Mysore's proud possession and one of India's most tour attractions; Mysore Palace is an preposterous man-made edifice. It is a imposing structure that tells many tales of India's complex and intriguing past. This palace was once a royal residence of the mighty Wodeyar rulers, who ruled Mysore for seven centuries. At present, it witnesses more than 2.7 million visitors every year. Built between 1897-1912 as per the designs of English architect- Henry Irwin, this three-storeyed building boasts of a flawless combination of Hindu, Gothic, Muslim and Rajput styles of architecture. The palace is constructed using fine grey granite and features beautiful domes that are made of deep pink coloured marbles. The central arch of the seven broad arches in the façade features an impressive idol of Gajalakshmi (the Goddess of prosperity, wealth and luck with her elephants) on its top.
Sprawling over a large area of about 150 acres, Brindavan Gardens are considered to be the best in Mysore. This beautiful stretch of land is situated just a level below the popular Krishnaraja Sagar Reservoir that is built across the Cauvery or Kaveri River. The garden is about 18 kilometres northwest of the city of Mysore. The idea of building this fascinating garden close to the dam was of two former Devans of Mysore, namely Sir M. Visveshwaraiah and Sir Mirza M. Ismail. The most notable thing about Brindavan Gardens are the beautiful fountains that look wonderful during the night when they are lit up. Sunset is the best time of the day to visit this garden and enjoy the sight of water (from fountains) dancing to the tunes of pleasant music. The area of the garden that is covered with shrubs, grass and trees looks like a well-manicured lawn. Within the garden, there is also a children’s park, hydraulic research station and fisheries station. Adding to the beauty of the garden is an attractive sculpture of Goddess Cauvery, set at the foot of the dam.
Thonnur Lake is a beautiful excursion site, placeded about 30 kilometres away from Mysore.The lake is spread across 2000 acres and is used as a tank to collect rainwater for irrigation. Surprisingly, it never runs out of water even if there is no rainfall. The lake and its surroundings (including rocky hills and tall trees) together make it a scenic spot. It is among those places that are not known to many tourists; however, locals are often seen here picnicking with their friends and family.
Karanji Lake, also known as Karanjikere Lake, is an appealing place to holiday. Apart from its natural beauty, this picturesque lake is noted for being home to a wide variety of indigenous and migratory birds. Spanning in an area of about 90 acres, this lake area features a butterfly park, boating point, children's corner, watchtower and India's largest walk-through aviary (with over 70 species of birds). Inhabited by a wide variety of birds, including peacock and geese, the aviary is the main highlight of Karanji Lake. Neighbouring the aviary is another huge area that is home to Sarus Cranes (a striking and possibly one of the tallest flying birds). A stroll in the butterfly park, located on an island in the lake, is a must while you are here. Brimming with plenty of natural treasures, this picturesque site is definitely a must-visit for every tourist coming to Mysore.
GRS Fantasy Park:
GRS Fantasy Park is one-of-a-kind amusement park, located about 6 kilometres away from the city centre. An endeavour of Baliga Investments Pvt. Ltd., the park is ideal for both adults and kids as there are a number of fun-filled rides for everyone. Sprawling over an area of 10000 sq ft, Jal Tharang or Wave Pool is the prime highlight of the park. For an experience similar to that of sea waves, this is an ideal place to be. Next is the Dragon's Den, built in an area of 60000 sq ft, which takes visitors to the Jurassic Age. This particular attraction won the National APT Award in 2003 for being the most innovative ride. The Red Indian Falls or theme based man-made waterfall catches the fancy of visitors. Witnessing 72000 litre of water falling per minute from a height of 80 feet is truly a sight worth beholding. Keeping the zest alive is the Aqua Tornado that is a four-seater family float ride.
Chamundi Temple, famous known as Chamundeshwari Temple, is a 12th century shrine placeded a top Chamundi Hills, about 13 kilometres away from the Mysore city. A flight of 1000 steps takes guests to the temple, which is named after Goddess Chamundeshwari or Durga, (the fierce form of Shakti). She is often identified as Parvati, consort of Lord Shiva, and is also the family deity of the Maharajas of Mysore. Architecturally, this shrine has a quadrangular structure with loftygopuram (temple tower) and dwara (entrance), which are visible from a distance. It also consists of a navaranga, sanctum sanctorum, antharala mantapa a prakara. The seven-tier gopuram of the shrine has been constructed in Dravidian style of architecture. Atop the tower orshikara, there are seven golden kalashas that capture attention of every onlooker.
Bylakuppe, a beautiful yet unexplored region in Karnataka, is home to two major Tibetan settlements. The town is noted for housing one of the most fascinating monasteries across the country - Namdroling Monastery. It is also popular as the ‘Buddhist Golden Temple’ as there are three colossal golden statues of Buddha Shakyamuni, Padmasambhava and Buddha Amitayus. The foundation stone of this three-storey monastery was laid by His Holiness Pema Norbu Rinpoche. Later, the monastery was sanctified by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Presently, this beautiful gompa serves as home to about 5000 monks and nuns. In the monastery, visitors can see silver coloured prayer wheels that are inscribed with holy chants. Buddhists are of the view that spinning these wheels is equivalent to the recitation of the prayers inscribed on them.
Mysore Zoo, or Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Garden, was established in 1892. The zoo has been named after its founder and erstwhile ruler of the city, Sri Chamarajendra Wodeyar Bahadur. Initially, it was only meant for royal families, but in 1920, was opened to public. This zoo spans over a large area of about 80.13 acres along with 77.03 acres of Karanji Lake in the heart of the city. The zoo home to about 1450 animals belonging to 170 varied species. Gorilla, Chimpanzee, African Rhino, Tapir, Baboon, Emu, Marmoset, Lemur and Cassowary inhabit the zoo. Besides, Deer, Antelopes, Candies, Primates and Reptiles can also be seen here. Since the popular Karanji Lake is an integral part of the zoo, you can even spot different types of birds here. Butterfly Park is another highlight of the zoo, which will especially be loved by kids.
Located in the foothills of the Chamundi range, Planet X is a fabulous entertainment centre in Mysore. Ideal for a day out or picnic, this place is perfect for both kids and grown-ups. It provides facilities for snooker, billiards, go-karting and video games. The complex has a bowling alley, mini golf course, restaurant, coffee shop and even a conference room. Planet X is a great place to spend a fun-filled day with family.
Srirangapatna is a charming town located approximately 15 kilometres away from Mysore city. It boasts of an interesting history that dates back several centuries. It served as the capital of many mighty kings, including Hyder Ali and his son Tipu Sultan, who was also known as ‘The Tiger of Mysore’. From one end to another, this town has several monuments that commemorate their imperial reign and combat against the British. Srirangapatna also bears traces of the Hoysala Dynasty. It is believed that originally the town of Srirangapatna was built by the Hoysala king Udayaditya. From temples and tombs to cenotaphs and palaces, there are seemingly endless numbers of attractions that can keep tourists engaged for weeks. One of the largest shrines in Karnataka, Ranganathswamy Temple is located in this town. Founded by Thirumalaiah (Ganga Chieftain), this temple witnessed many renovations that were made by the Hoysalas, Mysore Wodeyars and Vijayanagaras. Other important shrines in the town are Shri Narashimha Swamy Temple, Sri Gangadareshwara Swamy Temple and Shri Nimishamba Temple.
The rise in tourists influx over the years has taken a huge toll on the natural beauty of the place and resulted in polluted water that stinks during the summer season and unaccountable amount of plastic littering throughout the estate and the river. The river is part of the early reaches of the river Kaveri. Abbey Falls waterfall is situated in the middle of spice estates with trees entwined with pepper vines and private coffee plantations with stocky coffee bushes. It was earlier called Jessi falls named after a British officer's wife.However, the place was a thick jungle area back then.Flow is much higher during the rainy season.A hanging bridge constructed just opposite the falls. Years later, the beautiful waterfall was discovered by Mr.Neravanda B Nanaiah who bought the place from the government and converted it into a coffee and spices plantation that is surrounding the waterfall today.
Nagarhole National Park:
It houses not just multiple species of plants and shrubbery but also mammals, reptiles, rare birds, and crawlers. With its diversity of flora and fauna, the Nagarhole National Park is one of the best-known wildlife reserves in India. Tiger, Indian bison, and Asian elephants are found in large numbers inside the park. Other species include leopards, wild dogs, jackals, grey mongoose, sloth bears, striped hyena, spotted deer (Chital), sambhar, four-horned antelopes, wild boars, Indian porcupine. Reptiles including the crocodiles, vine snakes, wolf snakes, rat snakes, bamboo bat viper, Russell's Viper and Indian Rock Python are also found here. The national park has over 270 species of birds including the critically endangered Oriental White Backed Vulture, the Greater Spotted Eagle and the Nilgiri Wood-Pigeon.
Coorg is home to the well-known Namdroling monastery, also called the Golden temple on account of the gold work done on every painting. The namedropping monastery is situated just 6km from the town of Kushalnagar and 35km from Madikeri. It belongs to the Sangha community. It is a typical Tibetan monastery, presided over by an 18m-high gold-plated Buddha. Children are also taught outside the temple. The paintings inside the temple describe the gods, demons, culture and also some of the phases of Buddha's life.
White River rafting in Barapole River:
Barapole river is a famous white river rafting destination in Coorg. The white frothy river with speedy waters and rapids, flowing through beautiful landscapes, makes for an ideal river rafting experience. Set against the backdrop of the Western Ghats and bordering the Deccan Plateau, Coorg is a popular destination for travelers. Experience the thrill of adventure as the choppy waters of the river toss you about and the wind rushes through your hair. Whitewater rafting is organized in Upper Barapole are called Kithu-Kakkatu River which is a strong catchment area for the monsoons, thus providing a some of the most challenging stretches of rapids. The rapids have some fascinating names like Morning Coffee, Grass Hopper, Ramba Samba, Wicked Witch and Big Bang. The Barapole River surges through dense forests and offers rafting participants a breathtaking view of the Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary.
Bhagamandala is situated on the river Kaveri and is a pilgrimage place in Kodagu. The place is popularly known as Triveni Sangham since, it is on the banks of three rivers, Cauvery, Kannike and the sub-terrain Sujyoti. There is spot known as the Bhagandeshwara Kshetra inside the temple complex, where there are temples of Bhagandeshwara (Ishwara), Subramanya, Mahavishnu, and Ganapati. The pilgrims take a dip in the holy water and perform rituals to their ancestors before proceeding to Talacauvery, the birthplace of Kaveri. Pilgrims assemble here in large groups on the 17th or 18th of October during the Tula Sankramana.
The route traverses lush forests, green grasslands and countless small streams and rivers. Taking individuals deep inside the Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary, the Brahmagiri trek is a delight with its myriad offerings. It is located on the border between Wayanad District of Kerala state on the south and Kodagu District in Karnataka on the north side. The peak of the hill is well-forested and is rich in wildlife. The primary attractions around this trek are the Iruppu Falls, the Thirumalai Temple which is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and Pakshipathalam which has a cave that is legendary for being a haven for ?rishis? primeval times.
Mallali Falls lies in the northern region of Kodagu district in Karnataka. These falls lie 26 km away from the town of Somwarpet. They lie at the foot of Pushpagiri Hill Ranges, where the Kumaradhara river takes a deep plunge of over 200 feet. Since they are seasonal falls, the water pretty much disappears into thin air while falling from a height of just 60 meters in two tiers. The river flows down towards Mangalore passing through Kukke Subrahmanya. There is never-ending debate regarding the beauty of Abbey Falls and Mallali Falls.It is one of the most mystifying waterfalls in Coorg, which lie in the Bettadahalli Gram Panchayat in Somwarpet Taluka.
Angling (Fishing) in Coorg:
Primarily, you need a license to fish which can be issued at Coorg Wildlife Society's office in Madikeri. Also, fishing at Valnur has to follow 'Catch and release' principle - the fishes you catch need to be released back into the water. This is a part of conservation drive in the region. Valnur, a village near Coorg, is famous for its fishing camps. River Cauvery has lots of fishing camps located on the banks.Although, you will have to be a little careful about the rules and restrictions on fishing in this area.
It is Built in 1887 by Chamaraja Wodeyar, Bangalore Palace is inspired by England's Windsor Castle. The palace complex, including the gardens, is spread over 454 acres, of which the palace has a floor area of 45,000 sq. ft. The Tudor-style building is well-known from the turrets, the battlements on the fortified towers. The equipment has a touch of Victorian, neo-classical and Edwardian styles. The interior of the palace is wonderfully decorated with floral motifs, cornices and wood carvings. The ceiling is ornamented with relief paintings. There are 35 rooms in the palace, along with a manual lift. Wooden fans from General Electric and imported stained mirrors and glass are also used. The royal family still lives there. On display is all kinds of memorabilia, family photos, and portraits. The palace is open from 10 a.m. until 5.30 p.m. The entrance fee is 230 rupees for Indians and 460 rupees for immigrants. There's a 675 rupee camera fee as well, if you want to take photos.
National Gallery of Modern Art:-
It was set up in the premises of the Manikyavelu Mansion at 49 Palace Road, Bangalore and opened to the communal on 18th February 2009. Increasing over an area of 3.5 acres, the accommodating heritage building was altered from a residence into an Art Gallery, with a display space of 1551 square meters to which advanced gallery block with a display space of 1260 sq. m. was added. The construction of the additional block was designed in such a fashion that it merges with the style and ambiance of the heritage Manikyavelu Mansion while at the same time fulfilling the requirements of a modern museum.
Tipu Sultan's Palace and Fort:-
The modernize city of Bangalore performs the historic era of the potent emperor of Mysore Tipu Sultan and his courage. The Tipu’s Fort is placed close to the busy Krishna Rajendra city market at the intersection of Krishna Rajendra Road and Albert Victoria Road. Tipu Sultan’s palace also well-known as the ‘Abode of Happiness’ encloses the district of the castle. The Tipu’s Fort which is an outstanding landmark of the city of Bangalore depicts difficult Islamic style architect. The palace was constructed by Tipu Sultan and he named it as “Rash e Zannat” meaning “Envy of Heavens”. The sultan used the palace as a summer evacuation and was built absolutely of teak wood. The palace was free to the general public in 2005.
Lal Bagh Botanical Gardens:-
It is placed in Bangalore and is nationally and internationally outstanding center for botanical artwork, experimental study of plants and also care of plants. This botanical garden is one of the most beautiful botanical gardens you could find in India. Constructed by Haider Ali, it was later modified by Tipu Sultan. The Glass House in the gardens was inspired by the London Crystal Palace. Spread across a sprawling 240 acres of land, the garden has above 1800 species of plants, herbs and trees. The lawn clock in the garden is the first of its kind in India.
Nandi Hills: -
Nandi Hills is a perfect location to feel one with nature. Located 60 km away from Bangalore, it is one of the hill stations near Bangalore with the solid monolithic granite mass that offers the best view. Rivers Palar and Arkavathi originate from here. The hill was titled after the acclaimed Nandi temple, which is placed at the top of the hill. It is placed 1478 meters above sea level. The humidity is pleasant and hence any time is the right time to visit the place. Some of the visitor attractions here include Amruth Sarovar, Tippu’s Summer Palace and Fort, Horse Way, origins of Palar and Arkavathi rivers, Yoga Nandeeshwara Temple and Tippu Drop. You can find a playground for children here with accomplished facilities to add to the spirit of children.
Cubbon Park is placed in 300 acres of land. It was created by Richard Sankey who was the Chief Engineer of Mysore. The huge green parks and the lawns that are well provided need special notice. The Park actions alluring walkway. It is an ideal place for you to be during your chaotic holiday tour. It deserves to be called a Paradise for walkers. Statues of famous personalities are situated here. You will be mesmerized by the sight of Cubbon Park in the evening when the lights are turned on.
Things to Do at Cubbon Park:
- Museum tour.
- Toy train ride.
- Aquarium visit.
- Take long walks.
The Karnataka government has constructed a facsimile named Vikasa Soudha to the south of the construction. Built in 1954, Vidana Soudha is a memorial of Bangalore, next to Cubbon Park. This colossal construction is an extensive case of a neo-Dravidian building, with four domes on its four corners. It houses the parliamentary Chamber of Karnataka Government, as well as contains many government departments. Sadly, it's not open to the public but is stunningly bright at night.
Visit ISKCON Sri Radha Krishna Temple:-
The temple attracts tourists or devotees from all over the world as it provides a great spiritual experience. Inaugurated in the year 1997, the place houses the temples dedicated to the deities of Sri Sri Radha Krishnachandra, Sri Sri Krishna Balarama, Sri Srinivasa Govinda, Sri Sri Nitai Gauranga and Sri Prahlada Narasimha. Assembled in a excellent building style, the temple is a perfect union of spirituality and modernity. Bangalore has two ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness) temples, one of which is Sri Radha Krishna Temple, placed at Hare Krishna Hill, Rajaji Nagar.