Tuesday, September 22, 2009


I was suffering from lower backache for more than 3 months now and was under treatment, cure by exercise. Unfortunately the condition worsened. The doctors have advised surgery and complete bed rest for 4 to 5 weeks depending on the response to the recovery. Hence I will not be able to share my travel experiences with you all for the period.

Meanwhile, you can still go through my old posts, if you have missed anything and share your thoughts. Once back, I shall go thorough all your posts, which I like very much and respond to them.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

King's Balance, Hampi

In Hampi this is a located near Vittala Temple. This 16th century balance also known as "Tula Bara" is 5 meter tall and is a very simple structure. It is believed that on special days like Solar or Lunar eclipse King used to weigh himself in gold, silver, gems and precious stones. Then this used to be distributed among the people of the State.

Balance (click on the image for bigger view)

From far this balance looks like an arch way. Once near the balance on close observation on can see three loops at the top from which balance was actually hung. Also at the base of one of the pillars one can see image of the King carved with his concerts.

Loops in the balance

Monday, September 14, 2009

Mahanvami Dibba, Hampi

In the Royal Enclosure zone of Hampi this is a giant 3 layer structure and is the tallest in this area. From a distance this looks very simple elevated square stage and may not generate any interest to go near it. But as one approaches the structure, more details emerge and one can appreciate the marvel in stone. The platform is known as the Mahanavami-dibba (House of Victory).

This dimension of the base of these structure is 40 meter square and the topmost area is 24 meter square. It is 12 meters in height. The top of the structure can be reached by the the stairs either in the front (east facing) or in the back. There is nothing at the top, but for the view if the surrounding area from the top. The front stairs are highly decorated on either sides with carvings of elephants, horses, camels, lions and a host of other things.

The walls of the tiers are covered with rows of boldly carved horizontal friezes of horses, elephants, warriors, dancers, musicians,royal ceremony, city life, hunting scenes.

processions and hunting scenes

This was constructed by King Krishnadevara in the 16th century. This platform was used by the king to watch the army march-pasts, war games, aquatic sports, shows of the royal animals, musical performances and also the most important Navarathri celebrations.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Mumbai Skyline

I had taken these snaps few years back from the sea shore on a Sunny day. The sky scrapers of Mambai can be seen across the sea.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Cubbon Park, Bangalore

The Cubbon Park in the heart of the Bangalore (State: Karnataka) city and it occupies around 250 acres of area.

The vast landscape of the Park was first visualized by Major General Richard Sankey, the then Chief Engineer of the Mysore State. In the year 1870 it was made reality by Sri John Meade, the then acting Commissioner of Mysore. Gradually it was developed and improved by adding new structures and features. In the year 1927, the park was officially renamed as "Sri. Chamarajendra Park" to commemorate the Silver Jubilee of Sri. Krishnaraja Wodeyar’s rule in Mysore State.

The park is also popular among the naturalists, who prefer studying the plants in their own environment. The park has variety of statues, heritage buildings, children park, aquarium, tennis court. It is the favorite area for the people who want to jog in the morning and exercise.

The park has a predominant green area with a few concrete buildings, housing government and other organizations' offices. The park has many motorable roads and well laid out walking paths running through the park.

Rich in plant wealth, many indigenous and exotic botanical species are found here. The park has about 68 genera and 96 species with a total of around 6000 plants or trees growing in its locale.

Indigenous species such as Artocarpus, Cassia fistula, Ficus, Polyalthias etc., and exotic species such as Araucaria, Bamboo, Castanospermum australe, Grevillea robusta, Milletia, Peltophorum Schinus molle, Swietenina mahagoni, Tabebuia sp. etc., can be seen. In addition, many ornamental and flowering trees both exotic and indigenous are found in the park.

The landscaping in the park creatively integrates natural rock out crops with thicket of trees, massive bamboos, with grassy expanse and flowerbeds and the monuments within its limits, regulated by the Horticulture Department of the Government of Karnataka.

A bandstand, in an octagonal shape made with cast-iron, was built in the early part of the 1900s. Before India’s Independence, the British Royal Air Force used to play western band music at the band stand every Saturday evening.

lake in the park
The park also has a small lake and it is home for various variety of ducks. There is also a separate area in the park for birds.

Flowers of Park: 1

Thursday, September 3, 2009

King Edward Statue, Bangalore

In the year the King Edward VII statue was built by public subscription, and installed at the North-Western point of the Cubbon Park, Bangalore.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Vittala Temple, Hampi

Hampi, is the cradle of Vijaynagar architecture as showcased by various monuments in the region. But,the Vittala Temple is the prime attraction among them. No words of explanation can do justice to the architectural extravaganza of this temple. The construction of the temple was initiated in 1513 AD by the Maharaja Krishnadevaraya. The work was later supported by its successors Achuta and Sadasiva till its destruction in 1565 AD.

Sculptures on the tower of gateways

The sprawling temple campus was built inside the high boundary walls with 3 gateway towers on the east, south and north. The eastern entrance is used for entry into the temple complex. Inside this campus there are many halls, pavilions and temples.

Stone chariot

In front of the main temple is the Stone Chariot. This has become a iconic monument in Hampi. Even though it is referred as monolithic, it is in fact built with many giant granite blocks.

Temple Maha Mandap
The Vittala Temple stands on a strong ornate stone basement that has been richly carved with designs of horses, elephants, dancing girls, floral motifs and soldiers. The temple can be entered through a series of steps flanged by elephant balustrades that leads to the Maha Mantapa. This contains four open halls within. While the central western hall has collapsed, the south, north and the east ones are still intact.

musical pillars
The main attraction of Maha-Mantapa is its superbly carved giant monolithic pillars. The outermost of the pillars have slender and short pilasters carved out of the giant pillars. They are known as musical pillars as they emit musical tones when tapped. The tapping on it is not permitted for the sake of preservation. 

Sculpture on the pillar

The eastern hall is known as the musicians hall because of the sculptures of musicians on the pillars. The southern hall pillars are carved with mythical creatures called Yalis. The northern hall is surrounded with a series of pillars with the Narasimha themes. The ceilings of the halls are carved with lotus in the centre. The inner sanctum is devoid of any idol.

Pillared Hall in the temple campus
Even the other halls inside the campus are equally worth noticing. There is a 100-pillared hall at the southwest, the ceremonial marriage hall in the southeast. Even they have been richly carved.