Explore 3 Attractions with Karnataka Tour Packages

Karnataka, located in the Southwestern region of India, is popular among tourists for majestic temples and lavish structures. Soaked in traditions, the state is dotted with numerous attractions like Mysore Palace, Karanji Lake and Chennakesava Temple. People looking forward to visit these places can book various Karnataka tour packages offered by online travel agencies (OTAs). These packages often cover all the prominent attractions that can be explored during their visit to this state, and here is a list of popular ones that are often included in it.

Cubbon Park

Cubbon Park

Situated in the city of Bengaluru, Cubbon Park is one of the most popular tourist attractions that one should not miss while enjoying Karnataka holidays. It has been named after Sir Mark Cubbon – the erstwhile Viceroy of India. The park is a home to about 6000 species of trees and plants, including cassia fistula, Schinus molle and rare species like Delonix and Grevillea Robusta. Travellers can see a large number of government buildings in this park like the government museum, public library and the high court.

One of the worth exploring structures here is Attara Kacheri, which is built in stones and exhibits the Gothic architectural style. It is a two-storey building, situated at the entrance of the park. The State Archaeological Museum comprises antique items, such as old coins and inscriptions, belonging to the Mohenjodaro Period. There is also a toy train that is operated for the amusement of children. Travellers looking for peace can spend some quality time in this park.

Mysore Palace

Mysore Palace

People on Karnataka tours can visit Mysore Palace, located in the heart of the Mysore city. It is a three-storey building with domes of pink colour marble. The Doll Pavilion at the entrance of museum displays antique items made of silver, gold, ivory and marble from all over the world. The Royal Marriage Hall behind this court is the most attractive portion of this palace, followed by a huge open-air court. Travellers can see details of the festivals and ceremonies of the bygone era depicted in the oil paintings that are hung on the walls of the corridors of this palace.

Badami Cave Temples

Badami Temple

With Karnataka tour packages, tourists can explore the Badami Cave Temples, situated between the two rocky hills. It is a complex structure consisting of four cave temples carved out of the soft Badami red sandstone out of a cliff. Built in the Dravidian and Nagara styles of architecture, these caves feature inscriptions in old Kannada script. The first three caves are the Hindu temples, and the fourth cave belongs to the Buddhist faith. The first cave of the temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva, and features the idol of his incarnation of Nataraja. The entrance of the cave is decorated with different images of Shiva in dance postures. Its ceilings feature the images of Shiva and Parvati and his serpent.

Dedicated to Vishnu, the second cave of the temple is on the top of a sandstone hill, is portrayed as a dwarf and boar. The third cave of the biggest of all the caves. Highlighting the Deccani art, it throws light on the culture and art of the 6th century that includes jewellery costumes. The fourth cave belongs to Jain, and consists of the carvings of Padmavathi and Tirthankaras.

Holidaymakers can explore these three attractions with Karnataka tour packages.

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The 15 Most Popular Yoga Destinations in India

Through meditation and various body poses, the ancient Indian science of Yoga seeks to make practitioners disciplined and ultimately lead them to moksha or eternal salvation. In recent times, it has become so popular that its practice is bringing lots of tourists to India. There are hordes of places in the country where vacations can be planned to practice and learn about this science. The following is a list of the top 15 Yoga destinations in the country:

Rishikesh, Uttarakhand

Without a doubt, Rishikesh in the Indian state of Uttarakhand is the biggest Yogic centre in the entire world. It is the foremost destination that travellers come to during their vacation trips in India for a wholesome relaxing and divine experience. Visitors can come here directly by train from New Delhi or take trains first to Haridwar, followed by a short bus journey.

Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

Many Yoga sites here are located by the Arabian Sea, while some are nestled deep in pristine palm forests, providing a perfect setting to indulge in meditative activities. So while visitors are enjoying their beach holidays, they can also consider taking classes in these places for a really good time.

Mysore, Karnataka

Mysore is known for a distinct type of this discipline that developed here. In this form, the duration of the sessions and the difficulty level of the asanas depend on the expertise of students. People can plan their tours to the city easily as it has good transport connectivity with other places in India.

Pune, Maharashtra

Many notable practitioners have their teaching centres here and hence, Pune too is known for its Yogic culture. The best thing about the city is that besides yogic ashrams, there are many other attractions to visit for tourists. Its places of interest include medieval forts, museums, hills, temples and public parks.

Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh

Those who want to learn about the Buddhist influence on Yoga and its influence on the religion can plan their vacations in Dharamshala. Peace is the dominating philosophy associated with the science here and the backdrop of high mountains makes it even better.

Goa

Goa is famous worldwide for its beaches, which make romantic and family trips here highly sought-after. While travellers are enjoying their time together in the state, they may turn to any of the resorts that provide lessons in Yogic practices. Dabolim Goa International Airport has seasonal flights from and to many international cities apart from the regular services to Indian cities.

Coonoor, Tamil Nadu

A popular Yoga destination in Tamil Nadu is Coonoor, which is located in the Western Ghats, thus providing sheer tranquillity for its practise. Holidays in Coonoor may also be utilised to see its natural beauty, trekking through the hills or visiting the nearby hill station of Ooty.

Narendranagar, Uttarakhand

Another such famous destination in Uttarakhand is Narendranagar. It is located in the foothills of the Himalayas and so the climate here is cool, but not extremely cold and perfect for indulging in this activity. As it is near to the holy twin-towns of Haridwar and Rishikesh, pilgrimage tours to these places may be modified to include Narendranagar, as well.

Chennai, Tamil Nadu

A great destination to visit during vacations in South India to purify the body, mind and soul, is Chennai. Post touring the capital city of Tamil Nadu or after playing some beach volleyball, a relaxing meditative session at the Yoga ashrams or resorts here sounds like a remarkable plan.

Bengaluru, Karnataka

Bengaluru, the IT hub of India, is a raging urban centre with loads of attractions to visit. The presence of institutes of famous Yoga preachers and spiritual leaders makes it a good place to learn about and practise it.

Munger, Bihar

Trips can be taken to Munger to learn in detail about the Bihar style of the Yogic science, along with practising it with experienced gurus. Various institutes here educate visitors about monastic life and advanced stages of the practice.

Mumbai, Maharashtra 

Mumbai, the financial capital of India, is also the place where the first organised Yoga centre in the world was set up. Loads of international tourists come here during holidays and head to any of such centres and practise it.

Haridwar, Uttarakhand

Haridwar holds roughly the same importance as Rishikesh when it comes to this culture. The Ganga River flows through here and its banks become the perfect spots to indulge in this meditative and spiritually cleansing activity.

Kashmir

The Kashmir region is surely famous for its natural beauty and ski resorts, but another thing that it is known for is a type of Yoga with its roots in Shaivism. There are numerous institutes in the region, where travellers may enrol during their tours in the state to learn in detail about it.

New Delhi

Being the capital of India, New Delhi has also become an important destination from the perspective of this science. There are numerous institutes here that provide lessons and practise in this discipline. The Indian Government too has established various centres for the practise, research and promotion of this art.

What You Must See While on a Bangalore Trip

Explore the Beauty of Palaces and Forts in Bangalore

Bangalore, lying in the southernmost part of Karnataka, is counted amongst the top tourist destinations of India. During their Bangalore tour, people get a wonderful chance to explore different tourist hotspots, such as Cubbon Park, Lalbagh Botanical Garden, Hampi and Nandi Hills. All these landmarks provide an insight into the rich cultural heritage of this region. In addition to these places, there are several magnificent forts and royal palaces in this capital city. Some of them are the Bangalore Palace, Devanahalli Fort and Tipu Sultan Fort.

 

Bangalore Palace

 

Bangalore Palace

Bangalore Palace

Bangalore Palace was constructed in the year 1887, during the reign of King Chamaraja Wodeyar from the famous Wodeyar dynasty. This structure is regarded as the finest examples of Tudor architecture that are present in India. The architecture of this palace resembles medieval castles, which were built in England and Norway. Right from the day of its construction, the building has been receiving appreciation for its wooden carvings and verdant gardens. Travellers are drawn towards its imposing towers, battlements and foiled windows. The main building of this sprawling mansion is spread across an area of 45000 sq. ft. Major portions of this palatial structure are constructed using wood that reflect the distinguished woodwork and paintings of olden times.

 

The palatial complex has granite seats, which are designed using fluorescent blue ceramic tiles. In the courtyard of the structure, there is a ballroom, which was used for private parties. On the first floor, there lies an ornate room known as the Durbar Hall. As per records, it was the hall from where the king used to address his subjects. Inside the room, there are several exquisite paintings adorning its walls. Moreover, the huge windows of this hall are beautifully decorated with stunning stained glasses. They have partitions of veils, through which ladies sitting on the other side used to watch the proceedings.

 

This property has an elaborate gallery, where photographs of viceroys and kings are displayed along with impressive artworks and artefacts. The palace premises have several other antiques and attractions, which include a fountain gifted by the king of Spain, coat of arms, a chair used for weighing jockeys and a dining table owned by the erstwhile Diwan of Mysore.

 

Tipu Sultan Fort

 

Tipu Sultan Fort

Tipu Sultan Fort

This fort, popularly known as the Bangalore Fort, is a glorious reminder of the past. As per available records, it was built in the year 1537 by the founder of the capital, Kempe Gowda. Later, it was reconstructed and expanded by Tipu Sultan, who was an influential emperor from the Mysore kingdom. During the castle exploration, visitors get to see beautiful Islamic artworks. Earlier, there were several gates guarding the castle but at present only one is left. This two-storey structure, constructed of teak wood, is known for its beautifully adorned arches, pillars, gardens and balconies. Walls and roofs of this fortress are adorned with colourful floral motifs. Tourists can opt for family holiday packages, which include an insightful tour to this fort.

 Munnar-A Hill Station of South India

Munnar, a breathtakingly beautiful hill station in Kerala, is a place to visit to enjoy peace and tranquility. The name of this place literally means three rivers in Tamil, and this name has been derived from the fact that it is located at the confluence of three mountain streams – Mudrapuzha, Kundala and Nallathanni. Located at an elevation 1600 metres above sea level, this destination was a summer resort of the British in the colonial days. The pristine valleys, rolling hills, expansive tea plantations, captivating waterfalls and aroma of spices, make it an idyllic tourist destination. People on a Munnar tour, not only love sightseeing but also indulge in a number of adventure activities like trekking, paragliding and rafting. It has a lot more to offer in terms of exotic flora and fauna, found in its wildlife sanctuaries and national parks. Devikulam, Eravikulam National Park, Attukal Waterfalls, Nyayamakad, Anamudi Peak, Tea Museum and Echo Point are just few of the many popular attractions in and around the main hill station. All these attractions beckon nature and adventure lovers from far and wide to come here regularly. The best time to visit this spellbinding destination is from August to March as the weather remains quite pleasant. People planning a visit to this spectacular place are suggested to carry along enough warm clothes with them as on some days temperatures drop considerably. Things to Do From strolling past the sprawling tea estates to admiring the cascading waterfalls, this small paradise in South India has a lot to offer for leisure travelers. Marvelling at the pristine beauty of the town from the Top Station viewpoint and capturing beautiful sights in the camera are experience to remember forever. Adventure enthusiasts can undertake a trek to Anamudi, the highest peak in South India. Together with Eravikulam National Park, it is the abode to the Neelakurinji flower that blossoms once in 12 years. Tourists can also indulge in some enthralling activities like trout fishing, rock climbing, mountain biking, forest camping, paragliding, white-water rafting, rappelling and cycling during a sojourn here. How to Reach The majestic hill station of Munnar is accessible from different parts of the country courtesy air, rail and road transportation. The closest airport to this location is the Cochin International Airport, which is about 107 km away and is well-connected to all major Indian cities. To reach this place by rail is also a convenient option as tourists can get down at Aluva – the nearest railway junction. People who are on Karnataka tours can also plan a short trip to this mesmerizing hill station. This state is also home to some of the popular attractions of southern India and is flocked by tourists all round-the year. From natural beauty, majestic palaces, ancient temples to bustling marketplaces, this region attracts a lot of globetrotters. The National Highway 49 connects Munnar to other important towns in and around the state, especially Karnataka.

The Mythical Stories Behind the Hampi Ruins

Hampi is a UNESCO World Heritage Site famous worldwide for its ruins. In the medieval times, Hampi was the capital of Vijayanagar kingdom but the history of its existence predates the Vijayanagar Empire. There are many things about this forgotten city which attract tourists to this place. Once here, you would find that there are structures of civilian, military and religious importance. Also striking is the boulder-ridden topography of the region which archaeologists believe to be one of the oldest exposed surfaces of earth. It looks almost unbelievable when one sees these heavy boulders lain one over the other with full stability. Quite a few mythological tales are also associated with Hampi which give it its religious character. This article is to bring to light these mythical tales about Hampi.

The Lord Shiva Connection

Hampi is said to bear the name of Pampakshretra which is derived from Pampa, a devotee of Lord Shiva who married him afterwards. After the marriage, there was a shower of gold from sky which is now in the form of a hill called Hemkunta Hill. Virupaksha temple is devoted to Lord Shiva and its literal meaning is ‘one with oblique eye’.  There is also the Pampa sarovar where Pampa did penance before marrying Lord Shiva.

The Ramayana Connection

This place is also associated with the mythical Ramayana as the Kingdom of Monkeys, Kishkindha, is believed to be the region around Hampi. Anjayaneya Hill is believed to be the birth place of Lord Hanuman. When Ravana was taking Sita along, Sita dropped her jewels her. Also, Ram and Laxman are believed to have taken shelter at nearby Malyavanta Hill when it began to rain while laying the stone bridge to Lanka. That the place might have been a part of Ramayana myth is also testified by the fact that the ruins have more icons of Hanuman than of any other deity. The Rishimukh hill is the place where Hanuman had met Ram and Laxman.

The Mahabharata Connection

The place is also related to the mythology of Mahabharata. It is the place where Bhima meets Lord Hanuman while on way to bring the magnificent Saugandhika flower from Gandhamadana Hill for Draupadi. Hanuman asks Bhima to lift his tail from his way and keep it aside. But, Bhima is not able to do it despite best efforts.

Bheema Killing Keechka

Bheema Killing Keechka

Another episode of Mahabharata which is depicted on the rock relics of this place is that of Bhima killing Keechaka, the brother-in-law of ruler of Virata, during the period of their secret exile.

Hampi Boulders

Hampi Boulders

There is also a mythical story associated with boulders. These are said to have been lain so during the course of intense fight between Sugriva and Bali in which these were thrown at one another. Another reason for the presence of these boulders is that these were compiled here for the purpose of laying the Lanka water bridge.

These are some of the interesting tales which you would often get to hear during the Karnataka tour to this religiously important place.

The Splendour of Flower Show at Lal Bagh Botanical Garden

The state of Karnataka lies in the south-west region of India and is among the largest states of the country in terms of land area. This place is surrounded by Arabian and Lakshadweep Sea at west, Andhra Pradesh at east, Maharashtra at north and Tamilnadu at south-west. The region has been under the dominance of some of the most influential kingdoms of the nation, such as Hoysala, Vijayanagra and Chalukya empires. Recent past saw parts of Karnataka being ruled by Nizams of Hyderabad and then the British. Each of these kingdoms left an influence in the architecture, cuisine, culture and tradition of the state and the same can still be witnessed in the area. Tourists on Karnataka holidays can get a deep insight about the rich legacy of the state by visiting few historically significant sites of the region. These attractions are spread across the state and receive a substantial amount of travelers each year.

Botanical Garden

Lal Bagh Botanical Garden

Lal Bagh Botanical Garden

Lal Bagh Botanical Garden is a prominent tourist attraction in the southern region of Bangalore. The place is famous for housing numerous floral species that are endemic as well as exotic. Initially, it was developed as a 40-acre private garden by the king of old Mysore, Hyder Ali in 1760, and later expansion was carried out by his son – Tipu Sultan and Britishers during their rule. This location was entitled the Government Botanical Garden during mid- 18th century, and since then it has been among the most significant horticulture centres of India.

The place comprises well-laid pathways, open spaces and a glass house that is considered the jewel of the garden. This structure was constructed in 1889 to commemorate Prince of Wales, during his visit to the region.

Inside of Lal Bagh Botanical Garden

Inside of Lal Bagh Botanical Garden

The layout of this complex is derived from the Crystal Palace, which is located in England. It was built with an intention to acclimatise several exotic plant species that were assembled from various parts of the world. At present, this glass complex is the venue of bi-annual flower show, which is held on the Republic Day and Independence Day.

Image of Flower Show, 2013

Image of Flower Show, 2013

There are a few places of interest inside Lal Bagh that can be explored by tourists. Some of these are the statue of Sri Chamaraja Wodeyar, deer paddock, pigeon house, aviary, aquarium building and Kempegowda Tower. This garden is under the supervision of Directorate of Horticulture, Karnataka Government. It regularly conducts several educational seminars and conferences, where discussions over the economical, ornamental and environmental values of plants are held. This location remains open throughout the year and its entry timings are from 6 am to 7 pm.

The garden along with all its significant buildings can be accessed through four gates, and this destination can be easily reached from any part of the city. Holidaymakers on Bangalore vacation can opt for local means of transportation to reach the spot, after de-boarding their respective flights or trains. It is advisable to plan for a sojourn to this location during the flower show, when the entire garden is infused with the sweet fragrance of various kinds of flowers.