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    A spectacular structure in Bijapur - one of the best places to visit in Karnataka

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    The state of Karnataka is home to some of the most amazing landforms, flora, fauna and an impressive historical legacy. Karnataka has been home to some of the most regal and opulent dynasties that have left an incredible amount of historical places in Karnataka and archaeological wealth for future generations. It was inhabited since the Paleolithic era and offers a fantastic exploration experience for the history buffs and other tourists from all over the world.
    The State has been ruled by Nanda Empire, Mauryan Empire, Satavahanas, Kadambas, Western Gangas, Badami Chalukyas, Rashtrakuta Empire, Western Chalukya Empire and Cholas. So, there are hoards of historical places in Karnataka that are still alive with the stories and legends of the royals and are still fragrant with the impressions left by them on every nook and cranny of Karnataka.

    14 Historical Places In Karnataka

    Here is a list of some of the most famous historical places in Karnataka that you must explore on your visit if you have a case of history buff 101. Take a look at all the famous historical monuments of Karnataka before you proceed to book your trip so that you do not miss out on any while you’re there.

    • Hampi – City Of Ruins
    • Mysore – City Of Palaces
    • Bijapur – Biggest Domes In India
    • Shimoga – Ancient Rulers And Dynasties
    • Bangalore – The Silicon Valley
    • Badami – Unique Rock Cut Temples
    • Halebidu – The History Of The Hoysala Empire
    • Srirangapatna – Magnificent Architectural Masterpieces
    • Aihole – The Temple Complex Of Karnataka
    • Dandeli – Ancient Limestone Caves
    • Ramanagaram – Age-old Silk Trade
    • Hassan – The Elegant Hasanamba Temple
    • Bidar – The Seat Of Ancient Kingdoms
    • Talakadu – Temples Buried In Sand

    1. Hampi

    Hampi

    Also called as the ‘City of Ruins’, Hampi is one of the most famous historical places in Karnataka under UNESCO. The city is known for its ancient temples and monuments that date back to a thousand years. It has been an important seat in the history of Karnataka and has around 500 ancient temples; archaeological monuments; treasury building; bastions. What makes this place a famous backpacker’s delight is its hippie vibe along with vibrant street markets abound with handcrafts and souvenirs. Virupaksha Temple and Vithala Temple are the most famous historical places in Hampi.

    Things to do in Hampi: Trekking, Camping, Museums, Visiting Hampi temples, Nature Walks, Taxi Boat Rides, Cliff Jumping and Swimming etc
    Ideal for: Families, friends, adventure, history, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: Hampi experiences local Steppe climate with not much rainfall throughout the year. The temperature stays around 27.3 degree Celsius.
    Best time to visit Hampi: October to February as the monsoons make the hills and hilly roads slippery
    How to reach Hampi: Hampi is just 13 KM from Hospet and is easily accessible by roads. There is no railway station here and the nearest railway station is at Hospet. The nearest airport is at Belgaum which is 270 KM from Hampi.

    Must Read: 12 Hill Stations In Karnataka In 2020 To Rejuvenate Yourself


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    2. Mysore

    Mysore

    Mysore has been one of the most iconic places in the history of Karnataka as it used to be the home for the Wodeyar rulers for seven centuries. It is visited by more than 2.5 million tourists every year. That’s not all. Mysore has myriad attractions for you to explore like Lalitha Mahal, Jagmohan Palace, Brindavan Gardens, and Mysore Zoo. You could also go shopping in the city and buy famous souvenirs like Khadi cotton, incense sticks, sandalwood products, etc. Do not forget to try the world-famous Mysore Pak on your visit.

    Things to do in Mysore: Theme Parks, Historical Tour, Nature Tours, Silk Shopping, Wildlife Spotting, and long strolls in beautiful gardens
    Ideal for: Families, friends, history, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: Mysore enjoys cool winters and warm summers and the annual temperature is moderate.
    Best time to visit Mysore: July to February
    How to reach Mysore: Mysore has a domestic airport, Railway Station and well-connected network of roads. Cars, self-driven rentals, buses and taxis etc are readily available.

    Suggested Read: Karnataka Cuisine: 15 Popular Karnataka Dishes For A Flavorful Culinary Journey

    3. Bijapur

    A spectacular structure in Bijapur - one of the best places to visit in Karnataka

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    Home to the world-famous Gol Gumbaz or Gol Gummata, Bijapur is a must-visit historical place in North Karnataka. It is the mausoleum of Mohammed Adil Shah with a big circular domethat imparts this city its name. Gol Gumbaz is a single mammoth structure and is one of the biggest domes in India. Shivagiri, Jama Masjid and Bara Kaman are other prominent landmarks to explore in Bijapur. Bijapur is well-connected to other offbeat historical places in Karnataka and is an ideal spot for day-excursions.

    Things to do in Bijapur: Visit monuments and places of interest, explore the numerous palaces and garden tours.
    Ideal for: Families, friends, history, architecture, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 2 to 3 days
    Weather: Summers are very hot and winters are cool with temperature ranging from 15 degree Celsius to 20 degree Celsius
    Best Time to visit Bijapur: October to February
    How to reach Bijapur: There is no airport in Bijapur, but it has a railway station and good connectivity with all the other places via roads. Cars, buses, self-drive rentals and taxis are easily available

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    4. Shimoga

    Shimoga

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    The list of historical places in Karnataka cannot be complete without the mention of Shimoga which was an important seat for many dynasties. Have a rendezvous with its bygone rulers at Shivappa Nayaka Palace Museum. Shivamogga is also home to the exotic flora and fauna of Karnataka. Nature is abounding with tigers and other wild animals. The gushing waterfalls like Jog Falls, Dabbe falls, etc also put this place on bucket list of every wanderlust soul.

    Things to do in Shimoga: Visit Agumbe, Kodachadri; explore waterfalls; forests; Tiger and Lion Safari; Bird-watching; trekking; water sports; history tours and nature walks
    Ideal for: Families, friends, adventure, history, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: Shimoga has a Tropical wet and dry climate with hot summers.
    Best Time to visit Shimoga: October to March
    How to reach Shimoga: Shimoga is accessible via roads and rails and has its own railway station. Nearest airport is Mangalore Airport which is 195 KM away.

    Suggested Read: 6 Itineraries Including Best Honeymoon Places In & Around Karnataka


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    5. Bangalore

    Bangalore sightseeing

    Before it became the Silicon Valley of India, it was already a focal point of politics, commerce, and trade in Karnataka. Bangalore is yet another notable mention in the list of historical places in Karnataka and has palaces, fort and lots of other places to visit. Bangalore offers a sneak peek into the political, cultural, traditional and religious history of the region. Apart from having an interesting history, the places in Bangalore are also a seat of modern and urban living.

    Things to do in Bangalore: Explore forts, halls, memorial halls, palaces, gardens and other places; art galleries; museums; fine dining; boating and music concerts
    Ideal for: Families, friends, history, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: Bangalore enjoys a Tropical moderate climate with hot summers
    Best Time to visit Bangalore: Bangalore can be explored throughout the year; but September to March is the best time.
    How to reach Bangalore: Bangalore has an International Airport, railway station and fantastic road network connecting it with all the major parts of Karnataka. So, you can travel as per your preferences.

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    6. Badami

    Badami in Karnataka

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    Badami is one of the offbeat historical places in Karnataka where you will find exquisite temples and historical monuments. The megalithic dolmens is the evidence that this city was settled in prehistoric times. The unique rock-cut temples of Mahakuta is the main reason why people come to visit this place. The red sandstone cliffs, Badami Fort, and Agastya Lake are other major attractions of Badami. Rock Climbing is one of the most famous activities for the adventure enthusiasts.

    Things to do in Badami: Rock Climbing, Archaeological tours; temples; caves exploration and nature walks.
    Ideal for: Families, friends, adventure, history, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 1 day
    Weather: The average annual temperature is 25.7 degree Celsius and is moderate throughout the year
    Best Time to visit Badami: July to March
    How to reach Badami: Badami is easily accessible by roads as the nearest railway station is 100 KM away in Hubli and the nearest Airport is in Belgaum which is 190 KM away.

    Suggested Read: Monsoon In Karnataka: Fabulous Experiences That Will Cast A Spell On You!

    7. Halebidu

    Halebidu in Karnataka

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    Located in Hassan district, Halebidu is also one of the most famous historical places in Karnataka. The city used to be the capital of Hoysala Empire during the 12th century. No wonder you will find glimpses of Hoysala architecture in the temples and monuments of Halebidu. Its shrines and temple complexes are amazing and awe-inspiring. Hoysaleshwara and Kedareshwara temples are some of the most important historical sites in Halebidu that you must visit.

    Things to do in Halebidu: Visit Belur; temples; Dam, Museums, archaeological monuments; shopping and Hoysala Mahotsava celebration.
    Ideal for: Families, friends, history, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: The climate is tropical with annual average temperature being around 24 degree Celsius. Winters have less rainfall.
    Best Time to visit Halebidu: October to February
    How to reach Halebidu: Best way to reach Halebidu is via road as the nearby railway stations are in Hassan, Mangalore and Mysore. The nearest airport is in Mysore which is 125 KM away.

    Suggested Read: 10 Astonishing Churches In Mangalore One Must Visit For A Perfect Getaway

    8. Srirangapatna

    Temple

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    Srirangapatna is located in Mandya district and is an egg-shaped island in river Cauvery. Only 15 km from Mysore city, it makes an excellent day excursion. Srirangapatna is home to some of the most magnificent architectural masterpieces from Vijayanagara and Hoysala kingdom. The Ranganathaswamy Temple is thronged by millions of visitors every year. It is the most important temple of Vaishnavites

    Things to do in Srirangapatna: Waterfalls, temples, bird watching, garden walks and exploring historical places and landmarks
    Ideal for: Families, friends, history, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: The average temperature stays around 31 degree Celsius and is moderately warm
    Best Time to visit Srirangapatna: July to March is the best time to visit Srirangapatna.
    How to reach Srirangapatna: Srirangapatna has railway station and good road connectivity with all the other major cities. Nearest airport is in Mysore which is 32 KM away.

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    9. Aihole

    Aihole

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    Aihole is one of the most famous historical places in Karnataka, which is also called the temple complex of Karnataka. It has more than 100 carved temples from the Chalukya Empire and is also most likely to be included in the list of historical places in Karnataka under UNESCO.

    Things to do in Aihole: Visit temples and temple complexes, hill climbing and exploring the other archaeological places.
    Ideal for: Families, friends, history, nature and archaeological exploration
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: The annual temperature ranges from 18 degree Celsius to 25 degree Celsius and is pleasant all over the year.
    Best Time to visit Aihole: The best time to visit Aihole is from October to March.
    How to reach Aihole: Aihole is easiest to reach via roads. The nearest railway station is in Bagalkot, and is just 34 KM away. The nearest airport is 189 KM away in Belgaum.

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    10. Dandeli

    Dandeli

    Situated in the Uttara Kannada District of Karnataka, Dandeli is blessed with the verdant foliage, dense forests, and smashing views owing to the fact that it lies on the banks of the Kali river. But what really makes it stand out from other historical places in Karnataka are its limestone caves. Formed by volcanic activities, the famous Kavala Caves in Dandeli draw a huge influx of tourists every year with their bizarre winding tunnels and about 375 entrance steps. Home to snakes and bats, these caves have huge stalagmite structures which are a major attraction for devotees of Lord Shiva.

    Things to do in Dandeli: Trekking, exploring caves
    Ideal for: Shiva devotees, families, nature lovers
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: The average annual temperature is 26° C and is pleasant throughout the year
    Best time to visit Dandeli: October to May
    How to reach Dandeli: The nearest railway station is Alnavar Junction, 23 km away from Dandeli. The nearest airport is Hubli, 56 km away from Dandeli.

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    11. Ramanagaram

    Ramanagaram karnataka

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    Another one among the most celebrated historical places in Karnataka is Ramanagaram. Tucked amidst the tough rocky hillocks and bounded by lush green surroundings, Ramanagaram happens to be a popular weekend getaway for people in Karnataka, especially Bengaluru. Other than its lush surroundings, Ramanagaram is also famous for its tall granite hills. But what really makes it a historical locale is the age-old Silk production tradition that has earned this place the name of the Silk City of India. Silk produced here is what forms the input for the famous Mysore Silk.

    Things to do in Ramanagaram: Trekking, climbing granite hills, shopping
    Ideal for: Adventure seekers, nature lovers, shopaholics
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: The average annual temperature is 27° C and is pleasant throughout the year
    Best time to visit Ramanagaram: November to February
    How to reach Ramanagaram: The nearest railway station and airport is in Bangalore.

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    12. Hassan

    Hassan karnataka

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    Located 187 km away from Bangalore in the Malnad and Maidan districts, Hassan is famous as the temple-architecture capital of Karnataka. In fact, Hassan draws its name from the presiding deity Goddess Hasanamba, which means “smiling mother” in the Kannada language. Mainly popular for the magnificent Hassanamba Temple, Hassan is among the most popular historical temples in Karnataka. However, its ancient Hoysala architecture can also be seen in many other structures in the city. From the Shettihalli Church to the revered Jain temples across Hassan, you can find this unique and age-old architecture dominating various structures across this town.

    Things to do in Hassan: Visit temples for their Hoysala architecture and history
    Ideal for: Architecture fanatics, history geeks
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: The average annual temperature is 27° C and is pleasant throughout the year
    Best time to visit Hassan: Year-round
    How to reach Hassan: The nearest railway station is Hassan Junction Station. The nearest airport is in Bangalore.

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    13. Bidar

    Bidar

    Boasting its rich culture and heritage, Bidar is a flourishing city in South India that is packed with numerous historical monuments of Karnataka famed for their bewitching architecture, interesting history, and ancient artifacts. Bidar was once the center of power for many great kingdoms like the Chalukyas, Allauddin Khilji, and Muhammad bin Tughluq, all of whom had left a great history and heritage for this city along with a rich architectural legacy. The presence of several temples, mosques, and tombs brings a lot of tourists to this city every year.

    Things to do in Bidar: Visit temples, mosques, and tombs; explore the flora and fauna
    Ideal for: History geeks, architecture lovers, pilgrims
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: The average annual temperature is 25° C and is pleasant throughout the year
    Best time to visit Bidar: October to March
    How to reach Bidar: The nearest airport is in Hyderabad.

    Suggested Read: 8 Places To Visit In Bidar To Admire The Beauty Of Karnataka!

    14. Talakadu

    Talakadu karnataka

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    Sitting snugly on the banks of the Kaveri river in Karnataka, the town of Talakadu is a mystical place with a rich history and heritage. It is famous for many historical temples in Karnataka that are located within its premises, the most prominent of them being the Vaidyanatheshwara Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. Devotees of Shiva come here from every nook and corner of the country at least once in their life to bathe in its aura and spiritual vibe. Other than this shrine, there are several other temples here that have been dug out from under the sand and are excavated once every 12 years for the ‘Panchalinga Darshana’, a special form of worship.

    Things to do in Talakadu: Visit the unique temples
    Ideal for: Pilgrims, history geeks
    Ideal trip duration: 2 days
    Weather: The average annual temperature is 28° C and is pleasant throughout the year
    Best time to visit Talakadu: November to March
    How to reach Talakadu: The nearest railway station is in Mysore, situated 45 km away. The nearest airport is in Bangalore, located 120 km away.

    Further Read: 8 Fascinating Temples In Karnataka That Are All About Architectural Grandeur!

    Visiting these historical places in Karnataka is always better than learning about Indian history through books. If you are taking a vacation in Karnataka, you might as well head for a historical tour in the state to learn deeply about the rulers and dynasties in the south. These places are photogenic and will get more likes and follow on your Insta feed.

    Frequently Asked Questions About Historical places In Karnataka

    Q. How many historical places are there in Karnataka?

    A. There are many historical places in Karnataka that date back to the 6th and 7th centuries. Karnataka has been an important seat of many dynasties and empires and has a plethora of historical places to explore.

    Q. What types of historical monuments are there in Karnataka?

    A. Karnataka has forts, palaces, summer palaces, memorial halls, temples, cave temples, rock-cut temples, pillars and many other different types of historical places to visit.

    Q. What are the must-visit places to explore in Karnataka?

    A. Mysore, Badami, Aihole, Srirangapatna, Bangalore, Hampi, Halebidu, Shimoga and Dandeli are the must-visit historical places in Karnataka.

    Q. What is Bangalore famous for?

    A. Bangalore is also called as the Silicon Valley of India and has many historical places of interest as well. Lalbagh Botanical Garden, Bangalore Palace, Bannerghatta Biological Park, Cubbon Park, and many other attractions are there.

    Q. Which Maqbara is in Karnataka?

    A. Tipu Sultan’s summer palace is located in Bangalore which is an iconic historical attraction and is visited by thousands every year.

    Q. What are the best things to do in Mysore?

    A. Sandalwood Soap, essence (Ittar or Attar), Sandalwood artifacts and handicrafts are some of the world-famous things to buy in Mysore. Silk apparels and saris are also very famous and are highly popular among tourists. Traditional cotton woven sarees and fabrics are also very popular.

    Q. Is Bangalore safe for the tourists?

    A. Bangalore is safe for all kinds of tourists including the female groups and solo travelers. The police help is readily available and nightlife is also generally safe.

    Q. Which places are the best in Karnataka for day excursions?

    A. Bangalore offers all kinds of facilities and is located near all the major historical places in Karnataka. Badami and Belgaum are also good places for day trips.

    Q. What are the best things to eat while vacationing in Karnataka?

    A. Karnataka has delicious cuisine with lots of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes. Filter Kaapi or coffee; nuts; Idli, Bhaji, Vada Pav, Mangalore Buns, Mysore Pak, Masala Dosa, and Dal Obbattu are some of the vegetarian dishes and Korri Gassi, Kane Rava Fry are the most famous non-vegetarian dishes to eat in Karnataka.

    Q. Do people speak English in Karnataka?

    A. Karnataka is one of the most prominent tourist destinations in India where millions of tourists visit every year. Tourism has led people to learn English in almost all parts. The cities and semi-urban areas have English speaking population and Basic English is known in all the regions.

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