The Hoysala temples of Belur, Halebid and Somanathapura are very well-known and a large number of tourists visit them to view them. However, there are a few villages and towns that have equally impressive temples that seems to have been forgotten by a traveller.
One such temple is in Hosa Hollalu near KR Pet in Mandya district.
was built by the Hoysalas and it rivals its counterparts of Belur and Halebid in architecture and finesse. temple of Lakshminarayana
The temple was built in the 13th century and the intricate carvings in stone depict various images from the Mahabharata, Ramayana and other epics.
The temple is classified as a trikutachala structure or three-celled temple. Only the main cell has a sukhanasi and a tower.
Some of the images carved on the walls are about two and a half feet high. The images are carved in proportion and they are a sight to see.
The figures of Panduranga, Dakshinamurti and Mohini are particularly noteworthy. Groups of dancing women in different poses accompanied by musical instruments are carved on the pillars in the navaranga or inner hall.
The temple stands facing east on a six feet high platform with six pattikas and polyangled ground plan.It has three garbhagrihas and the main garbhagriha only has antarala or inner hall. A common navaranga at the centre has unified the three garbhagrihas or entrances.
The doorframe of the main garbhagriha is artistically decorated and it houses some beautiful sculptures as well as a grand sculpture of Nambi-Narayana holding Padma, Gada, Shankha and Chakra in his arms flanked by his wives Sridevi and Bhudevi.
The shikhara in the temple is attractive with minutely carved sculptures of Ganapathi and Mahashisinamardini.
One of the lathe turned pillars holding up the navaranga has a carving of a monkey sitting in a majestic posture, drinking tender coconut water. This is referred to by the locals as Hebbatu Anjeneya.
The carving seems to tell us the opposite of the proverb that says does a money know the value of a tender coconut.
The Platform of the temple is decorated with pattikas of elephants,
horses, creepers, crocodiles and swans. It is inscribed with Puranic tales.
The temple walls have been constructed at two levels so as to increase its height. The lower panel has sculptures of Chaluvanarayana, Brahma, Vishnu, Lakshminarayana, Keshava,
Chaturvimshati Vishnu, Paravasudeva, Yoga Narasimha, Lakshminarasimha, Indra, Rama-Lakshmana, Harihara, Bhairava, Bhairavi, Kali, Adishakti, Govardhanadhari
The upper panel is decorated with Pillars, shikharas and small devakoshtas as well as small sculptures. Here you can see carvings on Pattikas depicting the tales from Mahabharatha, Ramayana
The scene of Vasudeva standing in front of a donkey with
folded hands refers to the proverb “ To get one’s work done, one has to prostrate even before donkey”.
Similarly, behind the kakshasana to the left of the temple are beautiful dashavatara sculptures of Vishnu and some couples. On
the east, north and south walls outside the garbhagriha are two tier devakoshtas with beautiful but small shikaharas. The devakosthas are empty.
To the left of the Lakshminarayana temple, is a Devi templewhich has been constructed recently.
The Parshwanatha temple on the road to the fort’s main
entrance it faces east. The garbhagriha has sculptures of Parshwanatha, Ananthanatha and Padmavathi
Yakshi as well as Dharanendra-Padmavathi.
The idols are said to have been brought from the Bellibetta. Near the temple is a tall and beautiful sculpture of Bahubali. It has been damaged.
There is a ruined Harihara temple referred as Somanatha
temple in a record dated 1306 A.D. The three frieze hero stone in front of the Lingabasaveshwara temple in the outskirts of the village has makara torana decorations.
The arms of the soldier are decorated with significant armband
ornaments. The scene of a hero attaining the abode of Shiva is excellently carved.
Vadiraja Theerytha of Sode Matha has installed the six feet tall
idol of Hanumantha in the local Anjaneya temple.
There is a 30 feet tall Garuda pillar in front of it. There are other temples in the village such as Anjaneya, Ganapati, Navagraha, Bhairava, and others, as well as a Masjid and some Dargahs
A Jatra is held for the deity Hanumantha, a week after the Yugadi festival. The local Ranga festival and the lion costumes are significant features of the festival called Ranga Habba.
This festival is unique to this village and it resembles the Holi festival in some respects. The villages put on various disguises, sing the praises of god and dance the whole night, dunking each other with colored water and saffron water.
Hosahallu is small village near Krishnaraj Pete town. One can reach Hosaholalu by road from Mandya (60 kms),
Mysore (50 kms) and (160 kms). Bangalore
It is located located 3 kms southwest from Krishnaraja pete (KR pete). It is also well-known for its weaving. The weavers of Hosa Holalu are well-known for their skill and artistry.
If you are coming from
Bangalore take the road upto Mandya. After Mandya city, take the right on the Melukote road. There is board giving directions to Melukote and Sharavanabelagola just before the right. Mysore
Once you take right, you will come to a railway crossing which is just a few hundred metres ahead. The distance from Mandya to Melukote is 35 km. On this stretch you will come to Jakkanahlli which is 6 km before Melukote.
Four kms from from Jakkanahlli, there is a deviation to Melukote. Take the road to KR Pet from here. On reaching KR Pet, drive towards the busstand from there take the Hosaholalu road.
Hosaholalu is about 2 km from KR Pet.
You will get a small lake and then the Anjaneya temple. Take the right just before the Anjaneya temple to reach the Laxmi Naryana temple.
After Mandya, it is only at Jakkanahalli you can buy fruits, biscuits, water. All the other villages are very small and they do not have any facilities for rest or eating. On the Hosa Hollalu road there is a petrol bunk. After Mandya, this is the only petrol bunk.
So make sure, the petrol tank is full and head for Hosa Hollalu