Southern India: Mysore

Southern India


Mysore, in the southern state of Karnataka, is a wonderful place to get an impression of the color, sights and scents of India. It is famous as a place to buy sandalwood and you can find carvings of all sizes and prices, from small book marks to 3-foot high elephants. A visit to a sandalwood shop is not soon forgotton and you will find yourself thinking of this city every time you smell sandalwood.

The market at Mysore has been praised as one of the most colorful in India, which is a country full of colorful markets. Mysore's public market shows off an enormous variety of fruits and vegetables, colored dye powders, incense and of course sandalwood.

Another attraction of Mysore is its palace. Formerly the home of the maharaja, this palace is an amazing example of the wealth and opulence of the Indian royalty. You can tour this palace and will be amazed by the sheer scale of the place, yet the detail of the decor. It is a masterpiece of stained glass, mirrors, gilt, mahogony ceilings and amazing carved doors.

A girl at a stall selling powdered dyes in Mysore market.

I took a bus to visit Chamundi Hill to see the temple of Chamudeswari, which is built in the classical south Indian style. Along the way I ran into this fellow. I could not find out who he is and guessed he is just here to amuse the tourists. After visiting the temple, I walked down the hill's famed 1000 steps back to town.

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All text and photographs Copyright (c) 1991-1996 Naomi S. Smith
Last update: August 22, 1996