit is between low humid season from November and March.
Badami, formerly known as Vatapi, is a panchayat town in the Bagalkot District of Karnataka, India. It was the regal capital of the Badami Chalukyas from 540 to 757 AD. It is famous for rock cut and other structural temples. It is located in a ravine at the foot of a rugged, red sandstone outcrop that surrounds Agastya lake.
Badami Near Getaways
Aihole: Two hours by road from Badami, Aihole used to be the regional capital of the Chalukyan kings between the 4th and 6th centuries AD. Anyone who is interested in temple architecture should head for Aihole. Pattadakal : Pattadakal, half an hour from Badami, is a little village now, but it was at one time the second most important city of the Chalukyas and the site of royal ceremonies like coronations. Pattadakal is also an important site for the study of the development of temple architecture in South. Don't miss the ornate Virupaksha Temple, the Mallikarjuna Temple and the Papanath Temple. If you're in Pattadakal towards the end of January, there's every chance you'll catch the annual classical dance festival held here.
It is located at the mouth of a ravine between two rocky hills and surrounds Agastya tirtha water reservoir on the three other sides. The total area of the town is 10.3 square kilometers. Badami is located 128 kms from Bijapur, 132 kms from Hubli, 46 kilometers from Aihole, another ancient town, and 500 kilometers from Bangalore, the state capital.
How to reach Badami by Road
Badami is well connected by road to all the major places in the south. Karnataka State Transport Corporation buses are available from Badami to Aihole, Bangalore, Bagalkot, Belgaum, Bijapur, Hubli and Pattadakal.
How to reach Badami by Rail
The trains that arrive at the small Badami station are all II-class passenger trains. There are railway services from Gadag from where you can get a connection to the bigger cities of Hospet and Hubli, and from Bijapur, which is on the Mumbai - Secuderabad - Chennai main line.
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How to reach Badami by Air
The nearest airport is Belgaum (150 kms)
Badami Festivals and culture
A number of annual temple festivals are held in towns near Badami. The annual temple festival, held at Banashankari, in the month of January-February is worth visiting; so are the Virupaksha Temple Car Festival and Mallikarjuna Temple Festival held in Pattadakal during March-April.
Badami is full of cave temples, gateways, forts, inscriptions and sculptures. People speak Kannada, Hindi and English. They wear traditional Indian cotton wear.
Badami Religious Places
Most of Badami's temples are situated on the imposing cliff that lies north of the manmade Agastya Lake. Cave Temples : Badami Cave Temples are group of 4 cave temples, carved out of a hill opposite Badami fort. Of the four, three are Brahmanical, while the fourth is Jain. Almost 2000 steps have to be climbed to reach the cave. These cave temples are just adjacent to the Bhutanatha tank where Nagamma, Siva and Vishnu shrines can also be seen. The first cave temple houses the Shiva manifested as the eighteen-armed Nataraja displaying remarkable 81 dance poses! The biggest and most enhancing is the third cave temple dedicated to Vishnu. Jambulinga Temple: This temple dating to AD 699, with triple shrines dedicated to Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva opening off a common mandapa. Bhutanatha Temple : It is scenically located at the end of the lake and was built in several phases. The core shrine, with a pyramidal tower, is from the 6th-7th centuries, while the porch, embellished with angled eaves and overlooking the water, dates to the 11th century. Several boulders lying around the temple have reliefs of a sleeping Vishnu, and a seated Jain figure. Lesser shrines nearby show the pyramidal layered towers that are typical of the late Chalukya style.
Badami Fort: Perched on hill top about 2 km. from the town, the fort encompasses large granary, an underground chamber which must have served as a treasury or private audience hall, double fortification walls and many other architectural marvels. The fort also houses a carved temple raised on top of the northern end of the hill. Malegitti Shivalaya - one of the oldest temples in the region is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is constructed out of stone on a summit of a rocky hill.
Badami Entertainment and Night Life
Badami Cave Temples are group of 4 cave temples, carved out of a hill opposite Badami fort. Of the four, three are Brahmanical, while the fourth is Jain. Almost 2000 steps have to be climbed to reach the cave.
Badami is a historic sight so rocking nightlife cannot be enjoyed here. If you want to enjoy the rocking nightlife then go to Bangalore city which is 500 kms from Badami.
Kidding around Badami
Go for a walk during evening times at Agastya Lake and enjoy the calm atmosphere which prevails there. Children can also have a gala time here.
Shopping options mostly revolve around handicrafts and rugs with prices being competitive.
Famous To Eat at Badami
Tourists can have food in any of the several hotels that dot the station road. Though Badami does not offer any special cuisine to the tourist, one can easily get regular Indian, Chinese and Fast food.
Badami Museum and Hill Stations
Archaeological Museum : The Archaeological Museum, on the north side of the lake, displays a magnificent triangular panel depicting Brahma surrounded by elaborate foliage; this piece must have once surmounted a free-standing portal. Other items of interest include a squatting female divinity with a lotus head, and two panels showing Shiva - spearing a demon and shooting arrows as he rides in a chariot. The archaeological museum of Badami has also Nandi, Lord Shiva's bull, at its entrance. This museum is closed on Fridays. It houses superb examples of local sculptures, including the remarkable Lajja-Gauri images of fertility cult, which flourished in the era.
Gardens and Parks at Badami
There are number of gardens in and around Bangalore. Lalbagh botanical garden in Bangalore(500km from Badami) is the loveliest garden.
Lake at Badami
Agastya Lake / Agastyamuni Lake : It is a huge lake with rocky hills surrounding it on three sides and sandstone temples at the feet of these hills. It is worth being there in the mornings and evenings of winter. A dip in the tranquil waters of this lake is said to cure leprosy as the water of the lake is said to have healing properties.
Best Seasons: October to March
Badami Travel Tips
Carry two sets of photocopies of important documents like Visa, Passport, ID card, Licence card etc,. without fail in case of loss or theft. Respect the tradition and culture of the region. Carry a route map.
Badami Tourist Offices
The main tourist office (Ph: 65414) is located within the KSTDC-run Hotel Maurya Chalukya.
Must do at Badami
A visit to Badami Fort, Cave Temples is a must at this place.