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Mysore – A Place Renowned For Its Beautiful Palaces and Great Culture
The Cultural Capital
Mysore, the second largest city of Karnataka, is located at the base of the Chamundi hills and is major tourism hub of South India. The city, which was predominantly under the rule of Wodeyar Dynasty, was the capital of the Kingdom of Mysore till 1947. The Wodeyar rulers were known to be great lovers of art and culture and had a major role to play in enhancing the cultural growth of Mysore. Today the city is renowned for its great cultural heritage which is why it is also referred to as the “cultural capital of Karnataka”. For a brief period in the late 18th century, the kingdom was ruled by Hyder Ali and his son Tipu Sultan, two great kings, under whom the city prospered and flourished tremendously.  

Major Places of Tourist Interest
Mysore is a place famous for its ancient temples, magnificent palaces and beautiful gardens. Given below are the details of some of the major tourist hot spots in the city. 

Mysore Palace: Located in the centre of the city, this palace is also known as the Amba Vilas Palace or Main Palace. The Mysore palace reflects the grandeur of the city in past and hence is a major tourist hot spot. The current palace presents an artistic combination of the Dravidian, Indo-Saracenic, and Oriental and Roman architecture style and is the fourth structure to be constructed at the same place. The most important feature of the palace is its golden throne weighing 200 kgs, which is put up for public display only during the Dasara. Apart from that the palace also features a vast collection of dolls and seven cannons located in front of the Gombe Thotti, which are used even today to indicate the beginning and closing of the Dasara festival. 

Brindavan Gardens: This beautiful garden, located below the Krishnaraja Sagar Dam, is a famous tourist destination of Mysore. Known formerly by the name of Krishnarajendra Terrace Garden, the garden was constructed by Sir M. Vishveswariah, between 1924 and 1932. The design of the garden is based on the famous Shalimar Gardens of Kashmir and consists of magnificent lawns, flower beds, shrubs and trees along with several pools and fountains. The centre of the garden also features a pond with the statue of Goddess Cauvery located in it, where visitors can enjoy boat rides.  The garden is spread over an area of sixty acres and presents a mesmerizing view in the evening when it is illuminated by colorful fountains.

Chamundi Hills: Chamundi Hills are another major tourist destination of Mysore, primarily because of the Chamundeswari Temple located on the hilltop. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Chamundeswari an incarnation of Goddess Parvathi and the patron deity of the Wodeyars. Although the temple was constructed around the 11th century AD, it was renovated by the Kings of Mysore only in 1827. Chamundi hills also feature the Bull temple which has an immense monolith of Nandi, the bull. This 5 m high idol has been carved out of a single block of black granite and is among the tallest statues of Nandi in India. In addition, Chamundi hills are also famous for providing a majestic view of the city of Mysore.

St. Philomena's Church: This church is Roman Catholic Church which was constructed during 1840 AD. Earlier this church was named as St. Joseph Chave. This Church is located very close to Mysore palace and its foundation was laid down by the then king of Mysore Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV. It is designed in gothic architectural style by a French architect.

Jaganmohan Palace:  This is an art gallery at a walking distance from the main Mysore palace. During the kingship of Krishnaraja Wodeyar III in the year 1861 this palace was built to celebrate the functions of marriage of his daughter. Here you will get to see historic Travancore paintings of historic people from Mysore.

Somanathapuram Temple: This temple is located in Somanathpur village which is 35kms away from main Mysore city. This temple is built in Hoysala architecture style in the shape of star with 3 different towers. The walls are having carvings of caparisoned elephants, horsemen, gods, goddesses figure.

Kukkarahalli Lake: This Lake is located in the campus of Mysore University. This lake is considered as the source of inspiration for various writers and poets. You can relax and enjoy the scenic view of the place.  

Famous Thing to Buy In Mysore

Mysore is known across the world for two main things, namely sandalwood and silk. Visitors coming to this beautiful city are sure to bring back a good number of famous sandalwood agarbathis or perfumed incense sticks. Women also love to shop for beautiful sarees and dress materials made from the famed Mysore silk, as they can get them at a lot lesser rates than those offered outside the city.


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