Bangalore, Capital of Karnataka, is at present Asia’s fastest growing cosmopolitan city with huge demand from technological giants worldwide. With rapid development ‘The Garden city of India’ boasts now of also being ‘The Silicon Valley of India’.
Spread over an area of 2190 sq.km. Bangalore, the fifth major metropolis of India is home to 6.52 million people. The city is lined with green landscapes and is free from extremes of climate due to its convenient location in the heart of Peninsular India.
Founded in 1537, Bangalore now is a kaleidoscope of striking colors. The city epitomizes India’s excursion from an emergent nation to the hub of Information Technology. Recently renamed as Bengaluru, it is also the core of some of the major scientific establishments in India. The city bears mark of a splendid past and this mingles with modern conveniences and pleasures.
A delightful destination, the city of Bangalore is beautifully decorated with parks, gardens, lakes and fountains. It also serves as a perfect stopover for some very beautiful places nearby including Mysore and the Jog Falls.
While in Bangalore, you can visit the Lal Baug Summer Palace of Tipu Sultan or just take a break in one of the numerous amusement parks. Breeze through some of the best eating joints, the swankiest shopping malls or the hip-n-happening pubs. Pleasant climate, architectural landmarks and the beautiful city–Bangalore has something for everyone.
Places to See in Bangalore
- Ulsoor Lake
The Ulsoor Lake, also known as Halasuru, is in central Bangalore, close to M. G. Road. It is said that God Somesvara came to Kempe Gowda in his dream and blessed him with hidden treasure. He then built a pagoda using Dravidian architectural style, dedicated to God Somesvara. The lake was formed for harvesting rainwater and has a surface area of 125 acres. City drainage also contributed as a source of water. The lake is an interesting location for tourists, as it has boating and cruise facility to visit beautiful islands that contain various kinds of flowers, birds and insects. The Sri Guru Singh Sabha Gurudwara on the edge of the Ulsoor Lake enhances the beauty and attraction for the visitors.
- Govt Museum (Visvesvaraya Museum)
The Government Museum of Bangalore, an archaeological museum located on the Kasturba Gandhi Road, is considered one of the oldest museums in India. The building, originally designed by Colonel Sankey in 1876, was extended later. The museum has two exhibition floors, with eighteen galleries housing sections on sculpture, geology, natural history, art, numismatics, etc. The collections in museum are enriched by ancient coins, jewellery, sculpture, inscriptions, and artifacts including relics from Mohenjodaro, Halebid and Vijayanagar. Some prehistoric artifacts of Neolithic period found during excavation at Chandravalli adore the museum. The museum is governed by the Directorate of Archeology and Museum of Karnataka State. It is open for viewers from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. except on Wednesdays.
- ISKCON temple complex
The ISKCON an international society having 350 temples dedicated to Lord Krishna across the world. Among these, the temple in Bangaluru is the largest. It was inaugurated in 1977 by the President of India. Built atop a hillock, the temple offers the visitor an ethnic view of the surrounding. The architecture is a mix of neo-classical and Dravidian style, with four tall towers called gopurams. Its large prayer hall can accommodate 2,000 devotees. Roof paintings depicting the life of Krishna are unique and informative. The temple houses five incarnations of God Vishnu. Daily puja starts with mangala aarti at 4:15 a.m., followed by various other pujas and kirtans, ending with Shayana Utsava at night. The complex also houses ISKCON museum, Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, and the Dakshinakriti shop for handicrafts.
- Bull Temple
Bull Temple in Bangalore, also known as “Nandi temple”or Bhoganandiswara temple. The temple is a sculptural masterpiece. It is dedicated to Nandi, the bull, which is considered as Lord Shiva’s Vahana or vehicle according to Hindu mythology. The temple is situated in Bungle hill on the south of Bull Temple Road. There is a large sculpture of Bull, which is about 4.6 metres tall and 6m long. One of the distinguishing characteristics of the structure is that it has been carved out from a single rock of granite.
- Someshwara Temple
Someshwara Temple in Bangalore is dedicated to Lord Shiva. It was built by Kempegowda at Ulsoor. It is one of the oldest and biggest temples of Bangalore, reminding us of the rich heritage of the Chola Kingdom. The marvelous architecture of the temple with glorious Rajagopuram (tower) and Dhwajastambha (massive pillar) in the entrance of the temple attracts devotees from far off places. Presently the temple is under the supervision of Endowment Department of the Karnataka Government.
- St. Mary’s Church
In 1818 , St. Mary’s Church was built by a French missionary, Abbe Dubois in the form of a chapel and called it ‘Kaanike Mathe Devaalaya’ (Our Lady of Presentation). Later it was rebuilt in 1882 to its present form. Both the interiors and the exteriors of the church are extremely ornamental. The intricate stained glass windows of the Church were imported from Paris. In the year 1973, St. Mary’s Church was granted the the status of a basilica and many ceremonial privileges were granted to it. Every year on 8th of September, Virgin Mary’s festival is celebrated with glory and grandeur. A procession is taken out on this eve, that attracts thousands of devotees and a chariot moves with the statue of St. Mary.
- Lalbagh Botanical Gardens
Literally translated as the “Red Garden” this is one of the star attractions of the city of Bangalore, the Lalbagh Botanical Gardens are spread over a sprawling 96 hectares and is rich in a variety of flora. This park was founded by Hyder Ali in the year 1760 who commissioned it as a private retreat for himself and wanted it be along the lines of the Mughal Gardens in Delhi. Tipu Sultan, Hyder Ali’s son completed this garden and named it Lalbagh due to it’s profusion of red roses. The Lalbagh Gardens is popular for it’s collection of rare trees, the famous Lalbagh Rock that is believed to date back to 3000 million years and a glasshouse inspired by the Crystal Palace in London. Lalbagh Gardens host bi annual flower shows, one a week preceding 26th January for Republic Day and the other a week before 15th August for Independence Day.
- Bangalore Palace
If you wish to see a replica of the Windsor Castle in the middle of India, complete with Tudor and Scottish Gothic architecture, granite turrets, towers and battlements then a visit to the Bangalore Palace Is a must. Spread over a rambling 430 acres the Bangalore Palace was acquired by the King Chamarajendra Wodeyar in 1873 from its original owner Reverend J Garret who was then the principal of the Bangalore Central High School. A visit to Bangalore without visiting the Bangalore Palace is surely incomplete.
- Vidhana Soudha
Vidhana Soudha houses the state legislature of Karnataka, constructed in the Neo-Dravidian style of architecture this is one of Bangalore’s most imposing buildings. The Vidhana Soudha is known for the intricate woodwork on the insides of the building, including the Sandalwood door to the cabinet room and the speaker’s chair that is made out of Rosewood from Mysore. Unfortunately the Vidhana Soudha is not open to the public, though it is beautifully floodlit on Sunday evenings.
- Tipu Sultan’s Palace
Tipu Sultan’s Palace can be found in one of the most congested markets in Bangalore. This palace was initially built as a summer home for Tipu Sultan and was also called “The Abode of Peace”. This palace is sculpted entirely out of teakwood and is known for its ornamental pillars, curved arches and balconies. Tipu Sultan’s palace is known for the beautiful floral patterns on the walls and a Ganesha Temple, a testament of Tipu Sultan’s religious tolerance.
- Cubbon Park
Cubbon Park is situated in the middle of the Central Administrative Area of Bangalore and is also known as the “Lung Area” of the city. This park is maintained by the Department of Horticulture of the State of Karnataka and has many tourist attractions.
· Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium
The Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium is located in the heart of the city of Bangalore at Sir. T. Chowdaiah Road. It contains the Science Park and the Science Centre. The most popular show in the Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium that pulls lakhs of visitors round the year is the Sky Theatre. Sky Theatre includes use of different visuals such as computer animations, cartoon special-effects, and video clippings. The planetarium has a total capacity of 210 seats.
Public events at the planetarium include viewing of astronomical events such as solar eclipse, transition of planets, passing of comets, etc. During this time, special arrangements are made, like installing portable telescopes in the open area of the planetarium. For live coverage of astronomical events occurring elsewhere, large display screens are provided with special video projectors.
Bangalore, the capital of Karnataka, is one of the most vibrant of the Indian metropolitan areas. Being the information technology hub of the country, with a large, young working population, it boasts of mix of a cosmopolitan and traditional culture. The city is dotted with shopping areas, big department stores and glistening new malls. Everything from apparel, footwear, jewelry, to traditional silk and sandal wood handicrafts are available in the city making it a shopper’s paradise. Apart from the traditional items such as silk fabric and saris, antiques, ivory carvings and handicrafts, trendy designer wear and the high end consumer items, electronic goods, and cars are also part of the Bangalore shopping experience. Bangalore has traditional markets with shops aligned on specific roads as well as malls which have any number of shops within them.
Bangalore offers a lot of lip-smacking and delicious foods. There are numerous options in dining, where one can choose according to one’s taste. These different restaurants and eating out joints serve a range of cuisines from regional, Indian, Mughlai to Chinese, Continental, Italian, etc.
Bangalore always experiences a very soothing weather with warm summers and cold winters. But neither the summers are very hot, nor the winters are very cold. Rainfall takes place quite often. If one is planning for a visit to this wonderful city, it is better to avoid going to the place in the rainy season from July to September. Bangalore witnesses the south-western monsoon rains.
The most favorable time to visit the city is during the months of October to February when the climate is highly pleasant.
The maximum temperature level at the summer time can rise to 36°C whereas that during winter can even go below 17°C. The average annual rainfall in Bangalore is 859 mm. The weather in Bangalore is neither too humid nor too dry.
The weather becomes foggy in the early mornings of October to February which is the maximum in the months of December and January. The climatic condition in Bangalore is very much influenced by the low cloud during the months of June to September.
- Hinal Shah