This trip was originally written at Winding Roads and Never Ending Tales
Do you know just few hundred kilometer away from Bangalore is Asia's largest and the tallest shivalinga. The place is called kotilingeshwara temple and is situated within the sleepy town of kammasandra in Kolar district, the same place which is famous for Gold mines. So you can very well combine both of these places in a single day trip. This place was built by Swami Sambha Shiva Murthy in the year 1980, mythology says he had a vision in his dreams in which he was asked to take up the task for establishment of one crore shivalingas hence the name Kotilingeshwara and currently believe it or not there are about a hundred lakh shivalingas in various shapes and sizes installed all over the place. Anyone can come and pay respect here and could get a new shivalinga installed here if he wishes so.
As expected Maha Shivaratri is a special occasion and a large number of devotees make it a point to be there on this auspicious day, the tentative footfall across year here is around 2 lakh. Once you enter the place there is a huge area for parking and refreshments. Once you pay the camera fees which I am assuming you will as every nook and corner is allowed to be photgraphed. The entry is through maze of small temples of various deities. The first of them includes the temple of Lord Vishnu, Lord Brahma, and Lord Maheshwara temples. This is followed by a temple of Lord Kotilingeshwara. After them they have arranged ropes to direct the pilgrims through the temples of Goddess Annapoorneshwari Temple, Goddess Karumaari Amma Temple, Lord Venkataramani Swamy Temple, Lord Panduranga Swamy Temple, Lord Rama, Sita and Lakshmana Temple, Lord Panchamukha Ganapathy Temple, Lord Anjaneya Temple, and finally Goddess Kannika Parameshwari Temple.
This place is believed to be very famous among unmarried women for praying to have a happy and blessed married life. As soon as you exit from the last temple you will find yourself immersed in the sea of shivlings. It was an overwhelming sight for all fo us and which was multiplied many folds when we reached the central shivalinga which is standing real tall at 33 meters and standing guard next to him is 11 meter high Nandi/ basava statue.
It is as if lord Shiva and basava are showering their love and blessings to all that come and bow their head in his majestic presence. The drive is also a pleasant one from Bangalore with good roads almost everywhere and it takes around 4 hours to reach via car. But be aware the place has very basic facilities in terms of food and water so if you are travelling with Kid bring everything required like milk, diaper from home itself. If you arrive at this place during lunch time a very tasty and sumptuous lunch-prasad is provided to everyone visiting the place.
Management committe also performs community marriage here every year and by paying a basic fees of 400 INR the temple committee will take care of priests with drums, music and chants. A heavenly place to tie the nuptials. There are few limited rest houses also available in temple for people who want to spend some time here. Overall a great place and must see for all residing near Bangalore.
The best time to visit: between July and January. Address: Kodilingam Temple Road, Ghattakamadenahalli, Kolar-563121 Timings: 6:00 AM- 9:00PM Entry Fee: INR 20 per person Camera Fee: INR 100 per camera Parking Charges: INR 30 Linga Installation Fee: Starts from INR 6,000