Despite being home to amazing ruins and monuments, Bidar, hidden away in Karnataka’s far northeastern corner, gets very little tourist traffic – which of course makes it all the more appealing. It’s a city drenched in history, with this old-walled town being the first the capital of Bahmani kingdom (1428–87) and later the capital of the Barid Shahi dynasty.
A secondary capital of the Badami Chalukyas, Pattadakal is known for its temples, which are collectively a World Heritage Site. Pattadakal is 20km from Badami, with buses (₹23) departing every 30 minutes until about 5pm. There’s a morning and afternoon bus to Aiole (₹20), 13km away.