Belur Temple (Chennakesava Temple)

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belur temple Chennakesava Temple

Belur Temple (Chennakesava Temple)

Belur, which was once the capital of the Hoysala Empire, is home to the Chennakesava Temple Complex (Belur Temple Complex).

Chennakesava Temple Complex

The main temple in this complex is dedicated to Lord Chennakeshava (literally translates to ‘handsome Vishnu’). This temple along with the Hoysaleswara temple in Halebidu and the Jain monuments in Sravanabelagola have been proposed as UNESCO world heritage sites.

belur temple
Dravidian style Rayagopuram

Chennakesava Temple, Belur (Karnataka)
Chennakesava Temple

This temple, one of the finest examples of Hoysala architecture, was built by king Vishnuvardhana in commemoration of his victory over the Cholas in 1117 AD.

belur temple chennakesava temple complex
Lion sculpture

The facade of the temple is full of intricate sculptures and friezes.

belur temple chennakesava temple complex
Temple facade

belur temple chennakesava temple complex
The first Hoysala king fighting with a lion

It took 103 years to complete and Vishnuvardhana’s grandson Veera Ballala II completed the task.

belur temple
Sculpture, Temple facade

chennakesava temple complex
Lord Shiva killing Gajasura (elephant demon)

The 4 layer frieze on the Facade consists of Elephants (Strength), Lions (Power), Horses (Speed), and Flowers (Beauty).

chennakesava temple complex
4 layer frieze

The lowermost frieze panel around the temple has intricately carved marching elephants. Each elephant is unique in its form.

belur temple
Elephant Frieze

chennakesava temple complex
View of the Gopuram and the complex from the Mandapam

belur temple
Inside the temple

chennakesava temple complex
Ceiling, central dome

The central section has intricately carved sculptures.

belur temple
Sculpture on the central pillar

belur temple
Lord Vishnu

chennakesava temple complex

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