The remarkable Virupaksha temple information | History and architect

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Brief Introduction

Shiva is the manifestation of Oneness and this could be clearly understood through “Virupaksha temple information” . So let us dive deep into the interesting history of Virupaksha temple of Vijaynagar empire , amazing architect and darshan timing .

Virupaksha Temple is situated in Hampi village, Karnataka and located at the foot of Hemakuta Hill . This temple is dedicated to Virupaksha who is one of the forms of Lord Shiva . It is situated at the bank of the sacred river Tungabhadra .

Hampi was enlisted in World heritage sites of UNESCO in 1986  for having numerous temples in the town alone . But the Virupaksha Temple is the core temple of this village which attracts  lakhs of devotees around the world . 

Hampi was once the capital of Krishnadevaraya who was considered to be the greatest warrior of Vijayanagar empire in 1510 .

This temple also has the shrines of Goddess Bhuvaneswari and Pampa . Devi Pampa is the wife of Lord Shiva and this is the reason the temple is also known as Pampapathi Temple . 

According to Hindu scripture ,  Ramcharitmanas ,  written by Tulsidas ,  Mata Sabri who was a tribal woman told Rama to visit sacred Pampa Sarovar where he would have a meeting with sugriva

 In ancient times, this place was known as “ Kishkindha“ where Lord Hanuman had lived with his mother Anjani .

History of Virupaksha Temple

Though the temple of Virupaksha found its root of existence in the 7th century, the work of expanding the temple to its highest peak took place during the reign of Vijayanagar empire . 

During the period of Krishnadevaraya ( 1510 AD – 1530 AD )  ,  the work of expanding the temple to its highest peak was commenced under the supervision of Lakkan Dandesha who was the chieftain of Krishnadevaraya . 

 Krishnadevaraya was a follower of Vaishnavism  but also had a great reverence for Shaivism too . He did an astonishing job of dilating this temple . 

Carving of numerous deities and cultural events on the outer pillars was one of his breathtaking works . The road which led to the temple was adorned with attractive artworks . 

The eminent travellers  of those times Like Domingos ( Portuguese Traveller ) and others in the 16th century had glorified his distinguished work of enhancing the temple to its highest peak . 

The small shrine now had been developed into a larger Complex under Vijayanagar Empire . The Hoysala dynasty and Chalukyas dynasty had also played a significant role in expanding the temple but the major  expansion was done in the Vijayanagar Empire. 


The huge Complex of Virupaksha Temple is based on  dravidian style of architecture . It has a 51 metre high Gopuram and three anti Chambers with a large pillar hall .

When we move towards the Northern side of the temple we find a kanakagiri Gopuram which directly goes to the Tungabhadra river.

There is a carving of wild boar (Incarnation of Lord Vishnu) with a moon and a Sun on the wall  which depicts the existence of Vijayanagar Empire till the time the moon and the sun will exist on the planet Earth .

There is a small chamber at the back of the temple where a person can see the inverted Shadow of Gopuram through a tiny hole .This really amazes the people that that the people of the 16th century era were completely aware of the advanced Science of fractals and many more . 

Great architecture of Virupaksha temple

One of the main attractions of this temple is the murals Painted all over the ceiling of the Ranga Mandapa .

Some of them represent the culture and the lifestyle carried in those days . There is also a depiction of Maa Parvati and Lord Shiva’s  marriage celebration . 

Some other paintings depict God Indra , Agni ,  Kubera ,  Vayu , Nirrti ,  Yama and also Manmatha Striking with his desired arrow on Lord  Shiva.

Another painting which will leave you amazed  is the painting of Tripurantaka . Tripurantaka is the  incarnation of Lord Shiva. There is a fascinating story behind the incarnation of Shiva in the form of Tripuranataka and it goes like : 

One day pleased with the penance  of Tarakasura’ three sons , Lord Brahma gifted them three aerial cities in the sky which revolved around the earth and were indestructible except by an arrow which could pierce  it only when all three aerial cities aligned in a linear position .

Getting such a blessing from Brahma made all three of them cruel and very egoistic . They all started to torment the devas . When their act of destruction went beyond limit ,  the all devas including Brahma and Vishnu requested Shiva to save them . 

Lord Shiva took the help of Vishwakarma and raised a Chariot in which  Earth became its body and sun and moon became its wheel . Then Vishwakarma created a bow  from Mount Meru  having Vasuki as a string . 

Once the Chariot was ready ,  Shiva waited for the right moment of three cities getting aligned in a straight line and then hit them with his arrow . 

The Ashes of the three cities after destruction fell on the forehead of Shiva . Shiva wiped those ashes with his three fingers  which remained permanent on his forehead . And from that time , shiva’s devotees used to apply tripund tilak on their forehead as the symbol of their devotion towards Shiva. 

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Famous Shiva Temples in India

Temples near Virupaksha

  1. Vitthal Temple Hampi
  2.  Achyutaraya temple
  3. Anjanadril hill Hampi
  4. Pattadakal temple
  5. Pampa Sarovar
  6. Vsadavi shivling
  7. Kodandarama temple
  8. Badami cave temple

How to reach Virupaksha Temple

By road 

From Bellary or hospet one can take a bus directly to Hampi . You can also book a cab to reach   Virupaksha Temple

By train

Hospet is the nearest railway station which is just 13 km away from the Virupaksha temple . One can easily book a cab or take a bus to reach the temple .

By airport

Closest Airport is Bellary which is about  350 km  away from Hampi . Take a taxi or a cab to reach the temple from the airport .

Entry charge :

There is no entry charge for visiting Virupaksha temple . But if you want to take camera along with you inside the complex then you have to pay 50 rupees .

Dress code

There is no specific dress code require to visit the temple . In any formal dress , you are welcomed inside the temple .


You can visit this temple from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Then again from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Related Post which can provide you knowledge about more hidden hindu temples:

1.Interesting story and mystery of Jagannath temple Puri

2.Secret wheel inside Konark Sun Temple

3.Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple : facts and secrets of the richest temple in India

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