24 HOURS IN BANGALORE – THINGS TO DO

BANGALORE BOTANICAL GARDENS SUNSET

Your highly anticipated 2 month trip to India is pending.  You have no itinerary, no real idea of where you want to go, and no outgoing flight booked.  You’re apprehensive, of course, you are, this is INDIA.  It’s a country expected to be unlike anywhere you’ve ever been before, and you’ve heard so many different stories & mixed opinions. So why decide to book a flight for the following week into Bangalore?

Well, Bangalore is actually a nickname we have for each other following a rather funny incident involving a heated argument and damn spell check (you had to be there!).  But not only that, it’s a central hub for most spots in the South of India, so if like us, you have no idea what your next move will be, it’s a practical choice.

So without further ado here is our list of things to do in Bangalore in 24 hours.

24 HOURS IN BANGALORE – THINGS TO DO

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HOW TO GET TO BANGALORE

BY AIR – The closest airport to Bangalore is Bengaluru Airport, situated 50km away.

BY TRAIN – The closest railway station to Bangalore is Bangalore City railway station. Bangalore is connected via train from across the region, however, booking trains in India can be tricky.  It is advised to book at least 3 days in advance and even then you aren’t always guaranteed a ticket.  For this reason, we always used the bus network in India. You can book trains up to 6 months in advance using 12go Asia.

BY BUS – Bangalore is accessible by bus from a number of destinations across India.  To check routes, timetables and ticket prices we recommend using redbus.com.  In our experience, they are extremely reliable.  They are one of the few companies who will accept payment with an International card, and they are contactable by phone should you have any issues with your journey.

ARRIVING AT BENGALURU AIRPORT

Having a 5am arrival flight from London meant that thankfully, the airport wasn’t too busy.  The longest process was getting through the India border, as many questions were asked in terms of our plans while in the country.  As we both hold a UK passport, it is a requirement that we hold a valid visa or e-visa before we can enter India.  For visa requirements, you can check the official government website.

Upon leaving arrivals there are some stores and restaurants for your convenience.  We also recommend picking up a sim card here, as the price is very reasonable.  A 3-month sim card, with a considerable daily allowance, set us back 500 Rupees ($7).  They will need a copy of your passport, a photo (which they will take if you don’t have one) and some other personal information in order to register the sim card.

TIP – SIM cards take up to 3 hours to register, therefore if you require the internet for maps or to contact someone, be sure to use the airport’s free wifi before you leave.  We always recommend downloading maps me ahead of travel so that you always have an offline map to hand.

LALBAGH BANGALORE BOTANICAL GARDEN - THINGS TO DO
LALBAGH BANGALORE BOTANICAL GARDENS

ARRIVING INTO BANGALORE CITY

We arrived into Bangaluru Airport in the early morning, and after enjoying our first cup of chai to clear the weary heads, took an airport taxi to our budget hotel in the city (This cost us 1000 INR to Madiwala.)   We’d, of course, heard of the traffic pollution in Bangalore, but after 2 months away from Asia, our jet-lagged minds were not quite ready for the whacky races & incessant horn honking.  So after a nail-biting & somewhat painful journey, we were relieved to finally make it to our hotel.

Another culture shock that anybody who’s been to India will talk about, is the SMELL.  And it’s true!  I will never forget stepping out of that taxi for the first time into a myriad of different smells – The good and the bad in a futile battle to consume the senses.  It was at this point that it hit home.  Our journey in India had begun.

WHERE TO STAY IN BANGALORE

In general, accommodation in Bangalore isn’t exactly the cheapest, however it is possible to find some budget hotels.  There is a popular chain of hotels in India called OYO, who offer a basic yet clean room for a very reasonable price.  It is also possible to find hostels spread across the city:

Hostel – The Journey HostelThis property is one of the best-rated locations in Bangalore

Budget – Woke Hostel IndiranagarRated one of the best value in Bangalore

Mid-range – OYO Hotel in Madiwala – A little bit further away from the tourist attractions but it was peaceful and comfortable, what we needed after our long flight.

For more places to stay in Bangalore, check the latest prices here.

THINGS TO DO IN BANGALORE

It’s important to note that the below is just an overview of what we did with our 24hrs in Bangalore.  This is by no means all there is to do in this diverse city. If you find yourself with more time, this article by Time Out should help.

LALBAGH BOTANICAL GARDENS

Those who know us will know we are not city people, for those who don’t, ‘we are not city people’.  So naturally, when faced with the loud, polluted & overpopulated city of Bangalore, we went in search for some calm within the chaos.  Lalbagh Botanical Gardens offered us just that.  An enchanting wonderland spread across 240 acres, encompassing over 1000 species of flora and trees over 100 years old.

The gardens attract thousands of visitors each day.  Locals flock each morning and evening for jogging or a relaxing walk with friends & family.  And tourists from near & far come to marvel at the verdant, ethereal nature that adorns the grounds.  Main attractions in the park include The Lalbagh Rock – one of the oldest rock formations on earth, the glass house, Lalbagh Lake, the wood carved statues and numerous plant & tree gardens.

ENTRANCE FEES:
  • Per Person        20 INR
  • Camera              50 INR (You do not get searched *hint hint*)
  • Bike                    20 INR
  • Car                      25 INR

TIP – Stay for sunset, it is magical…

BANGALORE SUNSET
Watching the sunset was one of the best things to do in Bangalore
LALBAGH MAP LOCATION

EXPERIENCE THE PUB SCENE

Bangalore is known to be the pub capital of India, therefore it would be rude not to stop by in one of them for a drink.  Coming from the UK where the pub culture is legendary, we have learnt not to expect too much when visiting ‘pubs’ overseas.  However we were impressed by the sheer number of pubs & bars that can be found in this busy & bustling city.  With over 3000 venues to choose from, how do you pick the one right for you?

EAT SOME INDIAN FOOD

Of course, this should be one of the first things on your list when arriving anywhere in India.  It’s not difficult to find delicious traditional food in this city, whether it be humble street food or top quality restaurants.  You can even find Uber Eats here! However it is advised to do a little research first, to avoid the dreaded ‘delhi belly’.

It is worth mentioning that we attempted to visit the infamous Mavali Tiffin Room on Labagh road one evening, however it was extremely busy with male clientele and we were unable to get a table.  Booking in advance is advised.

where to eat in bangalore

PLAN WHERE YOU ARE GOING NEXT

As much as we enjoyed our short stay in Bangalore, we certainly didn’t feel we needed any more time there, therefore planning where you want to go next is imperative.  Thankfully, redbus.com allow you to book buses at short notice to a wide number of destinations throughout India, whereas for trains, you have to book at least 3 days in advance.

GETTING AROUND BANGALORE

Getting around the city can be tough.  Uber, Taxis and Rickshaws (Tuk tuks) operate throughout Bangalore however the interminable traffic can double or even triple journey times.  For this reason, many drivers do not want the business of longer journeys.  Or if they do, they want to charge a premium for it.  Thankfully we enjoy walking, and covered almost 20 miles on foot within our 24 hours in the city.

WHAT TO PACK FOR BANGALORE

Unsure of what you might need to pack for your adventures in India? Don’t worry, we have got you covered.  Check out our backpacker essentials, for a packing list of items that we carry with us on every adventure.

TRAVEL RESPONSIBLY 

As travellers, it should always be a top priority to travel responsibly.  We already leave a substantial carbon footprint just by flying to our travel destinations, so that’s even more reason to make a positive impact when we get there.  There are many small steps you can take to becoming a responsible traveller, and we highly encourage you to educate yourself before travelling to India. Here are some things you can do to minimise your footprint:

1. Do not leave any rubbish on the ground: You will see a lot of rubbish on the ground in India, but that doesn’t make it ok to add to it.  Bin your trash!

2. Limit your single-use plastic consumption:  This is tough in India as we wouldn’t recommend drinking tap water even if it has been treated/sterilised.  However, you can say no to straws and plastic bags. Take a reusable bag with you everywhere.

3. Respect the local culture: Be courteous of the local culture and act in such a way that leaves a good impression.  Learn a little of the local language (hello and thank you is the minimum), greet the locals in a polite manner, and respect dress codes & traditions. We recommend carrying a Sarong with you to cover up where needed.

More on India

Are you planning a trip to India?  Check out our other articles to help plan your trip.

Did you enjoy our list of things to do in Bangalore Itinerary & Travel Guide?

Well, that concludes Things to do in Bangalore Itinerary & Travel Guide.  We hope you enjoy your time in this magical country. If you have any questions or feel we have missed anything, please reach out to us in the comment section below, through our contact us page. Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram here where we share further travel advice & inspiration.

Stay adventurous & Happy Travels,

Charlotte & Natalie x

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2 thoughts on “24 HOURS IN BANGALORE – THINGS TO DO

  1. One late night, not sleeping having jetlag, in north India we watched a travel show on tv about Bangalore. They talked so much about their pub and distillery scene, an easy way to our hearts! We will definitely have to visit when we return. Safe travels!

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