Introduction / History of Somnathpur Temple: 

Somnathpur Temple which is also called Prasanna Chennakesava Temple is one of the famous shrines located near Mysore. Located in Somanathapura town, about 35 km away from Mysore. This is one of the last temples built in the 13th century by Hoysala kings.  Other two temples which are located at Belur and Halebid. 

This temple was built in 1268, by Somanatha who was general of King Narasimha III and led his army general “Somnath”, hence the name of the temple is named after him.

Currently this temple is maintained by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). It is said that Dandanayaka Somanatha, after establishing a village on the banks of cauvery River- Somanathapura, had taken the permission of King Narasimha III to create a temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The temple was created not only to seek blessings of the lord but also to showcase the enviable brilliance of Hoysala architecture and to represent its grandeur and intricate craftsmanship.

A stone slab is carved with the entire history of the temple and it is displayed at the entrance of the temple. It is useful for the tourists to know more about the temple.

Blue-hinged soapstone was used as the primary construction material, which was simple for the architects to carve and produce one of the beautiful and intricate works that history has seen. 



This holy place’s outside of the carvings depict mythological stories from the Ramayana and the Bhagavata Purana.There is an amazing array of thousands of intricate carvings portraying images of animals, humans, mythical beasts and gods.

The exterior carvings are incredible and the interior pillars are wonderful. As this temple is no longer a place for active worship it is very peaceful and easy to enjoy.The surrounding gardens are lovely to sit for a while.

 If you have just a day to spend in Bangalore or Mysore, and are curious about visiting historical places,then drive up to the small tranquil town of Somanathapura to check out this beautiful temple. YGO Tours and Travels ready to give you the massive trip.

Little deep details of Chennakesava / Somanathapura Temple :

This temple is located on the banks of Cauvery River built with the Hoysala architecture style. In the same way as other Hoysala sanctuaries, it is also built on a raised stage. This temple has three shrines, each with their Vimana and Sukanasi.  These three shrines had idols of Lords Keshava, Janardhana and Venugopala. At present, statues of only two have remained in the shrine with the idol of Lord Kesava missing. However, the devotees still offer prayers to the Gods here.

There are various intricately carved stone plates and star shaped folds on the walls. Other walls in temples are also decorated with carvings of various God and Goddesses’ as well as depicting instances from Ramayana, Mahabharata, childhood of lord Krishna, etc. 

Another interesting reality about Chennakesava Temple is the sixteen unique kinds of roofs, with each exhibiting an alternate stage that goes during the blossoming of plantain.

Timings and Entry Fee of Chennakesava Temple :

There is an entry fee of Rs.5 for Indians and Rs.100 for Foreign tourists at Somnathpur or Chennakeshava Temple. No charges for Still Camera. Rs. 25 for Video Camera. No entry fee for children below 12 yrs of age

Opening timings of Chennakeshava Temple are from 9 AM to 5.30 PM.

The best time to visit this temple is from the month of October to March. It doesn’t take more than 3 hours to explore and admire the beauty of this temple as well as seek the blessings of the Lord.

How to Reach Somnathpur temple ???

By Road or Rail :

Somnathpur is situated around 35 km from Mysore and 137 km from Bangalore. It is well connected by road and rail to Mysore and Bangalore, If interested in travelling at their peace then tourists can also hire a cab from Mysore to Chennakesava Temple. It takes around 1 hour to reach this temple from Mysore.

By Bus :

There are many buses from Bangalore, Mysore and Srirangpatna to Somnathpur.

By Air :

Bangalore is the nearest major airport connected to most of the major Indian cities with regular flights.

Nearest Attractions :

  • Shivanasamudra falls (50 km) 
  • Srirangapatna – Tippu’s palace (35 km)
  • Mysore (35 km )