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Shravanabelagola Belur Halebid Bastihalli
District Museum Hasanamba Shrine        

Shravanabelagola

 
Shravanabelagola Wedged between two stark rocky hills, this legendary pilgrim center and shrine of the Jains since early times is 149 kms from Bangalore, 52 kms from Hassan and 80 kms from Mysore. The monolithic statute of Lord Gomateshwara, a Jain saint and an object of worship for centuries, standing atop one of the hills (Indragiri hill), is 17 mtrs high and it is said to be one of the tallest and most graceful monolithic statues in the world.

Chamundaraya, a general and minister of the Ganga, King Rachamatta, created the symmetry in stone around 983 A.D. The Mahamastakabhisheka festival, an elaborate ritual, held here once every 12 years, the last one in 1993, attracts devotees from all over the world.

Priests climb up to pour pots of coconut water, turmeric paste and vermilion powder over the statue’s head. Just opposite is the smaller Chandragiri hill, where some Jain temples and tomb of Chandragupta Maurya, famous patron of Jainism can be seen.

Belur

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Belur, 40 km from Hassan, Belur was the erstwhile capital of Hoysala rulers 800 years ago and has beautiful temples and monuments built in ancient Hoysala architectural and sculptural style. Chennakesava temple of the 2nd century is an architectural wonder built on a star-shaped platform featuring bracket figures, intricate carvings on the stonewalls, the gravity pillar in the courtyard, exquisite panels and richly carved pillars, which are the masterpieces of craftsmanship. Another temple that is worth seeing here is Veeranarayana Temple with fine sculpted figures of various Hindu gods.
 

Halebid

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rai ranchodjiHalebid, 39 km from Hassan, Halebid was formerly known as Dwarasamudra, the ancient capital of the Hoysala Empire. The highlights of the city are the 12th century Hoysaleswara temple with friezes and sculptures depicting scenes from Hindu mythology and the Archaeological Museum displaying 12th-13th century sculptures, woodcarvings, idols, coins and inscriptions.

Bastihalli

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Bastihalli, Very near Halebid is Bastihalli featuring 12th century Jain settlements in a garden enclosure with glossy Blackstone pillars and carved ceilings.

Former Dwarasamudra in Hassan district is in Belur taluk and 27 kms away from Hassan and was the capital of Hoysala after Belur. The Hoysaleswara Temple, dating back to the 12th century, is astounding for its wealth of sculptural details. The walls of the temple are covered with an endless variety of gods and goddesses, animals, birds and dancing girls. Yet no two facets of the temple are the same. This magnificent temple - guarded by a Nandi Bull - was never completed, despite 86 years of labor. The Jain basadis nearby are equally rich in sculptural detail. Belur and Halebid are 222 and 216 kms from Bangalore, respectively. Channarayapatna, Ramanathpur, Gorur and Manjarabad are the other places of interest around Hassan.

 

District Museum

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rai ranchodjiDistrict Museum, The museum is a small one but has a decent collection of sculptures, paintings, weapons, coins and inscriptions. The District Museum at Hassan, established in 1977, preserves a great collection of archaeological antiquities. On display to the visitors are sculpture, both stone and bronze, inscriptions and coins. Also laid out are ancient paintings, arms and weapons. The museum is located in the Maharaja Park.

Sculptor Hassan Heshmat carved a niche for himself as a pioneer and founder of an individual school of sculpture. Greatly influenced by the local environment Heshmat was the first Egyptian sculptor who cast mini porcelain statues, which were widely admired at home and in foreign countries in 1960.

In 1984 the sculptor shifted his attention to small-size and monumental sculptures, and murals. Heshmat also distinguished himself by his impressive ceramics are the landmarks of squares and institutions in Egypt and abroad.

The museum is opened at the artist?s 1200- metre villa in Ain Shams district in Cairo. It was inaugurated in 1960 by the Minister of Culture Tharwat Okasha. Its exhibits consist of 235 sculptures and ceramics. The artist wisely opened a properly- equipped workshop on the first floor.

Eager to widen the cultural and artistic awareness of his young neighbours in the district Heshmat decided in 1998 to present the museum to the Ministry of Culture to expand its role in this respect.

 

Hasanamba Shrine

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rai ranchodjiHasanamba Shrine, The shrine with an anthill that represents Hasanamba, the presiding deity, is opened only once a year for a week, during the month of October and big fair or 'Jatra' is held during this time.

Other interesting sites nearby to the place of Hassan is the Hasanamba Shrine. It is a temple with the idol representing the deity of Hasanamba. The temple shrine is open to the visitors only for a week in a year in the month of October. The fair by the name of Jatra is held on the special occasion

Shopping: Some of the important shop where gift items, ancient antiques and other accessories are available are the Gruhavaibhava, Gulf Enterprises, Kannika Gift Centre and the Royal Novelties.