Giant Discs - Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple, Cave Temple in Bangalore

Exploring 10+ Hidden Gems in Bangalore: Uncovering Offbeat Attractions (2024)

Are you here to uncover the hidden gems in Bangalore? Or are you looking to explore beyond the normal touristy places in the city? Then you are at the right place.

Everyone knows about Cubbon Park and Lalbagh Botanical Garden in Bangalore. But did you know that there are plenty of offbeat places in Bangalore that are unexplored and not so popular? In this post, you will find the details of those secret spots in Bangalore.

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Exploring Hidden Gems in Bangalore: Uncovering Offbeat Attractions

It was such a shame that in spite of being a Bangalorean, I had not seem most of these things while I was growing up. I started exploring these with my friend Divya after we started Bengaluru Prayana. And I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Bangalore is much more than tall buildings and gardens. So let’s start uncovering the offbeat attractions of Bangalore.

Note:

  • The best and fastest way to commute in Bangalore is by metro. Read Transport in Bangalore for all the ways you can travel in this city.
  • For religious places, ensure to dress appropriately. You need to leave your footwear outside before entering any religious place.

Bengaluru Prayana conducts guided heritage and art walks. To know about the scheduled walks, visit the Bengaluru Prayana Facebook group or Meetup website. Alternatively, you can also write to us at bengaluruprayana@gmail.com.

Sri Dakshina Mukha Nandi Teertha Temple

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, Sri Dakshina Mukha Nandi Teertha Temple in located in Malleshwaram, diagonally opposite to Kadu Malleshwara temple. Claimed to be more than 400 years old, this temple was found during an excavation work. The highlight of the temple is the Nandi that is facing south and has a continuous stream of water from Nandi’s mouth that falls on to the Shivalinga.

The temple is open everyday between 7:30 AM and 12 PM, and between 5:30 PM and 8:30 PM. There is no entrance fee to enter the temple. As it is a religious place, ensure to dress appropriately.

The closest metro station is the Mantri Mall metro station. And the distance between the metro station and the temple is around 1.5 kilometres. You can either walk or take an auto rickshaw to the temple.

Sri Dakshinamukha Nandi Tirtha
Sri Dakshinamukha Nandi Tirtha

Indian Cartoon Gallery

Holding exhibitions from various artists, the Indian Cartoon Gallery is the only cartoon gallery in the country. It was founded in 2001 by Indian Institute of Cartoonists to help and promote local and international cartoonists.

The gallery is open everyday except Sundays between 10 AM and 6 PM. There is no entrance fee to enter the gallery but many a times there are celebrations and occasions that are held.

The closest metro station is the Trinity metro station. And the gallery is around 700 metres from the metro station. You can easily walk as it is a flat walk.

Indian Cartoon Gallery, Bangalore
Indian Cartoon Gallery

Oldest Functional Post Box

Being one of the first few post boxes to arrive from Britain to India to establish India Post, the post box at the 5star hotel Taj Westend Bangalore is the oldest functional post box. It is surely one of the most hidden gems in Bangalore. Taj Westend Bangalore (one of the top hotels to stay in Bangalore for families) itself is a 300 years old heritage property.

The post box is at the entrance of the hotel near the reception so you do not have to go inside the hotel or disturb the hotel guests. If you want a postcard, then you can request the staff of the hotel and they do provide you with a postcard so you can send it to yourself or anyone from that post box.

Click here to check for prices on Booking.com

The closest metro station is Dr. B. R. Ambedkar metro station. And this metro station is a kilometre from the hotel. You can either walk or take an auto rickshaw to get to the hotel.

Oldest functional post box - Taj Westend
Oldest functional post box

Kempegowda Museum

Did you know that Bangalore has a museum dedicated to its founder Kempegowda I? Yes, part of Mayo Hall on Mahatma Gandhi (M. G.) Road is a dedicated wing and museum to showcase and exhibit the history and stories of Bangalore. The Kempegowda museum is located on the first floor and is one of the top 6 museums to visit and is a lesser known secret spot in Bangalore.

The museum is open everyday except Sundays between 9 AM and 5 PM. There is no entrance fee to enter the museum. You need at least one hour to see the museum.

The closest metro station is MG Road metro station. And the museum is just 700 metres from the metro station.

Kempegowda Museum
Kempegowda Museum

Sri Panchalinga Nageshwara Temple (Begur)

Located in Begur near Electronic City, Sri Panchalinga Nageshwara temple has an old inscription, dating back to the 9th century, describing about the Bengaluru war. With a history of more than 1300 years, the inscription has the earliest reference of the name Bengaluru. This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva.

The temple is open everyday between 6 AM and 7:30 PM. There is no entrance fee to enter the temple. As it is a religious place, ensure to dress appropriately.

There is no metro station close to the temple. The best way is either to take a taxi or a bus to reach the Electronic City. It is around 12 kilometres from Bangalore city and by road, the journey takes up to 30 minutes. But note that this is on the Electronic City route which means that the traffic is really bad.

Nageshwara Temple (Begur); Picture by Divya Chandrashekar
Nageshwara Temple (Begur); Picture by Divya Chandrashekar

Malleshwaram Street Art Trail

Created by a group of artists called Geechagalu, the Malleshwaram Street Art trail is an amazing way to relive the childhood memories of what Malleshwaram area used to be. Starting at 18th cross Malleshwaram bus stop, the trail consists of 12 murals that were created as part of Malleshwaram Hogona project.

These murals are on the cross lanes of Malleshwaram and can be visited anytime during the day.

We, at Bengaluru Prayana, conduct a guided walk to showcase Malleshwaram street art. Contact us on BengaluruPrayana@gmail.com to find out when our next walk is scheduled.

The closest metro station to Malleshwaram 18th cross bus stop is Mantri Mall metro station. And the metro station is around a kilometre from the bus stop. You can easily walk to the bus stop.

Malleshwaram Sparrows
Malleshwaram Sparrows; Picture credit: Divya Chandrashekar

The Four Watch Towers

In the 16th century, Bangalore city’s founder Kempegowda I built four watch towers in all four directions to mark the boundary of the city. These four watch towers can still be seen taking its visitors back in time. These towers are situated at Ulsoor, Mekhri Circle, Lalbagh Botanical Garden and Gavipuram.

Three of these towers are open to public and can be visited anytime. The tower at Ulsoor is in the Military area and due to which general public cannot enter. There is no entrance fee to see these towers.

As these towers are located at different places around the city, the metro stations vary as well. For Mekhri Circle watch tower, the closest metro station is Mantri Mall metro station. For Lalbagh watch tower, the closest metro station is Lalbagh itself. And for Gavipuram watch tower, the closes metro station is Krishna Rajendra metro station.

Kempegowda tower Gavipuram
Kempegowda tower in Gavipuram

Kempambudhi Lake

Known for a record set by a 12 year old for swimming continuously for 12 hours straight, Kempambudhi lake is one of the secret spots in Bangalore. This was also built by Kempegowda I during the 16th century.

The lake is open for visitors everyday between 5 AM and 10 AM, and between 4 PM and 8 PM. There is no entrance fee for the lake.

The closest metro station for Kempambudhi lake is Krishna Rajendra metro station. And the lake is around 3 kilometres from the metro station. You can either walk or take an auto rickshaw.

Kempambudhi Lake
Kempambudhi Lake

Microlight Flying

One of the adventurous activities that you can do when you are in Bangalore is to try your hand co-piloting a small plane. Yes, if you love planes and want to fly one, then Microlight flying at Jakkur aerodrome is for you.

The booking for Microlight flying needs to be done in advance and the cost is around Rupees 3000 to 4000 per person.

Microlight flying Bangalore
Microlight Flying

Shri Dharmaraya Swamy Temple

Dedicated to the Pandavas from the mythological story of Mahabharata, Shri Dharmaraya Swamy Temple is one of the oldest temples in Bangalore. Dating back to more than 800 years, the temple is built in the Dravidian architectural style. The famous Bangalore Karaga festival happens at this temple during the month of March. It is a street procession where a priest dressed as a woman carries enormous clay pot on his head and dances through the streets of Bangalore. This procession is dedicated to Draupadhi.

The temple is open everyday except Fridays between 6 AM and 10 AM, and between 6 PM and 8:30 PM. There is no entrance fee to enter the temple. As this is a religious site, ensure to dress appropriately.

The closest metro station is Chikpete. And from Chikpete metro station, the temple is around 1.3 kilometres. The best way is to just walk to the temple as the lanes are very narrow and you could be stuck in traffic unnecessarily if you take an auto rickshaw.

NIMHANS Brain Museum

Dedicated to human brain sample and neuroanatomy, National Institute of Mental Health and Science (NIMHANS) Brain Museum is one of the unique and interesting museums in Bangalore. The museum is home to more than 400 samples collected for more than 40 years.

The museum is open only on two days a week Wednesday between 2:30 PM and 4:30 PM, and Saturday between 10:30 AM and 12:30 PM, and Saturday between 2:30 PM and 4:30 PM. There is no entrance fee to enter the museum.

The closest metro station is Krishna Rajendra metro station. And the museum is another bus ride away from the metro station. You can take a bus to NIMHANS from Minerva Circle.

Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palace

Used as a summer residence by Tipu Sultan, the Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palace is built in Indo-Islamic architectural style. Completed in 1791, the summer was started by Hyder Ali, Tipu Sultan’s father.

The palace is open everyday between 8:30 AM and 5:30 PM. There is an entrance fee of Rupees 20 for Indian nationals and Rupees 200 for foreign nationals.

The closest metro station is Krishna Rajendra Market metro station. And the palace is just 450 metres from the metro station. You can just walk up to the palace from the metro station.

Tipu Sultan Summer Palace
Tipu Sultan Summer Palace

Bangalore Fort

Built as a mud fort in 1537 by Kempegowda I, Bangalore Fort is a great example of 18th century military fortification. The complex had a church, hospital, temple, Tipu Sultan’s summer palace, park, cemetery and school. But now only one gate and a temple remains.

The fort is open everyday between 8:30 AM and 5:30 PM. There is no entrance fee to enter the fort.

The closest metro station is Krishna Rajendra Market metro station. And the fort is just around metres from the metro station. You can easily walk up to the fort.

Bangalore Fort, a step back in time
Bangalore Fort, a step back in time

Closing Notes

These are some of the hidden gems in Bangalore which are not known to many people, including the locals. How many of these hidden gems in Bangalore have you visited so far? Let me know by writing to be on BengaluruPrayana@gmail.com.

If you enjoyed and liked this article, do comment, tweet or share this post.

Do you have a question or a suggestion? Or want to know more information? Write to me at bengaluruprayana@gmail.com.

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