Also known as the Amba Vilas Palace, the Mysore Palace is located at the heard of Mysore city and is one of the most prominent palaces that is visited in India. This tourist destination attracts millions of visitors over the year and comes to light during the Dussehra festival in the month of October. Built in the 14th century by Yaduraya Wodeyar, this palace has been reconstructed and renovated several times.
The palace is housed within the old fort which is very close to the famous Chamundi hills and was the official residence of the Wadiyar dynasty who rules the kingdom of Mysore from 1399 to 1950. The original palace which was built out of wood was destroyed by a fire in the late 19th century and was reconstructed by Krishnarajendra Wadiyar IV. The highlight of this palace is the two Durbar halls which display the Indo-Saracenic style of architecture. The palace also has many courtyards and gardens which speak volumes about the Wadiyar dynasty.
Some history about the Wadiyar Dynasty:
Descendants of the Yadava community in Gujarat, the Wadiyar’s came and settled in Mysore around 1399. They have been ruling this area for about six centuries and had made Mysore as their capital. The current palace has been built and renovated many a times. In 1897, the wooden palace was destroyed by a fire post which Her Majesty Maharani Vani Vilas Sannidhna, delegated Lord Henry Irwin, to construct the new palace. The construction of the new palace was completed by 1912 and was later expanded in the year 1940 under the rule of Maharaja Jayachamarajendra Wadiyar.
The most significant feature of the palace is the mix of styles. The palace heavily borrows the Indo Saracenic structure and blends in elements from the Gothic, Rajput and Muslim styles. The palace is a three stories structure and has the Islamic influence in the form of deep pink domes. The palace has seven expansive arches and the central arc has an sculpted image of Gajalakshmi – the Goddess of prosperity. The palace faces the Chamundi hills and manifests the deep devotion of the Maharajas of Mysore towards Goddess Chamundi. The palace also has a large well-maintained garden which gives a great background to this magnificent palace
Time of Visit:
The palace can be visited on any day from 10:00 am to 5:30 pm. The entry charges are pretty nominal:
- 40 per person for Adults
- 20 per person for Children (10-18 Yrs)
- 10 per person for Students (Letter from School is Required)
- 200 per person for Foreign Tourists (Audio Kit Included)
One of the key spectacles is when the palace is lit up during the evenings. Many tourists flock the palace area to witness this beautiful sight. If you are interested in catching a glimpse of the palace lit up please keep the following times handy:
- 07.00 pm – 07.45 pm on Sundays, National Holidays and State Festivals.
- 07.40 pm – 07.45 pm on Weekdays (Monday to Saturday) after the sound and light show.
- There is no charges to watch Mysore Palace lighting
Another key attraction in the palace is the sound that light show which usually happens from 7:00 PM to 7:40 PM on weekdays (Monday to Saturday)
Note: Wearing footwear inside the palace is strictly prohibited. There is a footwear deposit place outside the palace where one needs to leave behind their footwear. By ensuring that visitors are not wearing footwear, the intricate stone and wooden artwork on the floor are not damaged.
We unfortunately did not have time to visit the palace when it was lit up as we were running short on time. We reached the palace at around 11 AM and spent a good 3 hours exploring this beautiful palace. If you are planning a visit to Mysore, this monument would definitely have to be on top of your itinerary.
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