"Everyone has a different reason to love Bangalore." Legend goes that King Veeraballa of Vijayanagara once lost his way in forest. Hungry and tired, he came upon a lone hut in the thick forest where he met an old woman.When he asked for food, she gave him baked beans ('Benda Kalu' in Kannada).The King found this humble meal taste better than the richest fare.To commemorate this incident, he called the place "Benda Kalu Ooru" (place of baked beans). Bangalore today is getting popular though for a different variety of Beans-JavaBeans. Capital of the Southern state of Karnataka, Bangalore today is Asia's fastest growing cosmopolitan city. It is home to some of the most high tech industries in India. The I.T industry views Bangalore as the 'byte-basket' of India. Bangalore is also home to some of India's premier scientific establishments. Blessed with a salubrious climate, gardens & parks, natural lakes, architectural landmarks, shopping malls, the best restaurants and pubs in this part of the globe, business opportunities, Bangalore is the ideal gateway to India and beyond. Bangalore offers something for everyone-music and dance concerts (Western and Indian), dramas, exhibitions, carnivals, conferences and more.
The Bangalore Palace & Fort:
The Bangalore Fort was built by Kempe Gowda and expanded by Tippu Sultan. Within its walls is the well preserved 16th century Ganapathi Temple. The Bangalore Palace was built by a Wodeyar king in 1887. Inspired by the Windsor castle, this palace was built in the Tudor style, complete with Gothic windows, the foiled windows, battlements and turrets resembling the Daria Daulat Palace in Srirangapatanam, this summer palace has been constructed largely of wood and is famous for it's carving and paintings.
Hyder Ali laid out this famous botanical garden and his son added horticultural wealth to them by importing trees and plants from several countries. The garden today houses over 1000 species of flora which include rare and enchanting collection of tropical plants, trees and herbs. The Glass House, modelled along London's Crystal Palace, is the center of attraction in this 2400-acre park. Bi-annual flower shows attracting participants from all over India is held in the Glass House.
This wooded and beflowered park was laid out in the heart of the cantonment in 1864. Since then, fairy fountains, an august bandstand and a wealth of atatury have been added. But the most important aspect of Cubbon Park is its newer buildings that have added beauty and cultural wealth. Lush green lawns, shady flowering trees, vibrant flower beds, make Cubbon Park an ideal place for morning joggers and alike.
One of the important buildings, the Government Museum is one of the oldest in India(1886). A special attraction here are the antiquities from Mohenjodaro period. Situated nearby the museum is Visveshwaraya Industrial and Technological Museum named after the great engineer-statesman. Next to the VITM is the Visveshwaraya Industrial Trade Center, the first of its kind in India. In addition to its trade promotional activities, the Center has two exhibition floors housing a permanent display of all that is manufactured in Karnataka. Near the Museum is the K.Venkatappa Art Gallery which has a permanent exhibition of the works of the great artist, K. Venkatappa. The Gallery does much to encourage art in the state. Also in the Cubbon Park are the Seshadri Iyer Memorial Hall, which houses the public library, the High Court and the Jawahar Bal Bhavan. The Bhavan, with its toy train, fairgrounds and theatre, is a recreational, hobby and educational centre for children.
The Bull Temple:
This temple, built by Kempe Gowda, houses the magnificent stone statue of the sacred bull, Nandi. It stands over 15 feet tall and is over 20 feet long . In Nov/Dec every year, when the groundnuts have been harvested, a groundnut fair is held near the temple. The first groundnuts are offered by the farmers to the sacred bull.
The Gangadhareshwara Temple:
Known for its four monolithic pillars and rare idol of Agni, the God of fire, this temple was built by Kempe Gowda. A unique phenomena is witnessed here on Jan. 13/14th every year when the rays of the setting sun enter through the window, pass between the horns of the Nandi and shine on the Shivalingam.
The Dharmaraja Temple:
Located at Nazarethpet in the suburbs of Bangalore, this temple is the starting point of the annual Karaga procession. The revered idols of this temple are the Shri Dharmaraja Swamy, hero of the Mahabharata and Lord Krishna.
Dargah Hazarath Tawakkal Mastan:
This Muslim shrine,located in Cottonpet, a suburban locality, is associated with the Hindu Karaga festival too. The procession annually visits the Dargah of this Sufi Saint, Tawakkal Mastan. His tomb attracts both Muslim and non-Muslim pilgrims.
The Jumma Masjid is probably the oldest mosque in the city. It is an imposing structure with tall ornamented granite pillars adorning the elevated prayer hall. Scores of devote Muslim worshippers throng this masjid during the annual festivals of the Muslims. It is located in the busy market area of Bangalore, K.R.Market.
The Kalakshetra, built to commemorate Rabindranath Tagore's centenary, promotes cultural activity in the city. It has a superb theatre and houses the Cultural Akademi Offices. Next to it is the Gothic styled Puttannachetty Town Hall whose huge auditorium can easily accommodate over 1500 persons.
ST. Mary's Church:
Established by a French missionary Abbe Dubois in 1811, St.Mary's church is the only church in Karnataka state to be elevated to the status of a minor Basilica. Every September, The Virgin Mary's festival is celebrated with a procession that attracts people of all faiths. The church is situated near the Shivaji Nagar Bus Terminal.