Karnataka, is a state located in the southern part of India. It lies on the (south) western part of the country, bordering the Arabian sea’s coast.

The capital of Karnataka is Bengaluru (previously Bangalore), which is located close to the south-eastern border of the state.


Before the independence of India in 1947 (from the British empire’s rule), the state was known as Mysore. Mysore state was prosperous but landlocked, on the Karnataka Plateau. It was identified as one of the princely states in India at the time (states which were under the rule of a regional ruler who was affiliated to the British Raj).

Later in independent India, the Kannada-speaking people from the nearby regions united and began living in this state, and its “land-lock” status was ended, by giving the state an outlet to the (Arabian) sea, and extending its boundaries to a larger area to accommodate these people, and thus forming the state of Karnataka.


There are about 27 cities and many smaller towns and villages in Karnataka. These are grouped into about 31 districts.

The most populous cities and towns are Bengaluru Urban, Dharwad, Mysore, Gulbarga, Mangalore and Belgaum – in that order.


Karnataka has a population of about 7 Crore (70 million) people. Hindus, Muslims, and Christians are the three largest religious groups in the total population of the state. Around 84% of the people in the state are Hindus, followed by up to 13% of Muslims and about 2% Christians. Other religions followed by people in the state include Jainism, Sikhism and Buddhism which collectively come to less than 2% of the population.

Most people of all religions speak Kannada, Telugu, Tamil or Hindi language in the state – the city has a blend of people from different parts of the country living and working here, as it is one of the major IT hubs of the country.


Karnataka has many traditional arts, and classical music forms – Carnatic music being the most popular. The state has more Hindus compared to people of other religions, but it also consists of a good number of Muslins, Christians and Jains.

Women here mostly wear sarees (especially middle-aged women), but western attire (jeans, pants and shirts, skirts, cardigans, etc.) is common among kids, teenagers and young working professionals.


Although the primary language spoken across Karnataka is Kannada, this state is also home to many people speaking Tulu, Konkani and Marathi (the languages of surrounding regions).


Rice, Jowar (Sorghum) and Ragi (also known as Finger millet) are the grains used in most dishes in Karnataka’s cuisine and these are the staples here. While Rice and Ragi are mostly consumed in South Karnataka, Sorghum is the primary grain in the food of North Karnataka.

Some popular dishes in Karnataka’s cuisine include Bisibele Bath (a porridge made of rice, dal (pulses), vegetables, spices and coconut), Ragi Mudde (steamed ragi balls), Jolada Rotti (unleavened Sorghum flatbread), and Akki rotti (unleavened rice flour flatbread).


Trains, Planes and Buses are major modes of inter-city transportation within Bihar. For travel within cities, there are many other modes such as the local metro (train), taxi/cabs, buses, and private vehicles like 2-wheelers and cars, or even walking and cycling.

Airports – Karnataka has 6 domestic airports connecting to other states and cities in the country, and 2 International airports connecting to cities within the state as well as other parts of the country.

  • Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru
  • Mangalore International Airport, Mangaluru
  • Mysuru Airport, Mysuru
  • Hubbali Airport, Hubbali-Dharwad
  • Bidar Airport, Bidar
  • Jindal Vijaynagar Airport, Ballari
  • Belagavi Airport, Belagavi
  • Kalaburagi Airport, Kalaburagi

Railway Stations – Karnataka has a total of 404 train terminals/railway stations (at least one for each city/town, and more than 1 in some cities) that connect to other cities and towns within the state as well as those in other states in the country. Some of the major train terminals and junctions in the state are:

  • KSR Bengaluru city Junction, Bengaluru
  • Yeshvantpur Junction, Yeshvantpur (near Bengaluru)
  • Mysuru city junction, Mysuru
  • Raichur Junction, Raichur
  • Katihar Junction, Katihar
  • Bengaluru Cantonment, Bengaluru
  • Davangere Railway Station, Davangere
  • Mandya railway station, Mandya
  • Belagavi railway station, Belgaum

Bus Terminals – Karnataka has its own line of state-run KSRTC (Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation) buses which provide the connection between all the cities and towns within the state and also neighbouring states. These buses can be boarded at KSRTC stops/terminals that are available in every division and town in the state. The prominent town/city bus terminals in the state are located in almost every city and town in Karnataka - they can be easily found and are conveniently accessible.


Karnataka has many historically significant places like monuments and museums as well as gardens and calm beaches. Most of the gardens in Karnataka are located in Bengaluru, which is also known as the Garden city” while many other places like Mysore also have some beautiful (historical) gardens.

Karnataka also has some incredible hill stations, of which Coorg is the most popular. This is a favorite getaway spot for people from most parts of the state, and it is famous for its coffee plantations, hills, greenery and pleasantly cool weather. Other great destinations include:

  • Hampi (famous for its ancient temples and buildings with beautiful architecture).
  • Gokarna (a place with calm and stunning beaches on the Arabian Sea coast, along with some ancient forts).
  • Udupi (a pilgrimage site, also known for its unique gastronomic experience).
  • Some amazing wild National parks such as Bandipur and Nagarhole.


Karnataka has many incredible places that make for perfect getaways or short vacation destinations. Here are some of the popular choices that locals as well as tourists love and recommend –

  • Coorg – This is the most popular vacation spot in the state; with hill station like weather, beautiful waterfalls and greenery (known for coffee plantations) – a peaceful location amidst nature and wilderness. The place has many luxurious as well as affordable resorts with great views.
  • Gokarna - a town on the Arabian Sea coast, known for sacred sites (like Mahabaleshwar Temple) and pristine beaches.
  • Hampi - an ancient village with numerous ruined temple complexes and religious (mostly Hindu) heritage sites from 7th century, the Vijayanagara Empire era and other historic eras. The rich heritage manifested through the buildings and monuments makes this place picturesque as well as culturally charming.
  • Udupi – Another city with rich heritage and an amazing gastronomical scene (Udupi’s food is a must-try).
  • Chikmagalur – A beautiful town with mountains, caves, peaks, coffee plantations and forests. Great for a peaceful vacation.
  • Sakleshpur – A pretty little town with beautiful mountain views.


Some popular adventure activities and places to indulge in them in Karnataka include -

  • White water rafting (at Dandeli, on the banks of river Kali)
  • Zorbing (in Bengaluru)
  • Trekking and Hiking (Nandi Hills, Kumaraparvata)
  • Parasailing (at Murudeshwara)
  • Rock Climbing (at Ramanagara)
  • Kayaking (at Bheemeshwari)
  • Wildlife Safari (at Nagarhole national park)
  • Coracle ride (Shivanasamudra falls)


Karnataka being a land ruled by various empires and dynasties in the past, has a deep history and a rich heritage, which are manifested through the beautiful monuments and other elements that the state has. Some popular historic places to explore in Karnataka are -

  • Hampi - an ancient village with numerous ruined temple complexes and religious (mostly Hindu) heritage sites from 7th century, the Vijayanagara Empire era and other historic eras. The rich heritage manifested through the buildings and monuments makes this place picturesque as well as culturally charming.
  • Tipu Sultan’s summer Palace, near Mysuru
  • Mysore palace, Mysuru
  • Udupi – Another city with rich heritage – historical monuments and temples.
  • Bangalore palace, Bengaluru
  • Badami – A region with beautiful ancient rock cut temples.

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