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Bidar, Karnataka

Been there recently?

Forming the northernmost tip of Karnataka, Bidar is the land that shot to fame when the Bahmani rulers shifted their capital from Gulbarga (Kalaburagi) to here during the 15th century. The forts, tombs and palaces showcase the rich Indo-Islamic architectural style. The Barid Shahis, who ascended the throne after the Bahmanis, added their own structures to the city’s landscape. This city, where the sun rises early, is also the place visited by Sikh Guru Nanak, and the beautiful Gurudwara stands as a testimony. Drive out of the city into the rural backyards and the beautiful temples dating back to the pre-12th century, built by the Kalyana Chalukya kings, welcome you to a wonderful world of art and innovation. If the Islamic structures tire you out, then head straight to Narasimha Zarani, the unique cave temple, and the Papanasha Shiva temple located in a forested shallow valley. Bidar is approximately 680 kilometres away from Bengaluru and approximately 140 kilometres away from Hyderabad. It is well connected by rail route, as many trains halt here. Bidar has an airport with limited service. Kalaburagi, 125 kilometres away and Hyderabad, are the other two nearest airports.

Nearby Places to See

Bidar Fort
Built during the 15th century on an already existing fort site, the fort, though partially ruined, still has many of its main sections intact. The entrance gates of the 2 levels of entry are beautifully built with its hidden balconies and steps. The Rangin Mahal with its colourful vistas, the takht mahal, the solah kambha masjid (16 pillar mosque), tarkash mahal, Gagan Mahal and many other structures are the main attraction.
Bidar Fort
Mahmud Gawan Madrasa
Mahmud Gawan Madrasa
Once an imposing building but now reduced to a small protected structure, this madrasa was a main learning centre established by Mahmud Gawan, a Persian who was the chief mentor and minister of Bahamani Sultans. Students from all over the world were studying in this madrasa, constructed in 1472.
It is a small village 5 kilometres away from Bidar. Lined up on both sides of the narrow road leading to the village are the tombs of Bahmani kings in various sizes and styles. One of these tombs was damaged by lightning. Nearby, on an elevated place, is the attractive tomb of Hazrat Khaleelulla, who was the adviser to the Bahmani sultans.
Narasimha Zarani
It is an ancient cave temple located within the city on an elevated place. Zarani means a small stream. Here a small stream that originates inside the cave slowly flows out and walking through it into the cave is the only way to reach the interior. Deep inside the cave on the walls, a natural design resembling Bhagawan Narasimha is worshipped.
Guru Nanak Jheera
Guru Nanak Jheera
The large and beautiful white-marbled Gurudwara is an important landmark of the city. Built in the memory of the visit of Guru Nanak, the Gurudwara is the most important and probably the only Sikh religious centre of Karnataka.
Papanasha Shiva Temple
Located in a shallow valley on the outskirts of the town, this ancient temple is surrounded by woods and is a soothing place that evokes divinity. Revered by the local people, the temple stands renovated.
Barid Shahi park
Kalleshwara temple, one of the iconic temples of Karnataka is in this small village, about 45 kilometres away from Bidar. Constructed during the 11th-12th century, the small temple is known for the excellent sculptures of shalabhanjikas (damsels) along with eight-shouldered Natya Ganapati (dancing Ganapati). Among the damsels the one standing in the pose of writing an inscription stands out. About 8 kilometres away from Jalasangvi is the town of Humnabad, which is famous for the attractive temple of Veerabhadra.
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