The famous Thousand Pillar Temple in Hyderabad is a specimen of the Kakatiyan style of architecture of the 12th century. The Thousand Pillar Temple of Hyderabad with its ruins lies in the near the Hanamkonda-Warangal highway, about 150 kilometers from Hyderabad city. 4-km from Hanumakonda crossroad in Warangal district is the Thousand Pillar Temple, a fine specimen of 'Kakatiya' architecture and sculpture. It is the main attraction of Hanamkonda. The temple was built by 'Rudra Devi' in 1163 AD.
Video - In and Around Thousand Pillar Temple
This temple is in shape of a star and has three shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva, Vishnu and Surya. The temple is built on a 1m high platform on the slopes of the Hanumakonda hill, and has a majestic monolithic Nandi. The black basalt Nandi, a monolith, has a lovely polished finish. There are many small lingam shrines surrounding the gardens. The temple is famous for its richly carved pillars, screens and detailed sculpture. The atmosphere is calm and serene with the sonorous ringing of the puja bells, gentle chirping of the birds and the soothing cool breeze.
The three shrines inside the temple are called the Trikutalayam. Further you can see 1000 richly carved pillars with an impressive Nandi bull in the thousand pillared temple. Nandi bull was carved out of a black basalt monolith polished carefully to give it a brilliant look.
Significance of the temple
A quite drive of about 3 hours from the capital of Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad would take the devotees 157 Km away to the ancient city of Warangal. The erstwhile Kakatiya capital of the 11th and 12th century is known for its shimmering lakes, beautiful temples and magnificent wildlife. The Kakatiya's ruled the city for over 200 years, decorating its interiors with some of the very best architectural splendors.
The most famous of the structures is the thousand pillar temple, built in 1163 AD by king Rudra Dev. Built according to typical Chalukyan style of architecture, the thousand pillar temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva, Vishnu and Surya. One thousand ornately carved pillars adorn the temple complex while a huge granite statue of Nandi, the bull is placed at the entrance. Neatly carved rock elephants built on either side greet the visitors at the temple entrance.
There are many small lingam shrines surrounding the gardens. Popular for its richly carved pillars, screens and detailed sculpture, Thousand Pillar Temple is one of the most visited temple in India.
Time to visit
The thousand pillar temple is a brilliant example of Kakatiya style of architecture. Its thousand intricately carved pillars, perforated screens, wonderful icons and rock-cut elephants are worth-seeing. Not to be missed is the monolithic statue of Nandi that certainly reminds the rich taste of the rulers. The colossal structure of Nandi is carved out of a single piece of black basalt. The Best time to visit the temple is from the month of October to March.
Other Places to Visit
Bhadra Kali Temple is situated on a hilltop between Hanamkonda and Warangal, it is noted for its stone image of the Goddess Kali.
Jain Temple which is 2,000-year-old Jain temple of Mahaveer is a famous place of worship for Jains in the country. The temple is embellished with beautiful images of Thirthankaras. The 5ft high image of Mahavira is entirely carved of Jade.
Kolanupaka is 80-km from Hyderabad, and is situated between Hyderabad and Warangal. This was the second capital town of Kalyani Chalukyas during the 11th century AD. During this period the village was a religious centre of Jains, and ranks among other great Jain centers in the south.
Sri Veeranarayana Temple is raised in the Chalukyan style around 1104 AD.
Pakhal Lake is a man-made lake built in 1213 AD by the Kakatiya king, Ganapathidev, by harnessing a small tributary of the Krishna River. It is located 50-km from Warangal and spreads over an area of 30-sq-km.
Ramappa Temple or Ramalingeswara is the temple situated in Palampet village, which is 70-km form Warangal. This is a beautiful monument dating back to 1213 AD. It displays the glory and richness of the Kakatiya kingdom.
Accomodation at the temple
The lodges and hotels in all three townships are primarily functional. It is best to stay at the Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation's Punnami Hotel at Kazipeth, opposite the REC and near the rail station. This is close to Hanamkonda and Warangal and is the most practical option to explore the area. The tourist season is winter; at other times there should be no problem with accommodation.
How to reach the temple
Through Airways: Through Airways the city has domestic airport situated at Hyderabad which is the nearest and most convenient air connection with the rest of the country. Indian Airlines connects Hyderabad with Delhi and other major cities of India. For more information on flight schedule and timings refer to the official website of Indian Airlines.
Through Railways: Through Railways the city of Warangal has its own railway station which connects it to major Indian cities. Important daily trains between Delhi and Warangal are the G T Exp., Tamil Nadu Exp., Kerala Exp. and Dakshin Exp. For train timings and online bookings, refer to the official site of Indian Railways
Through Roadways: Through Roadways, the state of Andhra Pradesh has transport corporation operating regular buses for Warangal to all the major neighbouring cities including Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Karimnagar and Khammam. Private taxis can also be hired, available from various locations around the city.
Through Local Transport:Through Local Transport the temple is accessible where the facilities are easily available and primary means of transport to move around inside the city include Buses, Taxis, auto-rickshaws and cycle rickshaws.