Bengaluru is the third largest city and fifth-largest metropolis in India. Founded in 1537, Bengaluru is the capital of the Indian state of Karnataka. Recently, it has been named as the "Silicon Valley of India" thanks to some of the biggest names in the Information Technology (IT) and Bio Technology (BT) having their base there.
Bengaluru in a nutshell
Capital City: Bengaluru
Founder — Kempegowda
Type: Mayor Council
Civic Body: Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP)
Area: Urban 709 km2 (274 sq miles)
Elevation: 920 m (3,020 ft)
Time Zone: IST (UTC + 5.30 hrs)
Area Code: +91 - (080)
Official Language: Kannada (Regional Language)
Mayor: Ms. G. Padmavati
Population: 8,443,675 (2011 census)
From being called as the Pensioners’ Paradise right unto the 1960s, Bangalore, now officially named as Bengaluru in upholding local sentiments, the city has been given more names than possibly any other city in India or may be Asia and the World.
Bangalore was founded in 1537 and was known as Bengalval –Uru meaning ‘City of guards’. Another story originates from Hoysala King Veera Ballala, who when being fed boiled beans called the place ‘Benda-Kaal-Uru (land of boiled beans).
Though it is widely assumed that Kempe Gowda was the founder of Bengaluru City, records found in Begur referring to the city from 890 CE shows it has a much older history.
Bengaluru is known as the ‘Garden City of India’ despite the toll urbanization has taken. At the heart of the city is Lalbagh, which covers an area of 240 acres. Apart from more than 1000 species of flora and fauna, Lalbagh is home to The Lal Bagh Rock, one of the oldest rock formations on earth, dating back to 3,000 million years and many trees that are more than a century old. Cubbon Park is another sprawling garden with flora and fauna that attracts thousands of tourists every day.
Bengaluru is also the ‘Air Conditioned City of India’ thanks to its salubrious climate as no weather lasts long enough to make people suffer. Situated at a height of over 3,000 feet (914.4 m) above sea level, Bengaluru is situated even above Dehradun (630 mts). Naturally, the city enjoys a very pleasant weather all through the year.
For all young men and women, Bengaluru is called the ‘Pub Capital of India’ due to which many youngsters flock to the city from different parts of the country to enjoy and experience ‘nights’ out.
It has the highest percentage of engineers in the world, with more than a million IT professionals, giving it an additional nickname as the “Engineering Capital of India”. Bengaluru has 21 engineering colleges which is highest in any given city. In addition Bangalore University has 57 Engineering Colleges affiliated to it, which is again a record in itself.
India’s famous air show i.e. The Aero India Show is held once in two years. Aircraft manufacturers and defence oriented firms swoop down to witness the spectacular air show and the wonderful exhibition that is held along with it which is usually held in the month of February for 5 days.
Apart for the above, Bengaluru is home to many legendary sportsmen and women like Dilip Gurumurthy (Basketball), Mahesh Bhupathi (Tennis), Robin Uthappa (Cricket) and Shika Tandon (Swimming) who have enriched the sports culture in the state and the country
By Plane: Kempegowda International Airport is situated at Devanahallil, 30 kilometers away from the Bangalore City Railway Station. Interestingly it is the first airport in India to be constructed in PPP model that means public-private partnership model. Covering an area of 4,700 acres, the International airport was established in May 2008, replacing Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. Airport (HAL), Bengaluru’s main commercial airport.
There are direct flights to and from Bengaluru to most of the major cities of the World like Melbourne, Sydney in Australia; Auckland, New Zealand as well as from most major Asian cities. Hence all the teams traveling to Bengaluru for the FIBA Women’s Asia Cup 2017 have nothing to worry about.
Once at the airport, teams will have their buses picking them up and of course being dropped back as well but for traveling supporters, connectivity to and from the airport to the city and vice versa is splendid.
Bus: Vayu Vajra is the airport shuttle service by the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC). They are air-conditioned Volvo buses, which connects the airport with the city through 11 different routes. They are available at a frequency of 30 minutes and they make almost 251 trips every day. Vayu Vajra is located at the terminal building and they are helpful for both arrival and departure passengers.
Taxi: If you are looking for a taxi at Bengaluru International Airport, it is very easy to find one. You can find here three service providers – Karnataka State Taxi, Uber and Ola Cabs. All these will be helping you to reach your destination conveniently and comfortably all across Bengaluru. Uber Cabs was launched in 2013, is the best Taxi Service Provider. Ola Cabs was launched in 2012 and the Karnataka Taxi is run by Karnataka State Tourism Development Corporation, the largest tour operator in Karnataka.
Car Rentals: part from airport taxis, you can rent premium cars at Kempegowda International Airport. Pay the rental directly by cash or by using credit or debit cards.
Train & Bus: Bangalore City Railway Station is officially known as the Krantivira Sangolli Rayanna Railway Station and is the main railway station serving the city of Bengaluru, Karnataka’s Ayala and India, The station handles 88 trains a day, including 63 express trains, and is used by 220,000 commuters every day.
All cities, small and big, are connected through the railway network. The railway station is served by City Railway Station Metro Station on the Namma Metro’s Purple Line. The railway station is also served by Kempegowda Bus Station situated right across it. Bus services, luxury, semi-luxury, to ordinary to all cities are available. Travel has never been easier with some wonderful road network now already laid out in all sectors.
BANNERGHATTA NATIONAL PARK (23 KMS FROM CITY RAILWAY STATION): Bannerghatta National Park is the most famous wildlife park and also one of the top tourist places in Bengaluru. This park is spread in reserve forests of Anekal Range. It is part of a wildlife corridor for elephants which connects the Biligiriranga Hills and the Sathyamangalam forest range.
BIG BANYAN TREE OR DODDA ALADA MARA (25 KMS FROM THE CITY RAILWAY STATION): The Dodda Alada Mara literally translated to Big Banyan Tree is a giant Banyan tree located in the village of Kethohalli in the Bengaluru Urban district of Karnataka. This is one of the popular tourist places to visit near Bengaluru. Dodda Alada Mara is a single Banyan tree that is 400 years old and has spread over 3 acres of land. This tree is said to be the largest tree in Karnataka and the second largest in India. It has a circumference of more than 250 m and has more than a thousand aerial roots.
MUTHYALA MADUVU (43 KMS FROM THE CITY): Towards Hosur on NH7 diversion at Chandapura after Electronic City via Anekal), Muthyala Maduvu is a small & cute waterfall. Also known as Pearl Valley, this is one of the popular Bengaluru tourist places to visit for half a day. Muthyalu means Pearls and Maduvu means Pond or Pool in Kannada.
SAVANDURGA HILLS (48 KMS FROM THE CITY): At a distance of 48 kms from Bengaluru City Junction, 31 kms from Ramanagara and 13 kms from Magadi, The Savandurga hill is considered to be among the largest monolithic hills in Asia. Savandurga hills are located at an altitude of 1226 mts above the sea level and are also considered to be a part of the Deccan Plateau. This is one of the popular ONE-DAY TRIPS FROM BENGALURU for trekking and also one of the ideal weekend getaways from Bangalore. Savandurga consists of two hills, the Billigudda (While hill) and the Karigudda (Black hill).
SHIVAGANGA HILLS (48 KMS FROM THE CITY): At a distance of 50 kms from Bangalore (close to NH4 towards Tumkur), Shivaganga Hill lies at an altitude of 4599 ft and it is a good short trekking destination near Bengaluru and a popular tourist place. There are also two Shiva temples, one very close to the foot of the hill, called Shivaganga Temple and another one at top of the hill, called Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple.
NANDI HILLS (60 KMS FROM THE CITY): At a distance of 60 Kms from Bengaluru (situated close to NH 207 towards Chik Ballapur), Nandi Hills or Nandidurga is a popular tourist place to visit near Bangalore. It is geographically located close to Skandagiri. With an altitude of about 1,478 meters, it is one of the best places for trekking in Bangalore.
WONDER LA (26 KMS FROM CITY RAILWAY STATION): Wonder La is an amusement park situated on the Bengaluru - Mysore Express way. It is India's biggest amusement and water park and also one of the most visited among Bengaluru tourist places. Spread over 82 acres, the park offers over 50 kinds of rides - water sports and open rides. Attractions include musical fountain and laser show, virtual reality show, high thrill rides, kids' rides, heated wave pools, and numerous water rides.
RANGANATHA SWAMY TEMPLE (44 KMS FROM THE CITY): At a distance of 2 kms from Magadi Bus station and 44.5 kms from Bengaluru City Junction, The Ranganatha Swamy Temple located in Magadi is an ancient temple and a protected monument. This is one of the popular pilgrimage sites to visit around Bangalore.
GHATI SUBRAMANYA TEMPLE (58 KMS FROM THE CITY): The Ghati Subramanya temple is dedicated to Lord Subramanya and Lord Lakshmi Narasimha. Lord Subramanya is the elder son of Shiva and Parvati. Subramanya is considered as Lord of Snakes. It is believed that the idol of Shri Subramanya is self-originated.
CHANNAPATNA — 58 KMS — At a distance of 58 Kms from Bangalore towards Mysore, Channapatna is a small town famous for wooden toys. This place is also famous for door hangings, powder boxes and traditional jewellery.
MYSORE CITY (120 KMS FROM BENGALURU): The historic city of Mysore is the seat of the Wadiyar Dynasty with major historical and heritage sites. The Mysore Palace is a major tourist attraction where the World famous Mysore Dasara festival is held every year during Sept/October. It has many historic places like the Brindavan Gardens, Chamundi Hills, Lalit Mahal Palace etc. to visit.