Best Things to Do in Mysore
Mysore in Southern India stole a little piece of our hearts and sucked us into staying there an entire month. It’s not necessarily that there are so many places to see in Mysore but the relaxed vibes, amazing food and culture of this city that make you feel like you’re at home and discovering vibrant, new cultures all at the same time.
Mysore is famous for silk and sandalwood but there are many more exciting things to do in Mysore than avoiding the tourist scams at the silk markets. From the stunning Mysore Palace to creating crafts with local artisans you’ll want to spend weeks eating, discovering and exploring your way through Mysore.
But in case you only have a couple of days, here are the best things to do in Mysore during your visit
1.See the Mysore Palace
The is the reason most tourists visit Mysore and it’s one attraction that is truly deserving of its fame. The Mysore Palace was built in 1912 and for just 50 INR you can enjoy feeling like royalty and you wander through the ornately decorated halls and corridors. The palace is definitely one of the best places to visit in Mysore and should be top of you Mysore attractions list!
Opening times: 10.30 – 5:30pm
Cost: 50 INR plus 285 INR (foreigners) for the residential quarters. We didn’t do this part.
3. Visit the Markets
4. Take a tour of the local artisans
5. Learn a craft
The cost for hand-woven cotton, a day’s craft workshop for two including test cloth and tote bags to print and tailoring of 3 shirts and a dress (plus zip pouches made from leftovers)? €80
The feeling of wearing clothing we’ve printed and designed ourselves? Priceless!
Learn more about the craft workshops here.
6. Have dinner in a Palace
If you’re feeling extra fancy you can even book a room. But make sure you do so in advance as it is often booked out for weddings and formal visits. Click hereto check it out.
7. Wander the streets
8. Do Yoga
9. Stay in a Mansion
For the more budget conscious check yourself in to one of the only hostels in Mysore, The Mansion 1907. This beautiful historic building houses several dorm rooms and a couple of spacious private rooms. There is free rooftop yoga in the mornings, amazing wall murals and a huge comfortable common area for hanging out. We made our home here for 4 weeks during our trip to India. Go there and you’ll see why. Book now.
10. Take a Cycle Tour
Continuing our discoveries of more off-beat areas of Mysore we learnt about Mycycle Tours. Stephen runs really interesting bike tours around the beautiful island of Srirangapatnam about 12km from Mysore. Over the course of 3-4 hours you’ll learn about the history of the area and get to soak in some amazing scenes of rural life. Make sure you bring a camera and some sunscreen!
11. Eat Masala Dosa
The dosas in Mysore are some of the best in the country and a trip to Mysore wouldn’t be complete without indulging at least once a day. For anyone unfamiliar with this edible glory a dosa is a large, crispy pancake filled with various things. A masala dosa comes filled with a potato, onion and spice mix. Hotel Mylari is famed as being THE place to enjoy a dosa. We were staying a few minutes from here and while their dosas are good, we far preferred others on the same street which were crispier and tastier, but everyone has their own dosa preference!
Best restaurants in Mysore
If you’re looking for some more places to eat check out any of these for great food and decent prices.
Di Lemon – Great range of North and South Indian cuisine at really reasonable prices.
Parklane Hotel – Decent North and South Indian food and beer towers!
The Old House – Woodfire pizza for when you need a break from Indian food. A little more expensive but well worth it.
Om Shanti – Amazing North and South Indian thalis and a cold stone ice cream stand outside.
Hotel Guru – Authentic local thalis for just 50 INR. Absolutely delicious!
12. Drink real coffee
Mysore is one of the few places in India where you can find real barista coffee. The mountain areas around Mysore are home to thousands of coffee plantations and the established yoga community means there is a good market for proper coffee.
Best cafes in Mysore
Depth ‘n’ Green – They have a full café with great food and an espresso bar for when you just need a caffeine fix.
Rasa Dhatu – Great range of organic food including vegan options. Organic supermarket attached.
Khushi Cafe – Service with a smile. Simple but delicious food, you can even earn your meal by volunteering for a couple of hours.
The Green Hotel – Social project cafe in an old colonial mansion. Beautiful gardens and great cake.
There are so many things to see in Mysore and the relaxed atmosphere of the city draws travellers in and a couple of days quickly turn into a couple of weeks here. So make sure you leave some time in your India to fall in love with Mysore and all it has to offer!
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