“Fit for a Maharaja”.
Where is Mysore?
The city of Mysore is located in the foothills of the Chamundi Hills in the southern part of Karnataka State. It was the capital of the Kingdom of Mysore from 1399 until 1947. In the centre is the opulent Mysore Palace, which was the seat of the former ruling Wodeyar dynasty.
The palace blends Hindu, Islamic, Gothic, and Rajput styles. Mysore is also home to the centuries old Devaraja Market, filled with spices, silk and oils and St. Philomena’s Cathedral, a Catholic church that is the cathedral of the Diocese of Mysore
Our journey from Murdeshwar to Mysore was by local buses.
During our time in Mysore, we chose to stay at Hotel Sandesh The Prince. A very nice 4* hotel, situated in the heart of Mysore. With a swimming pool and health club, the hotel has everything you require. The restaurant and breakfast food are excellent. The staff are both friendly yet remain professional.
Places of interest
Mysore is famous for silk sarees (Mysore Silk), sandalwood carvings, and the many varieties of perfume, oils, and incense sticks. To experience one of India’s best markets head to Devaraja Market where tourists and locals alike shop for daily fruit and vegetables as well as the rows and rows of flowers and various spices. The market is located on Dhanwanthri Road.
Be warned, there are a lot of perfume and oil sellers that sell inferior goods. Don’t be tempted by nice boxes or free gifts. As a rule, if it looks like a bargain, it will probably be poor quality. The genuine products can be found further from the city centre, but it is mostly for export.
Designed by the English Architect, Henry Irwin, the Palace dominates the skyline of Mysore. A three storey structure in Indo-Saracenic style, rebuilt between 1897-1912 after it was devastated by fire.
The palace has beautifully designed square towers with cardinal points, covered with domes. The Durbar Hall has an ornate ceiling and sculpted pillars and the Kalyana Mantapa, with its glazed tiled flooring and stained glass domed ceiling, is breathtaking.
The walled palace complex houses the Residential Museum with some of the Palace’s living quarters, temples, and shrines, including the Shwetha Varahaswamy temple.
The palace is illuminated on Sundays. Entry is 70 Rupees for foreign and Indian nationals.
St. Philomena’s Cathedral
Its full name is the Cathedral of St. Joseph and St. Philomena and it is also known as St. Joseph’s Cathedral. Constructed in 1936 using a Neo-Gothic style, inspired by Germany’s Cologne Cathedral. It is one of the tallest churches in Asia.
The cathedral has a crypt that houses a statue of St. Philomena, a 3rd-century saint from Greece, which was acquired from France. Some have described this Cathedral as a priceless French statue of a celebrated Greek saint in a German cathedral located in the heart of India.
Recently the exterior has been painted grey, the rest of the Cathedral still retains the original stonework colours.
The Cathedral is open from 0500 hrs to 1800 hrs daily. Entry is free.