The Lord Gomateshwara is one of the popular tourist attractions in Karnataka. It is situated at Shravanabelagola in the Hassan district of the state. This giant monolithic statue consists of a height of 60 feet and listed as one of the Seven Wonders of India. Hundreds of pilgrims and tourists come to the Lord Gomateshwara Monolith.
The Lord Gomateshwara Monolith in Karnataka was constructed in the 10th century AD. Chamundaraya, the minister and commander of the Ganga dynasty is credited to have this statue. The giant monolith was erected in the honor of Lord Bahubali. An event known as Mahamastakabhisheka is also held at the site of the temple. It takes place once in 12 years. During the festival, the monolith is bathed in pure milk, ghee, and curd, saffron and gold coins. The milk and curd are stored in 1008 vessels which are specially prepared for the event. Other elements like saffron paste, sugarcane juice, powders of sandalwood, turmeric, and vermilion are also used to bath the monolith. During the concluding day of the ceremony, flowers are showered over the statue from a helicopter.
The splendid Lord Gomateshwara Monolith is situated on top of a hill and is engraved out of a single block of granite. Shravanabelagola is one of the most well known pilgrimage site for the people of the Jain community and thousands of pilgrims come here to catch a glimpse of the monolith. The statue rises up to a great height and can be seen from a distance of 30 km. It is known for the intricate carvings and beautiful sculptures.
The Lord Gomateshwara monolith ranks among the largest and highest monolithic statues in the world. The site of the statue is surrounded by lovely hills and sprawling vegetation. From the top of the hill one can have a stunning view of the city. One can also visit various Jain settlements near the site where there are some Jain temples and monuments dating back to the ancient period.
The Lord Gomateshwara Monolith is also accessible through a number of ways. The city of Bangalore is around 158 kms from the site. Regular buses, cars and taxis ply between Bangalore and Shravanabelagola. Train services are also available Shravanabelagola and other parts of Karnataka and the surrounding states. There are also plenty of hotels where one can enjoy pleasant satisfaction and comfort at moderate rates.