6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore

The trip to Mysore is something which I was planning from the last 2 years but couldn’t make it. But this time, I was fortunate enough to visit this city of Palaces, Temples, Mysore Silk and Sandalwood and as I thought it is an amazing city to visit. Though, just 3 hours (143 kms) away from Bangalore, yet this city is very different from the hectic & full of traffic, city life of Bangalore. The friendly people, yummy food and relaxed ambience of Mysore just stole my heart.

If you are travelling to South India than, Mysore now officially called Mysuru should definitely be in your travel list as this is the 2nd most visited city of the Karnataka state. Mysore also serves as a great escape from the hustling bustling Bangalore life and thus, in weekend you will witness huge crowd here.


How I reached Mysore

I planned for a budget 3 days trip to Mysore and that’s why I opted for the railways, the most convenient transport in budget. I booked my Bangalore-Mysore tickets for Mysuru Express (16316) which started from Bangalore KR Puram Railway Station at 7:30 am and reached Mysore Railway Station at 11:30 am.
The return tickets for Bangalore I booked for Rajyarani Express (16557) which started from Mysore railway station at 2:30 pm and reached Bangalore Majestic railway station at 5:10 pm.


Mysore Mythology

According to Hindu Mythology, Once Mysore was under the control of a Devil King Mahisasur, who was a giant with buffalo head. The city got its name from that devil as Mahisur. To save the disciples from this devil, all the Gods started praying to the deity Durga. After that, Devi Parvati incarnated as Chamundi Devi and slayed Mahisasur. Chamundi Devi is called so as she slayed two devils Chanda and Munda and after the death of Mahisasur, the devotees called Devi Chamundi as Mahisasur Mardini.


Mysore History

Mysore, formerly called as Mahisasurnagara or Mahisur has a very rich history. As per the Indian history, a reference of Mysore can be found with the King Ashoka. But the accurate historical facts can be marked out from the period of Ganga Kingdom. It continued till the year 1004. After that, a number of kingdoms ruled over Mysore such as Ganga Kingdom, Chola Kingdom, Hoysala Kingdom, Chalukya Kingdom, Yadu Kingdom and Vijaynagara Kingdom.
During the period of Hoysala Kingdom, most of the striking structures and temples were constructed which includes the well-recognised Chamundeshwari Temple situated atop the Chamundi Hills.

Later on, in the year 1399, during the period of Yadu Kingdom, when Bettada Chamaraja Wodeyar was on the throne, the development of Mysore took place appreciably.

From 1761 till 1799, Mysore was under the rule of Hyder Ali & Tipu Sultan and after the defeat and death of Tipu Sultan; the Wodeyars again came on the throne of Mysore. This was the time when Mysore started expanding and the 24th King of Mysore, Krishnaraja Wodeyar III, started the ‘Golden Era’ of Mysore by encouraging education, art, agriculture of the city.


Places to Visit in Mysore

There are many striking places which I visited in the city of Mysore. Here is a list of these places:


1. Chamundeshwari Temple

The very first location which I selected to visit in Mysore is the Chamundeshwari Temple, which is the abode of the presiding deity of Mysore. This divine location is situated 12 kms away from the city and is perched at an elevation of 3489 ft on the Chamundi Hills.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
On the way to Chamundeshwari Temple


This 1000 years archaic seven storied temple got recognition globally, after the Wodeyar Royals of Mysore declared Chamundeshwari Devi as their guardian deity. This place is one amongst the 51 shakti Peeths located in India and the idol of the deity is an Astha-Bhuja stone idol plated with silver. You will get an amazing view of the Mysore city and its countryside the hilltop of the Chamundi Hills.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Chamundeshwari Temple


Entry Fee: This place is free for all.

Timings: 6:00 am to 2:00 pm
                5:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Additional Info: Photography/videography is strictly restricted inside the temple.


2. Mysore Palace

Soon after the darshan of Chamundeshwari Temple, I was very much excited to visit the 14th century Mysore Palace for which Mysore is well known. The palatial Mysore Palace is also called as Amba Vilas Palace and is positioned in the heart of Mysore. The Indo-Saracenic style Palace was designed and planned by Henry Irving in the year 1897.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Mysore Palace


This palace is constructed in 4.5 acres area, out of which only 2 acres area is open for the tourists. On the top section of this palace, the Wodeyar Royals of Mysore still reside. The elaborate detailing done inside and outside the palace is a treat to everyone’s eyes.
A light and sound show is organised every Sunday and on holidays for the tourists.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Mysore Palace


Entry Charge: 70 Bucks per person.

Light & Sound Show Entry Charge: 40 Bucks per person.

Timings: 9:30 am to 5: 30 pm

Light & Sound Show Timings: 7:00 pm to 7: 30 pm

Additional Info: Photography/videography is allowed inside the Palace.



3. Jagmohan Palace Art Gallery

On the second day of my Mysore trip, I visited the Jagmohan Palace Art Gallery. Situated on the western side of the Mysore Palace, this Hindu style structure was formerly constructed as a retreat palace for the Royals. Jagmohan Palace was constructed in 1902 and is one amongst the ancient structures of Mysore. The marriage ceremony of Maharaja Chamaraja Wodeyar’s elder daughter and the crowning of Maharaja Krishnaraja Wodeyar III took place in this Palace.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Jagmohan Palace Art Gallery


In 1915, the 3 stories of this palace were transformed into an art gallery by Maharaja Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV. The King named it as Sri Jayachamrajendra Art Gallery which houses approximately 2000 paintings of the great artists like P.P.Ruben, Aless Caddy, S.L.Haldankar, Raja Ravi Verma, Ishwardas, Rabindranath Tagore and many more. Other than paintings, there are many antiques like weapons, artifacts, coins, furnitures, utensils etc. The ivory and sandalwood figurines and the gold leaf paintings I liked the most. This place is a must visit location for the history and art lovers.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Jagmohan Palace Art Gallery


Entry Charge: For Indians 150 Bucks (Adult), 45 Bucks (Children)
                         For Foreigners 225 Bucks (Adult), 150 Bucks (Children)                         

Timings: 8:30 am to 5:30 pm all days.

Additional Info: Photography is not allowed inside the art gallery.


4. St. Philomena’s Church

My 2nd day’s 2nd place to visit was the 200 years ancient St. Philomena’s Church which is located on the Central Sayyaji Rao Road. This place is one of the best places for photography or you can say one of the most instagrammable locations of Mysore.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
St. Philomena's Church


This church was formerly a small ordinary church, but in 1959, Maharaja Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV, built this church in Neo-Gothic Style and is now recognised as the 2nd most elevated church in Asia. The interior of this church is beautifully done by stained glass. The surrounding is very calm and you can sit sometime in this place, pray and relax.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
St. Philomena's Church


Entry Charge: This place is free for all.

Timings: 7:00 am to 6:30 pm.

Additional Info: Photography is restricted inside the Cathedral.



Also Read >> Varanasi - The Spiritual Capital of India


5. Sand Museum

On the 3rd day of my trip I visited a unique museum called Sand Museum. This is the only sand carving museum in the country and it is in Mysore so; if you are in Mysore than you must visit this amazing place. This recently started museum is situated on the Chamundi Hills road and is extended over approximately 13000 sq ft area.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Mysore Sand Museum


There are about 120 sculptures in this museum which includes huge figurines of Devi Chamundeshwari and Lord Ganesha, sculptures of dasara procession, Islamic culture, Christian culture etc. M.N.Gowri, the lone woman sand sculptor of India started this intricately carved museum and gradually it has become one of the most visited tourist places of Mysore.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Mysore Sand Museum


There are some small shops of jewelry, wall paintings, stone & metal artefacts etc. inside the museum where you can buy some stuffs but better you bargain with them.

Entry Charge: 40 Bucks for adults and 20 Bucks for Children.

Timings: 8:30 am to 6:00 pm.

Additional Info: Photography is allowed inside the museum.


6. Cauvery Arts & Crafts Emporium

The last place of my 3 days trip to Mysore was the Cauvery Arts & Crafts Emporium located in Sayyaji Rao Road. This place is a Karnataka Government Enterprise and also the lone outlet in the state where you will get authentic handicrafts and beauty products of Mysore Sandalwood. If you are interested in arts and crafts than, you should visit this emporium once.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Cauvery Emporium


Other than, sandalwood, you will Rosewood furnitures and handicrafts, Shivaniwood handicrafts, Bidri Ware, Brass Ware, Mysore silk saris and stoles, Jewelleries etc. The prices of all these products are quite high but as it’s a Government enterprise you will definitely get authentic products.


6 Must See Places to Visit in Mysore, Mysore Trip
Cauvery Emporium


Entry Charge: This place has no entry charge.

Timings: 10:00 am to 8:00 pm.

Additional Info: Photography is not allowed.


Where to Stay in Mysore

There are a number of budget as well as lavish hotels in Mysore like
Raddisson Blu Plaza

White Orchid Resorts

The Mansion 1907

Sonder

Olive Residency

#Pro Tip: If you are planning to visit Mysore during weekends than do book your hotels in advance to avoid hassle.


Where to Eat in Mysore

In Mysore you will get all the food options such as North Indian Food, South Indian Food, Punjabi Style Food, Chinese Food and many more. Some of the places where the food I tasted was really good are:

1. Original Vinayak Mylari – Here you will get authentic Mysore Dosa.

2. Hotel RRR – Here you will get Andhra Style Veg and Non-veg dishes.

3. Hanumantha Mess – Here you will get Chicken/Mutton Pulaw in a unique style.

4. Hotel Guru – Visit for tasty South Indian Thali at reasonable price.

5. Mysore Coffee – Here you will get traditional style filter coffee.

6. Guru sweet Mart – Visit this for authentic Mysore Pak.


Best Time to Visit Mysore

The best time to visit Mysore is from August to February as during this time the Mysore weather remains pleasant and perfect for sightseeing.

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