Pattadakal also spelled Pattadakalu is a World Heritage site, a village and an important tourist centre in the state of Karnataka and is located on the left bank of the Malaprabha River, 22 km from Badami and 514 km from Bangalore. It is 22 km from Badami and about 10 km from Aihole, both of which are well known for Chalukya monuments. The Pre-Chalukya historical and Archaeological site Bachinagudda is also near Pattadakal.
Pattadakal, site where Badami Chalukya kings were coronated, was the capital of the Chalukya dynasty ofKarnataka in Southern India between the 6th and 8th centuries. The Chalukyas built many temples here between the 7th and 8th century. There are ten temples at Pattadakal, including a Jain sanctuary surrounded by numerous small shrines and plinthsin fusion of various Indian architectural styles (Rekha, Nagara, Prasada and Dravida Vimana). Four temples were built in Chalukya Dravida style, four in Nagara style of Northern India, while the Papanatha temple in a fusion of the two idioms. In all, nine Shiva temples and a Jaina basadi (called Jain Narayana temple built in the 9th century by the Rashtrakutas), situated along the northern course of a river.
Pattadakal is a great centre of Chalukya art and architecture, noted for its temples and inscriptions. According to inscriptions, the place was known by the names Kisuvolal (Red Town – mostly mountains near Pattadakal gave this name), Raktapura, Pattada Kisuvolal. The literary work Hammira Kavya of 1540 quotes the place as Pattashilapura and Hammirapura. It has been mentioned in the 11th and 12th century inscriptions, as well as in the literary work Singirajapurana of 1500 and Hammira Kavya as the place where the Chalukya kings were crowned.
Pattadakal continued to be an important centre under the Rashtrakutas and the Kalyani Chalukyas. It became a chief city for a small region called Kisukadu-70. The Sindhas of Yaramabarige (Yelburgi) also ruled it for some time.
Chalukya style of architecture
The Chalukya style originated in Aihole (450), Architects experimented with different styles, blended the Nagara and Dravidian styles, and evolved their own distinctive style. At Pattadakal, the Chalukya kings were crowned. In the middle of the 7th century, temple building activity shifted fromBadami to Pattadakal. There are ten temples here, four are in Nagara style and six are in Dravidian style. The largest of all the temples in Pattadakal is Virupaksha temple.
There are numerous Kannada language inscriptions at Pattadakal. Important among them; at Virupaksha Temple, there is 8th (733–745) century Old Kannada inscription on victory pillar, in the Sangameshvara temple, there exists a large inscription tablet (696-733) describing grants made by King Vijayaditya for the construction of the temple.