Bijapur and Pattadkal

Trip Planning

Detail of a column at Ajanta

I still remember the History of Architecture class where I was presenting Hagia Sophia. It is indeed a marvel to behold. Our teacher spoke about another such beautiful structure in India which till then was always restricted to history books as the biggest dome in India- Bijapur. I have to be honest that I was far more interested in visiting Hagia Sophia rather than Bijapur at the time. But right now I am planning a trip to see the biggest dome of India which is an example of structural brilliance of Deccan Architecture.

The other place which I did not know even existed an am super excited to visit is Pattadkal. A cluster of temples that span a huge area built over the years. I have written about Kailasa Temple at Ellora before and it is exciting that Virupraksha temple at pattadkal is the inspiration for the biggest rock cut temple of the world.
Summer season might not be the best time to visit the place but i believe When you can, Just go.  Plus I have a few heat beating tricks up my sleeve. We have decided to visit the world Heritage site in Pattadkal for gounesco challenge on the fourth weekend of May. Yup two weeks on this day I would be in the huge chamber of Gol Gumbaz. So here’s what we have planned till now.
1. Travel
We are planning to take the AC bus (VRL Travels 523/- as per www.redbus.in) from Hyderabad to Bijapur and back. Apart from this all the other travel required are sketchy.
Can someone suggest a bike rental at Bijapur so that we can look around the city and visit Pattadkal at our pace? Do you suggest it?
Otherwise I think its state transport buses and walking that is going to take us to places we want to see  
2. Places to see
Dosas at Kadpakkam
This currently is a very small number Gol gumbaz in Bijapur and the temples in Pattadkal. Considering the expanse of temples I think it will be quite a task and might leave us tired for the next day. Even then the floating itinerary consists of a few palaces, bawari and the sixty graves. The last one of those is something I would not normally want to visit but I am planning to give it a try this time around.

3. Accommodation
This is a big blank even though I have finally decided to not book anything but I haven’t zeroed in on anything and could not get a place with decent reviews and price range.
Can you suggest a place for one night that is decently clean and the staff is not out to rip you off?

4. Food
This is actually my first foray into Karnataka except for Bangalore on a family visit. The trip doesn’t count. I am really excited to eat some good Kannada food and must admit the idea of dosa and idli send me into a reeling bliss. To come to the point if you have been to Patadkal what are the lunch options there if any? Which is the best place to have local food in Bijapur?
We decided on the trip just day before yesterday as I was itching for travel plus I have a lot of trips left on the gounesco list. I am still researching the local places to be but could not come up with something any help is appreciated.

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