Ramalingeshwara group of temples in the Kolar district of Karnataka is a popular religious place in India. There are four major shrines, namely Ramalingeshwara, Bharatalingeshwara, Lakshmanalingeshwara and Shatrughnalingeshwara. Legend says that Rama and his three brothers installed four Shiva lingas one by each at this place to seek forgiveness from the Lord for fighting with children, Luv and Kush. The present structures are ornate 10th century monuments built by the Nolamba dynasty. Later it was renovated by the Chola rulers during their tenure.
According to historians, this is one of the earliest specimens of group of shrines within an enclosed outer wall. They further claimed that Shatrughnalingeshwara Temple is the first structure within the enclosed wall which was built by the Western Ganga Dynasty of Talakad. There are inscriptions suggesting these claims. The Ramalingeshwara temple is under the protection of the Archaeological Survey of India as a monument of national treasure.
Apart from the four major temples, the complex also consist shrines of Vali and Surgriva within its compound. A shrine dedicated to Goddess Parvatican can also be found inside the complex. The Ramalingeshwara Temple has a sanctum where the ‘linga’ is enshrined, vestibule or antarala and a decorated hall. The Lakhsmanalingeshwara Temple consists of the largest ‘linga’ within the group of shrines. The walls and pillars of the Ramalingeshwara temples are ornamented with several relief sculptures and ornate designs.
Ramalingeshwara Group of Temples open at 06:00 AM to to 09:00 PM