Travel and Tourism
It's usually difficult to do away with platitudes while writing on tourism, especially destinations. Not for Bangalore, though, as the city stands on its own when it comes to attractions. Reason? Each of these has a history and identity of its own, that attracts you irrespective of whether you are visiting complete city or that particular attraction alone. We are not going to talk about the pleasant climate anymore, you know that already. What may be a novelty for you, is that the man made architectural marvels and the natural beauty of the city coexist so harmoniously, that it often appears to be beyond belief. Founded by Kempe Gowda, a Vijayanagara vassal at that time, the original city has four mighty pillars built to define its boundaries. The city has moved well past the original vision and there are no signs of the Bengaluru (Bangalore) stopping just yet.
It is easily among the most industrialized cities of India, matching steps with the latest trends and fashion. The city boasts of several tourist destinations and attractions including several intriguing temples, universities, gardens and several ancient structures. Despite having it all, the tourists to India, more often than not, have treated it as a gateway to the south India rather than a destination in itself. Communicating with the local people with ease is a facility that is hard to find in several other tourist destinations across the world.
Visweswaraya Industrial and Technological Museum
It is located right next to the government museum, and is managed by the Council of Science & Industrial Research. The museum, which intends to create a science consciousness among the people, is actually a tribute to Sir M. Vishweshwaraiah, a man who worked all his life towards bringing the science and technology to the common people of India. The museum is close on Mondays and all declared holidays.
Venkatappa Art Gallery
It is a wing of the state government museum and is an interesting place for the art aficionados complete with works of Plaster of Paris, water colour paintings and other famous art works of Venkatappa and other famous contemporary artists. There is a separate section dedicated to the Major Cheppudira Ponnappa Rajaram's wooden artwork sculptures. There is a separate exhibition hall which is available for other artists to show their work to the public.
The main inspiration behind the Bangalore Palace is the Windsor Palace and has been constructed in the Tudor style. It was built by a Wodeyar king in 1887 AD. It, to some extent, tends to replicate the medieval castles built in Normandy and England with the interiors built of elegant wood carvings.
Karnataka State Government Museum
Established in 1866, it is among the oldest Museums, and has various antiques found in different parts of Karnataka on display here. Other items on display here include inscriptions, coins, and scultures among other things. The museum remains closed on Wednesdays and other declared holidays. The collection here includes natural history and other archaeological specimens as well as from numismatics, ethnology and industrial art.
Spread over an area of 1.5 sq km, the Ulsoor lake, is replete with small and beautiful islands. Located near the north eastern boundaries of the city, the lake feels just right for boating. The place is thronged by the devotees during August September when Ganesh festival is organized here. One of the watch towers, built by Kempe Gowda, is also located nearby. The Ulsoor lake also boasts of a swimming pool, which has different timings for the male and female swimmers.
Built as a seat for the state legislative assembly of Karnataka, the Vidhaan Soudha is a brilliant example of the neo-Dravidian architectural style. The while domes and pillars mirror the style of Mysore's old Palace whereas the entire building looks breathtaking on Sunday evenings when it is floodlit.
The Bull Temple
Built in the 16th century, the 6.10 long and 4.57 m high image was carved out of a single rock. The image of the Nandi Bull, when built, was gray, but has turned black due to coconut oil applied by the devotees. The place is famous for the profusion of ceremonies that go on here whereas the weekends are reserved for the musicians here.
The park came into existence in 1864, and is spread over an area of 300 acres. Cubbon Park's beauty is enhanced by the Greco-colonial style buildings and “fairy fountain” which looks extremely beautiful when illuminated. The park is also famous for the Seshadri Iyer Memorial Hall, which also houses the public library. The other renowned buildings located here include the Technology Museum, the Government Aquarium, High Court, the Government Museum and the Jawaharlal Bal Bhavan.
Lal Bagh Botanical Gardens
Spread over an area of 240 acres, the Lal Bagh owes its existence to Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan. One of the main attractions here includes spectacular glass house (inspired by the Crystal Palace of London) that was built in the 1840. Lal bagh attracts hordes of people during the annual flower, fruit and vegetable shows that are organized here on a regular basis. One of the four watch towers built by Kempe Gowda is located here. The Karnataka Horticultural Society's office, often frequented by the flower lovers, operates out of the Lal Bagh.
Excursions from Bangalore
Established for the development of the classical dances, the Nrityagram was founded by the famous Odissi dancer Protima Bedi. Located about 30 km away from the Bengaluru centre, it was designed by the renowned architect from Goa, Gerard Da Cunha. The Nrityagram also caters to the students of music, mythology, philosophy, paintings and choreography.
Bannerghatta National Park
It is a tiger and lion safari park, and is spread over an area of 104 sq km. The tigers, lions and elephants can be easily seen here in closed enclosures. There is a crocodile and snake farm here as well. Regular bus services operate from the Bengaluru (Bangalore) city centre to the Bannerghatta National Park.