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Cheap Flights to Bengaluru

Bengaluru has reinvented itself; ditching its previous name of Bangalore and transforming into a cosmopolitan city, with hotels, restaurants, bars and shops to rival other major Indian cities.

The explosive growth of Bengaluru over the last decade has been propelled by the city's IT sector, which has attracted leading Indian and multinational companies and led to the creation of thousands of jobs. The consequent rise in the city's young workforce, with their increased disposable income, means entertainment options have mushroomed, creating a more vibrant veneer.

Away from the commercialism, Bengaluru retains its old-fashioned charm from ornate temples and old buildings to quiet gardens and bustling street markets. Bengaluru has something for everyone: it is a case of just knowing where to look.

Things to see in Bengaluru

Tourist information: 

Government of India Tourist Office
KFC Building, 48 Church Street
Tel: (080) 2558 5417.

Karnataka State Tourism Development Corporation and Department of Tourism
49 Khanija Bhavan, West Gate, Race Course Road
Tel: (080) 2227 5883.

Passes: 

There are free passes to many of the tourist sights and reduced-price passes for others and the many museums. They are available from KSTDC.

Bangalore Palace

Bangalore Palace, in the north of the city, was built in 1880 during the time of the British Raj as a replica of Windsor Castle, complete with granite towers, turrets, Gothic windows and battlements. Mainly built of wood, it boasts splendid carvings and paintings. It was purchased by the descendants of the royal dynasty, the Wodeyars of Mysore, and part of the family still live here.

Disabled Access: No
Unesco: No
Address: Palace Road, Vasanth Nagar, Bengaluru, India
Bull Temple

Dating from the 16th century, Bull Temple contains a giant granite monolith of a sacred bull called Nandi. Large number of devotees visits the enormous monolithic statue of the sitting bull every day. There are often prayer gatherings, musicians and wedding processions to be seen.

Opening Times: Mon-Sun 0600-2000.
Admission Fees: No.
Disabled Access: No
Unesco: No
Address: Bugle Hill, Bengaluru, India
Iskcon Temple

The Iskcon Temple, 8km (5 miles) northwest of the city, is a shiny, modern, lavishly decorated temple. Iskcon stands for International Society of Krishna Consciousness, sometimes known as the Hare Krishnas. It is open to the public and has a multimedia cinema showing films on the Hare Krishna movement. For the converted there are five shrines.

Opening Times: Mon-Sun 0600-2000.
Admission Fees: No.
Disabled Access: No
Unesco: No
Address: Hare Krishna Hill, Chord Road, Bengaluru, India
Lalbagh Botanical Gardens

Lalbagh means 'red garden' and a feature of these botanical gardens, located 4km (2.5 miles) south of the city centre, is an enormous swathe of red roses. The gardens were laid out in the 18th century by Hyder Ali and his son Tipu Sultan and many of the trees have been there since the beginning. They are home to one of India's largest collections of rare tropical plants and a glasshouse modelled on London's Crystal Palace.

Opening Times: Mon-Sun 0600-1900.
Disabled Access: No
Unesco: No
Address: South Bangalore, Bengaluru, India
Telephone: (080) 2657 3667.
The Fort and Tipu Sultan's Summer Palace

A few minutes walk south of the City Market are The Fort and Tipu Sultan's Summer Palace. The fort was built in stone by Tipu Sultan on the site of an earlier mud brick one. Much of it was destroyed in the wars with the British and it has not been restored or well maintained. Tipu's Summer Palace is built of wood and has notable teak pillars but much of its painted decoration has disappeared.

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 1000-1800.
Disabled Access: No
Unesco: No
Address: Krishna Rajendra Road, Bengaluru, India
Vishana Soudha

The Vishana Soudha is Bengaluru's most imposing building. It was built in 1954 by convicts in the ancient Dravidian style, complete with onion domes. It houses the Secretariat and the State Legislature. As such, it is not open to the public.

Disabled Access: No
Unesco: No
Address: Cubbon Park, Bengaluru, India