Who was Tipu Sultan?
Before taking a virtual journey through the palaces that belonged to Tipu Sultan, it’s first necessary to understand who he was. Tipu Sultan, born in 1750, was known as one of the fiercest rulers of the Kingdom of Mysore following his ascension to the top upon his father’s death in 1782. History suggests he was a polarising figure, but well known for his never-ending rivalry with British Imperialism. He died fighting yet another round of British attack on the fort at Srirangapatna. He was killed at the Srirangapatna Fort’s walls and was buried next to the grave of his father at the fort also.
Tipu Sultan Summer Palace Bengaluru (Bangalore)
The Tipu Sultan Summer Palace in Bangalore is one of two palaces with the same name, so it’s easy to get confused. I know I did. The palace in Bangalore is part of Bangalore (Tipu’s) Fort and lies across from the city market. Whilst the physical location and original fort date back to the early 1500’s, it was Tipu himself who built this palace.
This palace was spectacular, being built completely from teak. To see a two-storey building such as this built entirely from wood and so demonstratively decorated and carved was truly something else.
Whilst most of the fort is in a state of ruin, the palace has been quite well preserved. The columns are plentiful and sit under such beautiful carved archways. Stone staircases lead upstairs to a central open area, used as the durbar by the Sultan to receive his special guests.
The durbar is flanked by four rooms on each corner. These were the rooms for the women.
A balcony on each side of the central hall was used for the Sultan to address his people.
On the lower ground, a museum now displays artefacts (portraits, clothing, trinkets) from the days of the ruler and associated royalty.
The Venkataramana Temple is located next to the Summer Palace. Built long before Tipu built his palace, he used to visit here regularly.
Where is Tipu Summer Palace Bengaluru
The palace can be found at New Tharagupet, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560002, just opposite the city market. The closest bus stop is Kempe Gowda (approximately 2.7 km) or the Kempe Gowda Railway Station, just over three km away.
Opening times Tipu Summer Palace Bengaluru
The palace is open every day from 8.30 am until 5.30 pm.
Note: It is forbidden to take photos or videos inside the palace without special permission. As a guest of the Ministry of Tourism, India, I had special permission to do so.
Tipu Sultan Summer Palace Mysore
The other Tipu Sultan Summer Palace can be found in Mysore, home to the beautiful Mysore Palace also.
This palace is also known as Daria Daulat and is located in Sriangapatna, the location of Tipu’s fort and the place of his ultimate death. The palace, now a museum, is located inside the Daria Daulat Bagh garden and grounds.
Located 22 km north of Mysore, the town of Srirangapatna is one of significant historical, cultural and religious importance. The name is derived from the Ranganathaswamy Temple, which is integral to this town.
Built in 1784, this summer palace holds a strong architectural similarity to his summer palace in Bengaluru. Built on a raised concrete base, there is a strong use of teak. Balconies, impressive curved archways, carvings and paintings adorn every part of this building.
It is the frescoes that I am most drawn to. Covering every bit of available space, as I walked around the external corridors. All is undercover to protect the paintings from the harsh Indian sun.
In the centre of the palace, there is a museum once again containing artefacts from Tipu Sultan’s time here including clothing and weapons.
The gardens outside are equally beautiful, and in the surrounding environment where there is generally dirt, the gardens provide quite the oasis.
Both of Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palaces are equally interesting, although you might consider one more beautiful than the other. They highlight the interesting architectural styles evident at the time and showcase the rich history of the area and those who lived here. Visit them if you can.