Devarayanadurga is a hill which is situated in Tumkur and has two popular temples, the Yoganarasimha and Bhoganarasimha and is a popular destination for the devotees.
Devarayanadurga – Overview
Devarayanadurga is a place in Tumkur district which is famous for its temples dedicated to Lord Narasimha. The place is a favorite with both pilgrims as well as mountain climbers. The hills with lush green trees on all sides make the climbing a lot enjoyable.
On the hilltop are perched two popular Devarayanadurga Temples, the Yoganarasimha and the Bhoganarasimha Temples. These temples are visited by pilgrims all through the year. The Bhoganarasimha is at the base of the hill while the Yoga Narasimha is perched at the top of the hill.
This place offers splendid view of the places around and it is quite a wonderful experience to be able to stand there with the wind blowing in your face.
Devarayanadurga – History
The place was originally known as Anebiddasari then as Jadakana Durga after a chief named Jadaka and finally as Devarayanadurga after its capture by Mysore king Chikka Devaraja Wodeyar.
Legend has it that a robber chief named Andhaka or Lingaka had his stronghold here, and he was subdued by Sumati, a prince, whose father, Hemachandra, was the king of Karnata and ruled from Yadupattana. After accomplishing the task, Sumathi is said to have established the city of Bhumandana near the present Nelamangala and taken up residence there for the protection of that part of his father’s kingdom.
Under the Hoysalas, there seems to have been, on the hill, a town called Anebiddasari or the cliff from where the elephant fell. An elephant, which the sthala purana describes as a Gandharva suddenly appeared before the town to the great dismay of the people and after doing considerable damage, tried to walk up the steep rock on the west; it slipped, fell back and was killed.
Under the Vijayanagara Kings, the use of the same name continued, and a large tank called Bukkasamudra, was formed from which the river Jayamangali has its source. Remains of the embankment and of the adjacent town can still be traced.
Devarayanadurga – Architecture
The temple is said to be around 2000 years old. This temple’s architecture is in Dravidian style, faces east, constructed by Kanthirava Narasaraja I. The architecture is an example of Chola rulers’ patronage for art.
Devarayanadurga – Mythology
Legend is that God Brahma Deva performed great penance to please lord Vishnu for thousands of years and lord Vishnu pleased revealed himself in the form of Yoga Narasimha Swamy, a variation of Lord Sri Maha Vishnu.
Also this place is also famous as Karigiri. Legend associated with this name tells that sage Bhirgu cursed Gandharva brothers, Devadatta and Dhanunjaya to take shape of a mountain and one as an elephant. Kari – Means elephant in local language and Giri – means mountain, so the name Karigiri. Also according to another popular legend this place is also known as Kusumadri. It is said that gods showered flowers on Sri Maha Vishnu when he killed a demon named Pundarika, thus the name Kusumadri.
The temple of Yoga Narasimha Swamy has a sacred pond named by Kalyani Theertham. It is believed that a sacred stream of water runs through the idol and one can experience this at the “Sri Padha Theertha” entrance.
Legend has it that the devotees of Hindu temples used to perform the ritual of circling the hills on which the temples were situated. As an effort to revive the practice, a large number of devotees perform the Giri-Pradakshina, organized by Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP).
Devarayanadurga – Facts
You can visit this temple during two festivals.
Sri Bhoganarasimhaswamy Jathra: This is an annual festival, is held during somewhere in the month of March/April in Devarayanadurga.
On this day the chariot/Ratha of Sri Bhoganarasimhaswamy is pulled, and on this festival devotees from all over Bangalore, Tumkur and surrounding areas flock to see the beautifully adorned god.
Narasimha Jayanthi: An annual celebration of Narasimha incarnation takes place during the month of May when thousands of devotees gather and many shelters are built to serve them with summer drinks like Panakam, buttermilk and free food is given to all devotees coming to get a glimpse of the lord.
How to Get to Devarayanadurga
Devarayanadurga is around 75 km from Bangalore and 15 km from Tumkur. There are three routes available: