Our favourite places in India – Mysore
With a population of nearly 1 million, Mysore is a charming town in the Southern state of Karnataka, a few hours drive from Bangalore.
The Mysore Palace which was built in 1912 is the largest Palace in India. Deservedly so as Mysore was once the capital of the Mysore state which was one of the 5 most important and wealthiest states in India at Independence.
With a wonderful & colourul market, Mysore is also famous for Sandalwood & Silk.
70% of India’s incense exports are from Mysore, and 70% of India’s domestic silk comes from the area also. Head out to the villages near Mysore and there’s a chance to see silk worm farms.
Each Sunday night, the Palace is illuminated for an hour with 80,000 light bulbs, quite a sight to behold. The Mysore royal family still live in part of the Palace, but the main part is open to the public and is worth spending several hours. It’s an amazing testimony to wealth, royalty and kitsch.
Another of Mysore’s famous exports is Iyengar Yoga. Travel to Mysore today and the city is full of yoga ashrams and foreigners studying yoga here, thanks to the influence of BKS Iyengar who moved to Mysore when he was 15 and began his study of Yoga.
Overlooking the city is the nearby hill of Chaumundi, topped by a temple dedicated to Chaumundeshwari, an avatar of Durga who slayed a demon called Mahishasura on the spot. This is where Mysore gets its name. Walk up the hill (or easier, drive up and walk down) and you’ll also come across India’s 3rd largest monolithic stone carving of the Nandi Bull (Shiva’s vehicle).
Visit Mysore on our South Indian Odyssey Tour..
Tags: Bangalore, Chaumundi, incense, Iyengar Yoga, Karnataka, largest Palace in India, Mysore, Mysore palace, Nandi Bull, Sandalwood, Silk
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