Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

Have you ever wondered what it feels like to step into a realm of history and grandeur? Mysore Palace, a jewel nestled in the heart of Karnataka, India, offers just that. Let’s embark on a journey through time and architecture as we explore the majestic heritage of Mysore Palace.mysore palace, mysore palace timings, mysore palace photos, mysore palace entry fee, mysore palace king, mysore palace entry fees, 
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Majestic Marvel: Mysore Palace

The real name of this palace is Amba Vilas Palace, but it is better known as Mysore Palace. The palace is 500 meters (245 feet) in length and 47 meters (156 feet) in width, with an area of about 72 acres and a beautiful garden. The palace is grand from the inside, but the exterior, with its red domes and beautiful arches, is also mind-blowing. With millions of tourists visiting the Mysore Palace every year, it is the most popular historical architecture in India after the Taj Mahal in Agra.

Legacy of Kings: The Evolution of Mysore Palacemysore palace, mysore palace timings, mysore palace photos, mysore palace entry fee, mysore palace king, mysore palace entry fees, 
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Before independence, Mysore was one of the 565 princely states of Hindustan (British India), ruled by the kings of the Wadiyar dynasty. The Wadiyar kings are believed to be descendants of Lord Krishna’s Yadava clan and to have migrated here from Dwarka years ago. In 1399, Yadurai Wadiyar established his rule in Mysore and had the Amba Vilas i.e., Mysore Palace, constructed. However, after that, the palace kept getting a new incarnation. This palace, built mainly of sandalwood, was destroyed in an accidental fire in 1896. Krishnaraja Wadiyar constructed the present palace, which lasted from 1897 to 1912.

Fusion Splendor: The Indo-Saracenic Marvel of Mysore Palace


Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

Designed by English architect Henry Irwin, the palace features Indo-Saracenic-style architecture. This distinctive architectural style was developed by English architects in the late nineteenth century. Indo-Saracenic style is a combination of Hindu, Islamic (especially Mughal), Gothic (French), and Victorian arts. An example of this is the Lakshmi Vilas Palace in Vadodara. When the Amba Vilas palace was built in 1912 at a cost of around Rs 41,00,000, it was considered an engineering marvel.

Timeless Majesty: Secrets and Splendors of Mysore Palace

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Even though a century has passed, the splendor and grandeur of the palace have not dimmed. An emblem bearing the text ‘Those Who Never Fear’ is seen at the main entrance while entering the spacious premises of twenty acres. The palace has three entrances, of which the east and west gates are opened only during Dussehra celebrations and on special occasions. The south gate remains open for tourist traffic. These three seem to be the visible entrances to the palace, but there is no dearth of invisible secret doors and passages. It is said that some hidden routes lead to Srirangapatna, twenty kilometers away from Mysore.

Symmetry and Elegance: Exploring the Grandeur of Mysore Palace

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Entering the premises through the southern entrance, one finds a large garden on either side and a palace right in front. If you look closely at the entire architecture while standing right in the middle, you will find that the palace is divided by an imaginary line down the middle, and its two’splits’ are identical. The three-storied palace is mainly made of granite. The domes are made of pink and gray marble, while the middle dome on the 44-meter (146-feet) tall minaret is golden. The arches and columns in the foreground add grandeur to the appearance of the palace, while the windows, shutters, umbrella-like structures, the brown of the stones, and the dark night color of the domes add beauty to the palace.

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Seeing a building that has been standing for a century, one wonders how such a huge complex could have been built. How many artists, sculptors, and craftsmen would have worked here? Of course, this curiosity is somewhat assuaged by the accounts of a Scottish traveler and painter, William Gordon Burn Murdoch , after his visit to Mysore. When William came to Mysore, the construction of Amba Vilas Mahal (Mysore Palace) was in full swing. In the eighteenth chapter of his book ‘From Edinburgh to India and Burma’, he has described the construction in great detail. Read some of it here:
Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

“There is a lot of movement here. It looks like some Gothic-era cathedrals are under construction. There are two towers, about one and a half hundred feet high, and a portion of the building between them. The bamboo scaffolding is constructed in such a way that it looks like a huge fishing net. Thousands of construction workers from different parts of India are seen working on scaffolding. There are hundreds of other artisans stationed on the land who are engaged in cutting marble and granite stones, stone grinding, and fine carving. The hands of the artisans move gently despite applying just the right amount of pressure with a chisel-hammer to the hard granite stones. Statues of Hindu deities, mythological scenes, flower-vine and leaf designs, geometrical shapes, animals, birds, and human figures—the work of the sculptors is equal to that of Italian artisans of high caliber.
Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

Inside, several modelers (those who make replicas of the sculpture in clay before making the final sculpture) were seen sitting in groups and rapidly creating relief sculptures. The different methods of different artisans from each country are always interesting. Here the modelers would sit on the floor with the help of heels in a space where only a napkin or a tablecloth was spread and made various replicas rapidly. Sculptors then making sculptures with chisels and hammer on the granite stone based on that replica. The woodwork inside the palace seems to be of a very high standard. At least four hundred experts are seen working meticulously on the hardwood of teak. Looking at the meticulous work done by all these artisans and by over four hundred sculptors, I think this will be one of the most beautiful palaces in the world. Present as well as future generations owe the preservation of Indian artistry to the prince of Wadiyar, who encouraged such talented artists.”

William Gordon Burn Murdoch was so impressed at the construction of the Mysore Palace that the Scottish painter might have written a book in praise of Amba Vilas after seeing its grandeur!

Dazzling Beginnings: Exploring the Gombe Thotti at Mysore Palace

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The tour inside the palace starts from ‘Gombe Thotti’ meaning Dolls Pavilion. Many statues, marble sculptures, idols of gods and goddesses, various art objects are arranged here. All these specimens belong to the personal collection of king Wadiyar. Such a tradition that The king should worship him during Dussehra has been going on for years. The ‘Gombe Thotti’ is divided into North and South by brass gates. Gandabherund (double-headed eagle), the emblem of the Mysore state, is engraved on this entrance. A Golden palanquin  can also be seen here. During Dussehra , the idol of Goddess Chamundeshwari is enshrined in this palanquin . The selection of an elephant capable of lifting 80 kilograms of solid gold palanquin remains an important process.

Local Elegance: Materials and Artistry in the Construction of Mysore Palace

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The palace has made extensive use of materials mainly locally available. The widely used granite stone is brought from Turuvekere, a hundred kilometers north. The sculptures are also carved from the same stone. Apart from this, expert mesons were called from many parts of South India who had learned the art of stone work from the great artists of Jaipur as well as Kolhapur. Apart from marble and granite, various materials like teak, rosewood, colored glass, ivory have been used for decoration.

Spectacular Artistry: Dussehra Celebrations and Architectural Marvels in Kalyan Mandap, Mysore Palace

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There are 26 pictures depicting the celebration of Dussehra in a huge octagonal hall called Kalyan Mandap. These images appear to be 3D/three-dimensional. So much detail that one can spend a good amount of time looking at each picture carefully. Another attraction of the Kalyan Mandap is the beautiful wrought iron pillars. (The columns were designed by the famous Scottish sculptor ‘Walter Macferlane’.) The arches above the columns are also artistic. A peacock figure framed in the ceiling with specially ordered colored glass from Belgium attracts the attention of the viewer. The pavement is no less attractive. Different varieties of designs have been made on the marble floor with beautiful stone pieces embedded in. This type of work is called ‘Agra work’, as this type of work is abundant in the Taj Mahal.

Regal Splendor: Exploring the Durbar Hall at Mysore Palace

Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage
Statue of King Krishnaraja Wadiyar IV

From the Kalyan Mandap is the way to the Durbar Hall or the Diwan-e-Aam. The Durbar Hall is quite spacious as it is used for various celebrations. The entrance to this room is of solid silver, while part of the ceiling is carved from the wood of the African mahogany tree. While entering the Durbar Hall, one can see a life size sculpture of King Krishnaraja Wadiyar IV. After entering the hall, the chandeliers, colorful columns, arches and decorations on them, ceilings made of wood and stained glass, etc. keep the viewer hooked. On the back wall of the hall is an oil painting of Sita Swayamvara painted by Raja Ravi Varma which is not to be missed.

Royal Treasures: Awe-Inspiring Artifacts and Armory at Mysore Palace

Apart from this, the abundance and variety of clothing, weapons, instruments used by the royals of the Wadiyar dynasty is awe-striking. The armory of the Mysore palace is extremely rich. Thousands of weapons are displayed there, including various types of spears, swords, knives, maces etc. The sword used by Tipu Sultan and his father Hyder Ali can also be seen here. So versatile and abundant Armory is found at very few palaces in India. Next to the armory are several stuffed animals and their heads.

Wild Elegance: Exploring the Royal Menagerie at Mysore Palace

Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage
Stuffed Lion and Tiger in Maysor Palace

A statue of a two-horned rhinoceros from Africa is a thrill. Altogether there will be fifty animal figurines in the room, including 14 tigers. Seeing this, one gets an idea that the Wadiyar royals killed some innocent animals just because of their hunting passion. Now, although watching wild animals is no surprise thanks to channels like Discovery or National Geographic, before the advent of television, animals kept like this (stuffed with spices) must have been a thrill for royalty and their guests.

Mysore Dussehra: 10 days of lavish celebrations
Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

Most of the Mysore Palace is in possession of the current Maharaja which they use as residence. The Maharaja no longer has direct contact with the residents of the city, but during the Dussehra festival, he goes out enough to give glimpse to the public. The festival of Dussehra is very important in Mysore. The palace is lit up with 1,00,000 bulbs during the festival which lasts for ten days. The palace lights up for two hours on the first eight days and three hours on the last two days. Millions of people flock to Mysore to witness this amazing sight.

Golden Grandeur: The Dussehra Spectacle of Mysore Palace
Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

The gold-plated throne, which is kept inside the palace all year round, is brought out for public viewing during Dussehra. On the ninth day known as Mahanavami, the sword is placed on the throne, it is ritually worshiped and then it is carried in a procession. The procession consists of elephants, camels and horses, besides colorful tableaus, many dance troupes, and orchestras. The procession starts from the Mysore Palace and ends at the Bunny- mandap where the Bunny tree is worshiped. According to folklore, after twelve years of exile, during the thirteenth year of exile, the Pandavas hid their weapons in the Banni tree.

Dussehra Delight: Mysore’s Timeless Tradition


Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

During the time of Dussehra, Mysore has a distinct mood. The dates of festival are announced in advance every year. Hence tourists who want to enjoy it can plan their trip in advance (from www.mysoredasara.org website). The appearance and magnificence of the royal procession on the day of Dussehra is a sight to behold. The tradition of this celebration was started by the kings of Vijayanagar in the fifteenth century. It ended with the fall of the Vijayanagar empire. But the Wadiyar kings of Mysore resumed it from Srirangapatna in 1610 AD. This tradition is still followed after four hundred years.

Good to Know


Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

– The nearest airport to Mysore is Bengaluru, located 144 km away, with direct flights from cities like Ahmedabad and Mumbai to Bengaluru.

– Mysore can be reached from Bengaluru by bus or taxi. Trains from Gujarat and Mumbai to Mysore are available, but the journey takes 30 to 40 hours.

– Battery-powered vehicles are available for moving around Mysore Palace. In the evening, a ‘Sound and Light’ show is organized, providing an immersive experience of the palace’s history.
Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

– Besides Amba Vilas (Mysore Palace), the city features five other palaces, including the residence of famous writer R. K. Narayan, now converted into a museum.

– Other attractions in Mysore include Chamunda Hills, Vrindavan Garden, Mysore Zoo, Sand Museum, and regular museums.
To fully enjoy these attractions, it is recommended to spend two to three days in Mysore.

Conclusion

As we conclude our journey through Mysore Palace, one cannot help but be enamored by the legacy it holds. The palace stands not just as a monument but as a living storybook, narrating the chapters of Mysore’s regal history.

Frequently Asked Questions
Explore Mysore Palace: Majestic Heritage

  1. What is the best time to visit Mysore Palace?
    –  The best time to visit is during the Mysore Dasara festival when the palace is adorned with mesmerizing lights and cultural festivities.
  2. Are photography and videography allowed inside the palace?
    Yes, photography is allowed in designated areas, but videography is restricted. Respect the guidelines to preserve the palace’s integrity.
  3. How much time should I allocate for the palace tour?
    Plan for at least 2-3 hours to explore the palace thoroughly and appreciate its architecture, history, and artifacts.
  4. Can I buy tickets online in advance?
    Yes, you can purchase tickets online to avoid long queues, ensuring a seamless entry and an unhurried exploration of the palace.
  5. Are there any guided tours available?
    Absolutely! Guided tours, including audio guides and virtual tours, are available to enrich your understanding of Mysore Palace’s history and significance.

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