Jan 242015
 
Mysore has an impressive royal heritage as it served as the capital of the princely State of Mysore for nearly six centuries with distinguished rulers like Tipu Sultan and Hyder Ali. It is famous for its various temples, palaces, forts and old churches with the highlight being the imposing Mysore Palace. This is especially beautiful when it is illuminated every Sunday evening. The city is also known as the cultural capital of Karnataka and is the origin for various styles of Indian arts and crafts. The festival of Dasara is an important event in Mysore and takes place around late September.

  • Mysore Palace

    Mysore Palace

  • Nandi Bull

    Nandi Bull

  • Woman Construction Labourer

    Woman Construction Labourer

  • Mysore Market Seller

    Mysore Market Seller

  • Mysore Flower Market

    Mysore Flower Market

  • Mysore Flower Market

    Mysore Flower Market

  • Mysore Market

    Mysore Market

  • Storage for Bananas at Mysore Market

    Storage for Bananas at Mysore Market

  • Fruit Seller at Mysore Market

    Fruit Seller at Mysore Market

  • Daria Daulat mural paintings depicting a Tipu  story

    Daria Daulat mural paintings depicting a Tipu story

  • Daria Daulat - Tipu Sultan Palace

    Daria Daulat – Tipu Sultan Palace

  • Mysore Flower Market Garlands

    Mysore Flower Market Garlands

  • Banana Selling Area at Mysore Market

    Banana Selling Area at Mysore Market

  • Vegetable Market

    Vegetable Market

  • Mysore Palace Illuminated

    Mysore Palace Illuminated

  • Festival at Mysore Palace

    Festival at Mysore Palace

  • Colours for Sale

    Colours for Sale

  • Powdered Colours Vendor

    Powdered Colours Vendor

  • Indian Bangles

    Indian Bangles

  • Chamundi Hills Monument

    Chamundi Hills Monument

  • Priest atChamundi Hills Monument

    Priest atChamundi Hills Monument

Things to see

Mysore Palace

P1040157Mysore Palace is one of the most visited monuments in India and also one of the largest palaces in the country. It was the residence of the Wodeyar Maharaja’s of the Mysore state and to this day, members of the Royal family still occupy one portion of the Palace. The rest of the palace has now been converted into a museum that treasures souvenirs, paintings, jewelery, royal costumes and other items, which were once possessed by the Wodeyars. The beautifully carved mahogany ceilings, solid silver doors, white marble floors and superb columned Durbar Hall are certainly very impressive. A silhouette of the Mysore Palace illuminated with 98,260 bulbs, shimmering against an inky black night is one of the most enduring images of the city and can be enjoyed every Sunday evening.

Chamundi Hill and Temple

P1040171Mysore, derived from “Mahishasurana Ooru,” was named from the demon Mahishasura who was killed by goddess Chamundershwari at the top of Chamundi Hill just outside Mysore.
The goddess Chamundershwari is still worshipped to this day with thousands of people visiting the Chamundi Hill to honour her. The Chamundeshwari Temple, a Hindu place of worship, is also located at the top of Chamundi Hill.

Nandi Bull

P1040195Half way up Chamundi hill, you will find an idol of a bull, called Nandi. The specialty of the 5-meter tall statue is that it was sculptured out of a single rock in 1659.

St. Philomena’s Church

st-philomena-church-and-rickshaw-with-childThe 200-year old St. Philomena’s Church, also known as St. Joseph’s Church, is built in Gothic Style. Originally, a small church stood in this place but later, Maharaja Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV, laid the foundation for the present St. Philomena’s Church. It is one of the largest Cathedrals in the whole of South Asia. St. Philomena’s relic belonging to the 3rd century is found in the Church.

Daria Daulat Bagh

Daria Daulat Bagh - Mural PaintingsTippu Sultan popularly known as the “Tiger of Mysore”, built this palace in 1784 and ruled Mysore from here for a short time after his father Hyder Ali took back power from the British in the middle of the 18th century. The most stunning feature of the palace is that all the walls have colorful frescoes in the style of Mysore paintings

Brindavan Gardens

Brindavan GardensBrindavan Gardens is situated below Krishnaraja Sagar dam. The work to construct the garden commenced in 1927 and was completed in 1932. It is spread across 150 acres of land and is one of the best gardens in the country. It houses a botanical park and many fountains in various shapes and sizes. The musical fountain is one of its main attractions. To enjoy the colourful fountains at their best, try to visit after sunset.

Mysore Zoo 

Mysore ZooDeveloped in 1892, the Mysore Zoo is one of the oldest and most renowned zoos in the world.
The zoo spans 245-acres and is home to rare and exotic birds and animals. Some popular exhibits feature tigers, Indian and African elephants, bears, gorillas, monkeys, lions, hippos, rhinos, and much more.

Srirangapatnam Fort 

water-gate1Built in the year 1537 by a feudal lord, this magnificent fort is considered to be the second toughest fort of India. The Srirangapatna Fort has four main entrances known by the names of Delhi, Bangalore, Mysore and Water and Elephant gates. The fort has a double wall defence system, which is what makes it impenetrable. The legendary Tipu Sultan’s residence was inside this fort. Hence, it is also known as Tipu Sultan Fort.

Dasara Festival 

KPN photoIn contrast to other parts of India where Dussehra is only celebrated for one day, Mysore Dasara takes place over the whole 10 days of the Navaratri festival (Sept/Oct). Numerous music and dance performances take place at the Palace and other venues. There’s also wrestling tournament, art exhibition, food festival, kite festival, film festival, flower show, and sightseeing to local tourist places. Another attraction is the Dussehra exhibition, which starts during the festival and continues for around three months. There are stalls selling all kinds of handicrafts, clothing and other ornaments, as well as games and amusement rides. However, the main attraction takes place on the last day of the festival. A traditional procession (known as Jumboo Savari) winds its way through the streets of Mysore, starting at noon from Mysore Palace and ending in Bannimantap. It features an idol of the Goddess Chamundeshwari, carried atop a lavishly decorated elephant. In the evening, there’s a torch-light parade at the Bannimantap grounds on the outskirts of the city.

Places to Stay

Royal Orchid Metropole

Hotel ExteriorA luxury heritage hotel, Royal Orchid Metropole is steeped in the history and culture of Mysore. It was built by the former Maharajah of Mysore in 1920 as a grand guesthouse for his distinguished British guests. Its imperial arches, imposing pillars and ornate corridors capture the old world charm of this majestic era. The heritage rooms are enormous, full of period style and have wonderful outdoor terraces. The courtyard dining is an absolute delight.

Windflower

Swimming PoolRelax by the natural rock formation outdoor swimming pool or visit the world-class spa that offers over 30 different ways to renew. An impressive multi-cuisine open-air restaurant and wine bar are also available. Windflower Resort & Spa offer silence, space and serenity in the heart of the royal city.


Green Hotel

Green HotelOriginally built for Mysore’s princesses and known as Chittaranjan Palace , this fabulous building has been lovingly restored as a charming, if slightly quirky, hotel. The extensive gardens, with formal lawns, flower borders and shaded pergolas are a beautiful place to relax after sightseeing in Mysore. Most admirably, the Green Hotel has been set up as a model of sustainable tourism, by the Charities Advisory Trust, a UK charity. All profits are distributed to charitable and environmental projects in India.