Hassan is the base for visiting the famous temples of Belur and Halebid which remain incomplete despite 80 years of labour. The intricately sculptured decoration on the temple is, according to some critics, even better than that at Konark in Orissa or Khajuraho in Madhya Pradesh. The temple at Halebid, the capital of the Hoysalas, was started 10 years after the Belur temple and is an outstanding example of the art of the 11th-13th Century Hoysala period. At Belur Channakeshava Temple is the one of the three Hoysala sites which is still used for worship. Halebid today is a rural village and Belur a small town and the temples are only testimony to their past glory.
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