Artefact inside Government Museum Bangalore

One of the many reasons why you need to visit Bangalore is the museums that the city has. There are plenty of museums that are unique to India and provide great insight into various fields and industries. Ranging from a museum for music to a museum for watches, the city has it all. There are more than 8 to 10 museums in the city and in this post, you will find the Top 6 Museums in Bangalore that you can add to your bucket list. Note that this list is a combination effort from the fellow Bangaloreans and me.

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Top 6 Museums in Bangalore

Government Museum

Submitted by Raksha

Currently situated next to Cubbon Park, Government Museum was first established in 1865 and housed in Cantonment’s Jail Building. It is South India’s second oldest building and has artefacts even from 1st and 2nd centuries. With 18 galleries, the museum is spread across two floors and is in a heritage listed building.

The museum has sculptures, paintings, coins, inscriptions, and pots excavated from Mohenjodaro and Mathura dynasties. One of the highlights of all the exhibits is a huge painting made up of many small paintings of Ramayana’s scenes, which is the mythological story of Lord Rama and Goddess Sita.

Government Museum Bangalore Building
Government Museum; Picture by Raksha

Timings and Entrance fee

The museum is open everyday between 10 AM and 5 PM, except for Mondays and public holidays. There is an entrance fee of Rupees 20 per adult and Rupees 10 per child. Ensure to take an audio guide if it is available at the entrance. To cover the two floors and galleries, you need at least two to three hours.

How to get to Government Museum?

  • Metro – The closest metro station is the Vidhana Soudha metro station. From the metro station, the museum is at a walkable distance of 500 to 600 metres.
  • Drive – As it is right next to the Cubbon Park, the museum is just around 500 metres from Bangalore General Post Office (GPO) and so by road, the journey takes less than 5 to 10 minutes. There is ample parking in the museum complex.

Sandesha Museum, the Museum of Communication

Submitted by Raksha

Dating back to 1804, Sandesha Museum is dedicated to the journey of Indian communication and how it has evolved over the centuries. The current museum that was opened in 2019 is located on Museum Road in a heritage listed building. There are 6 rooms inside the museum and each room has a themed display of artefacts. Ranging from stamps, envelopes, to communication instruments and equipment, the museum has it all. Sandesha museum also has an annual exhibition of stamps and envelopes where the collectors take part and showcase their hobbies. You can check the details on the exhibition on India Post website.

Sandesha museum Bengaluru
Sandesha museum; Picture by Raksha

Timings and Entrance fee

The museum is open every day between 10 AM and 4 PM, except for public holidays and Sundays. There is no entrance fee to enter the museum. You need at least one to two hours to cover and explore everything that the museum has to offer.

How to get to Sandesha Museum?

  • Metro – The best and fastest way to reach the museum is by metro. Mahatma Gandhi (MG) Road Metro station is the closest metro station to the museum, which is around 1.6 kilometres away. You can either walk (flat streets) or take an auto rickshaw to the museum.
  • Drive – Located close to MG Road, the museum is just 2.5 kilometres from the city centre and takes only about 10 minutes to reach via Residency Road. There are plenty of free parking spaces.

HMT Heritage Centre and Watch Museum

Submitted by Smita from The Lady Wanderer

Hindustan Machine Tools (HMT), also known as “Jewel among the public sector”, is India’s first watchmaker. And HMT Heritage Centre and Watch museum is the museum dedicated to the HMT watchmaker which has artefacts and stories of how the watch industry has evolved. Spread across two floors, the museum takes you on a time travel and journey of HMT showcasing the artefacts and exhibits related to HMT. The exhibits also include the manufacturing machine tools and defence equipment. 

You can ask any old timer in Bangalore and they have a lot of stories to share about this famous watchmaker HMT, which they used during their time. Back in those days, people saved money to buy their first “HMT Watch” which was a prized possession. Bangaloreans who have visited Lalbagh botanical garden might have seen the famous HMT floral watch. What you would not know is that if you observe carefully and you will notice that this floral watch works even today and still shows the correct time. And that’s to show the power of HMT. 

HMT watch museum Bangalore
HMT Watch Museum; Picture by Smita

Timings and Entrance fee

The museum is open Wednesday to Monday from 10 AM to 5 PM. It is closed on National Holidays and Tuesdays. There is an entrance fee of Rupees 30 per adult that can be purchased at the entrance of the museum.

You can easily spend an hour or two in understanding the journey of India’s largest manufacturer of wrist watches, various types of watches by HMT and processes that goes into watch making. Once you complete this museum tour, there is a souvenir shop where you can purchase HMT watches. Also there is a tractor ride that you can take and a ride on the tractor cost Rupees 30 per person for one round of the museum. 

How to get to HMT watch museum?

  • Metro – The HMT watch museum is located at Jalahalli in Bangalore. There is no direct metro train to this place but you can get down at Gorguntepalya Metro station and take an auto rickshaw or cab which might take another 15 to 20 minutes drive to this museum. And from Majestic (Bangalore City Bus Stand), you can take 273 series buses and get down at HMT Colony stop right in front of the museum.
  • Drive – The museum is around 12 kilometres from the city centre and it takes about 50 minutes to drive via New BEL Road. There is ample space for paid parking inside the museum premises and the parking fee is Rupees 20 for 2 hours. 

Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technological Museum

Submitted by Raksha

Built in honour of Sir M. Visvesvaraya, the Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technological Museum is a great place to visit if you love anything related to science and technology. Regarded as the most talented civil engineers in the country, Sir M. Visvesvaraya was awarded India’s highest honour the Bharata Ratna. The museum is right next to the Government Museum and Cubbon Park.

With more than 10 galleries spread across three floors, the Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technological Museum is one of its kind and has so many things to see and do. The museum has life size animal models, exhibits explaining the illusions, science and optics concepts, and many other things. It is an awesome place for kids to learn about modern science, concepts and theories, and technology. There is also a 3D theatre that is absolutely worth visiting.

Visvesvaraya industrial and technological museum
Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technological Museum

Timings and Entrance fee

The museum is open everyday except for Deepavali and Ganesha festivals. It is open between 10 AM and 6 PM. There is an entrance fee of Rupees 85 per person for general admission. Kids below 5 years of age are allowed inside the museum for free. You can spend at least half a day looking at the galleries and exhibits. Note that this is a very popular museum and always has large crowd.

How to get to Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technological Museum?

  • Metro – The easiest and quickest way to get to the museum is by getting off at Vidhana Soudha metro station and walking inside the Cubbon Park to reach the museum. The museum is just 400 to 500 metres from the metro station.
  • Drive – You can also drive to the museum as it is located in the city centre on Kasturba Road. There is plenty of parking spaces inside the museum.

Indian Music Experience Museum

Submitted by Ananya

Waking up to a cassette player singing “Dil Kya kare Jab kisi ko”, singing religious hymns at school and swapping pen drives with friends to exchange Taylor Swift songs, I lived a music filled childhood. Yet how much do I know about music?

Music is woven intricately into our lives yet it is hard to be aware of the impact it has, especially on our moods and actions. Be it Bollywood songs or rock bands, classical music or western albums, music is way more than just rhythm and lyrics. It is shared emotions, which is an universal language. Hans Christian Andersen says “Where words fail, music speaks”. And understanding the music of our own incredibly diverse and plural country seems like an idea that can never go wrong.

A bright weekday afternoon, I walked into the Indian Music experience museum with mixed feelings. My friend had canceled the plan of visiting museum at the last minute so I was all alone and yet I did not want to sit at home. It turned out to be a great decision after all. The museum was a surprise right from the start, an open air sound garden where you can make music with touch, tap and wind. I entered to walk through rooms filled with beautiful pieces, interspersed with short movies being played on the screen. The artfully decorated interactive space engaged me completely for a couple of hours.

The museum has guided tours that you can take that provides you the insight and history about the museum. On weekends, at around 11 AM and 3 PM, these guided tours are given for free to the visitors. I wasn’t aware of the free guided tours and reached on a different day but that also meant flexibility to stay as long as I like in one room.

There are genres ranging from classical music to folk, and religious to rock. The audio visual screens in each room makes sure you listen as you watch, the truly musical experience. The Bollywood section can easily be the favorite section of the museum with relatable tunes and colorful melange of posters, yet the folk music section also fascinates with its varieties and stories. And the cherry on the cake was lots of photography spots ideal for social media.

I came out, proud of my Indian musical heritage and full of many interesting facts and names. A definite visit if you are looking for a light hearted walk down the music lane.

Indian Music Experience Museum
Indian Music Experience Museum; Picture by Ananya Vats

Timings and Entrance fee

The museum is open from Tuesday to Friday between 10 AM and 6 PM, and Saturday and Sunday between 11 AM and 7 PM. There is an entrance fee and it depends on the type of ticket you purchase. For general admission, it is Rupees 150 per adult and Rupees 100 per child on weekdays, and Rupees 250 per adult and Rupees 150 per child on weekends.

How to get to Indian Music Experience Museum?

  • Metro – The closest metro station is Yelachenahalli metro station. And this metro station is about 2 kilometres from the museum. You can either walk or take an auto rickshaw. There is also a direct bus (number 215) from Majestic (main bus stop) that drops the passengers right in front of the museum.
  • Drive – Located in JP Nagar 7th Phase, the museum is around 11 kilometres from city centre and by road, the journey takes around 30 minutes. Note that the parking spaces are limited at the museum.

Kempegowda Museum

Submitted by Raksha

The Kempegowda museum is part of the Mayo Hall in Bangalore. Situated in the heritage building, the museum is dedicated to the founder of Bangalore city Kempegowda I. He was the chieftain of Yelahanka area in Bangalore. The museum is on the first floor of the red building and has a floor map at the entrance of the museum. Opened in 2011, the museum has paintings, boards, and stories of how Bangalore was built and what are the important landmarks in the city.

The highlight of the museum is the 18th century heritage map of Bangalore that has been framed and is installed on the floor. It has then covered with panels that symbolize the four watch towers that were built by Kempegowda I. There are paintings, illustrations and details about these watch towers and the monuments built by Kempegowda I.

Kempegowda Museum
Kempegowda Museum; Picture by Raksha

Timings and Entrance fee

The museum is open every day between 9 AM and 5 PM, except for public holidays and Sundays. There is no entrance fee to the museum. You can easily spend an hour at the museum reading through the details and illustrations.

How to get to Kempegowda Museum?

  • Metro – The best way to get to the museum is by taking the metro. Both the MG Road Metro Station and the Trinity Circle Metro station are closest to the museum. You can walk from either of these metro stations and the distance between the museum and any of these metro stations is around 500 to 750 metres. There are also buses that stop right in front of the Mayo Hall. You can take these buses from Majestic bus stop.
  • Drive – Situated on MG Road, the museum is very close to the Brigade Road. It is just about 500 metres from the corner of Brigade and MG Road. If you are driving, then there are parking spots available in the complex. There is also the Central Mall just opposite to the Mayo Hall where you can park your vehicle (paid) and just walk up the museum.

Closing Notes | Museums in Bangalore

These are some of the amazing, cultural, and unusual museums in Bangalore. Each one of these museums is interesting, and gives you a peek into the history and something exciting. If you have visited any of these or you know of other museums that need to be in the list, then email me and let me know which one of these you loved.

Price disclaimers:

  • The prices mentioned in the post are indicative and are applicable at the time of publishing the post.
  • For up-to-date prices and availability, check individual and respective websites.
  • Opinions mentioned in the post are solely mine and unbiased. If the post is written as part of a collaboration, then the collaboration disclaimer is discussed explicitly at the end of the post.

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