Bangalore is a culturally and religiously rich Indian city which is evident from the vast number of temples around town. The temples in Bangalore showcase the culture, architecture, and glory of several dynasties that have ruled Karnataka over the centuries. The iconic hill-top temples in Bangalore draw tourists from across the world to witness the grandeur of these temples.
Nandi Hills is about 60 km from Bangalore and the best way to reach there is by taking a Bangalore to Nandi hills taxi available at affordable rates. Arriving early in the morning (about 6 am) is advisable since the climate will be even more pleasant and the ambience around the place will whisk away all your stress. The hill gets its name because of the huge statue of a bull (Yoga Nandeeshwara) in front of the temple.
Apart from the religious importance, Nandi Hills also attracts nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts. The location is picturesque with the brilliant sunrise above the misty mountains adding more tranquillity to the place. Flora and fauna around the mountains provide the perfect setting for trekking activities. For visitors planning to stay overnight, there are decent accommodation options on the hills, though most people choose to return to Bangalore the same day.
Tirupati is a holy city that draws more religious pilgrims than tourists. The distance from Bangalore city to Tirupati is about 250 kilometres, and it takes about 4 hours to reach there by taking a taxi from Bangalore to Tirupati. The main temple sits atop the seven hills, and the drive along the ghats from the plains add to the enjoyment. Once you are at the top, the atmosphere is entirely devotional and spiritual.
To get a glimpse of the Lord, one can either join a free line that takes about 20 hours on a typical day, but could exceed 36 hours on some days. Other options include buying darshan tickets priced at Rs.300 and above depending on individual needs. Once you enter the sanctum sanctorum conclave, everyone merges into the same line, and finally, you get a fraction of a minute in front of the deity. Free lunch/dinner is served to devotees at the hills, and you will also need to set aside some time for waiting in the queue. Once you return to the plains, there are several smaller temples around the Tirupati town that can be seen.
Chamundi Hills is about 12 km from Mysore city situated at a distance of about 3 hours from Bangalore city. Once you reach the foothills of the temple, you can either drive up to the temple or use the 1000 steps built some three centuries ago. Atop the hill is a temple dedicated to Goddess Chamundeshwari regarded as the incarnation of all the divine forces into one to fight evil. Chamundeshwari or Goddess Durga was also the royal protector for the erstwhile rulers of Mysore. The temple is open on all days from 7.30 am to 9.30 pm with a couple of one-hour breaks in between.
Chamundi Hills is considered the crowning glory of Mysore, and one cannot miss the natural beauty surrounding the temple. Similarly, the view of famous landmarks of the city of Mysore from atop the hills is breathtaking. The place is particularly enchanting during the Dussehra festival lasting about two weeks. During this period it could be difficult to book Bangalore to Mysore taxi due to the enormous inflow of crowd. It is advisable that you book your transportation in advance to avoid last minute hassles.