Chandramouleshwara Temple – A Shiva Temple in Hubli
Directions to Chandramouleshwara Temple in Hubli
The Chandramouleshwara Temple in Hubli is a 900-year-old temple dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva.
The temple was built by the Western Chalukya dynasty (Badami Chalukyas) during the 11th and 12th centuries and has magnificent sculptures that will charm any visitor who enjoys seeing old artefacts preserved, outlasting time itself!
The temple is a beautiful site, situated close to the serene Unkal Lake.
The temple features intricate carvings and sculptures and is a must-visit for anyone interested in Hindu architecture.
Chandramouleshwara Temple is also one of the oldest temples in Karnataka and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Chandramouleshwara Temple is open from sunrise to sunset and admission is free.
Unfortunately, the temple is not wheelchair accessible.
I had the opportunity to visit the temple recently and want to share my story with some pictures.
The temple was commissioned by King Someshwara I and was completed in just one night! (There is an interesting story behind this.)
The temple is built on a raised place and is decorated with carvings of gods and goddesses. The temple is also home to a large Nandi statue.
History of Chandramouleshwara Temple
The Chalukyas were an influential dynasty from the 11th and 12th centuries. They are known for their lavish architecture, which they used as a means of displaying power to enemies that threatened them.
For this reason alone it’s no surprise when we learn about the Chandramouleshwara Temple built overnight – but because construction was completed so quickly without any sort of finishing touches or decorating features inside; what remains today is only half complete!
It’s said that the workers were so fast in their construction that they didn’t even have time to finish the work entirely. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva and is a popular tourist attraction in Hubli.
Despite its unfinished state (or semi-ruined state), the temple is still an impressive sight to behold. I couldn’t help but feel impressed by its grandeur. As I walked around, taking in all the sights and sounds, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of peace and tranquillity wash over me.
Visitors can explore the intricate carvings on the walls and pillars, as well as the stunning stone sculpture of Shiva that is located at the front of the temple.
As I walk up to the temple, I can’t help but admire the two Shivalingas and the two imposing Nandi statues.
My first impression of the Shiva temple
As I entered the temple, I was in awe of the marvellous sculptures that adorned the walls. Each sculpture seemed to tell a story, and I couldn’t help but admire the craftsmanship of the artists. The temple had an air of history about it, and I felt lucky to be able to witness it firsthand.
The carvings on the walls are stunning. I make my way to the inner sanctum and offer my prayers to Lord Shiva.
I wandered around, taking pictures of all the beauty of the temple. Suddenly, I heard a voice behind me. “This is an ancient and sacred place,” it said. “You can only click from your phone inside the temple.”
I turned around to see a man dressed in traditional Indian clothing. He looked like he belonged there, and I quickly nodded in agreement. “Of course,” I said. I turned off my DSLR and took a few pictures using my phone.
The man continued. “This temple is over 1,000 years old, and it’s important that we protect it.” I nodded again, understanding the importance of preserving this ancient site. “I would never want to do anything to harm it. Thank you for reminding me,” I said.
The man smiled and nodded, before turning away to continue his usual duties. I couldn’t help but admire the temple even more after speaking with the man. It was clear that he cared about it deeply and wanted to protect it for future generations.
As I look closer, I notice that not all of the carvings are finished. In fact, many of them are still in progress, with half-finished designs and rough lines. It’s fascinating to see the process in action, how an idea is gradually carved into reality.
Some say, the temple was attacked by a few rulers in the past and that’s the reason for unfinished carvings. I’m not sure if that’s true or not, but it’s an interesting theory.
The temple is definitely worth a visit for any history lover or architecture enthusiast. It’s a fascinating glimpse into the past, and I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to see it.
The Holy 4-Faced Shiva Lingam
As the sun began to set, the devotees started making their way out of Chandramouleshwara temple. Among them was a young couple, who couldn’t take their eyes off the four-faced Shiva linga – Chaturmugha Linga (Chatur-Mukha Lingam)
“It’s so beautiful,” the woman whispered, as her husband nodded in agreement.
They had heard about the Chaturmugha Linga from friends and were excited to see it for themselves. They spent a few minutes gazing at the divine statue before making their way out of the temple.
I make my way back outside as well, feeling inspired by the temple and all it stands for. It’s a beautiful reminder of the rich history of India, and I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to visit it.
I clicked a few random pictures on my way out, determined to capture the beauty of the temple in its entirety.
Chandramouleshwara Temple cries for attention
The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) had been entrusted with the responsibility of protecting this 900-year-old temple. But, much to the dismay of everyone involved, the agency had failed to provide even the most basic security or facilities to the ancient temple.
Not only that but the surrounding area was also being encroached by people who were blatantly violating the law that barred construction works in a radius of 200 meters from the temple.
It is a real shame because this beautiful piece of architecture is slowly crumbling due to neglect. And it seemed like no one cared. The politicians seem really busy making grand speeches about preserving our cultural heritage. Meanwhile, everyday life carries on as usual for everyone except for this ancient temple.
It’s a crying shame because this temple has so much potential. It could be a major tourist attraction for Hubli-Dharwad, but instead, it’s been relegated to the background.
I could not find a “SINGLE” signboard of directions that mentions this great temple. Sad!
After reaching the temple area as directed by Google maps (even Google got confused) I had to get down from my car to inquire about the exact location with the locals around, who guided me to the temple.
Hopefully, things will change in the future and this beautiful temple will get all the attention it deserves. Till then, we can only hope and pray.
Around Chandramouleshwara Temple
There are a few more temples that are within walkable distance from Chandramouleshwara temple. If you are in the area, make sure to check them out too.
If you’re ever in Hubli, be sure to visit the Chandramouleshwara Temple – it’s definitely one of the city’s most unique and fascinating landmarks!
Also, try to visit the nearby temples, they are worth a visit.
Furthermore, here are the most popular places that are a must-visit in Hubli, just in case you are looking to find other places, apart from temples.
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