City of Gardens

A visit to Lalbagh Gardens here in Bangalore has served to increase my enjoyment of this city. One of several gardens in the city, Lalbagh Gardens is probably the largest and best known of the gardens.

After a short (and very expensive!!) hotel taxi ride to the Gardens – over 600 rupees for somewhere where I would think I could walk to if necessary – the approach to the Gardens was a captivating walk under multi-coloured Bougainvillea arched walkways, rather like ones I saw in Brisbane a few years ago, but so much more fecund and colourful.

Lalbagh-entryLalbagh-entry-pathLalbagh-bougainvillea

The Gardens are dominated by a large Peninsular Gneiss (rock!), and perched at the apex of this stone hillock is a watchtower with mainly blue decorations on two adjoining sides and mainly pink on the other two. I doubt this is regarded as a male/female thing in India, but I am sure it has some significance. This watchtower was originally placed at a spot where it was felt Bangalore would eventually extend to…LOL….they certainly got that wrong! This is a thriving and large city, constantly bedevilled with outstanding traffic jams and full of life – far larger than the watchtowers would have us believe.

Lalbagh-view-watchtower

After a walk down the first side garden, under trees – escaping from the sun, then it was time to explore the precincts. A saunter down to the “glasshouse”, fountain and the bandstand persuaded me that it was probably better to avoid the sun – yes I had a hat and sunblock! By the time I put on my sunglasses I must have looked a true tourist – or was it that I was only one of the “Mad dogs and englishmen” that  “go out in the midday sun”…..

I got as close as I dared to a wasps nest attached to a trunk of a tree and then noticed a flower growing out of the tree – rather like a red succulent flower. there were some very nice picnic areas – filled up rather more later in the day.

Lalbagh-flower-on-treeLalbagh-1Lalbagh-wasp-nest

Lalbagh-squirrel-2

A rather swampy beginning with some herons – the blue one looks peculiarly like a New Zealand Pukeko – and then it was onto a tree-lined path around the quite large lake. This was a lovely walk with tree branches entwined above contrasting with the red soil beneath. A dog resting beside the path provided a moment of mirth – a couple of butterflies provided some exercise as they flittered almost unceasingly in their search for whatever one seeks in a life of only a few days.

An Egret stood “fishing” for a long time – peering intently into the murky depths of water – there is nothing that I would like to eat in that colour of water…

Lalbagh-Egret

At the far end of the lake was one of the world’s largest Kapok trees (Cotton Silk tree) and a topiary garden full of plants in tortuous shapes – I have not included a photo of such dubious pleasures.

Lalbagh-Kapok-tree

Back from the walk – back into the full heat of the sun, it was time to shinny up the great rock, look out on the city of Bangalore and then down out of the sun and into a Tuktuk for a much cheaper, and more exciting, trip back to the centre of the City of Gardens.

Lalbagh-watch-towerLalbagh-exit-from-rockLalbagh-watchtower-closeLalbagh-flower

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About David Adlam

I am a conductor, composer, clarinettist and examiner for Trinity Guildhall working in Auckland, New Zealand and overseas
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