Banavasi is a temple town situated on the left bank of the
, in Uttara Kannada District
. Once the capital of Kadambas, the first kingdom of ancient Karnataka, the town finds mention in the epics of
. Banavasi means 'nestled in the forest’.
This is the place where the eminent poet Pampa wrote his poems. Banavasi is known for its rice, sugarcane, arecanut, spices and the famous Banavasi pineapple. The important places worth seeing are Madhukeswara Temple, known for its honey-colored linga in the inner sanctum. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva and an imposing Nandi faces the linga. Other attractions are the ruins of a Buddhist Stupa, the Veerabhadra Temple, several idols and Jain icons.