While actually located in Andhra Pradesh, the historic hamlet of Lepakshi is easily accessible from Bengaluru. Famous for its Veerbhadra Temple; the highlight of the place is the 9m long monolithic Nandi at the town’s entrance. What’s interesting is you can spot the temple’s Naga-lingam (a phallic representation of Shiva) crowned with a seven-headed cobra from a distance. Also, watch out for the stunning ceiling frescoes adorning the Natyamandapa (Dance Hall).
Lepakshi is a part of the Anantpur District, and about 120km from Bangalore in Karnataka and 15km from the town of Hindpur. Although small, the town has a lot of historical and religious significance for the locals. The place is famous in the whole of South India for its three temples that are dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu and Lord Virbhadra. Another famous attraction here is a small hillock that is shaped like the back of a tortoise. This hill is named Kurma Saila and located nearby are temples of Srirama, Raghunatha, Veerbhadra, Papanatheswara and Durga.
The temples display the exquisite craftsmanship that the Vishwakarma Brahmins were capable of. The sculptors were specifically employed for carving out the hard walls of the temples. While famous Vishwakarma sculptor Amarashilpi Janakachari helped prepare the design and layout of the temples, sculptors including Kakoju and Moroju helped prepare the carvings on the temple walls. You will find various scenes depicted on the walls from Hindu mythological books like Ramayana and Mahabharata. Interestingly, the carvings on the walls have inspired the designs on the famous Lepakshi sarees. The temples of the region are famous for their hanging pillar, rock chain, Durga Paadam, Vastu Purush, a racing lady and many more.
The weather in Lepakshi remains pleasant for most part of the year, except for in summers when it can become exceedingly hot. The best mode of transportation to reach Lepakshi is road since there is no airport or railway station in the town. A town of architecture and colours, Lepakshi is truly a gem for travellers and backpackers to experience and explore.