Mysore, erstwhile capital of the Mysore Maharajas, is the 2nd biggest city in Karnataka and also the cultural capital of Karnataka. Mysore is one of the top places to experience Karnataka Tourism and also one of the famous tourist places to visit in India. Mysore Palace is amongst the grandest royal buildings in India. Apart from famous Mysore Palace, Mysore has several tourist attractions including palaces, museums, temples, gardens, etc. Chamundi Hill Temple, Lalitha Mahal Palace, Jagan Mohan Palace, St. Philomena’s Cathedral, Mysore Zoo and Brindavan Gardensare the most famous Tourist places to visit in Mysore. Mysore is also famous for Dussera celebrations. The month long Dussera celebrations, with its colorful processions, fireworks and glittering palaces, gives an enchanting look to the city. Here is the list of top 5 places to visit in Mysore.
Mysore Palace, the official residence of the former royal family of Mysore, is the top tourist attraction of Mysore and amongst the largest royal palaces in India. The Palace was designed by British architect Henry Irwin and built in 1912 after a fire burnt down the old wooden palace. Mysore Palace is one of the popular heritage palaces in India and also one of the best places to experience Mysore Tourism. It is a treasure house of attractive carvings and works of art from all over the world. The Kalyana Mantapa or Marriage Hall with its chandeliers and stained Belgian glass ceiling arranged in peacock designs is another major attraction here. The palace is illuminated with more than 97,000 lights in night during Sundays, holidays and Dussera.This is the venue for famous Mysore Dussera.
Jagan Mohan Palace / Jayachamarajendra Art Gallery
Jagan Mohan Palace is a magnificent palace built in 1861AD. It was initially used by the Wodeyars kings as their home when the present majestic Mysore Palace was under construction after the old palace was burnt down in a fire accident. Jagan Mohan Palace is one of the seven palaces of the royal city of Mysore and also one of the top places to visit in Mysore. It is considered as one of the best art galleries in South India. The art gallery contains paintings exceeding 2000 in number belongs to different Indian styles of painting like Mysore, Mughal and Shantiniketan. It also houses the prestigious collection of paintings of Raja Ravi Varma. Weapons of war, musical instruments, sculptures, brass-ware, antiques coins and currencies are the other popular exhibits here.
Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens, popularly called as Mysore Zoo, is one of the oldest and one of the best zoo parks in South India. It was established in 1892 CE by Sri Chamarajendra Wodeyar and designed by German Landscaper and Horticulturist Mr. G.H. Krumbeigal. Mysore Zoo is one of the best Mysore Tourist places and often used to promote Mysore Tourism along with Mysore Palace. Sprawling over an area of 250 acres, Mysore Zoo provides shelter to large number of animal species like lions, tigers, hyena, deer, elephants, rhinos, king cobras and birds. The highlights of the zoo are Giraffes, Jaguars, African elephants and Wallaby.
Chamundi Hill Temple
The Chamundi Temple is a famous Hindu temple located on the top of Chamundi Hill in Mysore. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Chamundeswari, an incarnation of Goddess Parvathi who took this form to destroy Mahishasura. She is the tutelary deity of the Mysore Maharajas and the presiding deity of Mysore. The Chamundeshwari Temple is one among the 18 Maha Shakti Peethas. The idol of goddess Chamundi inside the central sanctum was made with pure gold. The most famous is the 15 feet high and 24 feet long Nandi on the 800th step on the hill. There is also a colorful image of the Mahishasura situated on the summit of the Chamundi Hill.
Brindavan Gardens is a famous & beautiful garden laid out below the Krishnaraja Sagar Dam in Mysore. The beautifully landscaped garden was completed in 1932 and is one of the places to visit in Mysore. It was designed by Sir Mirza Ismail, Diwan of Mysore based on Shalimar Gardens of Kashmir in the Mughal style. Considered as one of the best gardens in India, the Brindavan Garden is laid out in three terraces, and ends in a horseshoe shape. The Musical and dancing fountain is the main attraction of the garden. Boating is also available inside the garden.
Lalitha Mahal Palace
Lalitha Mahal Palace is one of the elegant palaces located close to Chamundi Hill Road in Mysore. This is the second largest palace in Mysore after Mysore Palace. Built by Krishnaraja Wodeyar Bahaddur IV in 1921 CE, the palace is beautifully designed by EW Fritchley in European and Indian Styles. The corridors and the hall have lovely paintings of Mysore rulers and historical events of Mysore Kingdom. The restaurant block is the alluring part with the curved roof and the glass dome at the center follow spectacular architectural interest of the Mysore rulers. It is one of the magnificent palaces in South India and one of the top places to visit in Mysore. Now, the palace is converted into a five-star hotel and is maintained by the India Tourist Development Corporation.
Karanji Mansion is one of the famous palaces located in Nazarbad Mohalla of Mysore. The palace was built in 1902 on an area of 38 acres on an elevated place. It was constructed for Krishnajammanni, a second princess of Mysore. The Mansion is built using the Indo-Sarcenic Renaissance style of architecture comprises stone cleave balconies, cusped arches, carved stone columns and sunshades. This mansion houses the Postal Training Institute of the Department of Posts from 1965.