On Monday Kinjal, Janet and I set out for some sightseeing in downtown Bangalore. Much like Mysore, we set out to see a palace, a temple. We saw some cool sites, but not so grand and picturesque as Mysore.
We started at Tipu’s “palace.” He was a sultan who ended up losing a battle to Cornwallis (the same British general to fight in the Revolutionary War in the United States). The structure we saw wasn’t really a palace but more of a place where the Sultan and his court would sit to hear from people and to make speeches.
As is common here, there was a man who offered to be our tour guide when we entered the palace grounds. He said we could pay him what he thought it was worth after. I said, okay. This time though, he didn’t add much to what we could read on the walls and he was very hard to understand. I gleaned a few nuggets though. When he was done he asked for payment. We gave him 100 rupees. He told us he wanted 50 more. So much for paying what we thought!
Tipu the Sultan apparently intentionally built the palace near a temple to the god Shiva. The temple itself wasn’t so grand and much of it seemed reconstructed but we saw some cool carvings anyhow.
Then we set off to the City Market/Chick Pet area. I was hoping to find a bazaar like the one we found in Mysore, with the winding little paths and picturesque stalls. We found something much bigger and chaotic.
This guy with the basket on his head was really, really annoying. He followed us about the market in hopes that we would buy something so that he could carry it around for us. No amount of “please go away” seemed to hlep. This little kid came chasing after me making “snap a picture” gestures. Kinj groaned when I did, because he was worried then a flock of kids would chase us and then ask for rupees in exchange for the photo taken. The basket head buy also kept asking Kinj to take a picture for him. Finally, Kinj gave up and did take a picture and blissfully the kiddo and the man then disappeared.
We were starting to give on the market and head out when we discovered the flower stalls!
After all of that craziness, we made our way to an incredibly beautiful and tranquil spot–the Blue Ginger restaurant at the Taj West End (one of the fanciest hotels in town).
Blue Ginger is a Vietnamese restaurant. The food was hit or miss, but we loved, loved the raw mango salad and the shrimp also was fantastic.
And we received complimentary “Blue Ginger drinks”