It is one of the especially fascinating places in the South, unspoiled by tourism due to bad roads and poor accommodation. Pattadakal and Aihole nearby are also worth seeing. One should take a train to Sholapur then change to a local train via Bijapur. Hire a tonga from the station into the city to enjoy the beautiful tree-lined roads.
This is a small town of 20,000 people. In the 6th-7th centuries it was the capital of the Chalukya dynasty and was called Vatapi. Along with Aihole this is the place where South Indian architecture originated. A large manmade lake has red sandstone cliffs on three sides. The town is spread over plains on the fourth side while there is a fort on the mountains. Ancient stone temples blend with the northern and southern mountains they are built on. Bhutanatha Temple on the other side of the lake looks like it is floating on the water. The evening view is unforgettable. It looks like a painting of India in the Middle Ages.
Elevation of Bhutanatha temple
Cross section of the Bhutanatha temple
Floor plan of Bhutanatha temple
The city in the plains and the temples on the mountain.
The Shivalaya temple (7th century) above. There is a stone temple on the other side.