During the winter school you will explore the spatial structure of historically significant places and develop planning and design strategies to secure preservation of cultural heritage.
Places you will be visiting
Vijayanagara, the “City of Victory,” was one of the greatest of all medieval Hindu capitals of South India. Its impressive ruins in central Karnataka are known best as Hampi, after the name of a still populated local village. Traditionally known as Pampakshetra of Kishkindha, Hampi is situated on the southern bank of the river Tungabhadra.
It was the seat of the mighty Vijayanagara Empire (1336-1565) which extended from the Arabian Sea to the Bay of Bengal and from the Deccan Plateau to the tip of the Indian Peninsula. Hampi is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The foundations of this historic city were laid during the reign of the Chalukyan Dynasty. They called it ‘Vijayapura’ or the ‘City of Victory’ from where comes its present name Bijapur.
This one-time capital of the Adil Shahi kings (1489-1686) is dotted with mosques, mausoleums, palaces, fortifications, watchtowers, and strong gateways, with the massive Gol Gumbaz, the world’s second largest dome, dominating the landscape for miles around.
Bijapur experienced a great burst of architectural activity under the Adil Shahi rulers. It is also famous for the hand-made sarees of llkal. Bijapur is also the best base from which to see other exceptional heritage sites such as Aihole, Badami and Pattadakal.
Known as Vatapi in ancient India, Badami was once the capital of the Chalukyas who rose to power in much of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh in the middle of the 6th century AD. Its claim to world fame lies in the magnificent rock-cut cave temples built by the Early Chalukyas who is great temple builders.
The Badami temples are dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu and the Jain Tirthankaras, displaying the secular nature of the Chalukyas of Vatapi or modern Badami. These temples are known for profusion of symbolic and mystical carvings of the highest order.
An absolute must see destination in any cultural tour of India, Belur, located on the banks of the river Yagachi in Hassan district, was the capital of the powerful south Indian dynasty of the Hoysalas. Also known as the Banaras of the South, “Dakshin Varanasi”, and the place is home to the awe-inspiring Chennakesava Temple, a fine specimen of Hoysala architecture.
17 km away is another splendid attraction of Halebid which was the Hoysala capital before Belur. Previously known as Dwarasamudra, the place is famous for the Hoysaleswara temple which is a cultural extravaganza. While visiting these destinations, don’t miss Sravanabelagola for the gigantic statue of Gometashvara.
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