Chamundi hills is something that only Mysore can boast of and it is has an unavoidable importance in the history of the city. It visible from any part of the city. And once you reach at the top of the hill you'll get a bird's eye view of mysore which includes the mysore palace . People who loves trekking will not forget this destination. It is not just a hill but it holds the famous chamundeshwari temple and the Mahabaleshwara temple. The Mysore Wodeyar dynasty considers Chamundeshawari as the deity of the royal family. Therefore the hill is important for the people here from religious as well tourism perspective.
The Chamundeshwari temple was built in 13th century. The temple is located on the top of Chamundi hills about 13 km away from the palace city of Mysore in the state of Karnataka. This temple was named after Chamundeshwari or Durga, the fierce form of shakti . This is considered as the shakti peeth and is among the 18 maha shakti peeth. The temple has a seven storey tall Gopura/Gopuram decorated with intricate carvings. The deity of the goddess is said to be made of Gold and the entrance doors are of Silver.
Mysore Maharajah's Palace (Amba Vilas)
This palace which was the seat of the Wodeyar kings was rebuilt in the year 1912 by an English architect named Henry Irwin as the original one was destroyed of fire in 1897. This palace is one of the best examples not only of the Edwardian Raj Era but also of Indian Royal architecture. The beautiful kaliedoscope of stained glass enhanced with the wood carved doors and mosaic floors is exquisite undoubtedly. The museum of weapons is a must visit along with the part of the palace where you see a number of beautifully carved statues and paintings referring to the life of Mysore in that era.The palace is lit up with hundreds of bulbs every evening from 7:00 PM - 7:45 PM and the whole evening on public holidays. This is when you get a more extravagant view of this royal beauty.
Chamundi Hill Bull Statue
This is the highest and probably the most important landmark of Mysore. Located very close to the Tipu Sultan's Palace, this is a perfect option for adventure seekers. Hiking is a popular activity enjoyed by tourists here and the most important attraction is of course the Chamundeshwari Temple on the peak of the Hill. This place was once named Mahishapura after the name of the Buffalo Demon. He became extremely powerful with a boon that no man could kill him. He became arrogant and started torturing all the gods and goddesses. This is when all the lords of heaven decided to take the help of Goddess Shakti who then took the form of the fierce Chamundeshwari. The goddess is said to have killed the demon on this hill after which the hill was named Chamundi Hills. The region was once also named as Mahabaleshpura as the cult Deity was Lord Shiva and there is also a lovely temple dedicated to the God of Gods, Lord Shiva here. Later, when the Wodayar kings accepted Chamundeshwari as the royal goddess, the temple of Chamundeshwari temple became more popular. There is also a life size statue of Nandi, the mount of Lord Shiva. This Bull statue is the third largest bull statue of India. There is also a brightly painted statue of Mahishasura on the foothills and this is a hotspot for clicking group photos by all tourists.
Royal Orchid Metropole
Our stay will be at Royal Orchid Metropole which in a previous time served as the Mysore Maharaja's guest house for his British visitors. Entering the Metropole is like stepping back in to colonial times, but though it retains its colonial charms, it has been refurbished to incorporate modern luxuries like like a pool, wi-fi, an in-house restaurant and spacious well-furnished rooms, becoming one of the most popular hotel chains of India.
This is the best market in the whole state and is full of colors. This is otherwise nothing but a local market where you can get farm fresh fruits, vegetables, tea and rangoli powder colors. The colors are decoratively exhibited in a way that it looks no less than a rainbow.
Just outside Bhubaneshwar ,on top of the hill are Udayagiri and Khandagiri vaves. These are the twin hills of Kumargiri and contain varieties of rock-cut caves, built mainly for the Jain monks around 1st - 2nd century B.C. These are old caves partly natural and partly structured built as residences for Jain monks. You need to climb a few steps to reach to caves. Most of the caves consist of rows of cells having opening towards the common verandas or open space. The doorways have attractive carvings of animals, creepers and flowers. Climb is steep place may be hot during summer season.
Sri Chamundeshwari Temple
This is a famous religious center on top of the Chamundi Hills in Mysore. This temple was built ust after the Wodeyars started their rule on this place and the Goddess Shakti was thei cult deity. Later, many contributions were made by the Hoysalas and Vijayanagara rulers. The legend goes that after the Goddess Chamundi had slayed the demon kind Mahishasura, everyone started praying to her and thus was built a very small shrine in devotion of the Goddess. This is the same temple which was rebuilt and beautified to form what we see today.