Thursday, April 28, 2016

Royal Enclosure, Champaner

The historical place Champaner of Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park has several  structures of architectural importance. One such structure is Royal Enclosure.

It is fortified area with high defensive stone walls, towers and gates. Built by Mehmud Begda in the 14th century, it formed a rectangle area measuring 1480 meters by 280 meters.

The enclosure can be entered through Halol Gate followed by Badhra Gate.

Within these walls there were  palaces, gardens, royal mosque and administrative buildings.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Images of India - 161

A glimpse of India in black and white. 

A view of IT Park at Cochin

Monday, April 25, 2016

Poetry in Stone - 31

This is thirty first in the series on the rich cultural heritage of temples in India. The ancient temples of India are richly carved and they behold ones attention for their craftsmanship.

In the Chennakesava Temple of Belur there are several beautiful sculptures created in 1175 A.D. Here one can see beautiful carving of Lord Vishnu in a reclining position over the Adi Sesha with Laksmi near the feet on the external wall of the temple. This pose is known as Vishnu Anathashayanam.

A beautiful sculpture in black stone at 12th century Airavateswarar Temple of Darasuram.

A sculpture of Lord Hanuman on the external wall of 13th century Lakshmi Narasimha Temple at Bhadravati. Not so elaborate carving of Vishnu Anathashayanam on a pillar at 
Panchalingeshwara Temple in Barkur. A simple carving of 2 people on a animal at Mallikarjuna Temple, Basaralu.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Crested Lark at Lothal

During the tour of Gujarat state when going around archaeological remains of Lothal we came across many birds. One such bird is Crested Lark.

Is is a small bird measuring around 190 mm but larger than other birds of the same species. They are distinguished from other birds of the species by quite large crest on the head. The crest is brownish, grayish or grey buffy-tinged; with brownish streaks broader and darker on the crest. The upper tail is without streaks, often with fine buffy tinge. 

The breast is off-white with large brown streaks. The belly and under tail are white. The flanks are pale streaked. The upper wing coverts are brownish with broad pale edges. 

It primarily feeds on grains and seeds, such as oats, wheat and barley. They also feed on beetles.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Tirupati the Lord of the Sacred Hill

Tirupati is a city known for its temple. The name of the place is derived from the word Tripathi meaning "Lord of the Sacred Hill". It also translates into "Sacred Abode of Vishnu"

The Tirumala Hills here is the second oldest rock mountains in the world. Places of interest here are:
  • Lord Venkateshawara Temple
  • Govindarajaswamy Temple
  • Silathoranam
  • Padmavati Temple

Images of India - 160

A glimpse of heritage monument of India in black and white. Check other posts that will give you more details about this monument.

A canon in front of Junagadh Fort Palace in Bikaner

Monday, April 18, 2016

Odegal Basti, Shravanbelgola

Odegal Basti on Indragiri Hill at Shravanbelgola is one of the very unique structures. Built in 14th century this shrine stands on a lofty terrace with a high flight of steps leading up to it. As stone props are used for strengthening the basement walls the shrine has been called by the name "Odegal Basti".

It is a fine granite structure of the Hoysala period. The temple has a plain exterior. It is the only triple shrine temple in this area that has three sanctum facing different directions with common hall between them.

In the 3 sanctums are beautiful images of Tirthankara carved in schist. The main cell contains a fine figure of Adinatha flanked by male chamara bearers, the left cell has a figure of Neminatha and the right a figure of Shantinatha. 

The veranda has beautifully shaped pillars. Another view of the Basti.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Images of India - 159

A glimpse of India in black and white. Other posts provide more details on the place.

In front of Nandi Shrine at  Hoysaleswara Temple at Halebid

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Girijamba Shrine, Nandi

The Bhoganandishwara Temple Complex at Nandi built in 9th century has several shrines. One of the shrine is Girijamba shrine.  This is on your right as soon as enter the complex.

The shrine has a small veranda in the front with beautifully carved pillars.

The entrance to the shrine has beautiful  carvings on the either side. On the left side of the entrance there is lovely carving of Lord Ganesh.

Around the shrine on the external wall there a beautiful carving of several deities in different poses.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Srikanteshwara Temple, Nanjangud

Srikanteshwara Temple at Nanjangud on the banks of river Kapila is an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple was intially built by Chola Kings in the 11th – 12th century. Later Hoysala and the Vijayanagara dynasty kings further developed it. The temple was developed on a full scale during the reign of Krishna Raja Wodeyar.

This big temple and measures 385 feet by 160 feet in dimension. The outer walls of the temple are about 12 feet high. The beautifully carved huge tower on top of main entrance has seven stages. On top of it there are seven gold plated Kalasas flanked by two horns.

The interiors of temple is beautifully carved with several scupltures of dieties Shiva, Subramanya, Parvati, Chandikeshvara and Ganapathi. The pillars are carved with beautiful sculptures.

Even on the exterior walls of the temple there are beautiful sculptures.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Purple Swamphen at Karanji Lake, Mysore

Karanji Lake at Mysore is a beautiful lake spread over a area of 55 hectares with many trees all around even in the lake.  

It is one of the favorite haunts of many birds and we spotted one such bird the Purple Swamphen.

These birds have bright plumage and red bill and a large frontal shield. They have red eyes.

They prefer wet areas such as swamps, lake edges and damp pastures. They are often seen in pairs and larger communities. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Mahadeva Temple, Aluva

The Mahadeva Temple at Aluva on the sand banks of Periyar river. 

The unique feature of this temple is that the Shivalinga is not enshrined within the walls of temple. The temple has no walls at all i.e., it is a open temple. 

As per legend the Shivalinga is installed by Lord Parasurama and worshiped by Lord Sri Rama. 

The Shiva Linga faces east and there is a Nandi in-front of the temple. During the rainy season most of the temple is submerged in river.

Images of India - 158

Had taken this shots while flying over Indian sky.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Kurudumale, the Meeting Hill

Kurudumale is a small village near Mulbagal town. This offbeat place can be reached while traveling from Bangalore to Kolar. It was originally known by the name Koodumalai meaning 'Meeting Hill'. It is called so because it was believed to be meeting place of Gods for the purpose of recreation. 

It is known for the ancient temples:

Other place close by is Mulubagal famous for Anjaneya Temple.

Another place close by Ramalingeshwar Temple Complex at Avani.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Purple-rumped Sunbird at Bangalore

Hebbal Lake in north Bangalore is favorite spot for joggers, photography enthusiasts and bird watchers. If one goes here early in the morning they can spot various small  birds flying around from one tree to another. One such beautiful bird is Purple-rumped Sunbird

It is a tiny bird with dark maroon upper-side with a blue-green crown. The underparts are whitish with dark throat, maroon breast band and purple/violet patch in the throat.

It has a medium-length thin down-curved bills. The female species has a white throat and yellowish breast. The upper-side is olive or brownish. 

They are endemic to the Indian Subcontinent. They mainly feed on nectar but sometimes take insects.