In the Northern most part of Karnataka lies Bidar- a tiny district steeped in history. The fort, the cannons , places in ruins ,the magnificent tombs and the massive monuments ,all combine to make a visit to the one time capital of the Bahamani and the massive monuments all combine to make a visite to the one-time capital of the Bahamani and barid Shahi dynasties truly memorable.
The name of Bidar appears to be derived from 'bidiru' which means bamboo. The place seems to have been known for bamboo clusters in the past, came to be known as 'Bidaroor' and then 'Bidare', 'Bidar'. Though there are other versions of origin, the name 'Bidarooru' seems to be more near one and authenticated by contemporary literary works
Nearest airport Hyderabad 136 kms
Nearest railhead Bidar.
Gulbarga - 120km, Bangalore - 720km
The most convenient way to begin your sightseeing is from the Bidar fort .Five darwaza (gates) with imposing bastions lead into a little town mestling within the ramparts.
Enter from the Gumbad Darwaza and step lead you to the Rangin Mahal. The Royal residence has elaborately carved wooden pallor’s, Persian couplets engraved in encaustic tiles and exquisite mother-of-pearl inlay work
Near the place are the royal Kitchens and the royal Boths .Further one are the ladies apartments with a sixteen columned prayer hall built in 1423.The Solah Kambah Masjid as it is popularly known, is the oldest Muslim building in Bidar and one of the largest in India.
Not to be missed are the Gagan Mahal the Diwan-e-aam where the fabulous turquoise throne once rested ,the Takhat Mahal, the Royal Pavilion, the Hazar Kothari and the Naubat Khana. Once the exhaustive tour of the fort is complete move on to the Bahamani Tombs at Ashtur.The interiors of the tombs are adorned with well preserved paintings that are excellent example of medieval Muslim art. The outer walls are decorated in tile work.
Right in the heart of the Bidar town stands the chaubara a 71 foot tower. You can have a splendid view from the top of the Chaubara.
The Madrasa of Mahamud Gawan is another important building in Bidar.Architecturally similar to the Madrasa at Fez; this university was once a renowned centre of learning, attracting scholars from all over the Muslim World.
The rock temple a Narasimha Zarni is also worth a visit. Situated in a big cave, the temple is carved into the plateau and to approach the deity you’ll have to wade through water.
While in Bidar don’t forget to visit Basavakalyan-80 kms away. Earlier known as Kalyana this was the capital of the later Chalukyas in the 10 Th Centuries. Embracing a large area, this ancient town ….Surpassing in Beauty and splendors all others cities in the world. It becomes famous as a centre of wealth and prosperity, a seat of learning and an abode of spirtual wisdom. Even today, Basavakalyan is remembered for the saints who made the city their home-Basaveshwara, Akka-mahadevi, Channabasavanna and Siddharta.
Temples and mathas, mosques and durghas and a fort constructed by the Chalukyas of Kalyana Beckon the Tourist of Basavakalyan.
It is 52 away from Bidar, is a famous pilgrim centre. It attracts thousand of devotees during the Veerabhadreshwara jatra, held for 7 days during January-February.
It is 409 kms away from Bangalore, is the historical town of Raichur with a rich cultural legacy. Flanked by the Tungabhadra River Raichur is famous for its imposing Fort.
It is 14 kms from Raichur has some away inspiring temples from the Vijayanagar times. The Ranganatha temple and the Huchchappayana Matha are worth a visit. The Pampa Sarovar, the Kamal Mahal and Nava Brindavan housing the mortal remain of famous saints, are the other attractions around Anegundi.
It is 428 kms from Bangalore, is Dharwar known for its scenic beauty and pleasant weather.Dharwar is also a famous educational centre. Dotting this town is magnificent monuments. The all saints’ church Bassel Mission church and the Roman Catholic Church are some of the important churches. The temple dedicated to Hanuman, Dattatreya, Durgadevi and Panduranga are a must see. Dharwar is famous for its mouthwatering “Pedas”. Belgaum is the nearest airport and 140 kms away from Dharwar.
It is 502 kms from Bangalore and 125 kms from Goa is a picture of contrasts. The old Town area with cotton and silk weavers stands gloriously beside the modern bustling tree lined British Cantonment. Step out the forts and you have a wide choice of temple and churches to Visit.
No story is complete without a mention of Kittur Rani Chennamma. One of India’s first freedom fighters, the queen’s statue stands sentinel over Belgaum at a prominent square.
Bidar is famous for handicraft and art & wood crafts.