Mysore Dussehra

Mysore Dussehra

Mysore, the ‘city of palaces’, is royalty and magnificence embodied. Ruled by the Wadiyars from 1399 till independence, Mysore’s magnificence during the Dussehra festival is a truly sight to behold, when the fables of Maharajas and their regal splendour come alive again.

On this very special tour, we will enjoy exclusive access to Mysore Palace’s Dussehra events. These events are not open to the general public, but a select audience is granted permission by the Mysore Palace. We are extremely fortunate and privileged to witness the age-old royal court ceremonies.

Dussehra symbolizes the victory of good over evil. Mysore’s maharajas partook in the festival to convey their gratitude for all the good that took place during the year; and pray for the coming year to be a prosperous one. They also prayed for victory over one’s enemies and for the general welfare of their kingdom. The festival continues to hold tremendous cultural significance even in modern times as a window into Mysore’s tradition and culture.

From close quarters, we shall be able to admire the magnificent jewel studded golden throne which is the pride of the Wadiyars and the symbol of their sovereignty, displayed in its full glory. We also enjoy ringside view of the various religious and royal ceremonies that have changed little in 400 years, and of course, the awe-inspiring, famous Dussehra procession involving caparisoned elephants, cavalry, folk dancers, musicians, a torchlight parade and fireworks display.

On this festive tour, we shall explore the major cultural sites of Mysore to understand why it still retains its stature as the leading centre of traditional arts and crafts, music, dance, and literature. Mysore is also the best place to shop for the finest quality silk, sandalwood artefacts and antiquities.

7 DAYS
FROM £1995
Group Tour
Themes:
Activity Levels
Leisurely Active
WHAT'S INCLUDED
  • Activities and excursions as specified
  • Entrance fees/tickets for the above
  • In-destination transfers & transport
  • Accommodation & Meals as specified
  • English speaking guides
  • 24/7 support while you travel

Explore this itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Bangalore
Arrive in Bangalore. Check into your Bangalore hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure.
None
Day 2: Srirangapatnam & Mysore

After breakfast, drive to Mysore (2hrs).

Enroute, we step back in time and revisit glorious Srirangapatnam, the bastion of the two mighty Deccan kings, Hyder Ali and his son, Tipu Sultan.

This island fortress was the early capital of the Wadiyars and is just 16 km from Mysore. Take a journey through the fortress from which Tipu aggressively waged war against the British. Jama Masjid with its twin minarets, a gunpowder room, the Wellesley Bridge and the dungeons where British officers were once imprisoned are the main attractions here.
The white domed Gumbaz, where Tipu and Hyder Ali are buried, forms an imposing structure with doors of ebony inlaid with ivory and lacquered with Tipu’s tiger striped emblem. About 1 km to the east of the fort is Tipu’s Summer Palace, also known as Daria Daulat Bagh which is nestled amidst a beautiful garden.

Srirangapatnam is also home to the renowned Ranganatha Swamy Temple, which displays a fusion of Hoysala and Vijayanagara styles.

Check into your hotel in Mysore.

In the evening, you may choose to do an optional visit to the lively Devaraja Market for a sensory delight.

Breakfast
Day 3: Mysore

Today, we visit the City Palace as it prepares for the Dussehra festival. Constructed in Indo-Saracenic style, the magnificent Amba Vilas or Mysore Palace is the official residence of the Wadiyar dynasty and the seat of the Kingdom of Mysore. Its exquisite interiors – replete with carved mahogany ceilings, stained glass, gilded pillars and glazed tiles – epitomizes royalty and grandeur.

While the Durbar Hall leaves you amazed with its splendid jewel-encrusted throne, the paintings of the past Dussehra processions in the Marriage Pavilion are truly awe-inspiring. The Palace also houses a museum, which is a fascinating repository of the royal possessions of the Wadiyars.

After lunch, we visit an erstwhile royal residence, the Jaganmohan Palace, which now houses an art gallery of royal paraphernalia, clocks, traditional Mysore gold-leaf paintings, ivory and sandalwood figurines, musical instruments and antique furniture. The biggest draw are paintings by world-renowned artist Raja Ravi Varma.

A few miles outside the city, lies Brindavan Gardens. Modelled on the Mughal gardens in Kashmir, the garden is today best known for its fountains, which are a colourful night spectacle. The garden was designed by Sir Mirza Ismail, the then Dewan of the princely State of Mysore.

Our day concludes here with a dinner at Royal Orchid Brindavan, a grand heritage hotel overlooking the Brindavan Gardens.

Breakfast, Dinner
Day 4: Mysore

Today we continue to explore Mysore’s rich heritage and culture.

Start the day at Chamundi Hill, home to the Goddess Sri Chamundeshwari, the patron deity of the Mysore Royal Family. Built in the Dravidian style of architecture, the 17th century temple contains a massive statue of the demon, Mahishasura near the entrance. According to legend, the Goddess defeated the demon on this hill. Marvel at the monolithic Nandi bull statue, reputedly the largest in the country.

Mysore is famous for its beautiful silk, sandalwood and incense industries. This afternoon, enjoy an informative and memorable visit to the famous Karnataka Silk production centre to learn all about the luxurious and opulent silks of Mysore, a prized fabric we’ll encounter throughout the royal festivities.

Visit one of the largest cathedrals in India, St. Philomena’s Cathedral, a remarkable example of Gothic architecture inspired by Cologne Cathedral.
Depending on time available and your preferences, we’ll visit the Folklore Museum and/or the Railway Museum.

Housed in the Jayalakshmi Vilas Palace, the Folklore Museum is a brilliant repository of folk culture and has a collection of 6,500 indigenously-made artefacts including wooden figurines, rural costumes, utensils, tools and decorative masks from all over Karnataka.

One of Mysore’s hidden gems is its small Rail Museum, providing a fascinating insight into the history and growth of the railways under the patronage of the Mysore Royals. The museum houses a valuable collection of photographs, locomotives, coaches and signalling equipment.

Enjoy dinner at Royal Orchid Metropole, an erstwhile royal palace built exclusively for British guests of the Maharaja of Mysore in the 1920s. Restored sensitively into a heritage hotel, it retains its colonial character and charm.

Breakfast, Dinner
Day 5: Mysore Palace Dussehra events

Today, we will enjoy exclusive access to Mysore Palace’s Durbar events. These events are not open to the general public, but a select audience is granted permission by the Mysore Palace. We are extremely fortunate and privileged to witness the age-old court ceremonies.

The Dussehra ceremonies we’ll witness today have been observed by the Wadiyar royals for more than 400 years, starting in 1610 AD. An enchanting mix of religious and court rituals unfolds as courtiers in full regalia greet the H.H. Maharaja Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar at the morning and evening Durbars. Special wrestling matches and ceremonies worshipping weapons and arms are part of the spectacle.

The palace illuminations are a glorious spectacle at dusk during the festival week. The entire city is festooned with lights and illuminations, which we shall enjoy on our evening drive.

Breakfast, Dinner
Day 6: Mysore Dussehra Procession

The last day of the Dussehra festival is Vijayadashami, the day of Vijaya or victory.

Vijayadashami culminates in a splendid procession known as Jamboo Savari, with decorated elephants, cavalry, foot soldiers, folk dancers, musicians, and tableaux, a torchlight parade and fireworks display. The procession begins at the Mysore Palace and ends at Bannimantap, where the holy Sammi/Banni tree is said to be the abode of Goddess Durga. Her divine powers are commemorated till date for being instrumental to the Pandava victory. In a bid to maintain martial fervour, Kshatriyas worship their weapons beside this tree. Later, the procession returns to the Palace.

We shall enjoy privileged access to the procession at the Palace, and will be able to enjoy the grand spectacle at close quarters.

After the exhilarating experience, we shall retire to our hotel to relax at leisure

Breakfast
Day 7: Departure

At the end of our royal Dussehra celebrations, we check out of our hotel and drive to Bangalore Airport in time to catch our return flights.

There are several enticing options for extending this trip, with visits to the World Heritage temples of Karnataka, wildlife watching in Kabini, or time spent on the coast all within easy reach.

Breakfast
Day 1: Arrival in Bangalore
Arrive in Bangalore. Check into your Bangalore hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure.
None
Day 2: Srirangapatnam & Mysore

After breakfast, drive to Mysore (2hrs).

Enroute, we step back in time and revisit glorious Srirangapatnam, the bastion of the two mighty Deccan kings, Hyder Ali and his son, Tipu Sultan.

This island fortress was the early capital of the Wadiyars and is just 16 km from Mysore. Take a journey through the fortress from which Tipu aggressively waged war against the British. Jama Masjid with its twin minarets, a gunpowder room, the Wellesley Bridge and the dungeons where British officers were once imprisoned are the main attractions here.
The white domed Gumbaz, where Tipu and Hyder Ali are buried, forms an imposing structure with doors of ebony inlaid with ivory and lacquered with Tipu’s tiger striped emblem. About 1 km to the east of the fort is Tipu’s Summer Palace, also known as Daria Daulat Bagh which is nestled amidst a beautiful garden.

Srirangapatnam is also home to the renowned Ranganatha Swamy Temple, which displays a fusion of Hoysala and Vijayanagara styles.

Check into your hotel in Mysore.

In the evening, you may choose to do an optional visit to the lively Devaraja Market for a sensory delight.

Breakfast
Day 3: Mysore

Today, we visit the City Palace as it prepares for the Dussehra festival. Constructed in Indo-Saracenic style, the magnificent Amba Vilas or Mysore Palace is the official residence of the Wadiyar dynasty and the seat of the Kingdom of Mysore. Its exquisite interiors – replete with carved mahogany ceilings, stained glass, gilded pillars and glazed tiles – epitomizes royalty and grandeur.

While the Durbar Hall leaves you amazed with its splendid jewel-encrusted throne, the paintings of the past Dussehra processions in the Marriage Pavilion are truly awe-inspiring. The Palace also houses a museum, which is a fascinating repository of the royal possessions of the Wadiyars.

After lunch, we visit an erstwhile royal residence, the Jaganmohan Palace, which now houses an art gallery of royal paraphernalia, clocks, traditional Mysore gold-leaf paintings, ivory and sandalwood figurines, musical instruments and antique furniture. The biggest draw are paintings by world-renowned artist Raja Ravi Varma.

A few miles outside the city, lies Brindavan Gardens. Modelled on the Mughal gardens in Kashmir, the garden is today best known for its fountains, which are a colourful night spectacle. The garden was designed by Sir Mirza Ismail, the then Dewan of the princely State of Mysore.

Our day concludes here with a dinner at Royal Orchid Brindavan, a grand heritage hotel overlooking the Brindavan Gardens.

Breakfast, Dinner
Day 4: Mysore

Today we continue to explore Mysore’s rich heritage and culture.

Start the day at Chamundi Hill, home to the Goddess Sri Chamundeshwari, the patron deity of the Mysore Royal Family. Built in the Dravidian style of architecture, the 17th century temple contains a massive statue of the demon, Mahishasura near the entrance. According to legend, the Goddess defeated the demon on this hill. Marvel at the monolithic Nandi bull statue, reputedly the largest in the country.

Mysore is famous for its beautiful silk, sandalwood and incense industries. This afternoon, enjoy an informative and memorable visit to the famous Karnataka Silk production centre to learn all about the luxurious and opulent silks of Mysore, a prized fabric we’ll encounter throughout the royal festivities.

Visit one of the largest cathedrals in India, St. Philomena’s Cathedral, a remarkable example of Gothic architecture inspired by Cologne Cathedral.
Depending on time available and your preferences, we’ll visit the Folklore Museum and/or the Railway Museum.

Housed in the Jayalakshmi Vilas Palace, the Folklore Museum is a brilliant repository of folk culture and has a collection of 6,500 indigenously-made artefacts including wooden figurines, rural costumes, utensils, tools and decorative masks from all over Karnataka.

One of Mysore’s hidden gems is its small Rail Museum, providing a fascinating insight into the history and growth of the railways under the patronage of the Mysore Royals. The museum houses a valuable collection of photographs, locomotives, coaches and signalling equipment.

Enjoy dinner at Royal Orchid Metropole, an erstwhile royal palace built exclusively for British guests of the Maharaja of Mysore in the 1920s. Restored sensitively into a heritage hotel, it retains its colonial character and charm.

Breakfast, Dinner
Day 5: Mysore Palace Dussehra events

Today, we will enjoy exclusive access to Mysore Palace’s Durbar events. These events are not open to the general public, but a select audience is granted permission by the Mysore Palace. We are extremely fortunate and privileged to witness the age-old court ceremonies.

The Dussehra ceremonies we’ll witness today have been observed by the Wadiyar royals for more than 400 years, starting in 1610 AD. An enchanting mix of religious and court rituals unfolds as courtiers in full regalia greet the H.H. Maharaja Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar at the morning and evening Durbars. Special wrestling matches and ceremonies worshipping weapons and arms are part of the spectacle.

The palace illuminations are a glorious spectacle at dusk during the festival week. The entire city is festooned with lights and illuminations, which we shall enjoy on our evening drive.

Breakfast, Dinner
Day 6: Mysore Dussehra Procession

The last day of the Dussehra festival is Vijayadashami, the day of Vijaya or victory.

Vijayadashami culminates in a splendid procession known as Jamboo Savari, with decorated elephants, cavalry, foot soldiers, folk dancers, musicians, and tableaux, a torchlight parade and fireworks display. The procession begins at the Mysore Palace and ends at Bannimantap, where the holy Sammi/Banni tree is said to be the abode of Goddess Durga. Her divine powers are commemorated till date for being instrumental to the Pandava victory. In a bid to maintain martial fervour, Kshatriyas worship their weapons beside this tree. Later, the procession returns to the Palace.

We shall enjoy privileged access to the procession at the Palace, and will be able to enjoy the grand spectacle at close quarters.

After the exhilarating experience, we shall retire to our hotel to relax at leisure

Breakfast
Day 7: Departure

At the end of our royal Dussehra celebrations, we check out of our hotel and drive to Bangalore Airport in time to catch our return flights.

There are several enticing options for extending this trip, with visits to the World Heritage temples of Karnataka, wildlife watching in Kabini, or time spent on the coast all within easy reach.

Breakfast

Departure Dates & Prices

The prices below are based on two sharing and exclude international flights. A deposit is required to reserve a place.

For further information about this or any of our other tours, please contact us.

07-Oct-2024
£1895
Group Size: 8 Max
Available

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Our prices do not include international flights unless explicitly stated.

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