Location: 5 km from Hesaraghatta village
Distance: 35 km from Bangalore city
Journey time: 1 and 1/2 hour on two wheeler. More than 2 hours in bus.
How to reach there: The best way to go there is by two wheeler or private 4 wheeler. You can also go there by bus. Only bus # 266 from market goes directly to Nrityagram. Othere buses from Majestic and market goes upto Hesaraghatta. From there auto charge is Rs 50 – 60.
Route: Tumkur road – look for ECIC factory on the left hand side, little ahead on the opposite side there is big black coloured glass building, take right diversion here and take the road to Hesraghatta.
Best time to visit: Any time. If you want to see dance rehearsals then do not visit during summer vacations. Contact them directly for more details.
Where to stay: Taj Kuteeram
Where to eat: Taj Kuteeram located besides Nrityagram.
Language spoken: Kannada, Hindi and English
Nrityagam literally means dance village. It was established by Odissi danseuse Protima Gauri (Bedi) in 1990. Protima Bedi is the wife of actor Kabir Bedi and mother of Pooja Bedi. She was a model but a chance sight of a Odissi dance changed her completely.
Entry fee: Rs 20
Timmings: Nrityagram is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. On Sunday 10 am to 2 pm. Closed on Mondays
My visit there last Sunday was an awesome experience. Started around 11.45 am in our Scooty Teenz from Rajajinagar. Once we past chaotic Tumkur road, the road to Hasseraghatta is nice one. Looks like the road has been newly laid. With green cover around, smooth road and great climate it was a day for riding. There are few circles on the way, ask any villager if you are not sure. Also, look for Nrityagram or Taj Kuteeram signage. Nearby Nrityagram, there is a wooded area, it looks like some part of Ooty, Kashmir or Shillong. Reached Nrityagram around 1 pm.
We were told the dance classes were over by 1 pm and Nrityagram will close by 2 pm, so we have 1 hour to see the campus. The campus has been given a country side design with stone the central theme. On entering you will see mascot of the dance village. Then there are dance rooms, community kitchen, store room, hostels etc. Going inside little further you can see African style huts amidst trees. At the fag end, there is an amphitheater. At the side there is a building with a Chinese style roof. Though some of them needs little restoration.
Nearby you can see Hesaraghatta lake. It is a man made lake in 1894 for serving drinking purpose of Bangalore. In July 2009, the lake went completely dry. Not sure if has water now. As it was drizzling on the back, we did not keep Hesaraghatta lake as an option. Around the lake one go bird watching or see Government Aquarium, Horticultural Research Institute, Indo-Danish Poultry and Dairy farms. On the way to Nrityagram one can also find Central Poultry Development Organization office and college.
Nrityagram or Dance Village
Bangalore Rural District – 560088
When you are coming out of Nrityagram on the other side is Taj Kuteeram. It is one of the best eco – hotels I have seen. Owned and maintained by Taj Hotels, a Tata group company. Here, too the theme is stone perfectly blended with colorful flowers. After the entrance, you have go through a passage which will lead to little pond besides the restaurant. You can go to the roof top and sit there for sometime and get a broader view. Taj Kuteeram has small cottage rooms which for hire. At one it has a watch tower. It was locked, not sure if they allow to go to the top. It has a tennis court too. Few swans keeps roaming all over the place. A very good place to spend time leisurely.
Karnataka 560 088
Tel: (94 – 80) 28466326/329/332
But for lunch options are very little and it would cost you Rs 550 plus tax per person. We had food at Das family dhaba on the way back. It is a ok kinda place with mainly locals and guys thronging this place. We ordered for kulcha (Rs 12) and Chicken 65 masala (Rs 55). Price seems to be ok. Btw, drinks are also available. Started riding back by 4 pm through the winding road and reached Jalahalli cross by 5 pm. Visited one brother at Kamagondonahalli and made our way back to Bangalore city. Reached home by 7.30 pm. A wonderful place, you should be there to experience it.
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