The Chamundeshwari Temple is a Hindu temple located on the top of Chamundi Hills about 13 km from the palace city of Mysore in the state of Karnataka in India.
The temple was named after Chamundeshwari or Durga, the fierce form of Shakti, a tutelary deity held in reverence for centuries by Mysore Maharajas. Chamundeshwari is called by the people of Karnataka as Naada Devathe which means State Goddess. It is situated at the elevation of 838 feet from the mean sea level.
Chamundi Hills is located 13 km east of Mysore, the Palace City, in Karnataka, India. Its average elevation is 1,000 metres (3,300 ft).
The Chamundeshwari Temple is considered as a Shakti Peetha and one among the 18 Maha Shakti Peethas. It is known as Krouncha Pitham as the region was known in Puranic times as Krouncha Puri. It is said that the hair of Sati Devi fell here.
The most important festival that is celebrated here is Navaratri. Mysore Dasara is celebrated as the state festival of Karnataka, called Nadahabba in Kannada. During Navaratri, the Goddess is decorated in 9 different ways to depict nine different aspects of the goddess.
On the 7th day of Navaratri that is Kaalaratri, valuable jewels donated by Maharajas are brought from the District Treasury of Mysuru and decorated to Chamundi.
Mahishasura Mardhini the one who vanquished the demon Mahishasura, Chamundeeswari, or Durga is the fierce form of Shakti. A colorful gigantic image of the demon, Mahishasura greets visitors as they reach the summit of the hill. During the reign of Dodda Devaraja, this statue was built, along with the steps leading up the hill.
The story of Mahishasura is the typical mythical theme of victory of the good over the evil. Mahishasura , literally means the buffalo demon, was slayed by the goddess Chamundeshwari. It is for this mythological association that the statue of Mahishasura located near the Chamundeshwari Temple atop the Chamundi Hills.
The statue stands in a traffic circle near to the parking lot. For the tourists to Chamundi Hills taking a group photograph keeping the Mahishasura as the backdrop is almost a mandatory custom. This is one of the most photographed attractions in Mysore.
Nandi (Bull) is an important icon in Hindu religion. You will find Nandi statue in every Shiva Temple as he is the vehicle or mount of Lord Shiva. Hence, he is one of the important mythological figures in Hinduism. India is full of architectural wonders and Nandi statues are a part of this huge artistic stream. The life-like sculptures of Nandi can be seen in various places in our country. Among them, the figurine of Nandi in Chamundi Hills has an interesting historical past.
The Nandi sculpture is one of the major tourist attractions of Chamundi Hills in Mysore. The Nandi was constructed during the time of Dodda Devaraja Wodeyar (1659 – 1673), the Maharaja of the Kingdom of Mysore. This beautiful icon of Nandi is situated half-way up to the summit of Chamundi Hills. The bull sits on a higher platform and is an active temple where the priest performs religious rituals on a daily basis. Interestingly, it is also one of the largest Nandi statues in India.
- Darshana and Pooja Timings: 7.30 a.m to 2 p.m and 3.30 to 6 p.m and 7.30 p.m to 9 p.m.
- Abhisheka Timings : 6 a.m. to 7.30 a.m and 6 p.m to 7.30 p.m | Friday 5 a.m to 6.30 a.m.
- Dasoha (free meals) is arranged to devotees daily Morning – 7.30 a.m to 10 a.m, Noon – 12 p.m to 3.30 p.m, Night – 7.30 p.m to 9 p.m.
- KSRTC bus facilities are available every 20 minutes from Mysuru city bus stand to Sri Chamundeshwari Temple.
- Sri Chamundeshwari Temples are declared as NO PLASTIC ZONE. Devotees are requested not to bring the plastic carry bags and not throw the plastic wastes in the hill area.