Travel recaps

The New Maharaja in Mysore

Because we were already in Bangalore for a good two days and as the city doesn’t really have much of sightseeing we went for a day trip to Mysore. A nearby city where the historic seat of Wodeyar maharajas is held. The Mysore dynasty was founded in 1399 and there was a brief period in the late 18th century when Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan disturbed their throne. Start was early in the morning because it was a three hour drive eventough it’s only about 150km away (that explains in what conditions the roads are). We stopped for a quick breakfast, where for me, a plain dosa and a coffee were more than enough.

A New Maharaja in Mysore - Healthy, simple, clean
Dosa – a rice pancake with coconut chutney and a spicy red sauce. If ordering a coffee you’ll always get it with milk

First stop was a small city of Srirangapatnam where Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan ruled much of the south India during 18th century. Gumbaz – mausoleum where the remains of both rulers lie is an impressive sight to see.           The summer palace of Tipu Sultan Daria Daulat Bagh was not really such an impressive view from the outside just because the palace was covered so you couldn’t really see the beauty of the pictures that are drawn on every inch of the palace. We couldn’t take photos inside tough. We also experienced the difference between the entries for foreigners and locals. We had to pay 200 Rs per person (3$) and locals only 5 Rs. We knew that the prices are different but sometimes we got surprised by the difference. The main attraction of Mysore city is the Indo – Saracenic Maharaja’s palace, which is the seat of the Maharajas of Mysore. The earlier burnt down in 1897 and the present one was completed in 1912 at a cost of 4,5 million Rs (6 million $). We were ‘lucky’ enough that the palace was closed for the visitors until 6pm (that actually meant 8pm) because the ceremony for the new maharaja was held inside. That meant we had to spend a bit more time in the city and that we won’t actually see the inside of the palace. I wasn’t really happy with that but what can you do? We drove on the top of The Chamundi Hill, a 1062m high summit. The temple was packed with people waiting to get in. Pilgrims are supposed to walk the 1000 stairs to the top of the hill. Sorry we skipped that but the views from the middle were amazing. On the half of the way there is a 5m high Nandi – Shiva’s bull vehicle – carved out of solid rock in 1659. Quite impressive when you see it up close.         DSCN7279 A stop before we went to wait in front of the Maharaja’s palace were Brindavan Gardens. During our walk in the gardens a whole family came and ask us if they could take a photo with us. We didn’t know if we should laugh or? Sure why not? I still wasn’t quite used to the ‘staring’ part of the India, which meant that you couldn’t go for a walk without getting glanced by the locals, but this family was kind of nice. Especially the little kids were funny because they were waving to us and asking us where are we from and what are our names. Cuteness overload.          Then the wait in front of the Maharaja’s palace started. in the beginning they said we will be able to come in at 5pm, it quickly shifted to 6pm and we actually came in at 7pm. Of course. Again the same thing happened inside. The Maharaja, a new 23 old leader, should have come at 7:30 pm and of course that was not the case. We just wanted to leave when a bit after 8pm he came out and the palace was lit up. A really amazing view but we really really had to go as we had a 3 hours ride back home. DSCN7306         I fell asleep during the ride home and if I woke up I only saw a lot of lights, dust and heard a loot of honking. My boyfriend said this was the most weird and dangerous ride he had because in some moments it really felt like we will crash. Trucks with no lights, cows in the middle of the road definately without lights, speed bumps you can’t see combined with the already hectic multiway driving is definitely an ‘interesting’ combination. After we came home a friend where we were staying said that yeah, he never travels at night because it is just too dangerous. Good to know! If I didn’t catch the action during the night I sure did catch the road traffic during the day. They never cease to amaze me.                First aid tips:

  • Always have some change with you because they will take everything and not return the change
  • Foreigns pay more – much more for the entries into the sights
  • Weird adds can be seen everywhere: one was – Cockroaches freehome – that’s nice!
  • The way people transport themselves and their stuff still surprises me
  • Speed bumps here are just unreal. You literally have to take a full stop and even then it may happen that the car will bump into it.
  • Just a general heads up – lemon water at the end of the meal is to wash your hands! And you eat only with your right hand (figure out why yourself)

A.

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