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India south Kerala

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

MYSORE

28.2. - 1.3. 2017, travel book part III.

 

Why to go to Mysore

Mysore, [Karnataka, population 0.8 mil] is a city of maharajas, silk, scented oils, illegal coffee shops and yoga. Its dominant is stunning Mysore Palace.

 

How to get to Mysore

I traveled to Mysore by train from Hampi [Hospet 21:30 – Mysore 09:45, 888 INR, 556 km] and this time in AC3, in other words in three bed coupes. I was forced to be an early bird as all the alarm clocks of my co-travelers started ringing at six o'clock in the morning. I wanted to use the chance to wash my face in a sink which was located in the hallway. However, it was already being used by Indian man who was brushing his teeth. Oh well, I'll wait...After five minutes I thought to myself that this man is really thorough but after ten minutes I was suspecting he is a bit of a lunatic. The foam from his toothpaste almost couldn't fit the sink at this point. Then I was amused by the conductor who didn't want to see my papers, but only asked if I'm Tomas. We arrived to Mysore exactly at 9:45 and I grabbed a tuk tuk in front of the station for 50 INR and let him take me to my accommodation.

 

Acommodation tip

I chose to stay in Mysore in The Mansion 1907 [booked via booking.com]. At first glance the building looked like an embassy from colonial times but it had completely different atmosphere inside. I quickly realized that it is more of a cheap long-term stay for yoga students. In the middle of the house was a spacious hall with tall pillars, which was used as a common room. There were matrasses and pillows lined along the walls. Most of the rooms had bunk beds and bathrooms and toilets were shared. So was the kitchen with fridge and dining room. It had an amazing atmosphere. I had the most expensive room on the roof with a terrace [1400 INR].

 

My experience in Mysore

Right after I checked in I asked in the kitchen for late breakfast [100 INR] and in the meantime found a great spot on one of the matrasses. I had breakfast together with sleepy English guys, who were just getting up. From a quick conversation I found out that they’re here for a month already without starting the month yoga course and without leaving Mysore city. They just said they're lazy. I wasn't surprised at all, with this great accommodation, amazing atmosphere, night stay for 15 USD and meals for 2 USD, I could stay here and be lazy as well, the only thing they had and I didn't, was time.

After breakfast I made myself comfortable on one of the matrasses again and observed my housemates. I was most captivated by an American girl who was all covered in tattoos, including her face and an Australian girl who kept walking around in something like a nightgown.

I decided to go to the city in the afternoon as I was enjoying lazing around in the Mansion so much. I walked to the Mysore Palace entrance but it was closed [it keeps happening to me]. I was stopped by a local man who wanted to chat. Usually if one of the locals is so friendly, there is something behind it...He told me he's on his way home and he can show me around a little bit. I knew that he's definitely not on his way home but I didn't mind as I have a lot of experience with these cheeky locals. Naturally we first went to yogi shop. I was interested in this metal pot filled with water, when the shopkeeper moved his finger on the edge of the pot, it made a strange sound that made the water crackle. Next stop was a manufacture with scented sticks and oils. Here I was intrigued by the shopkeeper himself as he was so stoned he couldn't keep his eyes properly opened. We said our goodbyes at a Muslim marketplace with a mosque and Christian church.

India Mysore Daravaja market

Daravaja market

As I was walking back through the streets with shops and markets, I could smell all the food, spices and scented sticks and I was stopped by another local near Daravaja market. He was really keen to show me his shop with silk and oils, but when we arrived there, his shop seemed more like a den for passionate users. It was even clearer to me when I saw all the messages on the walls from random 'happy people'. I was lectured right there that Mysore is one of the five Indian cities where soft drugs are tolerated. Later, when I was telling this story to the owner of the guest house in Kumily, who also worked with Police drug control, he was genuinely shocked. It wasn't legal after all...

India Mysore

Mysore

Before I got back to Mysore Palace, I almost stepped on a sleeping homeless person in a busy junction and not far from there I was nearly stepped on by a cow who was rushing towards a bin with loads of rubbish.

India Mysore palace

Mysore palace

On the way to Mansion I used a little map to find licensed shop with alcohol, bought two large Kingfisher beers for three hundred rupees and went back to the matrasses.

Next morning, I got up with only a towel around my waist and opened the doors from my room with the intention to go to the bathroom to wash myself. How shocked I was when I almost stepped on a head of a yogi who just lead a lesson for ten other people. I definitely didn't expect that. Everyone else seemed to be as shocked as I was, staring at my towel...

After breakfast I headed out towards Mysore Palace again [entrance without cameras 200 INR]. It took me about two hours to walk through it, and after that I hopped in a tuk tuk and let him take me to Chamundi hill on top of which lies Chamundesware temple. I wasn't impressed by the temple as it was too small, under reconstruction, unlikable monks were behung with heavy golden chains, the queue was endless and I stepped in a shit.

India Mysore temple

Mysore palace

It was right after noon and I still had quite a lot of time before my train was supposed to depart. When I noticed a sign 'Ayurveda massage', I knew straight away how to spend my time. But I couldn't imagine how interesting it's going to be. The masseuse was a young girl, who after a while started to offer very different alternative to this massage where for a little extra cash she'd be willing to do it 'complete'. I started to laugh rather awkwardly but she pressed on and told me it's completely normal, until we almost got into a fight. And how did it end? I have to admit that I was probably the only person in the world who had to pay her to NOT 'complete' the massage. What an experience...

 

VISITED COUNTRIES

zeme 100

37

KM ON THE ROADS

km 100

48 560

DAYS ON THE ROADS

dny 100

397