Sakleshpur ( kannada: ಸಕಲೇಶಪುರ) is a hill station town and headquarters of Sakleshpur Taluk in Hassan district in the Indian state of Karnataka. It is referred to as ‘poor man’s Ooty’
The town lies in the Malnad region on the magnificent hills of the biodiversity hotspot, the Western Ghats. It has a temperate climate surrounded with lofty green hills full of coffee, cardamom, pepper and areca plantations . These crops which contribute mainly to the economy of the Taluk are grown in the surrounding villages and entire taluk are brought to Sakleshpur city for sale. The town lies on National Highway 48 (NH-48) which connects port city of Mangaluru with capital city Bengaluru of Karnataka state. The nearest airport is Mangalore International Airport.
180 kms. From Bangalore in the district head quarters, Hassan. This quiet and peaceful town is convenient base to visit Shravanabelagola, Belur and Halebidu. Hasan offers a wide variety of accommodations. It is well connected by road and rail to Bangalore, Mysore and Mangalore.
1. Sharavanabelagola: 51 kms, South-East of Hassan, is one of the most important Jain Pilgrim Center. Here is the 17 mtr. High monolith of Lord Bahubali, the world’s tallest monolithic statue. Thousands of devotees congregate here to perform the Mahamasthakabhisheka – a spectacular ceremony held once in 12 years when the 1000-year-old statue is anointed with milk, curds, ghee, saffron and gold coins. The next Mahamasthakabhisheka will be held in 2005 A.D.Shravanabelagola is 150 kms. From Bangalore.
2. Belur; The quaint hamlet-38 kms. From Hassan is located on the banks of river Yagachi. It was once the capital of the Hoysala Empire, total made unforgettable for its exquisite temples. The Chennakeshava temple is one of the finest examples of Hoysala architecture. It took 103 years to complete and the reason is evident. The facade of the temple is filled with intricate sculptures and freezes with no portion left blank. Elephants, episodes from the epics, sensuous dancers… they are all there-awe inspiring in their intricate workmanship. Inside are hand lathe turned filigreed pillars.
The Kappe Channigaraya temple and the smaller shrines are well worth a visit.
3. Halebid is 27 kms. North-West of Hassan and 17 kms. East of Belur. The Temples of Halebid – like those of Belur, bear mute testimony to the rich cultural heritage of Karnataka. The Hoysaleshwara temple, dating back to the 12th century is astounding for its wealth of sculptural details. The walls of the temple are covers with an endless variety of Gods and Godesses, animals, birds and dancing girls. Yet no two facets of the temple are the same. The magnificent temple guarded by the Nandi bull was never completed despite 86 years of labour.
4. The Jain basadis near by are equally rich sculptural detail. Belur and Halebid are 222 and 216 kms. From Bangalore respectively.