Saundatti is a town in Belgaum district Karnataka (78 kms from Belgaum city).
In the medieval times the region was known as Sugandavarti. It served as the capital of the ruling Ratta dynasty (9-13th cen AD) before they shifted base to Belgaum.
The Saundatti fort was actually built by Jayappa Desai of the Navalgund Sirasangi sansthan sometime between 1743-51.
Later the fort was besieged by Hyder Ali of Mysore and the Desai had to transfer his allegiance over to him.
The Saundati fort lies in the Saundatti town itself and a road takes you right upto the fort gates. The fort is very well preserved and maintained.
There are lawns and gardens created at every corner of the fort. There is also a playground created for children.
The outer walls and bastions of the fort are still intact after all these years and are a testimony of its strong construction.
There is also a water tank that served as a reservoir for the fort.
Within the topmost structure of the fort is the temple of Kadsiddheshwara.
Text and Photographs: Abhijit Rajadhyaksha