This post talks about the best food walks and photo walks that you can saunter along in Bengaluru, starting with the mini town Malleswaram has been a place that has intrigued me, because of the 80’s and 90’s vibe mixing with modernity. I first heard about Malleswaram, when someone told me that the ‘MAL’ in ‘Malgudi Days’ came from Malleswaram.
Interestingly Malleswaram and Basavangudi’s association goes back to 1848 when Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV (Maharaja of Mysore) was perturbed by living conditions in the cramped city area (primarily in and around present day Majestic), . He and his forward-looking Dewan of Mysore, Sheshadri Iyer, initiated the creation of Malleswaram and Basavanagudi over the vision to create new and clean suburbs to accommodate the city’s then burgeoning population.
A friend of mine lived there in 2006-07, and I used to stay with him briefly during my visits to Bangalore back then, and what stood with me, was the vibrant market and people.
So here I am, with my first photo series on Malleswaram Walks
How to get to Malleswaram Food Walk Area
If you have just come to Bengaluru through Rail or Bus, remember to get to the closest Metro station that can go to the Green Line stations of Mantri Mall (Sampige Road) or Srirampura in Malleswaram.
Shanti Nagar Bus Stand– Closest Metro Station is Lalbagh or National College Metro
Kengeri Bus Stand– Get to Mysore Road’s metro station’s on the Purple Line and change at Majestic Metro station (Nadaprabhu KempeGowda Majestic)
City Railway Station– Get on the Purple Line Metro near Platform 10, or walk out of the railway station from Platform 1 to get to the Green Line Metro station at Majestic Metro station
Krishnarajapuram Railway Station- You could either take a passenger train to City Railway station, or get out and take a bus to Bypanahalli Metro (Purple Line) closeby, and then interachange on the green line at Majestic to Mantri Mall/SriramPura
What Places can be covered in the Malleswaram Food Walk?
The list is extensive, but lets start with a small walkable list, which would take about a couple of hours, if you leisurely amble around
Malleswaram Food Walk- Route 1
Srirampura Metro-Veena Stores-Kadu Mallikarjuna/Malleswara Temple-Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Temple- Sri Gangamma Temple-Sri Dakshinamukha Nandi Tirtha Kalyani Temple-Sai Baba Temple-Nandishwaram Temple
Veena Stores- Malleswaram-Iconic Breakfast and Tiffen Place
After getting off at the Srirampura Metro, I followed the route to Veena Stores on Margosa Road, a 40 year old legacy when it comes to tasty South Indian food. Veena Stores in Bengaluru was a condiment store that has been converted into a breakfast/tiffens joint. It sells crispy vadas, BisiBela Bath, Khara Bath and soft idlis, amongst savouries/condiments. It usually has a queue waiting outside, and it has no place to sit and eat. People say, its a no-garlic food option for vegetarians.
They prepare a mint-green chutney, which is available in abundance separately to add to your breakfast, which is washed down your stomach with their filter kaapi. It has a few items namely Khara Bhath, Bisi Bele Bhath, Idly, Vada, Coffee, Puliogre, Kesari Bhath, Shavige Bath
Interestingly Margosa Road and Sampige Road in Malleswaram, are named after trees, by the same name. I am guessing there were more trees and greenery around the time, the names of the roads were given.
Temples of Malleswaram-15th Cross Road
While there are quite a few temples, I am limiting this post to the temples at the junction of 15th Cross and 1st and 2nd Temple Streets.Roads running from North to South are Main Roads and perpendicular to these are Crosses.It is told that a few centuries ago, this place was part of thick and dense vegetation with a little hill. ‘Kadu’ means forest, and that gives the name to the temple ‘Kadu Malleswara’. This area, a couple of centuries back was a thickly wooded region and the Kadu Malleswara temple dates back to the time of the iconic Maratha ruler Shivaji (whose brother Venkoji constructed this temple)
1) Kadu Malleswara/ Kadu Mallikarjuna Temple
2) 400 Year Old Shiva Temple- Sri Dakshinamukha Nandi Tirtha Kalyani Kshetra
This temple has an interesting backstory. In 1997, when a local builder wanted to use this space for real estate construction, and during excavation they found a mound, which turned out to be the spire of the present day temple. They dug deeper to discover that there was more to it than what met the eye.
The ASI (Archelogical Survey of India) then took over, and excavated further and found a perfectly preserved pool with layered granite steps, surrounded by pillars. The temple has a shiva linga that is continuously fed water from the Nandi above (while the source of the water is not known, it adds some mystery and backstory to this set up). The locals feel the source could be the beautiful Sankey Tank in Malleswaram, while historians have added that this could be the source of the Vrishabhavathi river.
The Nandi is south facing, while most Nandi idols are north facing. I am researching further about this place to add it, so that travellers can know more about this beautiful place.
3) Gangamma Temple