Bengaluru (also called Bangalore) is the capital of India’s southern Karnataka state. The center of India’s high-tech industry, the city is also known for its parks and nightlife. By Cubbon Park, Vidhana Soudha is a Neo-Dravidian legislative building. Former royal residences include 19th-century Bangalore Palace, modeled after England’s Windsor Castle, and Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palace, an 18th-century teak structure.
An epitome of great architecture and beauty, The Majestic Bangalore Palace preserves in it the spice of old regal opulence. Currently the central attraction in Bangalore, the palace was built in the year 1878. Chamarajendra Wadiyar’s British Guardians bought the original property in 1873 from the principal of Bangalore Central High School, Rev, J Garret, from his funds. The palace is extraordinarily vast and spread across 45,000 square feet. A mixture of Tudor and Scottish Gothic architecture have resulted into the grand palace that we see today.The wooden structure of the palace along with the beautiful carvings both inside and outside showcases the royal culture in different ways.
Apart from being a major tourist destination, the palace is a host to different cultural events, rock shows, and marriages. As per beliefs, King Chamarajendra Wadiyar drew his inspiration for building the palace from the Windsor Castle of London. The granite seats decorated with fluorescent blue ceramic tiles on the ground floor, a fairy tale Ballroom, the famous painter Raja Ravi Varma’s paintings, vine-covered walls, and the Durbar Hall on the first floor come together to form the prepossessing Bangalore Palace.
A visit to the palace gives you a chance to witness the elegant and lavish splendour of one of the most powerful dynasties of South India. An audio tape is available inside the Palace, both in Hindi and English, to help the people having language issues, understand its history better.
Spread over an area of 300 acres, Cubbon Park in the city of Bangalore is a major sightseeing attraction rich in green foliage. It is a green belt region of the city and is an ideal place for nature lovers and those seeking a calm atmosphere. Having been laid down by Lord Cubbon, the park is named so in his honour. It is home to more than 6,000 trees that support a vibrant ecosystem. In addition to being a natural sightseeing destination, some of the major structures of the city such as the Attara Kacheri, Cubbon Park Museum and Sheshadri Iyer Memorial Park are also situated here. Another famous attraction in the Cubbon Park is The Bangalore Aquarium, which is the second largest aquarium in India.
Cubbon Park was originally spread over 100 acres, which was later extended to 300 acres. First established in the year 1870 by Sri John Meade (acting Commissioner of Mysore), Cubbon Park has a long history. Major General Richard Sankey (Chief Engineer of the State) conceived this park in honour of Sri John Meade. Initially, the park was called “Meade’s Park” and later came to be known as the Cubbon Park. Since the introduction of the park, it was made and improved in many ways.
In the year 1927, the park was officially renamed as “Sri. Chamarajendra Park” to mark the Silver Jubilee of Sri. Krishnaraja Wodeyar’s rule in Mysore State. At present, the Cubbon Park is under the control of the Department of Horticulture. The Deputy Director of Horticulture (Cubbon Park) is responsible for the administration and maintenance of the park.
Lal Bagh Garden
Lalbagh Botanical Garden is located in Bangalore and is nationally and internationally renowned centre for botanical artwork, scientific study of plants and also conservation of plants. A haven for all nature lovers, Lal Bagh covers an area 240 acres in the heart of the city and has nearly 1,854 species of plants. It was commissioned by Hyder Ali in 1760 and completed by his son Tipu Sultan. The garden features rare plants of French, Persian and Afghani origin and has attained the status of a Government Botanical Garden. The Lal Bagh Rock which is over 3000 million years old is found here and is a major tourist attraction.
This botanical garden, a delight for photographers, also consists of the famous glass house where an annual flower show is held every year and is also a home to an aquarium and a lake. Tipu Sultan brought in imported trees and plants from countries all over the world and planted them here and today, Lalbagh Botanical Garden has one of the world’s largest collection of rare plants. In addition to being rich in foliage, this garden also houses a number of birds such as Myna, Parakeets, Crows, Brahminy Kite, Pond Heron, Common Egret and Purple Moor Hen.
One of the busiest roads in Bangalore, MG Road or Mahatma Gandhi Road is a hub of recreational and commercial activity in the city. Swarming with people at almost all the time, MG Road is a one-stop destination for a perfect weekend shopping adventure. Items such as traditional handicrafts, silk, sarees and cutlery and bone china sets are easily available here among other enticing goods. And once you get tired of shopping and are looking for a quick bite to eat, a plethora of cafes and restaurants here are at your service. Nights at MG Road call for partying and dancing till you drop and it packs quite a few high-end pubs as well. One of the most popular shopping and entertainment hubs of Bangalore, MG Road is a must visit when you’re in the city.
It was known as South Parade during the pre-independence era but was renamed as Mahatma Gandhi Road or MG Road on 26th February 1948. Today, MG Road is best known for its amazing shopping experience, restaurants, cafes and food outlets offering delectable delicacies. With its own metro station now since 2011, MG Road runs east from Trinity Circle at one end towards Anil Kumble Circle at the other end. Once flocked with old buildings, today the avenue is all about fancy glass buildings mixed with an old vibe exhibited by few old-time structures. Take a stroll on the street and enjoy the bright atmosphere at MG Road!
Bannerghatta National Park
Located 22 km away from Bangalore, the Bannerghatta National Park is an asylum for a large variety of flora and fauna. Spread over a massive area of around 104.27 sq. km, this national park was established in the year 1971. The park itself has a number of establishments within its confines, which includes the country’s first butterfly park as well. Other attractions here are ten Reserve Forests of Anekal Range of the Bangalore Forest Division, an aquarium, a zoo, Children’s park, Crocodile Farm, Snake Park, Prehistoric Animals’ Park and a museum. What’s more, you can get up close and personal with the wondrous wildlife here by the means of a jungle safari, which is a popular activity to pursue here.
Nature lovers and photographers are surely in for a treat in the Bannerghatta National Park. The assorted collection of wildlife here includes elephants, leopards, jackal, fox, wild boar, sloth bear, India gazelle, spotted deer, porcupine, Asiatic Lion, Royal Bengal Tiger, monitor lizard and cobras. Rediscover the botanist in you as you inspect and learn more about the sandalwood, neem, tamarind, bamboo, eucalyptus and many more trees that find a place here. The various establishments here such as the zoo and the aquarium provide a number of experiences with the endearing wildlife here. Blessed with the bounty of nature, the Bannerghatta National Park is a unique learning experience for both adults and children alike. In addition to being a natural retreat, the park is also an unlikely destination for a wide variety of adventure sports such as trekking and hiking. All in all, Bannerghatta is a wonderful rendezvous with nature in its most unadulterated form.