Bangalore (official name: Bengaluru) is the State Capital of Karnataka. One of the largest cities in India, Bangalore is a vibrant cosmopolitan city housing major industrial and commercial centers. Bangalore is known as the city of contrasts and is nicknamed variously as ‘Silicon Valley of India’, ‘Garden City’, ‘City of Pubs’, ‘Shoppers Paradise’ and ‘Jewel of South’. The city is known as India’s Silicon Valley because it is home to a large number of software industries, IT and ITES companies.
The city is blessed with salubrious climate, beautiful gardens & parks and natural lakes, which is why the name ‘Garden City’. Good number of Pubs, famous among the locals and the tourists contributed to the name ‘City of Pubs.’ Bangalore is famous for the shopping malls which have some of the finest and biggest showrooms in India, so the name ‘Shoppers Paradise.’ Bangalore is considered as the ‘Jewel of South’ due to its rich cultural heritage, splendid monuments, lush green lawns, bustling shopping plazas, beautiful gardens and exotic cuisine.
Bangalore has become an amalgam of modernization and development with a hint of its glorious history. The city has forts and palaces from the 16th century that will give you a clear idea of efficient town planning and splendid architecture observed at the time of some of the earliest dynasties in India. This is demonstrated in the ornately carved Islamic style arches on the gate walls, in the luxurious palace of Tipu Sultan, Lal Baug with its sprawling greenery and Bungle Rock which stood as a watch tower for the city.
This garden city has several beautifully laid green spaces that help you take a break and relax in the lap of nature. One can also enjoy the marvels of universe at the Nehru Planetarium located in the city which is an ideal place for children.
PLACES TO VISIT
It was built on the lines of Tudor-style Windsor's Castle by Chamaraja Wodeyar in 1887 AD. The edifice signifies the impression of British Architecture in Bangalore. Largely made up of wood, the place is famous for its carvings and paintings in English Style.
A beautiful wooden palace which served as the summer retreat of Tipu Sultan is situated a little south of the fort near 'city market' at Krishna Rajendra Road and Albert Victor Road junctions. Kempe Gowda first raised this fort with mud in 1537. In 1761, Hyder Ali renovated it to a standard stone structure. The fort has five intricately sculpted arches. The walls and ceilings were once covered with bright paintings that have now faded into pale whisper over the centuries.
Jawahar Lal Nehru Planetarium:
Enjoy the marvels of the universe at Jawahar Lal Nehru Planetarium. Founded in 1989, it has a dome with 150m diameter upon which the night sky is projected. The hall has a seating capacity of 210 and is equipped with a space meter. It receives more than two hundred thousand visitors every year at its sky theater.
Sprawling over 240 acres of land with colorful flower beds, Lal Bagh is one of the most beautiful gardens in India. An intricate 17th century water system is used to irrigate the plants within the garden. Lal Bagh has artistically landscaped lawns with a profusion of flowerbeds, lotus pools and tinkling fountains, an attempt to nurture nature's beauty without confining it. It also has a magnificent glass house built in 1840, on the lines of London's Crystal Palace.
This amusement park is located 20-30 kms from Bangalore. The place is ideal for a weekend with friends or children. The park has a range of Dry Rides and Wet Rides from the scary to the tranquil.
Bannerghatta National Park:
Located 22 kms away from Bangalore city, Bannerghatta National Park, covering an area of 104.27sq km, was established in 1971. This park is home to fascinating variety of wildlife including spotted deers and sambars, magnificent elephants and mighty bison along with the king of the jungle ,the lion. Bannerghatta National Park comprises of an Aquarium, Zoo, Children Park, Crocodile Park, Snakes Park, Prehistoric Animals Park and a Museum.
Kempe Gowda II constructed this 125acre lake in the second half of second century. Located at the Northeastern fringes of the city on M.G. Road, this enchanting lake is an ideal place for boating and shopping. There is a boat club where you can hire boats for yourself and make a stop at some of the small islands dotting the lake. The lake is surrounded with many buildings that were once part of British army. There is a public swimming pool welcoming tourist to take a dip. Pool opens daily from 9:00am to 06:00pm and remains closed on Wednesdays.
HOW TO GET HERE
Bangalore international Airport, known as 'HAL Airport' is situated on Airport Road about 6km from the city centre. A busy Airport with over 70 international and domestic flight landings everyday, this airport is divided into three terminals. Terminal I contain the Departure lounge for the Domestic Flights and Terminal II is for Arrival of Domestic Flights.Indian Airlines and private carriers operate regular flights from Delhi, Bombay, Calcutta, Madras, Trivandrum, Hyderabad, Goa, Kochi, Ahmedabad and Mangalore. International Terminal handles Departure and Arrival of International flights to and form Singapore, Dubai, London, Oman, Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia.
Bangalore is connected to all major Indian cities by rail. Several super fast trains such as Shatabhi, Bridavan, Lalbagh express connect Bangalore to Chennai. The City Railway Station is the main terminal in Bangalore.
Major National Highways connects Bangalore to Chennai and Mumbai. Other cities and towns of the state and neighboring states are also connected by road. The Main bus terminal in the city is opposite City Railway Station.