Also known as “Mysuru” or the city of palaces, it would not be wrong to say that Mysore is one of the most extravagant places in the country. It is steeped in the history of its dazzling royal heritage, its intricate architecture, its famous yoga, Mysore saree Udyog, sandalwood Mysore silk saris and Mysore’s famous Sandal Soap to name a few. Located at the foot of the Chamundi hills, Mysore is the third most populous city in the state of Karnataka and its rich cultural heritage attracts millions of tourists throughout the year.
Mysore is steeped in royal history – it was one of the three largest princely states of the former British empire in India. To this day, the Mysore Palace stands as one of the most spectacular palaces in the whole country. A very famous tourist place that witnesses thousands of visitors on tour every day, Mysore Palace is famous for its ancient architecture, design, craftsmanship and tapestries. Every Sunday and during Dussehra celebrations, the palace is dramatically illuminated after dark.
Different Modes to Reach Mysore
Although Mysore has its own airport, it is not fully functional, so tourists can access this city through Bangalore airport. The approximate distance between Bangalore and Mysore is 170 km. Getting on a train at Mysore railway station is a very convenient way to travel, as the daily trains travel here. Bus services also operate regularly and finding a seat is never a problem.
The closest international airport of Mysore is Bangalore airport for those wishing to visit the city by plane across the border. There is a domestic airport within the city which organizes flights to and from major cities such as Chennai, Mumbai, Bangalore, New Delhi and Calcutta.
Mysore is located 139 km southwest of Bangalore. The state highway linking these two cities is extremely well maintained. Getting out of Bangalore to Mysore by road is a wonderful experience and will take about 3 hours. Karnataka Road Transport Corporation has a brilliant transport administration in Mysore.
The Mysore railway station, located in the heart of the city, connects the city with all major cities of India. Mysore railway station has three lines connecting the city to Bangalore, Hassan and Chamarajanagar.
Local Transit Within The City
The best way to travel around the city of Mysore is to rent a rickshaw. They are the most reliable and accessible way to get around the city, as you can pay by the meter during the day. Private day taxis can also be hired from car hire companies. Many hotels in Mysore also offer this service. Buses are also operated by the government of the state of Mysore and its surroundings. They run along fixed routes and the cost is nominal. A popular way of getting around among tourists is Tonga, which is a horse-drawn carriage. Although it is a slow mode of transportation, the experience is worth at least once.
Best Time To Visit Mysore
Mysore certainly has a tropical climate, but monsoons and winter are the best time to visit the city. The monsoon – the winter months are from July to February have a pleasant climate. With these captivating months the beauty of the city can be enjoyed. Summers are less ideal for traveling and visiting the city although Mysore’s weather usually remains cool, calm and pleasant all year round.
Festivals in Mysore
The Vairamudi Festival is the annual celebration held at the Swamy Temple of Cheluva Narayana, when the deity is adorned with the legendary crown of diamonds. Then the Lord is led through the city in a colorful procession, attended by over 500,000 people.
Mysore Dasara is a ten day festival which is celebrated during Navratri and continues until the day of Vijayadashami. This festival is the most anticipated event in the small town of Mysore and is often referred to as the Royal Festival for its lush atmosphere. When you visit Mysore during this festival, there are many things to do, from combining dance, music and processions to participating in various exhibitions and Food Mela on the field, or simply taking a heritage tour and witnessing the twinkle of Mysore and glamor close up. The beautifully decorated Mysore palace with more than 1 Lakh bulbs adorning it is a sight to behold.
Food In Mysore
Mysore cuisine has a clear influence of Udupi cuisine on its dishes. One of the most famous items here is the traditional dessert, Mysore Pak. Other than that, the Mysore is full of authentic, traditional and local cuisine. These include Mysore Masala Dosa, Idli, Shavige Bath, Pongal, Chutney and Pickles, Vangi Baath (rice with eggplant curry), Bissi bele bath (a spicy rice preparation), as well as numerous sweets such as Payasam, Jalebi, Rave Unde, Ladoo and more still Indian coffee filter and Adike (areca nut) with betel leaf are also popular items.
Top Places To Visit In Mysore
1. Mysore Palace
Mysore Palace was the official residence of the former Mysore royal family and also hosted the darbar.
The facade has seven large arches and two smaller ones flanking the central arch, which is supported by tall pillars. Above the central arch there is an impressive sculpture of the goddess Gajalakshmi with her elephants.
Also known as Amba Vilas Palace, it is a treasure house with exquisite sculptures and works of art from all over the world. The building has three entrances, the east gate, the south gate and the west gate. The entrance to Mysore Palace is through the Gombe Thotti or the Doll Pavilion which has a large collection of dolls that belong to the early 19th and 20th centuries. This section also includes the Howdah wooden elephant which is decorated with 81 kg of gold. Mysore Palace in India is believed to be the most beautiful palace in the country.
During the Dussehra festival, the magnificent gold throne with gold jewelry made of 200 kg of pure gold is displayed. The splendid paintings on the ceiling of the durbar room are impressive and provide a unique feature to the palace.
2. Brindavan Gardens
Brindavan Gardens, spread over 60 acres, are located at a distance of 21 km from Mysore. Built across the remarkable river of India, Cauvery, it took about five years to complete the project. The timely fountain show with music, boat rides and well-kept lawns with flower beds are some of the best experiences of Brindavan Garden.
Built in 1932 by the Diwan of Mysore, Sir Mirza Ismail, Brindavan Garden is visited by millions of tourists every year.
Divided into two parts, north and south, a navigation structure offered by the Karnataka State Tourism Development Corporation which connects the two parts with a pedestrian bridge.
Mysore City is known for its great heritage value of having and maintaining numerous number of beautiful Temples in and around Mysore. On the banks of the Sacred River, Kaveri is a peaceful town in Somanathapura. Here is the most beautiful and exemplary monument of Hoysala architecture, known as the famous Prasanna Chennakesava temple or simply the Kesava temple. Consecrated in 1258 AD, it is a Hindu temple in Vaishnav dedicated to the power and beauty of Lord Krishna (Chenna-Bello and Kesava-Krishna). Tourists near and far come to visit the temple to admire the beautiful place. The Chennakesava temple is one of 1500 temples built by the kings of the Hoysala empire in different parts of their kingdom, and is said to be the culminating development in the style of the Hoysala temple, yet it is unique in many other ways.
A classic example of Hoysala’s famous architecture, it is one of three temples of the type named on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Unfortunately, this temple is no longer used as a place of worship because idols have been destroyed and desecrated by invaders of Muslim armies. However, the beauty of the temple still fascinates thousands of visitors who visit the site to witness the magnificent artistic and engineering achievements of the time, to seek the blessing of the Lord and admire the delicate sculptures and sculptures, whose beauty is irregular and so unique as God.
4. Mysore Zoo
Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens, also known as Mysore Zoo, is one of the best zoo in India. Maharaja Chamaraja Wodeyar founded this zoo in 1892 for royalty. In addition, after gaining freedom, he handed himself over to the State Government’s Parks and Gardens Department. The meticulous planning of the zoo is responsible for transforming it into a special zoo. It tends to create a natural habitat for animals inside. From large to small cats, from water birds to land birds and from primates to reptiles, one hundred and sixty-eight species find their place in this zoo. The world’s first cesarean delivery performed on an elephant at the Mysore zoo brought him worldwide fame and recognition.
Located near the Mysore palace, the zoo covers an area of 157 acres. It is one of the oldest and most famous zoos in India. It plays the role of an orphanage for abandoned animals. Various exhibitions are held here with an insect show that literally steals the show. Subsequently, the zoo runs some educational programs, such as youth club activities, literary competitions and summer camp activities. Karanji Lake was placed under the jurisdiction of the zoo in 1976 and has since been a calm and peaceful place to go boating.
5. Chamundeshwari temple
Dedicated and named after the goddess Durga, the temple also has statues of Nandi and Mahishasura, the demon. Being one of the oldest temples in the palace city of Mysore, the temple is a must for travelers. The Chamundeshwari temple is considered a Shakti Peetha and is one of the 18 Maha Shakti Peethas.
There are two options for visitors to reach Chamundeshwari temple, either on foot or through the braided valley road. The temple displays the fierce form of Shakti, a tutelary deity that the Maharajas of Mysore have held in veneration for centuries; hence its name derives from the goddess Durga. The idol of the goddess Durga here is adorned every day and worshiped by various priests. The divinity is offered a variety of fruits, coconuts and flowers to show respect and reverence.
Located atop the Chamundi hills, the temple is generally not too crowded. Chamundeshwari temple also has statues of the demon Mahishasura; You can even see the huge statues from the path to the temple. The temple also has a statue of Nandi, which is that of a cow and is of great importance in Hindu mythology. The view from the temple is impressive as it is possible to see many important structures of the city, including the Lalitha Mahal Palace. The temple has also been declared an area without plastic, making a great contribution to the conservation of our environment, by blocking the use of plastic materials and the discharge of hazardous materials.
6. Shuaka Vana
With over 450 different species, this impressive 50-meter-high aviary spanning an area of 1 acre currently holds the record for most bird species in an aviary in the Guinness Book of Records. Many rare species of parrots can be found flying around this beautiful enclosure.
Through this initiative, hopes to inform, raise awareness and develop a sense of respect and friendship among the general public towards bird species. The parrots here have been assigned based on the zodiac signs with which they are connected and you can find a parrot representing their date of birth and the planet according to Indian astrology. Here you can also find parrots that symbolize days and months of the year. It is quite impressive to see a large number of these enchanting creatures, considered ships of invisible spiritual dimensions.