Bengaluru Rural is surrounded by Bengaluru Urban in the south, Tumkuru and Chikkaballapur in the north, Kolar in the east and Ramnagara in the west. Bengaluru Rural District was formed in 1986 when Bengaluru was split into Bangalore (Rural) and Bangalore (Urban). Again, it was spilt in 2007, when the talukas of Kanakapura, Ramanagar, Magadi and Channapatna merged to the newly formed Ramanagara district. At present, it is spread across four taluks namely Doddaballapur, Devanahalli, Hosakote and Nelamangala.
It has a suitable climate for horticulture and sericulture farming activities. There are also a number of wineries in the district. Although Bengaluru Rural is mainly an agricultural district, the proximity to Bangalore city has its own influence on the district. It has a sizable population who work in the city areas as well as the presence of many services and IT (Information Technology) industries with the arrival of SEZs (Special Economic Zones).
And without doubt, it is the Gateway to South India – as the swanky Kempegowga International Airport is located here. Some of the popular tourist attractions include Ghati Subramanya Temple, Devanahalli Fort and Shivaganga Temple. Given their proximity to the city, attractions in Bengaluru Rural are ideal for quick day trips or as weekend getaways.
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- Devanahalli Fort: Devanahalli, located at a distance of around 35 km from Bengaluru city, was part of many empires like the Gangas, Rashatrakutas, Nolamba, Pallavas, Cholas, Hoysalas and the Vijayanagara rulers. It is a famous tourist place for its Fort as well as for being the birthplace of Tipu Sultan, who was born in 1750. The birthplace of Tipu Sultan is located very close to the Devanahalli Fort and is a small pillared enclosure; with the area around the enclosure known as Khas Bagh. It is believed that the initial mud fort here was constructed around 1501. Subsequently, in 1747, the fort passed into the hands of Wadiyars of Mysore, Marathas and later came under the control of Haider Ali and Tipu Sultan. The roughly oval east-oriented fortification has as many as 12 semi-circular bastions. A spacious battlement is provided towards the inner side of the fortification. The fort is provided with entrances in east and west decorated with cut plaster work.
- Makali Durga: Makali Durga is located around 60 km north of Bengaluru and a great trekking destination for a weekend getaway for the Bengaluru crowd. At the foothill, there is a temple dedicated to Lord Krishna. The fort at the summit has an old temple dedicated to Lord Shiva with a Nandi statue and it is believed that Markandeya Rishi performed penance here. Makali Durga Fort stands at the top of a huge granite hillock, huddled up amidst the chains of hills, formed like a valley close to Ghati Subramanya, a well-known pilgrimage center. The hill top provides for stunning views of the landscape below with lakes on either side and curvy roads. The most memorable and photograph worthy would be a train passing by in the tracks below. The glimpse of the train from here is very exciting.
- Dodda Ballapura: Dodda Ballapura is a major town in Bengaluru Rural and home to Ashur Khana monument and a big stone well. Dodda Ballapura is also home to Venkataramana, Chowdeswari, Ishwari, Janardhana, Someshwara, Kashi Vishvanatha, Arkavati, Nageshwara temples as well as several mosques.
- Hosakote: Hosakote is a pre-historic site, modern day taluk headquarters and a major industrial town. Volvo Buses and trucks are made here. Hosakote has an old fort with Avimukteshwara, Varadaraja, Anjaneya and Vithoba temples.
- Nijagal: Popular for a hill fort- ideal hiking and picnic location. The hill has multiple water springs, few temples and dargahs. Veerabhadra temple and Chennigaraya temples are the main temples in Nijagal.
- Ghati Subramanya Temple: The temple of Lord Subramanya, one of the ancient pilgrim centres in Karnataka, is located here. The uniqueness of this temple is that the prime deity Lord Karthikeya, is installed together with Lord Narasimha. It is also an important centre in South India for snake worship. Another ritual practiced here is the installation of snake idols near the temple, which is believed to be an auspicious act and offering. Visitors to the temple are greeted with the sight of thousands of such idols around the complex, planted by devotees. Ghati Subramanya is also the starting point of the awesome night treks to the Nandi Hills.
- Sri Shanimahathma Temple, Chikka Madhure: On the banks of the Madhure Kere Lake in Chikka Madhure in Doddaballapur is Sri Shanimahathma Temple. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shani Deva (Saturn as per the Hindu Astrological system) who is regarded as one of the Nava Grahas (nine planets) worshiped in Hinduism. As per Hindu Astrological system, Lord Shani Deva is supposed to be the seventh among the nine planets, but has the greatest gravitational pull as compared to the earth. Hence the influence of Saturn is the most in a person’s astrological chart. However, the influence of Lord Shani Deva is considered to give a person bad effect/ luck.On Saturdays, special poojas are offered by devotees to get rid of their bad effects/ luck. People come to this temple to pray to Lord Shani Deva and to offer Ellu Batti (black sesame seeds tied up in a piece of cloth and soaked in gingelly oil and lighted before the deity). This offering is believed to please Lord Shani Deva. The annual festival here attracts lot of devotees wherein Lord Shani Deva is taken out on a procession on a chariot.The temple has stunning Dravidian architecture with many sculptures and intricate carvings on the gopura.
- Shivaganga: The Shivaganga Hill towers over a small hamlet near Dobbespet around 60 km from Bengaluru city. It is a sought-after weekend destination for the city crowd for some outdoor fun/ climbing. However, it is more famous as a religious destination as it is home to the Sri Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple which is located inside a cave. There are steps hewn into the rocks all the way to the top. The cave temple is dedicated to Lord Gangadhareshwara (Lord Shiva) and his consort Goddess Honnammadevi (Goddess Parvathi) who are worshiped here. Here, there are many spots where one can find natural spring water and it is believed that this comes from the holy River Ganga (Ganges). During the Makara Sankranti festival, the marriage function of Lord Gangadhareshwara and Goddess Honnammadevi is conducted with religious fervour. This holy water is used for the dhare ritual (solemnisation) of the marriage function. Due to this connection of Lord Shiva and River Ganga together, this place is called by the name Shivaganga.An interesting miracle that happens here is that when an abhisheka is performed on the Shivalinga with ghee, the ghee turns to butter. So, the devotees who travel to Shivaganga bring along with them, the ghee to offer to Lord Shiva. The ghee, that turns to butter, has medicinal properties in it and can cure many illnesses.
- Vishwa Shanti Ashrama: Spread over 15 acres of land, Sant Keshavadas established the Vishwa Shanti Ashram in Arasinakunte village on the Bangalore – Tumkur highway in 1982 with an aim to promote international peace and understanding. The Vishwa Shanthi Ashram houses some beautifully designed temples and is an ideal place for a day out with family.A 36ft tall Lord Vijaya Vittala statue greets the visitors to this place with a small temple dedicated to Lord Narayana and Goddess Lakshmi. Another attraction is a sacred Astha Tulsi pot; with incarnations of Goddess Lakshmi on the 8 different faces of the pot. Nearby there is a very big lamp post which is lighted on special occasions. There is also a sculpture of Sapta Nadi (Seven Rivers) which shows seven lady idols showering water which represent the sacred rivers namely Ganga, Yamuna, Godavari, Saraswathy, Narmada, Sindhu and Cauvery. There is also a sculpture of the Gitopadesha from Mahabharata - which depicts the scene of Lord Krishna delivering the Bhagavad Gita to Arjuna in a horse chariot. There is also a temple dedicated to Gayathri Devi (mother of all Vedas) who is shown five-faced, seated on a lotus. Gayathri Mantra is the most powerful mantra with a divine energy associated with it. The most fascinating temple of all is the one that shows Lord Vishnu's Vishwaroopam. A gigantic statue that shows the most superior form of Lord Vishnu - which reveals all gods and creatures in the universe are a part of Him and that God is one.
- Venugopalaswamy Temple: Located near the Devanahalli Fort is the Venugopalaswamy Temple and is believed to be existing since the period of Vijayanagar Kings. The temple is dedicated to Lord Venugopalaswamy (Lord Krishna). The courtyard, with a Garuda Stamba, is spacious and the walls of the temple depict various scenes from Ramayana and childhood of Lord Krishna. The pillars have beautiful statues carved on them. The sculptures in this temple is said to be comparable to the temples of Belur and Halebeedu.
- Sugganahalli: Popular for Vijayanagara style Narasimha temple.
- Vijayapura: Home to Nageshwara, Chennakeshava, Dharmaraya and Someshwara temples
- Avathi: Home to Chennakeshava, Anjaneya and Ishwara temples
- Gautama Girikshetra: Small hill near Avathi with Timmarayanaswamy temple
- Kempegowda International Airport:Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru is located around 40km from the city and is the first Greenfield Airport in India, to be built through a public-private partnership. It is well-connected to all the major airports in India and abroad. Backed with state-of-the-art technology, 36 passenger airlines connect Bengaluru to 82 destinations.For more information; visit www.bengaluruairport.com General Enquires: 1800 425 4425, 080-6678 2425