I won’t lie, I woke up quite excited this morning as we had tickets for the IPL game between Royal Challengers Bangalore and the Mumbai Indians. The game didn’t start until 4 pm though so we thought we would take advantage and see a bit of what Bangalore had to offer.
First stop was the Bangalore Palace and after Mysore we were quite excited. Unfortunately though it wasn’t quite that grand and we were shouted at by guards while trying to take photos of the outside. We weren’t the only people getting shouted at though so we joined the others in taking a few cheeky snaps. The inside wasn’t meant to be much to write home about but we thought we would have look anyway but the entrance fee was the highest we would have paid in India so we decided against it.
Number one recommended sight in Bangalore was the Museum of Modern Art and we were keen to see what modern India had to offer. Unfortunately when we got there most of the museum was shut so once again we were a bit let down as to what we could do.
Nevermind we thought. Not to be defeated we headed off to the other side of town towards Tipu’s Sultan Palace. We had had enough of negotiating rickshaw fares so thought we would change tactics and hire an uber. There were plenty of drivers around and we couldn’t believe that the fare was 50 rupees! The traffic though was crazy and I wasn’t sure if I felt safer in the car or in the rickshaw!
Tipu’s Sultan Palace was a beautiful wooden palace in perfect symmetry. What a relief that a sight was actually open! The place was full of other Indian tourists all taking romantic photos of each other clutching the intricately carved wooden columns and this was just what the boys were up to with their mates! It was quite funny to watch and imagine what they were saying to each other! “Ravi, come on give me a sexy pout and look thoughtfully up into the sky!” Maybe.
We took a little stroll towards the Bangalore Fort which was surrounded by markets and shops yet somehow remained pretty much intact. Again there wasn’t much to see so on we went towards the markets.
These were definitely not for tourists and we saw the real energy and grit of the locals. There was (as usual) just about everything, including the kitchen sink, for sale and the place was pretty busy. Even though there are obvious signs of abject poverty we still never felt threatened at all and enjoyed having a laugh and a joke with the stall sellers.
We went back to where we were staying on Church St near the MG road for lunch. We have noticed that Bangalore is an incredibly diverse city in terms of wealth, from the desperately poor to the fantastically rich and just about everything in between. We have noticed this in the shops and shopping malls as well as in the restaurants. For example our lunch was in a place where all the Bangalore Hipsters hang out and enjoy food which could be on any menu throughout the world. They also pay 2 to 3 times as much for it as they could have done at the restaurant next door serving up Indian fare.
These places all serve alcohol and the clientele are all dressed in the latest trends. While you won’t see the girls wearing “short shorts” you will see them wearing western fashions whereas elsewhere we have been, the girls and ladies have all been wearing their beautifully coloured saris. There are a lot of smart phones and smart hair cuts and these guys seem/are a million miles away from the average guys we see working in the restaurants or at the market who are eternally grateful for a 20 rupee tip.
So the dichotomy continued as we walked to the cricket passing people selling flags and t-shirts for us to support the RCB for next to nothing. While we were headed to our seats which cost more than an average months wage in India. To be fair the tickets were as much as I would spend on an ashes or Broncos seat, and they certainly weren’t the most expensive!
Still enough about the money we were here to enjoy a game of IPL and along with 30,000 other excited supporters we queued up outside the ground to get in. Just as we were barging our way through the queue (it wasn’t just us, everyone was barging so if we hadn’t we would still have been stood there now) we were taken aside and had a camera stuck in our faces for a pre match interview!!! Fame at last.
Our tickets were fantastic, about 12 rows back from the boundary in perfect six territory! The atmosphere of the crowd was just electric! There was constant cheering and excitement and the cricket was pretty good too. We got to see Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers, a hat trick from Badree, Harbhajan Singh and a cameo to win the game from Kieron Pollard. The crowd was enthusiastic all the way through the match but Virat Kohli’s every move was cheered in full voice by the whole crowd!! I have never seen anything like it they were absolutely wild about him and they went properly crazy when he scored his 50!!
The RCB lost the match in the end but the crowd remained good natured and throughout we had our usual banter with the locals who all seemed to be glad that we were having such a great time in India. We certainly are! T
Bangalore Palace looking like it belongs in a fairytale.
This is what happens when you blow all of your budget on one half of the house!
The interior of Tipu Sultan’s Palace. While the exterior wasn’t particularly amazing the intricate woodwork inside more than made up for it.
Flower sellers at the market.
Anything you could want was for sale at this fantastic market.
The buzz of the market and in the background these buildings are typical of the ones we saw in Bangalore.
Yes a five seater scooter!
Wonderful time had at the 20-20 cricket in Bangalore!