Owing to a rich historical foundation and having acquired a multi-cultural flavor over the years, Karnataka’s capital awaits an exploratory tour by the intrepid tourist looking for an unmatched holiday experience. Bangalore, with a pleasant weather throughout the year, has become a traveller’s delight.
Whether you are a lone traveler or travelling with a large group, there are several tourist places for you to go to and make the most of what the city offers. After going through the extensive list below, you just have to choose those experiences that catches your fancy to get indulged into.
Here are the best tourist places to visit:
1. Tour the Vidhana Soudha
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When it comes to tourist places to visit in Bangalore, the Vidhan Soudha, the impressive and magnificent building that houses the state legislature of Karnataka, is a must-see for all. This marvelous example of Dravidian architecture is made of granite, has one central as well as six minor domes and can be approached from all the four directions. However, the access to the biggest legislative building in India has been restricted and one has to take prior consent before visiting its interiors. The structure looks dramatically stunning on Sunday and on public holidays, when it is floodlit from 6:00 to 8:30 in the evening.
2. Stop by the Attara Kacheri (High Court)
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[Enjoy the culinary delights of street food in Bangalore on our tour]
As you come out of the Vidhan Soudha premises, you would spot a red bricked building constructed in the Greco-Roman style. This is the Attara Kacheri or the High Court of Bangalore. Touching the periphery of Cubbon Park, the structure dates back to the year 1867 and is renowned for its European classical architecture. With its perfectly symmetrical columns and bright red hue, it offers a perfect contrast to the Vidhan Soudha’s shades of white. One can visit the court on all weekdays between 10:00 AM and 5:00 PM.
3. Take a walk in the Cubbon Park
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[Take a guided walk through Bangalore and appreciate its greenery]
A landscaped garden covering nearly 300 acres in the heart of the city, Cubbon Park is a prominent landmark and tourist place to visit in Bangalore. Originally named ‘Meade’s Park’, the garden has well laid out walking paths throughout its premises and is frequented by early morning walkers and interested naturalists who study plants in the peaceful environment. Over the years several historical monuments and statues have been constructed within the park and offer an insight into Bangalore’s past connection with the British Empire and its indigenous rulers. Walking through the tree-lined avenues, amidst local flora, you come across statues of Queen Victoria, King Edward VII, Major General Sir Mark Cubbon, Sri Chamarajendra Wodeyar and Sir K. Sheshadri Iyer. You can even enjoy the dancing musical fountain show in the park between 7-8:30 pm every day; except Mondays.
[Moreover, one can find out various cheap resorts near bangalore to visit]
4. Watch the marine life on display at Bangalore Aquarium
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Situated on Kasturba Road, at the entrance of the magnificent Cubbon Park, is a tourist place that is much loved by young tourists. Housed inside an octagonal-shaped building, the Bangalore Aquarium boasts of having an exotic variety of aquatic life including angel fish, glow light tetra, red tail shark, Siamese fighters, catla, Indian tiger barb, mahseer, freshwater prawns, blue gourami, gold fish and several others. The Bangalore Aquarium is the second largest aquarium in India and has on display the largest number of freshwater cultivable as well as ornamental pet fish. One can visit this place during all working days between 10:30 am and 5:30 pm.
5. Take science lessons at Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technological Museum
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If you are a science enthusiast or looking for the perfect place to take your kids for an interesting learning experience, you must head to the Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technological Museum. Situated on the Kasturba Road, it is nmed after the famous engineer and the Diwan of Mysore, M Visveswaraya.
It has five galleries: Popular Science Gallery, Kimbe Paper Metals Gallery, Children's Science Gallery, Electronic Technology Gallery and Engine Hall Gallery. Apart from various machines and experiments on display, there are also many interactive exhibits which you can participate in. It also houses a mobile science exhibition which tours the entire state throughout the year and provides scientific information to visitors.
6. Take a walk through MG road and Brigade Road and ride the Metro
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[Go on a guided tour through Bangalore and learn about its heritage]
MG Road and Brigade Road, apart from Commercial Street, are considered as two of the most happening and busy shopping spots in Bangalore. Along with many shopping centers and branded retail outlets, they also have numerous eateries, pubs and restaurants offering cuisines from different corners of the globe. A walk on these streets would enable you to get a sense of the city’s young and vibrant social scene. The MG Road Boulevard leads you to the Metro station where you can board the metro train for a short ride to the eastern part of the city. On the way you would be able to catch glimpses of various localities like Indiranagar, Ulsoor and Bypannahalli.
7. Go for a picnic at the Ulsoor Lake
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[Go on a guided walk through Malleswaram and learn more about its diversity]
Among the biggest lakes of the Garden City, Ulsoor Lake is one of the popular tourist places in Bangalore that is known for its beauty and appeal. Located a stone’s throw away from the commercial hub of M.G. Road, the lake originated during the reign of Kempe Gowda II, but was given its current form by Sir Lewin Bentham Bowring, the then Commissioner of Bangalore. Spread over an area of almost 1.5 sq. km, the Ulsoor Lake has several islands scattered within it. One of the major attractions among people visiting the lake is boating. There are also several eateries and coffee shops near the lake where visitors can relish a variety of snack items.
8. View Aircraft Models Exhibited At The HAL Aerospace Museum
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This museum is India’s first aerospace museum that has been showcasing the growth of the Indian aviation industry and HAL (Hindustan Aeronautics Limited) since last 60 years. Managed by HAL, it has a collection of various aircrafts and helicopters, aircraft engine models, flight simulators, a mock Air Traffic Control Tower and an exhibit of Indian aviation history. A must-visit tourist place in Bangalore for aviation aficionados, aspiring pilots and history buffs alike, the Hal museum is located on Old Airport Road and is open between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm every day except Mondays.
9. Legends Motorcycle Museum Beckons All Bikers
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Owned by S.K. Prabhu, a biking aficionado, this café cum museum is situated in Fraser Town. It has a collection of over 20 vintage motorcycles dating back to 1924; some of which are imported from countries like the United Kingdom and New Zealand, along with photographs and other biking memorabilia. The collection includes some rare motorcycles from World War II era displayed amidst old-world settings. You can have a sip of coffee or tea and snacks while admiring some of the older generation motorbikes and going through quirky “motorcycling quotations”. It is open on all days from 6:00 am to 11:00 pm.
10. Appreciate the flora of the Lalbagh Botanical Gardens
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One of the tourist places in Bangalore that attracts a high number of footfalls each year is the Lalbagh Botanical Garden. Created on the lines of the Mughal gardens, the 240 acre garden has a prominent glass house which hosts flower shows annually. It hosts India's largest collection of tropical plants, fountains, ancient trees, an aquarium and a lake. Open throughout the year between 6:00 am and 7:00 pm, it is a pretty place for guests to stroll around, admire seasonal flowers, stretch their legs, or even enjoy a picnic brunch with friends and family.
If you happen to visit the garden on the second and fourth weekend of the month, you can enjoy the government-organised folk fair featuring folk dance, music and plays performed by groups from different parts of Karnataka.
11. Observe the natural formation of Bugle Rock and Peninsular Gneiss at Lalbagh
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Bugle Rock is a gigantic rock in the Basavanagudi area; situated very near the renowned Bull temple, of South Bangalore and generated immense attention within the scientific and geological societies when it was discovered. It is an unexpected and prominent rise above the ground of peninsular gneiss as the main rock formation, with an estimated age of about 3,000 million years. Offering a panoramic view of the city, it once had a watchtower built on it by Kempe Gowda - one of four that defined the city’s limits. Another one of these natural creations with a watchtower on its top, can be found inside the Lalbagh Gardens and is now identified as a National Geological Monument.
12. Learn about Astronomy at Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium
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The Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium is situated at T. Chowdiah Road and is counted amongst the popular tourist places in Bangalore city. A huge, 15 meter dome serves as the sky theatre inside the planetarium and has the capacity to host 225 guests at a time. There are 2 astronomy shows daily at 3:00 pm and 4:30 pm; except Mondays, which provide visuals of space as well as accurate information on astronomy. There is also an observatory inside the planetarium that has a professional six-inch code refractor telescope on display. Anyone with an interest in astronomy and young kids with a curiosity towards life in outer space would find a trip to the planetarium a worthwhile experience.
13. Admire the structural splendor of the Bangalore Palace
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[Relive the Victorian times of Bangalore on a cycling tour through the city]
Owned by the royal family of Mysore, the Bangalore Palace is another tourist place in Bangalore that stands out for its unique architecture. Built along the lines of a Tudor Castle, the palace and its grounds cover over 450 acres. As you tour through its interiors, you can view its 35 rooms, wood carved motifs and relief paintings on the ceilings. The Greek and Dutch collection of paintings is on display, as are a few creations of Raja Ravi Varma. One can visit the Palace between 10 am and 6 pm on all working days.
14. Brush your history lessons at Tipu Sultan’s palace and fort
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Bangalore Fort, originally a mud fortress built by Kempe Gowda, was converted to a stone fortress by Tipu Sultan’s father, Hyder Ali. Located at the center of Old Bangalore near Kalasipalyam Bus Stand, the fort stands as a testimony to the Mysore Emperor’s resistance to the British authority. The intricately carved arches of the Fort have been built as per the Islamic style and it also has a well-preserved Ganapati temple located within the premises. The summer retreat of Tipu Sultan is situated within the walls of the Bangalore Fort as well. The structure is an example of Indo-Islamic architecture and has been built entirely with teak wood. It is adorned with pillars, arches and balconies and has striking floral motifs embellishing its walls. You can visit the fort between 8:30 am and 5:30 pm every day.
15. Visit Devanahalli Fort
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[Take a walking tour of Bangalore and relive the Mediveal times]
Another one of the tourist places in Bangalore that is associated with Tipu Sultan is situated close to the Bangalore Airport. The birthplace of the erstwhile king of Mysore, it was originally a mud fort before it was converted into a stone one by Hyder Ali. There are also a few temples within the premises including Venugopalaswamy, Siddalingeshwara, Chandramouleshwara, Sarovaranjaneya and the Nanjundeshwara temple. All of them contain unique sculptures and carvings providing viewers a good example of architectural styles of a bygone era.
16. Visit Nandi Hills For A Spectacular View Of The Sun Rise
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[Enjoy tasting fine wine at wineries around Nandi Hills]
Nandi Hills, at a distance of around 65 kms from the city, is the best tourist place in Bangalore to enjoy a long drive and watch the sun rising over the horizon. The hills, once a summer retreat and fortress for Tipu
Sultan, now serves as a popular weekend getaway for the city dwellers. Atop this 600m cliff, Tipu’s Drop that offers great visuals of the surrounding valley, Yoga Nandishvara Temple, Gandhi Nilaya, the Nehru House and Amrita Sarovar are some of the delights for the visitors.
[Also check out best hill stations around Karnataka]
17. Explore nature at the Bannerghatta National Park
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[Walk amongst butterflies at Bannerghatta National Park]
Situated 21km from the main city and at the outskirts of Bangalore, the Bannerghatta National Park is renowned for its fascinating range of wildlife and safaris. Spread over 104 sq. km, its other attractions include a crocodile and snake farm along with a butterfly park. The national park is one of the best tourist places to visit in Bangalore for spotting animals like bisons, lions, elephants, panthers, Indian tigers and many more. On the weekends, this park witnesses a large crowd of the city dwellers opting for a quick weekend getaway. An ideal place for nature lovers and adventure seekers, it offers you options of wildlife safari, trek and boat rides as well. Except on Tuesdays, the park remains open for visitors every day between 09:30 AM to 5:00 PM.
18. Invoke your spirituality at the ISKCON temple
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[See the religous side of Bangalore on a guided walking tour]
For those looking for spiritual solace, ISKCON Temple, which is dedicated to Lord Krishna, is an attractive proposition. It is situated to the west of the Chord Road, on a seven-acre hillock, known as the 'Hare Krishna Hill'. Built in the Neo-Classical style, it effortlessly blends the traditional elements of temple architecture with modern high-tech amenities. As one enters the intricately ornamented Rajagopuram through patterned arches, one comes across illuminated artificial waterfalls, making it a perfect setting for a peaceful connect with the deity. There are four 'gopurams' inside the temple, each of them connected to the other by an outstanding glazed-glass canopy. The other attractions of the Bangalore ISKCON Temple include ISKCON Vedic Theatre, Vedic museums and exhibit areas, a lecture hall and beautifully landscaped gardens. Apart from meditating and praying in the complex one can participate in the daily pujas and aartis conducted at regular intervals.
19. Attend mass at St Mary’s Basilica
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[Visit churches and cathedrals on a guided tour through Bangalore]
St. Mary's Basilica, the oldest church in Bangalore, is well-known for the festivities held during the St. Mary's Feast in the month of September. It is one the many tourist places in Bangalore that have a rich history and a special architectural style. Situated opposite the Russel Market Square in Shivajinagar, it attracts a number of devotees from in and around Bangalore. It is adorned with numerous stained glass windows and has a striking tower built in gothic-style with pointed arches. Visitors can attend the morning mass at this minor basilica on all days.
20. Bird watching at Puttenahalli Lake at Yelahanka
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Budding ornithologists have a treat in store for them at the Puttenahalli Lake near Yelahanka. It is a 10-hectare water body situated 14km north of Bangalore, which might soon be converted into Karnataka’s first bird sanctuary. Experts have discovered 49 species of birds breeding here which include Darters, Painted storks, Black-crowned Night Herons, Purple Herons, Pond Herons, Egrets, Asian Openbill Storks, Eurasian Spoonbills, Spot-billed Pelican, Little Grebe, Little Cormorant, Spot-billed Ducks, Purple Moorhen, Common Sandpiper and other water-birds. Besides these, some migratory birds and endangered species also pay a visit to the lake seasonally. If bird watching interests you, be sure to go to the lake armed with your camera and binoculars.
21. Watch migratory birds at Hessaraghatta Lake
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Apart from Puttenahalli Lake, one of the best tourist places to visit in Bangalore for spotting migratory birds is the Hessaraghatta Lake. Situated 18km to the north-west of the city, it is a man-made reservoir that holds fresh water of the Arkavathy River originating at the Nandi Hills. Birds such as the kingfisher, magpie robin, little egrets, common mynas, Brahminy kites, black drongos, bulbuls, greater coucals, purple sunbirds, and others has been reported in and around the lake’s border. It is also a great place for the winter migrants of the species and you are sure to catch sight of a few on your visit here.
22. Have fun at Snow City
[Enjoy a day at Snow City in Bangalore and beat the summer heat]
Snow City, an indoor snow-themed park that has sub-zero temperatures, snowfall and snow games is located in Jayamahal. With toboggan rides, snow basketball and a fantasy snow castle, young visitors will be delighted to spend a day here; playing and making snowmen at this positively entertaining theme park. A great place for a family outing, you can also organize birthday parties or get-together with friends over the weekends in this recreational destination. With real snow falling overhead, it will be a memorable experience for those who have never seen snow firsthand. Open between 10 am and 8 pm, one can choose to go for any of the 45 minute long sessions scheduled throughout the day.
23. Wonder La, the amusement park for those young at heart
[Treat yourself to a day of fun at Wonderla Amusement Park]
If you travelling with children, one of the best tourist places to visit in Bangalore is the Wonderla Amusement Park and Resort on the Mysore Road. Filled with exciting rides, water rides and high thrill rides, you are sure to have an excitement-packed day with your family, friends and colleagues in this park. Open on all days of the year, you can visit from 11 am to 6 pm on weekdays and from 11 am to 7 pm on weekends. For those who craves to spend a day at the park, the Wonderla resort attached to the park, offers an ideal place for overnight stay and have some of the jolly and merry memories.
24. Trek to Manchanabele Dam
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Manchanabele Dam is small artificial dam constructed on river Arkavati and leads to the creation of beautiful backwaters surrounded by stone-scattered rugged hills. Apart from being a popular destination for family picnic and outings with friends, it is also one of the most sought after destinations for the trekkers and adventure sports enthusiasts. It is in this vicinity, one can participate in activities like bird watching, hiking, rock climbing, boating, kayaking, sunset tour and photography.
25. Mall Hopping
Being a cosmopolitan city, Bangalore has many malls all across its length and breadth. These malls usually cater to the shopping and hanging-out delights of the city dwellers. With large multi-national brands opening shop in these swanky shopping centres, you would be spoilt for choice as you make your way within these malls. Once you have had your fill of retail therapy, you can indulge your taste buds with the choicest of cuisines being served at the various food outlets and restaurants located at these malls. There is also a recent trend of organizing live music shows and performances at different places within the malls which attract more crowds which get entertained in between the shopping sessions.
Now that you know all about Bangalore and its myriad tourism options, you must surely be keen to try out the different experiences available in this vast city. Most of these sightseeing places are well-connected by buses, private cabs and auto rickshaws, although one can opt to visit certain areas by foot too. While you are busy exploring and discovering Bangalore, do not forget to taste the local dishes which are sure to add another flavor to the trip.