The perfumed city.

Trip Start Sep 19, 2012
Trip End Jul 22, 2014

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Flag of India  , Karnataka,
Tuesday, February 26, 2013

What a nightmare of a bus journey. Left Hospet in the evening on an overnight sleeper bus. Bus was OK but the road was awful. Bone jarring teeth rattling bumps. Hardly got any sleep and arrived in Mysore at some ungodly hour in the morning. After checking in to a cheap and basic hotel decided to explore this city. The first thing you notice is the smell of incense that wafts throughout the streets. . This is one of the largest manufacturers in India .Lovely wide tree lined main streets but as with all of India lots of litter.

The Palace is quite impressive and was rebuilt in the early 1900's after it was burnt down when a fire got out of hand in the kitchen. Unfortunately one is not allowed to take photos of the interior but I did manage to sneak a few. It is a great mix of British and Indian architecture. Well worth the few hours wandering around.

As usual got totally lost on the way back but eventually found my grotty little hotel. Pleasantly surprised that downstairs is an amazing little bakery Selig all sorts of food. I don't know what most of the food is but just ask for one of each. Lots of little biscuits and some are very sweet and others are so spicy that the blow your mouth apart.

After an afternoon siesta wandered into town looking for something to eat. Found little local place down a back street and no one could speak English and the menu was written on the wall in Hindi. Eventually managed to order and devour a magnificent chicken curry. No cutlery and when I asked for a serviette was given a piece of newspaper.

The walls of my hotel room are so thin I can hear the guy in the next room storing! After another interesting breakfast in the downstairs bakery I caught the local bus up to Chamundi Hills. This large hill dominates the skyline and has a large Hindi temple at its summit.This is an important place for pilgrims. All around the temple are little stores selling cheap souvenirs, plastic toys, furry stuffed animals, offerings for the temple and an assortment of Tiffen shops selling local food. Some great views over Mysore and had a great breakfast. Not sure what it was but tasted good and washed down with a nice cup of chai. I had all the good intentions of following the pilgrims down the 1001 steps but it was too hot and I was too lazy.

Later on I took a stroll through the market. What a sensory overload of smells, sights, sounds and taste. All the stall holders are shouting out their wares. The smell of incense, fruit and cooking food is overwhelming. There are piles of flowers, beautiful fresh fruit and vegetables and piles of coloured powders used in festivals. Stalls selling an assortment of incredible sweet delicacies, others selling pots, household utensils and knives. Jewelry stores from cheap plastic to silver and gold. An amazing experience especially as the traders were very friendly and everyone wants to chat to the foreigner. No one hassling you like in most of India.

In the evening I went back to the Palace for the 'Sound and Light' show. Most of it was boring as I did not understand the Hindi commentary but at the end the whole palace is lit up with nearly hundred thousand light bulbs which was rather impressive. Once again, on the way home, found some great chili spicy chicken from a street stall. All wrapped up in newspaper and enjoyed with the locals while we discussed cricket.

Some hotels in India work on the 24 hour rule. As I had arrived on an overnight bus and arrived at the hotel at 7.30 am, I had to check out at 7.30 am. So now I have to wait all day with my backpack until 6.30pm to catch my bus to Kochi. Against all my principles I decided to spend the day at the zoo. I really don't agree with zoos but this was well maintained and laid out. Animals should not be in cages but these animals can not be rehabilitated or released. To see one white rhino all alone in a dusty enclosure is not right. Maybe they should just release them or ship them back to where they come from. They may not survive long but at least they would be free. I really don't know the answer. Anyway I spent most of the day relaxing under the trees and trying to tell the giraffes about Africa.
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Lu on

I love that everywhere smells so nice ... instead of sewers and drains! Your pictures are so bright and pretty! BEAUTIFUL!

simon storey on

nice one Guss,
Keep up the blog.

good to hear all ok your side. sharks lost to Brumbies got a klap.

keep well & travell safe.

simon Storey

GabonPhil on

Thanks for sharing Gus. Enjoyed colourful Mysore market and food images. Phil.

Rachelle and Dave on

Love getting your blogs and your pic's are great - keep them coming1

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