from here & there - Glimpses of an ancient port town

from here & there - Glimpses of an ancient port town

from here  & there - Glimpses of an ancient port town

Barkur, an ancient port town, is situated 15 km away from Udupi. The place is known for its heritage sites including many ancient temples. Barkur was under the reign of various dynasties, which ruled this region for more than a thousand years, since the 5th century.

Hundreds of stone inscriptions, copper plates (belonging to the periods of Alupa, Hoysala, Vijayanagar and Keladi rulers) have been discovered inside the temples and other heritage sites located in and around Barkur.

Apart from the famous Kattale Basadi and fort excavations, Barkur has the Alupa period Panchalingeshwara Temple. This is one among the numerous temples located in the different keris (streets) of Barkur. According to the elders of the village, there were over 300 temples here just 5 decades ago. Sadly, today, most of these structures are either untraceable or in dilapidated condition.

During the period of Vijayanagar dynasty, Barkur was under the rule of several governors, and, it is said, that as many as 80 governors ruled this province for about 200 years from the 14th century to the 16th century. This is the period when Barkur flourished as a port town and an important trade centre.

The Alupas made Barkur their capital between the 11th and 12th centuries. A stone inscription at Barkur Panchalingeshwara Temple refers to a 12th century Alupa king, who ruled the provinces of coastal Canara — the present Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts.

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