Bull temple is located in Basavanagudi. This temple built by Kempegowda in the Dravidian style and contains a huge granite monolith of Nandi. This temple is also known as Nandi temple or Bhoganandiswara temple. It is dedicated to Nandi, the bull which is considered as Lord Shiva’s Vahana or vehicle according to Hindu mythology. the prime attraction of this temple is the large sculpture of Bull, which is about 4.6 meters tall and 6m long and one of the immortalize characteristics of the structure is that it has been carved out from a single rock of granite. The monolithic bull is believed to be much older than the temple itself . The popularity of this sculpture gave the name its place as Basavanagudi or the Bull temple. (Basava, which means Bull in Kannada).
Behind this enormous image, there is a Shiva lingam. Like most of the other temples in India, the Bull temple also has history behind its establishment. It is believed that the temple was constructed to pacify Bull. Hundread years ago, Basavanagudi was known as Sunkenahalli and there was a fertile farmland dedicated to the cultivation of groundnut crops, but the wild bull began to devour and destroy the groundnut crops. This enraged the farmers and one of them, in an attempt to drive away the animal, hit it with a club. Legend has it that the bull sat down, became motionless and turned into stone much to the amazement of the farmers. Later the stone bull began to grow in size and the worried farmers turned to Lord Shiva for help. A trident, retrieved from where it was planted near the bull’s feet, was placed on the bull’s forehead to prevent it from growing further.
In the proximity of this temple, there is a shrine of Lord Ganesha by the name of Dodda Ganesha Temple. The unique feature about this shrine is that the huge image of the Lord is made out of 110 kilograms of butter after every four years. It is amazing to know that the butter never melts. After every four years, the butter deity is broken and distributed amongst the devotees.
Bull Temple is also the venue for the famous Kadalekaye Parishe (Groundnut Fair). It is held in the month of November or December every year. In the ceremony, the farmers offer their first harvest of groundnut to Nandi. It is kind of farmer’s appreciation and gratitude towards the Bull, Nandi. The sheer size of the Bull attracts people from far and near to this shrine of religious significance. Bull Temple is believed to be the source of the Vrishabhavati river. Priests say the spring originates at the feet of Nandi. An exciting time to visit the temple is during the weekends or during Shivaratri or Sankaranthi.