On the west coast of India, between Bombay and Goa, the mosaic of Karnataka forms an astonishing and vibrant culture, between excessive high-tech and ancient culture.
Land of ancient capitals of successive Hindu and Muslim empires and kingdoms, often over vast territories, Karnataka has inherited a rich architectural and cultural heritage without equivalent in India.
Karnataka also has vast natural parks, where elephants and wild animals share mountains covered with lush forests and spice and coffee plantations. Alongside it, festive Goa and energetic Bombay also offer opportunities for wealth and astonishing discoveries. Here is a unique opportunity to discover a facet of another India, little-known and off the beaten track.
Among the most emblematic stops in Karnataka, Bangalore, a vast industrial, commercial and scientific metropolis, can serve as a gateway thanks to its international airport. However, travelers will not linger there and will quickly reach fascinating Mysore, with its maharajah’s palace and its colorful market. It is also the city of sandalwood and Tipu Sultan. The city comes alive during the Dussehra festival, during which parades of caparisoned elephants, camels and other animals parade under the benevolence of the maharajah.
A must-see during a trip to Karnataka, the mythical Hampi is the ancient capital of a vast kingdom covering all of South India. It was larger than Rome with its fabulous temples and palaces scattered in a magnificent mineral setting. More than 1,600 remains remain and testify to the sophistication of forts, palaces, temples, sanctuaries, mandapas, stables, hydraulic works…
Another major site in Karnataka, the forgotten village of Pattadakal, the ancient capital of the Chalukya, forms with its extraordinary temples a happy synthesis of the architectural forms of northern and southern India. Like Hampi, the Pattadakal site is listed as a world heritage site by UNESCO.
Known for its historical and cultural sites, Karnataka also offers traveling clients magnificent landscapes of green countryside, coffee plantations, ancestral villages, hills covered with deep jungles and sea shores lined with coconut groves…
Delighted Journey recommends the discovery of 2 natural parks of the Nilgiri biosphere reserve (classified as world heritage by UNESCO) which are located in Karnataka. Bandipur National Park, which is renowned for its breathtaking natural beauty and rich wildlife. And the Nagarhole National Park, which has several rivers which are all extraordinary wildlife observation points. With its intact forests, it represents a significant territory for the future of the tiger.
Gateway to Karnataka for some, end of seaside trip for others, the mythical state of Goa, whose charming capital is Panjim, attracts travelers from all over the world for its beautiful beaches lined with coconut groves, its festive side and joyful and its colorful Luso-Indian atmosphere. A former Portuguese colony until 1961, Goa has been deeply marked by 450 years of Portuguese presence. We find its influence in the architecture, the population (nearly 30% Catholic) and the cuisine, a fusion of Portuguese and Indian flavors.
Fascinating for some, repulsive for others, a trip to Karnataka can begin or end in Bombay. The largest city in India and the economic capital of the country, we work there 24 hours a day. Bombay mixes the most diverse architectural styles in its old buildings, neo-Gothic, art deco, Indo-Sarracenic, or ultra-modern buildings. There are of course Bollywood studios there. The city bears witness to the strong vitality and energy of its inhabitants.
How to Travel to Karnataka?
The discovery of southwest India begins with an arrival at the international airport of Bangalore, Goa or Bombay. An itinerary in Karnataka is then organized by road with different stages allowing access to the sites of the region.
The minimum length of stay to discover Karnataka is 10 nights. However, this duration will only allow you to discover the major sites of the state during an itinerary between Bangalore and Goa (or vice versa). To include the visit to Bombay, plan to add a minimum of 2 nights.
Delighted Journey recommends devoting a few more days to discovering Karnataka to explore the many other little-known and unusual sites at a slower pace.
For travelers with more time, and wishing to discover a greater variety of the riches of India during the same trip, it is also possible to combine a trip to Karnataka with Kerala, Tamil Nadu or Neighboring Andhra Pradesh.
When to Travel to Karnataka, Mumbai (Bomay) & Goa?
The best time to visit Karnataka, Mumbai (Bombay) and Goa is from mid-October to mid-April. In July and August, strong heat (sometimes over 35°) and risk of sporadic heavy rain.
Even though some parks are open all year round in South India, Delighted Journey recommends that customers-travelers avoid the rainy period.
Our Customers – Highlights
- Mysore’s dazzling royal palace and picturesque Devaraja Market.
- The illuminations of the Mysore Palace on Sunday at 7 p.m.
- The melancholy ruins and precariously balanced rocks of Hampi.
- The beaches and festive atmosphere of Goa.
- The traditional neighborhoods of washermen or Banganga in Bombay.
- A Bollywood cinema session.