There is something about being surrounded by nature that changes you. You may find that your energy has been renewed and you feel recharged after a long walk or a hike. With spring approaching, you’ll definitely be wanting to find yourself outdoors more often. Maybe to have a picnic with your family and friends, or just to enjoy the scenic view of your surroundings, having some time to yourself to think and relax.
Nature has long been thought to reduce stress, with forests being thought of as therapeutic landscapes. Maybe it is the fact that we know that these plants are also living, holding on to this same life force. We can find ourselves lost in the thought of imagining the people they once encountered. That someone 100 years ago had also sat close by, staring up at this same beautiful living piece of artwork. Or maybe it’s the smell brought in from the roses, or the pine that brings back wonderful memories from our past. Whatever it may be, try to find yourself outside more to enjoy the outdoors; mentally and physically you will feel better!
Lalbagh Botanical Gardens has been one of my favorite places to visit in Bangalore (Bengaluru), India. There are so many different varieties of plants, flowers, and trees to admire. Each having its own marker to tell you exactly what you’re looking at, and which part of the world this particular plant comes from. It was in 1760 when the Sultan of Mysore, Hyder Ali, started building, and creating this luxurious garden on roughly 40 acres (16 ha) of land. Eventually, it was completed by his son, Tipu Sultan, and was known as the Rose and Cypress Garden until 1856 when the garden took the name Lalbagh because of the glorious collection of the red roses that continue to bloom here throughout the year.
Starting with just a mere 40 acres, Lalbagh Botanical Garden has grown to now house over 1,000 species of flora across 240 acres (97 ha) of land! Lalbagh is now the host of the largest collection of tropical plants in all of India! On a beautiful sunny day, you can look to spend hours here, relaxing in the shade and exploring all of what Lalbagh has to offer. There are many things to be discovered, such as the Lalbagh Lake, and the Glass House in the middle of the park that was modeled after the Crystal Palace in London. There are also two annual flower shows that are held here. One on January 26th and the other on August 15th to celebrate India’s Republic Day and Independence Day, respectively. There’s a peninsular gneiss, which is an abundance of rock that has formed on top of each other, and if you climb up you’ll find a small shrine. This is also a great area for photos, as you’ll see many families, or groups of friends, posing with their camera! Don’t be shy, ask them to take yours too!
One of the things you want to watch out for when you are in Lalbagh Botanical Garden are the guys trying to sell you sandalwood fans. If you are not interested, just politely tell them no and they won’t bother you again. I’ve noticed they tend to mainly hang out around the layered gneiss, and you typically won’t see them in other areas of the garden.
Nature lovers, photographers, artists, and anyone looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city will enjoy the lush scenery at Lalbagh Botanical Garden. Additionally, there are concession areas where you can buy drinks and snacks, and there are even people selling fresh cut veggies, such as cucumbers and tomatoes throughout the gardens. The prices for these snacks are quite higher than what you’d find throughout the city. So if you’re able, bring something with you from home, to enjoy a lovely picnic under the cool shade of the trees.