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Keshava Temple, Somnathpur

Ruin · Hidden Gem · Historic Site
The Chennakesava Temple, also referred to as Chennakeshava Temple and Keshava Temple, is a Vaishnava Hindu temple on the banks of River Kaveri at Somanathapura, Karnataka, India. The temple was consecrated in 1258 CE by Somanatha Dandanayaka, a general of the Hoysala King Narasimha III. It is located 38 kilometres (24 mi) east of Mysuru city.
The ornate temple is a model illustration of the Hoysala architecture. The temple is enclosed in a courtyard with a pillared corridor of small shrines (damaged). The main temple in the center is on a high star-shaped platform with three symmetrical sanctums (garbha-griha), set in a square matrix (89' x 89') oriented along the east–west and north–south axes. The western sanctum was for a statue of Kesava (missing), the northern sanctum of Janardhana and the southern sanctum of Venugopala, all forms of Vishnu. The sanctums share a common community hall (sabha-mandapa) with many pillars. The outer walls, the inner walls, the pillars and the ceiling of the temple are intricately carved with theological iconography of Hinduism and display extensive friezes of Hindu texts such as the Ramayana (southern section), the Mahabharata (northern section) and the Bhagavata Purana (western section of the main temple).
The Chennakesava temple, states George Michell, represents the climax of the development in Hoysala temple style and yet is also unique in many ways.
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30 reviews
  • Marvellous architecture and intricate sand stone carvings. About 30 km from Mysore. Go to Bannur from Mysore and then to Somnathpura.  more »
  • Visited the temple on the way to mysore after seeing the Shivasamudra waterfall.Amazing Architecture intricate carvings. How much painstakeing work would have gone into it.The stone pillars look as...  more »
  • Beautiful temple. Very well preserved. It is worth taking the guide as there is a story about every single ornament  more »
  • Excellent place to visit. You can soak in the history for a long time here. Very well maintained as well. Kudos to the maintenance team. Note- the timing on Google Maps is listed incorrectly. It is open till 30 minutes before sunset. I have suggested an edit but not sure if it will get accepted. So just be aware of the timings.
  • One of the most important place to visit in Karnataka which impressed me a lot with its special appearance. Never miss to watch this temple. Great architecture by great people.the way the statues are designed are Impeccable..
  • Simply beautiful. Most of the sculptures are well preserved and the stone work on the temple walls are amazing. There are hundreds of sculptures of Vishnu in various avatars, daily activities of the kingdom and various other stories. Easily accessible through road, well maintained with parking facilities (₹30 for car in Sept 2019).
  • What a wonderful architecture. Enjoyed our short trip to there from Bangalore with family. I recommend this place to others to make a visit and see the level of architecture.
  • Lovely place. It shows the skills of our old people. Excellent art work. Not much crowded. Shows architecture skills of old ancient people.

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