The twin cities of Hubli-Dharwad, known for Dharwadpedas, Girmit and Jolladha Rottis, also have a rich historical heritage. The region was under the domination of powerful dynasties such as Vijayanagara, Chalukyas, Bahmanis, Mughals, Marathas and later the British. It is natural to see a wealth of traditions, monuments and culture in Hubli-Dharwad. Some places not to be missed in the twin cities are:
Banashankari Temple, Hubli:
The Banashankari temple, dedicated to the goddess Parvathi, is located in Lake Amargolnear Unkal. The temple was built in the 13th century by the Chalukyas and shows the influence of the north. The temple has a dvikuta, which means two shrines. The two shrines have two vimanas. One is of Nagara style and the other of Dravidian architectural style. One deity is the goddess Parvathi or Banashankari and the other is God Shiva. There is a NavarangaMantap adorned with beautiful pillars. The figures of Vishnu, Ganapathi, Brahma, Narasimha, Shiva and Parvathi are engraved on the pillars. The temple is a monument protected and maintained by the ASI.
Temple of Chandramuleshwara:
Chandramouleshwara temple is located near the Banashankari temple in the village of Unkal. Built 900 years ago by the Chalukyas, the temple is dedicated to Lord Chandramouleshwara or Shiva. He has two sanctuaries. The most important is for Shiva and has entrances in four directions. The other sanctuary is for Chaturmukha Lingas. The distinctive features of the temple are the walls and columns, all of which are decorated with intricate carvings and sculptures. This temple is also under the protection of ASI.
Nruplunga Hill, Hubli:
On the small hill of Unkal is the Nruplunga hill. The panoramic view of the city and the breeze make it a popular picnic spot.
Indira Gandhi Glasshouse, Hubli:
The Indira Gandhi Glass House is made of glass, as its name suggests. It is similar to that of Lalbagh, Bangalore and is surrounded by well maintained gardens and parks. Many concerts and exhibitions take place here.
Navagraha Teertha, Hubli:
Located 18 kilometers from Hubli, NavgrahaTeerthahas has 61 feet of monolithic BhagavanParshwanath idol set on a 48-foot pedestal. It was carved on a huge hill near Bangalore and then transported in a huge car through Hospet. There are eight other idols or tirtankaras that have been installed with the idol of the hand.
Ulavi Temple Channabasaveshwara, Dharwad:
Located on a hill, the Ulavi Channabasaveshwara Temple is an important pilgrimage site for the Lingayats. The temple is Shivasharana and is dedicated to Shivasharana. The hand consists of a Shankara marble of meditation. Along with the elephants, a statue of Akka Nagalambike, the mother of Channanasaveshwaras and Bilvapatire or Apple Tree, the temple houses all the favorites of God Shiva.
Lake Unkal, Hubli:
The lake is a popular picnic spot for locals and tourists alike. It covers 200 hectares. It has a statue of Swami Vivekananda in the middle of the lake, green gardens, a children’s corner and boat rides.