Affectionately dubbed as the “garden city”, Bangalore, now renamed as Bengaluru, is an obvious charmer. Branded as the Silicon Valley of India, Bangalore with its concrete infrastructure, benevolent climate, architectural marvel, and oodles of green space truly stands out as a unique cosmopolitan city. However, the charm of Bangalore isn’t just confined to its IT status. Apart from lush gardens, ornate temples, IT offices and bustling shopping malls, there are a number of other popular historical and picturesque getaways around Bangalore that can just remind you that Bangalore, with all its urbaneness and civility, is just another amazing tourist hotspot. If you wish to take a break from your busy life and spend some quality time with your family and friends, then zooming off to the tourist attractions around Bangalore can make your weekend truly enjoyable. However, if you are holidaying in Bangalore, then make sure you have ample time to explore the tourist places in and around. To know more on the popular tourist places near Bangalore, read on.
Tourist Attractions Around Bangalore
Nandi Hills or Nandidurga, situated in the Chikkaballapur district of Karnataka, is one of the popular hammocks near Bangalore. This hill, which derives its name from a thousand year old Dravidian Nandi temple, is located just 65 km away from Bangalore. This erstwhile summer retreat of Tipu Sultan, with its pleasant climate and magnificent view of the green landscape, tots up as a mind-blowing tourist spot. If you happen to visit the Nandi Hills, then don’t forget to catch up with other attractions of the place like Tipu’s Drop, Tipu’s Summer Palace and Fort, Shri Bhoga Narasimha Temple and Gandhi House.
Bannerghatta National Park
Bannerghatta National Park, located 22 km to the south of Bangalore, is the home to a wide variety of flora and fauna. This zoological garden, spread across 2500 acres of land, consists of dense forest and green lands, which is the home to a huge number of wild animals like leopard, bison, deer, elephants and more. Apart from a large variety of fauna, this national park is also famous for its other attractions like the pets’ corner, the serpentarium, the lions safari and the beautiful butterfly park. The park is open for your recreation on all days from 9 am to 5 pm, except on Tuesdays. The best time to visit this zoological reserve is between September and January.
Mekedaatu is a famous daytrip destination, perched on Cauvery Arkavati Sangama. Located just 110 km away from Kanakapura road in Bangalore, Mekedaatu is truly a mesmerizing tourist spot. With gushing water, deep ravines and smooth granite, Mekedaatu translates itself into a good getaway from the city hubbub of Bangalore. Although this place promises nothing much in terms of action, one can wade through knee-deep waters or enjoy a pleasant boat ride while in this place. You can hire any local transports or take a bus from the city to reach Mekedaatu.
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, located about 125 km away from Bangalore, is a whopping 57 acres of land perched on the banks of river Kaveri. This exotic bird habitat owes its existence to the famous ornithologist, Dr. Salim Ali, who convinced the King of Mysore to declare Ranganathittu as a bird sanctuary. Today, this bird sanctuary is a nesting and breeding centre for a wide species of birds like egrets, kingfishers, swallows, cormorants etc. The best time to visit this place is between June and October.
Shivanasamudra Falls, located at a distance of 120 km from Bangalore, is one of the most famous waterfalls in Karnataka. This waterfall, which literally means “Shiva’s Sea”, branches out into two waterfalls, Gaganachukki and Bharachukki. Adjoining this roaring waterfall is the dense Cavery Wildlife Sanctuary, which is the home to a variety of wildlife. Another attraction of this place is the hydel power generation station, which is believed to be one of its kind of hydroelectric power stations in Asia.
Bheemeshwari, also known as the ‘angler’s paradise’, is a small town perched between Shivanasamudra and Mekedaatu. Famous for its serene beauty and adventures sports, this place is best-known fishing hub in Karnataka. Natural habitat of the famous game fish Mahseer, Bheemeshwari offers good sport to the fishing enthusiasts as well the adventure freaks. One can try their hands at fishing, go down trekking, take a coracle ride down the Cauvery or just enjoy the thrill of river rafting in this place. The best time to visit this place is between September and February.
Shravanabelagola, the holy pilgrimage for Jains, is popular all over the world for its monolithic statue of Jain Lord Gomateshwar. Located 158 km away from Bangalore, Shravanabelagola is better celebrated in history as the land where King Chandragupta Maurya renounced his throne and became a Jain follower. The Mahamastakabhisheka, which is held once in 12 years and is one of the greatest attractions of this place, attracts many tourists from all over the world. During this celebration, which lasts for 20 days, the statue of Lord Gomateshwar is worshipped by offering 12 different kalashas of water, tender coconut water, milk, saffron, jaggery, butter, bananas, sandal paste and marigold flowers. Shravanabelagola is well connected by road and rail to Bangalore.
Shivaganga, situated 70 km away from the garden city, is located on 1368 meters high hilltop. This hilly peak, which houses the temples of Gavi Gangadhareshwara Cave Temple and Honnadevi Temple, attracts thousands of devotees every year. Another attraction of this place is a quadrangular Shivaganga Fort built by Shivappa Nayaka, a Nayaka ruler of 16th century. If you love historical lands, then this place is likely to woo you with its panoramic splendor.
Ghati Subramanya, one of the famous pilgrimage centres in Karnataka, is located 60 km away from Bangalore, near Doddaballapur. This temple, which attracts many devotees, is dedicated to Lord Subramanya and Lord Lakshmi Narasimha. It is fabled that the idol of Lord Subrhmanya self originated in this place and that the temple came into existence much later. One interesting fact about this temple is that while Lord Subramanya stands facing the east and Lord Lakshmi Narasimha is facing the west, both the idols are reflected as standing together side by side. The best time to visit this place is after 10.30 in the morning.
Mysore, located 140 km from Bangalore, is the second largest city in Karnataka, best known for its charm, legacy, magnificent palaces, gardens, impressive buildings and sacred temples. There is an old world charm about this city, which leaves an everlasting impression on the minds of the visitors. With traces of history and rich culture, Mysore is truly a must visit place for the tourists. Adding to this glory is the world famous Mysore Dasara held during Navarathri in the month of October. Other attractions of Mysore are Ambavilas Palace, St. Philomena’s Church, Chamundi Hills, Mysore Zoo and more.
Srirangapatna, the historical capital of Tipu Sultan, is known for its historical moments. Located about 125 km from Bangalore, on Bangalore-Mysore highway, this place is a must visit place in Karnataka. Along with the famous Ranganathaswamy temple, this place is the home to a number of historical and religious monuments such as Masjid-E-Ala or Jumma Masjid, Daria Daulat Bagh, Gumbaz, Place of Martyrdom etc.