You will also hear some people calling Mysore, Mysuru. It is the third-largest city in Karnataka. Moreover, the location is also amazingly beautiful, at the foot of the Chamundi Hills. It was also the capital of the Kingdom of Mysore. So, by now you may have understood that Mysore boasts royal connections and traditions. You can also call it a heritage city with a long drawn historical background. Many people also call it the cultural capital of the state. You will find no dearth of palaces, temples, heritage structures, lakes, waterfalls, and gardens, in the city.
The city is also famous for the Mysore Silk sarees, Mysore paintings, Mysore Pak sweetmeat, and the Mysore Dosa. That is quite a lot on the plate. It is no wonder that you will find tourists from all over India visiting the beautiful city of grandeur. You will be bewildered to know other mythological facts about the city. It finds mention as ‘Mahishmati’ in the epic saga ‘Mahabharata.’ Some of the noteworthy places in the city are the Maharaja’s Palace, Curzon Park, the Silver Jubilee Clock Tower, and the Oriental Library. It is also a top pilgrimage site, where devotees head to worship Nandi in the Chamundi Hills. The weather is also peasant throughout, so you can visit it at any time.
Background of Mysore
According to historical texts and scriptures, Mysore became an independent state in AD 1565 under the Hindu Wodeyar Dynasty. However, in the year 1761, Hyder Ali established his control over the ruling dynasty of Mysore. He was succeeded by Tipu Sultan in 1782. Tipu Sultan was the first ruler who used western methods to rule the kingdom. Moreover, he was the one who used modern military training methods and also established a modern weapon-making workshop. Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan ruled Mysore for over 40 years. After Tipu Sultans’ death in the Anglo-Mysore War, history took another turn. After the British took over, rulers from the Wodeyar Family ruled the kingdom for a number of years. Mysore continued as a sovereign state under Maharaja H.H. Jaya Chamaraja Wodeyar along with Chief Minister, K.C. Reddy. However, the city was included as a part of Indian Democracy in 1950. Under the Mysore Kingdom traditional art and craft flourished. Kannada literature also developed at the same time.
Popular Tourist Attractions of Mysore
Located in the Southern city of Karnataka, tourists from across India and foreigners visit the heritage city, for its grandeur. You can admire and enjoy classical architecture at this city, also referred to as the ‘Ivory City’ at times. It is also addressed as the ‘City of Palaces.’ Some of the main attractions at Mysore include Mysore Palace, Mysore Zoo, Butterfly Park, Chamundi Hills, Tipu Sultan’s Palace, and Brindavan Gardens, to name a few.
Apart from all the attractions that Mysore has, it is also popular for Dassara celebrations. It is celebrated in the autumn months. The revelry continues for nine days in the Brindavan Gardens. Ugadi or Kannada New Year is also celebrated amongst a lot of revelry. If you happen to visit Mysore in March or April you can witness the celebrations. You might consider yourself lucky, if you drop there during the Panchalinga Darshana festival, which takes place every 12 years.
Here is a list of attractions, which you must check out when you visit Mysore.
- Mysore Palace
- Brindavan Gardens
- Mysore Zoo
- Somanathapura Temple
- Chamundeshwari Temple
- Shuka Vana
- Jaganmohan Palace
- Bonsai Garden
- Rail Museum
- Karanji Lake
- St. Philomena’s Church
- Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
- Edmuri Falls
- Folklore Museum
- Shivanasamudra Falls
- Nagarhole National Park
Activities That You Can Indulge in Mysore
If you are seeking more thrills than what these attractions can offer, Mysore will not disappoint you either.
Lake Rafting – It is one of the more popular activities, which you can engage in, in Mysore, the city that has numerous lakes. It is an adrenaline-pumping activity, in which you get on an inflatable raft, and navigate the water bodies. The 20-minute ride will leave you refreshed, excited and asking for more. You can enjoy this activity at Varuna Lake.
Jeep Safari – It is one of the best activities which you can enjoy in the jungles of Nagarhole. You can spot large predators, herbivores, and a range of birds on such trips. This is the perfect trip for all nature lovers. You can enjoy this activity under expert guidance and also learn about the forest, the animals, and their habitat.
Trekking – It is one of the best adventures that you can engage in Mysore. You will find many hilly terrains in and around the region. Chamundi Hills offer you a good chance to try this activity. It is a great exercise which can invigorate your mind and senses.
Mountain Camping – This is another activity that allows you to spend a night or two under the stars. This is a combination of both mountain climbing and camping. There are many spots in and around Mysore, but Chamundi Hills happens to be the best one.
Kayaking – You can also try your hands at kayaking. Varuna Lake is the place, where most water sports are conducted. So, you have got to be there, on your trip to Mysore. The trainer will guide you with the tricks and tips to engage in this thrilling water activity.
Sky Diving – Now, this is something just out of the world. Sky diving will give you a bird’s eye view of the entire city. Furthermore, you can sky dive in Mysore from a height of 10,000 feet. You can try it alone or with a large group.
How To Spend a Few Days in Mysore
Most of us get a week’s time mostly as a holiday. So, you can also cover Bangalore and Mysore on one such holiday. Bangalore residents treat Mysore as a weekend destination. If you are visiting Bangalore for some work, you can include Mysore. On a short trip, you should definitely cover Mysore Palace, as it happens to be one of the most iconic structures in Karnataka. Apart from the palace, you can also cover Chamundi Hill Temple which has a Hindu temple located atop the peak. You can also cover Brindavan Gardens, Mysore Zoo, Railway Museum, and the Museums nearby. Additionally, on the next day of your stay, you can also cover Lalitha Mahal Palace, St Philomena’s Cathedral, and Karanji Lake. You can also engage in water sports at Varuna Lake. Srirangapatna Fort, Gumbaz, Tipu Sultan’s Palace, and Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary can also be covered on the third day. If you are left with time in hand, you should taste Mysore Dosa and Petha.
How to Reach Mysore
Travellers can fly to Bangalore International Airport and then take the road to reach Mysore. You can also head to Mysore Airport, which has connections with the other South Indian cities. The travellers from other parts of India, can opt for Bangalore as the best option. It is the same for foreigners as well. You can take a cab or bus to head to Mysore.
You can also get a ticket to Mysore Junction Railway Station, which is on the Bangalore-Mysore line. Public transport is easily available from the station to your accommodation in Mysore.
If you are in any of the southern cities, you can use NH 275, NH 766 and NH 150A to reach Mysore. There is no dearth of state buses. The interstate bus terminal is KSRTC Bus Stand.
Places to Stay in Mysore
You can stay at hotels, guest houses, and resorts in and around Mysore. There are hotels in all kinds of budgets. Additionally, you can also stay at one of the heritage properties, as well. Some of the best resorts are The Kings Sanctuary, The Quorum Hotel and Hotel Pai Vista, Silent Shores, and many more. Some of the cheaper options include Hotel Ajantha Palace, and Megha Comfort.