Channakeshava Swamy Temple, Belur

Belur, Chikmagalur houses the famous Channakeshava Swamy Temple, an excellent archeological marvel. The stone carvings present inside and outside the temple walls makes us spell bound. The large area houses many temples, main among them are the Channakeshava Swamy Temple and Kappe-Channakeshava Swamy temples. Channakeshava Swamy is the main deity. There is no restriction on photography except taking photographs of main deity. Inside the temple premise Rs 20 will be charged as fees for search light for focusing on interior designs, it is waived for those opting for the guide service.
Entrance of Temple

Gopuram of temple looks like it is built recently compared to the temple inside. Kappe-Channakeshava Swamy temple is the blue print of actual Channakeshava Swamy temple built as reference. The main deity Channakeshava Swamy temple’s outside wall is surrounded by artistic stone carvings depicting instances of Mahabharatha and other prominent rituals of rulers.

inside temple premise

Sri Channakeshava Swamy Temple

Kappe-Channigaraya Swamy temple

 The stone carving of Elephant in different positions is present at the ground level surrounding the temple.

Elephant lining around the base of temple

The temple entrance door has the following stone carving on the top, the minute art looks so attractive and very difficult to understand without the help of guide. The stone carving involves Ugra Narasimha and the animals present on either sides have features of seven animals like trunk of Elephant, body of Lion etc., There are three doors to enter temple except at the back side.

carving present on top of entrance door

Similarly the temple is surrounded by the various stone carvings, carved and placed perfectly at an angle of almost 45 degrees. Popular Darpana Sundari stone carving placed down to roof in slanting position. A woman holding a mirror to see her face is so popular that many books on history of Belur have this as cover page. These stone carvings of Women in Belur are also popular as 'Belur Shilabalike'

Darpana Sundari, woman looking her face in mirror

Woman holding a bird in her hand, may be used for sending messages

Bhima shaking the tree


Woman going for walk with her kids. Kid on right side holding a pet with the help of chain!

carving of Vishnu

Servant giving flower to her queen

Arjuna pointing to Fish

Woman with Rudra Veena

Woman changing her ear rings

Man with drum, only carving of man

Woman trying to shoe away the monkey


Woman with drum and trying to change the string in one hand

Ugranarasimha, even the nails are carved finely


Inside the temple also the carvings are attracting and the roof standing on four pillars has the carving of Ugra Narasimha. The four corner pillars of roof has four stone carvings placed slant.

Ugranarasimha at the roof

Woman drying her hairs

Other carving includes the  Woman doing Bharata Natyam and Woman holding bird in her hand similar to the outside one

Pushkarani of Temple

All these carvings are believed to be made by Jakanacharya popularly known as Amarashilpi Jakanacharya as his carvings are immortal and second to none in the World.


  1. This is a very beautiful place. I have been here a couple of times but, still it amazes me!

    1. Dear Kusum Sanu,

      thanks for your comment... me too back from Belur with a feel to visit it again very soon!!!

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  3. Is there train connectivity to Belur from Bangalore. The blog increased my temptation to visit. Before returning to Chennai in August, I want to visit the wonderful stone carvings. As I cannot travel by bus or car, I travel by Train only.