Shravanabelagola is a city located near Channarayapatna of Hassan district in the Indian state of Karnataka and is 158 km from Bengaluru, the capital of the state. The Gommateshwara statue at Shravanabelagola is one of the most important tirthas (pilgrimage destinations) in Jainism, one that reached a peak in architectural and sculptural activity under the patronage of Western Ganga dynasty of Talakad. Shravanabelagola has two hills, Chandragiri and Vindhyagiri. Acharya Bhadrabahu and his pupil Chandragupta Maurya are believed to have meditated there. The 58-feet tall monolithic statue of Gommateshwara is located on Vindyagiri Hill. It is considered to be the world's largest monolithic statue. The base of the statue has an inscriptions in Prakrutha i.e. Devanagari script, dating from 981 AD. Shravanabelagola is located at 11 km to the south-east of Channarayapatna in the Channarayapatna taluk of Hassan district of Karnataka. It is at a distance of 51 km south-east of Hassan, Karnataka, the district centre. It is situated at a distance of 12 km to the south from the Bangalore-Mangalore road (NH-75), 18 km from Hirisave, 78 km from Halebidu, 89 km from Belur, 83 km from Mysuru, 158 km from Bengaluru, the capital of Karnataka and 233 km from Mangalore.
- Chandragiri: You can see the Chandragupta Basadi of the Gangas and the Parashwanatha Basadi here, besides several Jain temples. There is also a famous temple built by Chamundaraya.
- Indragiri: Indragiri has the Gommata monolith, the statue of Bahubali, said to be the tallest monolithic structure in the world. This statue, the exquisitely engraved Tyagada Brahma Pillar, along with Siddhara Basadi, Odegal Basadi, Chennanna Basadi and Chauvvisa Tirthankara Basadi was installed by a Ganga general and scholar Chamundaraya.
- Jinanathapura: Located north of Shravanabelagola, this place has the Aregal Basadi and the Shantinatha Basadi of Hoysala times.
- Inscriptions: More than about 800 inscriptions related to Shravanabelagola are found here, belonging to the period before 10th century. Some of them are recording death by starving (sallekhana) by Jain ascetics and laymen.
PLACES AROUND SHRAVANABELAGOLA
- Halebid: Halebid is also referred as the Gem of Indian Architecture. Once the capital of the Hoysala Empire after Belur, Halebid is famous for the remnants of the glorious Hoyasala period and has one of the finest Hoysala temples.
- Belur: This eminent temple town is especially renowned for the grand Hoysala Temple Complex. Another attraction of the place is the Hoysala Mahotsava, the magnanimous dance festival held at the Hoysala temples.
- Melukote: Melukote in Pandavapura taluk of Mandya district, Karnataka, in southern India, is one of the sacred places in Karnataka. The place is also known as Thirunarayanapuram. It is built on rocky hills, known as Yadugiri, Yaadavagiri and Yadushailadweepa, overlooking the Cauvery valley. Melukote is about 51 km (32 miles) from Mysore and 133 km (83 mi) from Bangalore. Melukote is the location of the Cheluvanarayana Swamy Temple, with a collection of crowns and jewels which are brought to the temple for the annual celebration. On the top of the hill is the temple of Yoganarasimha. Many more shrines and ponds are located in the town. Melukote is home to the Academy of Sanskrit Research, which has collected thousands of manuscripts..