Karnataka is the seventh-largest state in India that lies in the southwestern coastline. It is the largest state in South India that comes as a rescue to all those who want to enjoy nature's marvels along with the heritage sites of India. Bengaluru is the capital city which is the famous IT hub in India. It is a famous tourist destination in India that is endowed with a beautiful chunk of land blessed with timeless monuments, world heritage sites, luscious forests, marvelous wildlife, romantic hill stations, stunning beaches, and the most amazing blend of cultures.

History of Karnataka

Traced back to the prehistoric times, the history of Karnataka is replete with the rise and fall of innumerable dynasties and empires. Also known as Karunadu which means elevated land, this high plateau region was first discovered by the Mauryas. Then came Satavahanas who ruled here for 300 years. Then shifting the reign to Kadambas and the Pallavas, the Gangadikaras, the Chalukyas of Badami, the Rashtrakutas, the Kalacharis, the Hoysalas, the Yadavas, the Kakatiyas and few more who stayed here for a brief time. After which the power went in hands of Malik Kafur who was a Muslim ruler, however, in 1336 Hindu kingdom at Vijayanagar was established by Harihara (Hakka) and Bukka.

Art and architecture flourished tremendously in Karnataka during the reign of the Hoysalas. Then came Wodeyars, who took Karnataka on lease from the Mughal king, Aurangzeb in the 15th Century. Hyder Ali took over the throne after the death of Krishnaraja Wodeyar II. Then came the most powerful ruler of contemporary Karnataka, Tipu Sultan who was the son of Hyder Ali. Considered as the Tiger of Mysore, he, however, succumbed to death in the Anglo-Mysore War. His fatal death in 1799 left Karnataka in the hands of the Britishers. The native state remained under the control of Wodeyars who were merely puppets, until 1947 when India got its independence. Originally known as Mysore, the state was renamed as Karnataka in 1973.

Culture of Karnataka

So many dynasties and empires left a few distinctive cultures and values which together enriched the state. The ever-evolving state of Karnataka has a rich cultural heritage, literature, architecture, folklore, music, painting, and many art forms that have been inherited from their ancestors. Apart from the architectural marvels left by the Mauryan Empire, many ancient monuments and fossils have been excavated in Karnataka. Leading ahead in the IT sector, the state is also known as the knowledge, research, and innovation hub of Asia.

The capital city Bengaluru notches up to the 1st Digital city and is ranked as 4th largest technology cluster in the world. Having given shelter to Tibetan refugees, influenced by various dynasties and also being Buddhist sacred land, Karnataka is a blend of many religions. Hinduism is the most prominent religion, while Jainism, Christianity, and Islam are practiced widely.  

Art and Handicrafts of Karnataka

The timeless art tradition in Karnataka has passed on from one generation to another. The State Government has also taken initiatives to preserve the charm of the craft-making tradition that in a way has helped artisans to maintain decent living standards. Many masterpieces of Ivory carvings from Karnataka are gracing the museums of London and Russia even today. Sandalwood state of India, the state is famous for the peerless sandalwood craft which is explicit to the Gudigar families of Shimoga, Uttara Kannada, and Mysore districts.

Bidriware is one of the rare handicrafts of Karnataka which is about intricate carvings done on the metal plates. The Mysore silk of Karnataka is famous all over the world for its luster and color. Traditional silk weaving art has helped its weavers to survive in modern times as well. The heritage city, Mysore is known to be the hub for paintings that take inspiration from Ajanta caves. Karnataka is also famous for stone carving.

Food of Karnataka

Many unique recipes are brewing in the local pots of Karnataka. From the vast range of dosas, spicy sambar, and lip-smacking variants of chutneys, there are a plethora of food options that would tickle the taste buds even of a non-foodie. Neer dosa, Mysore masala dosa tops the chart of dosas. Halasina Yele Chilmi is an exotic steamed dish from the Canara coast. Tatte idlis are super soft and as big as roti. Bisi Bele Bath is a traditional recipe of Karnataka. Ragi Mudde is an authentic dish prepared in every kitchen of Karnataka. The exquisite Shaiyya Jhinga Biryani made of delicate vermicelli and prawns is delectable. Gojju is a curry-like dish that is very popular in Karnataka.

Coorg Pandi Curry is a pork recipe that has a sour flavor due to the secret ingredient, Kachampuli which is the local fruit. Kundapura Koli Saaru is another style of Chicken curry and is very popular in the Mangalorean coastal region. Finger snack, Kane Rava fry made with Lady Fish is an authentic dish of Karnataka. Korri Gassi is a famous Mangalorean chicken curry recipe. Mysore Pak, Bonda Payasa, Mandige, Haalbai, Rava Kesari, Chiroti, Maddur vada are few of the famous sweet servings to satiate your sweet cravings. The list of astonishingly diverse cuisines of Karnataka is fathomless. 

Things to do in Karnataka 

A perfect blend of technology and nature, Karnataka offers both the sites related to modernity with amazing nightlife and wonderful water bodies with serene environment. Trying the following activities is all about fun and making the trip to Karnataka a success. 

  •  Enjoy karting in Bangalore city
  • Hampi is considered to be the heritage city in the Indian state of Karnataka. Find the old ruins with Matanga Hill Trek in Hampi
  • Take a temple tour to Belur Sri Chennakeshava Temple and Badami Cave Temples.
  • Kukke Subrahmanya in Subramanya and Shree Durga Parameshwari in Kateel are two famous temples in Karnataka. 
  • Mysore Palace, Bidar Fort, and Bangalore Palace are historical sites in Karnataka. 
  • Have a look at largest monoliths of Asia in Madhugiri

  • Spread your wings with skydiving in Mysore
  • Touch waters with river rafting in Coorg
  • Amaze yourself with breathtaking Jog falls
  • Bask in the lap of nature at Bandipur National Park
  • Splash water in Kanakpura waterfalls

Karnataka is not merely popular for its tourist attractions but its pleasant climatic conditions also catch the attention of people a lot. Its cities and villages have the required essence to bring smiles to thousands of tired faces. 

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