Travel with Chef Duminda – Mysore Palace India
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The most eye catching destination of my whole tour was the beautiful Mysore palace.being the home to maharajahs and maharanis of the Wodeyar dynasty of the kingdom of Mysore for many centuries,today the mighty and beautiful palace has become one of the most prestigious tourist destinations in India. Mighty and majestic with royal elegance in the daytime,bright and shining with many lights in the night,this huge landmark dominates the Mysore skyline.
The wish to visit the palace lingered in my mind since i watched the beautiful TV series called the maharajah`s daughter in 1994.the lifestyle and everything about the Indian royalty captured my mind,finally i was able to fulfill my wish when my agent in India took us to visit the beautiful jewel of the city of Mysore.
The palace we see today was built by the British architect Henry Irwin in 1912,and many features were added to it until 1940.The beautiful Neo-Moghul architectural style shouts out from every pillar and post of the palace,being one of the few buildings in the whole world with such style.I came to know that several palaces were built within the same grounds for Wodeyar kings over centuries,but they were demolished and rebuilt half a dozen times..talk about the wealth of ancient kingdom of Mysore and the amount of human labor consumed!
The moment i entered from the tall and beautiful palace gates,it felt like i went back several centuries past in time.the well kept garden was green and full of colorful and fragrant flowers..for sure this would have been a wonderful place for maharajah`s relaxation.we could see several Hindu temples built within palace grounds,obviously for fulfilling religious rituals of the lords and ladies in the house.the maharajahs who ruled the kingdom surely knew how to live the royal lifestyle,even the temples were massive and full of artistic elements.the sun was shining bright over the beautiful garden,inviting us to feel and enjoy the beauty of the premises more and more..
We had to remove our shoes and buy a ticket which wasn’t expensive to visit the palace interior,with one most disappointing regulation;we cannot take photos inside.The palace itself consists of the main building and accompanying wings which were used for many different purposes.
From the moment i entered the palace building,the spectacular amount of decorative paintings amazed me.while walls were full of portraits and paintings,floors were beautifully tiled with decorative clay tiles.roof was aligned with huge arches and pillars with very detailed and decorative paintings..i was surrounded and hypnotized by this vibrant and colorful world as i was walking through infinite corridors of the palace.as elegantly beautiful as it seemed,the whole environment was majestically intimidating at the same time.
Alongside the corridors,many different royal belongings were displayed.the pavilion of dolls used in the Dasara festival,sculptors of goddess Chamundi and the most beautiful golden howdah,the seat of maharajah where he sat while giving private and public audiences were quite masterpieces.the royal parade held at the annual Dasara festival for centuries was beautifully painted on the long walls of corridors.how different it could be watching a parade in motion from watching a still one while walking by? not much it seemed,the painting was so alive that i could feel all the festivity,music and dances right there!
the vast and beautiful corridors took me to another great hall,called the public durbar,or where the maharajah gave his public audiences. massive hall with decorative pillars,it was facing the royal sitting chamber from one side and to the courtyard from another.adjoining the public durbar and the private durbar was the hallway of doors.the pavilion of marriages was also another eye catching room,with bluish walls and enormous transparent rooftop.the courtyard for wrestling,which is used for the same purpose until this date was also another masterpiece within the palace.
Before leaving the ancient times and the palace i took a while to imagine how different it would have been back then..iron faced royal guards with horses and weapons,formally dressed royalties and lords walking by,little princes and princesses playing and running around the garden and corridors..we certainly live in much developed times but the beauty and tranquility of ancient times will never be experienced by us in the same way.i left the palace building with such mixed feelings,only to return to my modern hotel room and spend the next few days in Mysore.
if you could find time in your busy schedules while visiting India,i recommend you to visit this beautiful monument without fail.You could catch the illumination of the palace if you visit during Sundays or Indian public holidays from 7 pm till 7.30 pm,an unforgettable site indeed.