Janapada Loka, Srirangapatna, and Melukote – Part 2
After having a great time at Janapada Loka, we proceeded towards our next destination, Srirangapatna (Mandya ditrict, Karnataka) which was around 76 km from Janapada Loka. At around 12 o’clock we reached our destination. In Srirangapatna, on both sides of Bangalore-Mysore highway, there are tourist attractions. On the right side (while traveling from Bangalore to Mysore), there are Sri Ranganathaswamy temple, Jama Masjid, Tipu’s death place, and Colonel Bailey’s Dungeon. On the left side, there are Dariya Daulath (Summer Palace), Nimishamba Temple, Sangama, Gumbaz, etc.
We decided to visit Sri Ranganathaswamy temple first (as we knew that the temple would be closed between 1 PM to 4 PM) and visit all the attractions on the right side of the road.
Sri Ranganatha Swamy Temple
- Timings: 7.30 AM to 1 PM and 4 PM to 8 PM
It was scorching hot at the time we reached Srirangapatna, but that did not make us deviate from our plan. Sri Ranganatha Swamy temple is believed to be first constructed in the year 984 AD and the temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu (in the form of Ranganatha). It is one of the most popular pilgrimage centers for the devotees of Ranganatha. Luckily, when we visited, there was not much crowd and we could finish darshan in about half an hour. Watching the image of Lord Vishnu reclining on the coils of Adishesha from a very close distance is an absolute bliss. After darshan, we spent some time in temple taking photos and discussing about the ancient architecture.
Colonel Bailey’s Dungeon
Very near to Sri Ranganatha Swamy Temple situated is Colonel Bailey’s Dungeon. This dungeon was constructed by Tipu Sultan and has imprisoned many British officers. This place is named after Colonel Bailey who was a British prisoner died in this dungeon. Colonel Bailey’s Dungeon is below ground level and we have to climb down few steps to see the place. Place has stone slabs fixed at shoulder height on the walls. The prisoners were chained and tied to these slabs with waist level cold water. One more important thing you can notice here is the big cannon which is believed to have fallen through the roof while Tipu was fighting against British.
After spending some time in the dungeon, we decided to leave for lunch. On the way back, we just had a glimpse at Jama masjid and Tipu’s death place where Tipu’s dead body was found. Post lunch, we made the plan of visiting the places which are on the left side of the highway. There are no good restaurants in the town center, but if you proceed towards Mysore for around 1 Km you can find some decent ones. We had our lunch at a hotel called Parampare.
- Timings – 9 AM to 5 PM
- Entrance fee – 15 Rs for Indians, 100 Rs for foreigners, 25 Rs for video camera
After lunch, the first place that we visited was Daria Daulat which is also called Summer palace. This palace was built by Tipu Sultan in 1784 and is standing proudly amidst a beautiful, vast garden. The paintings on the walls and roof of the palace are very impressive. Every inch of the wall is a beautiful art here. The Durbar hall is treat for eyes. The palace also has museum which has huge collection of paintings telling the story of Tipu’s era, the artifacts used by Tipu, his portraits, etc. Interesting one is the life size painting of young Tipu, which makes you feel that the portrait is staring at you wherever you stand in front of it within 180 degree angle.
The temperature was at its peak during that time of the day. We relaxed in the garden for some time after which we started towards Nimishamba temple.
- Timings: 6.30 AM to 8.30 PM
Nimishamba temple is located just 2.5 kms from Dariya Daulat on the way leading to Sangama. The temple dedicated to Goddess Paravathi is situated on the banks of river Kaveri in Ganjam. Since the temple was slightly crowded, it took some time for us to have Darshan. Sangama where rivers Kaveri, Kabini and Hemavathi confluence is very near to this temple. However, we did not go there as we were running short of time.
- Timings: 8 AM to 6.30 PM
- Parking fee: 50 Rs (car)
Gumbaz is situated in just a km distance from Nimishamba temple. The Gumbaz is a huge mausoleum in the middle of a beautiful garden. It was built by Tipu Sultan himself as a tribute to his heroic father. Later, he was also buried here. Gumbaz houses the burial chambers of Tipu Sultan, his father Hyder Ali, and his mother Fatima Fakhr-un-Nisa. It is constructed in the Persian style and beautiful intricate carvings can be seen on the outer walls and minarets of Gumbaz. This place is very peaceful and one can sit and relax for hours together. Thilak and I had been to this place couple of months back, but the beautiful image of Gumbaz still looked refreshing for us.
One very bad thing that we noticed here was the poor parking facility. Though it is a very famous monument, there is no proper place to park your vehicles and what is more frustrating is that you have to pay 50 Rs as parking fee just to park your vehicle in an open area without any security.
As per our plan, Gumbaz was the last point in Srirangapatna. Therefore, after Gumbaz, we left Srirangapatna and proceeded towards another popular place called Melukote.
- Places covered in Srirangapatna: Srirangapatna > Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple > Colonel Bailey’s Dungeon > Dariya Daulat > Nimishamba Temple > Gumbaz
- Photos: Srirangapatna Photos
To be continued…