Halebidu or erstwhile Dwarasamudra was the capital of the Hoysala Empire. It is famous for the Hoysaleshwara Temple which took 105 years to be completed. In the 14th century, this glorious city fell into ruins with the invasion of Malik Kafur from North India. This place was ransacked and plundered repeatedly rendering it in ruins. Hence its name Halebidu, meaning " City in Ruins". It is assumed that the building of the Hoysaleswara Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, was begun in the middle of 12th century. It is covered with intricately engraved sculptures from the Puranas. The Hoysaleshwara temple is a sculptural marvel, made standing on a platform enriched with most finely detailed scrollwork in stone. This star-shaped temple is a pair of two similar temples with separate sanctuaries and mandapams next to each other. Outside there is a Nandi (Bull), the chariot of Shiva. Garuda Stambha (Pillar) is a noteworthy structure of Hoysaleswara Temple. In the southern side, there is a pillar with inscription of heroes carrying knives and cutting their own heads, commemorating Kuruva Lakshma, the bodyguard of Veera Ballala II. From records it is known that the temple derives its name from the Hoysala ruler at that time, King Vishnuvardhana Hoysaleswara, though interestingly, the construction of the temple was initiated and financed by wealthy Shaiva citizens of the city, prominent among whom were Ketamalla and Kesarasetti. Hoysaleswara temple lies in a wide grass land which is now a maintained lawn encircled by a beautiful blue water lake in the backdrop of scenic hills of western Ghats where many picturesque villages lie amidst rich nature and culture. Apart from Hoysaleswara temple, there is also a museum managed by Archeological Survey of India. This museum was started in year 1962. It’s an open-air museum which displays sculptures and architectural pieces from Hoysala period.