4 Things to Do in Bangalore India
After a month long stay in Pondicherry, Bangalore was next up on the list.
Kelli and I took the overnight bus from Pondy to Bangy (why not?) at the peak of Diwali. We evaded being burned alive by the two 5 year olds setting off violent fireworks at ground level on the street where the apartment was located so off to Bangalore it is.
One look at this gem of a city in southern central India shows you why it is affectionately called the Garden City by Indians. Green, flowery corners seem to meet you everywhere. Toss in a number of huge, serene, heavily vegetated parks around town and you have an urban oasis just begging to be explored.
If you are heading to Bangalore soon try these 4 activities on for size.
1: Shop at the Muslim Market
One of the more fascinating things we did was shop at the Muslim Market.
Ok; I didn’t buy too much. A pair of flip flops, I believe. Cow carcasses and large wooden carvings did not serve much purpose for me, the digital nomad. I did however snap quite a few awesome shots – as did Kelli – and we both enjoyed our time in this throwback neighborhood in the center of town.
At least, I think it was in the center of town.
The Muslim neighborhood was quite unlike any other area we saw in Bangalore. I felt a little like I was visiting a souq in the Middle East, as we did at the Souq Waqif in Qatar. Old men barked prices out, while customers barked back lower prices, and then the merchants barked back a lower price. The haggling dance continued.
This is an intense place in some spots. Ditto for India. Be prepared to see some interesting things, to smell some strong smells and yep, to be gawked at for a bit.
I learned a long time ago not to take any staring personal; in a market of Muslim men largely, in traditional attire, a white guy in shirts and shorts sticks out. I get it. I look different. No big deal.
The scale of the market impressed me. This was a huge, living presence offering anything and everything.
2: Watch a Movie
We watched Thor after a few days spent in Bangalore.
The movie theater we attended was large, clean and served some mean fare. Aka, good movie fare for chowing down during the flick.
Curiously enough, grown men screamed and hooted and hollered when Thor made his first appearance. Serious Marvel fans there. I loved it. I also found the intermission break refreshing. We could use those back in the States.
I did find the movie wrap up a bit dramatic or maybe outright funny; when the credits began rolling, you heard a quick cut out (volume pulled) and theater workers began sweeping the aisles.
This was a cue for “get the eff outta here,” in terms about as subtle as heart failure.
Like many things India, this signal was clear and to the point. No beating around the Bangalore bush.
3: Stroll the Garden City
Bangalore is one of the prettiest cities I have visited.
The Garden City has been aptly dubbed by locals and Indians throughout this nation.
I recall arriving early in the morning with Kelli to a green, lush urban setting. You almost forget that you are in a city. Even busier areas with bustling commerce and heavy car – and foot – traffic seem to be blessed by this intense focus on making as much of the city as green, flowery and calming, as possible.
Enjoy one of the many parks in the city. We spent a few afternoons people watching in a serene setting; a jungle within an urban jungle.
On other days we walked for hours through areas with vast green gardens.
If you walk just a little bit you are almost guaranteed to see a flower or two, along with a flower bed and some green fields in most cases. That’s just Bangalore.
The Garden City.
4: Grab a Bite to Eat
I enjoyed some fine fare at more than a few spots in Bangalore.
This city reminds me a bit of the Northern New Jersey city known as Hoboken. Glam enough, with ample eateries of all different genres. Italian, fast food chain, dessert spots, local veg Indian restaurants and everything in between dotted a few areas of Bangalore.
You will not lack for food choices. Grab a bite to eat. Enjoy the controlled but frenetic pace of life unfold before your very eyes as you grub and grog your way into the afternoon or evening.
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