Bidar Tourist Places or Places to visit in Bidar Karnataka India

Bidar is about 120km from Gulbarga.  It is located in the northwest corner of Karnataka.  It was the first capital of the kingdom of Bahamani and then the main centre of the dynasty of Barid shahi until it fell to Aurangzeb in 1656.  The town possesses an old world charm with its tiled tombs and red laterite countryside.  Bidar is world famed for its encrusted metalware, known as Bidri.  The craft of Bidriware was evolved by the ancient Persians and Syrians and was introduced here in the early 15 century.

The fortified town was once the capital of the Bahamani’s and the Barid Shahi’s.  The Bahamani Empire broke into four kingdoms and Ahmad ShahI, the 9th Bahamani ruler shifted his capital from Gulbarga to Bidar in 1424.  He rebuilt the old Hindu fort and also made beautiful palaces and gardens.  The Bahamani’s were succeeded by Barid Shahi dynasty, which ruled here from 1487 to 1619.  There are fine palaces and tombs, some of them are great examples of Muslim architecture in the Deccan.  It is also an important Sikh and Hindu pilgrim centre.

Other buildings worth a visit include a semi spherically domed Solah Khamba Mosque (1423) inside the fort, and the tomb of Saint Hazrat Khalilullah at Chaukhandi.

Bidar has train connections to Gulbarga, Bangalore and Mumbai. Buses head to Gulbarga, Hyderabad (120km) and Hospet(380km).

Bidar District Taluks

Bidar district Taluks has five taluks they are Aurad, Basavakalyan, Bhalki, Bidar, Humnabad.

Bidar Sightseeing

Bidar is situated in the northernmost part of Karnataka, Bidar is steeped in history.  It was once a part of the Chalukyan Empire.  Later it became the capital of the Bahmani kingdom.  As one enters the town, the Bidar Fort welcomes the visitor with five Darwazas or gates that lead into the little town nestling with the ramparts.  Within the old fort are the three palaces Rangeen Mahal, the royal residence which has elaborately carved pillars with engraved couplets in Persian and exquisite Mother of Pearl inlay work.  The remnants of Chini Mahal and Turkish Mahal were one huge structure.  The oldest monument in the fort is the Sola-Kamba Masjid, one of the largest in India.  Other important monuments are the Gagam mahal, the Diwan-E-Am where the fabulous torquiose throne was displayed at one time, the Takht Mahal, the Royal Pavilion, the Hazar Kothari, the Noubat Khana and the Bahmani Tower of Astur.  In the heart of the town stands the Chaubara, a 27m high tower, now converted as a clock tower.  The Madarasa of Mahmood Gawan is another magnificent monument in Bidar.  It was once the renowned University and centre of learning, attracting scholars from all over the Muslim world.  Khane Jehan constructed this monument in 1472.  Narasimha Zharni is a rock temple situated in a big natural ave.  One has to wade through water to reach the shrine.  Recently, electric lighting has been provided inside the cave to guide the pilgrims visiting this cave shrine.

Bidar Fort Information

This stronghold of the Bahamani Kings in the14th and 15th centuries was built by Ahmad Shah Bahmani between 1426 and 1432. There are five Darwazas (gateways) of the fort and within its precincts are fine palaces and tombs. The impressive Bidar Fort provides a glimpse of the richly textured history of Karnataka. The external circumference of the fort is 4km with 37 bastions.  It is protected by a triple moat carved from red rock and has intricate battlements and imposing gateways, all well preserved.  The fort has evocative ruins of the palaces - the Rang Mahal, Tarkash Mahal, Takht Mahal and the Gangan Mahal.

South of the fort lie the ruins of Madrasa of Mahmud Gawan, a fine example of his native Persian architecture.  This Islamic seminary still has few colorful remains of tiles with swirls of floral patterns and bold calligraphy.  It is three storeyd with tall minarets at its two corners. 

A 23m circular watchtower, the Chaubara in the center of the city offers goods views from the top.  South of this is the Jami Masjid and the Kali Masjid.  From here move on to the eight huge domes of the Bahamani Tombs at Ashtur whose exteriors are decorated with some magnificent stone carvings and colored tiles, while the interiors have carefully preserve medieval paintings with gilding. The Barid Shahi Tombs also show a strong Persian influence like the Bahamani tombs with granite carvings and floral patterns on the colored tiles.   Some of these show the typical arched niches.

Bidar Places to Visit

Chaubara

The 71ft high watch tower is set in the heart of Bidar town.

Madrasa of Mahamud Gawan

It was built in 1472, by Muhammad III and was a renowned centre of learning, attracting scholars from all over the Muslim world.

Nank Jhira

This Sikh pilgrim site is associated with a miracle of Guru Nanak, the first guru of the Sikhs.  He is said to have visited here during a severe famine and created a Jheera 9spring) of crystal clear water.  The scared site is marked by huge gurudwara.

Nanak Jhira is about 3km from Bidar.  It is a Gurudwara associated with Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism it is said that he visited Bidar when the place was drought-struck. At the request of the people, the Guru touched the rock below his feet, resulting in a continuous gush of water.

Dev Dev Vana

It is 6km away is the Dev Dev Vana, an eco tourism project housing more than 200 species of medicinal plants in a botanical garden.  The cave temple Narsimha Jharani and a Sikh holy Gurudwara, Nanak Jhira, where Sikhs believe that a miracle performed by Guru Nanak resulted in the eruption of a spring (jheera). 

Basavakalyan

Basavakalyan is 80km southwest of Bidar.  Basavakalyan was the capital of the Kalyana Chalukya Empire in the 10 Mahadevi.  A fort around this place ha bastions some of which are mounted with pieces of weaponry of extraordinary size.  There is a museum with many interesting antiquities within the fort. In the medieval period, it was one of the most beautiful cities of the Deccan with many large palaces, temples and buildings.  It became the seat of learning and an abode of spiritual wisdom.  Many famous saints like Basaveshwara, Channabasavanna, Siddharama and Akka Maha Devi lived here.

Narasimha Jheera

It is the only subterranean stream of Karnataka.  The cave with waist deep water has an image of Lord Narasimha.  Papanaash, the sacred shrine of Lord Shiva is visited by a large number of devotees.

Jharani Narasimha

On the outskirts, Jharani Narasimha is a temple having a roughly carved image of Lord Narasimha placed on a stonewall at the end of a cave.  A legend states that Vishnu after slaying Hiranakashyap slew another demon named Jharasura.  The demon at the moment of his death prayed the Lord to dwell in the cave in which he was living and grant boons to the devotees.  The devotee have to wade through a cave, 91m long, 2m wide and slightly more than a meter deep to have a look at the deity.  The cave is fed by the water of a natural spring.

Humnabad

Humnabad, 52km, is the place having the ancient temple of Lord Veerabhadreshwara.  The shikhara of its sanctum contains the figures of the 28 incarnations of Lord Shiva, 10 incarnations of Lord Vishnu and the stories of the puranas.  The annual jatra in January/February with its spectacular cart pulling festival attracts large number of devotees. The shrine dedicated to Lord Chandrapraba reminds that it was once a flourishing Jain city in ancient times.

Sangam is the place of confluence of rivers Manjara and Karanja.  The typical Kalyanna Chalukyan style Sangameshwara Temple here was attractive columns and doorways.

Gurudwara

Near the tombs, the Sikh community has built an imposing Gurudwara entirely constructed out of white Marble.  Legend has it that Baba Guru Nanak visited this place while the land was in a grip of severe famine.  The Guru performed a miracle at the request of the local people and a spring of water burst forth. Even to this day, water flows out of the laterite trap.  Popularly known as Nanak Jharini, the Sikh pilgrims flock to this place all the year round.

Jalasangvi

Jalasangvi is about 40km from Bidar.  An interior village near Humnabad having the ancient temple on the fringe of a big tank.  A Hoysala style temple dedicated to Kalleshwara, it has excellent specimen of sculptures.  The bracket and panel figures are finely sculptured Madanikas in varying poses.  These seductive beauties are the imaginative creations of Hoysala sculptors.

How to reach Bidar

Bidar is well connected by rail and road with the rest of the country.  It is only 136km from Hyderabad. Private and state buses operate to many places around this area.  A number of good lodges and rest houses are available at all the places for the convenience of tourists.  Bidar is famous for Bidriware, a distinct and exquisite craft of silver inlay on an alloy base.

Bidar City Distance Guide

Belgaum 465 Km
Bellary 436 Km
Bangalore 712 Km
Bijapur 258 Km
Chikmangalur 568 Km
Chitradurga 570 Km
Dharwad 460 Km
Gulbarga 113 Km
Hassan 765 Km
Karwar 607 Km
Kolar 778 Km
Maikeri 888 Km
Mandya 779 Km
Mangalore 877 Km
Mysore 788 Km
Raichur 279 Km
Shimoga 575 Km
Tumkur 668 Km