Sunday, July 23, 2006

Bannerghatta National Park

This is the Bannerghatta Road, a state highway, beyond Meenakshi Temple, and as you can see, the road is not bad, it's at least paved.

You have to take a right on Bannerghatta Road some 6-8 kms from Meenakshi Temple, and then drive a couple of kms through a village. 
A buffalo letting a crow treat itself to a snack of worms is a photo op not to be missed. A camera with a zoom lens would have made for a more satisfying photo. Well... someday

The entrance to the park. You do not enter through the gate on the right, but drive straight ahead where the ticket counters and main gate are.

This is a closeup of the gate seen in the earlier photo. You can see the timings, and see that the zoo is closed on Tuesdays. I didn't see any postcard shops around, but if carry a polaroid camera you could post an instant card courtesy the post box seen in the corner.

This is where you buy a parking ticket. The venerable old man sitting on the chair kept on giving that enigmatic look the entire time I paid for the ticket and snapped this photo.

Not really something to write home about; this row of shops could be made into something so much more, but this is Karnataka for you. A nice national park so close to a large city like Bangalore, and this is the best that our planners can manage. You can however get a 'bhutta' for five rupees. Lots of shops also sell photo rolls for those who still live have not moved to the world of digital cameras.

And here is the fare card for you - lots of options, you can see the zoo only, or go on a grand safari that packages a tiger safari, lion safari, Bear safari, a herbivore safari, and entrance to the zoo, all for 85 rupees per person.

A map of the zoo tells you that there is a KSTDC hotel proposed near the park. There is also a pre-historic animal park that we did not go to - next time.

The ticket counter - at 10 AM there is no line (queue) and even inside the biological park there were less than 30 visitors - an ideal time to visit one would argue.

And the 'Q' for the different safaris are also empty. Partly because the first buses leaves only at 10:30AM.

They are quite strict about educating people about not littering the place with plastic, which is quite commendable. And truth be told, I did not find plastic bags littering the place. I would like to know if people are actually fined or prosecuted for littering the place...

By far the funniest sign in the whole park - the signage is in Kannada, but you don't need know what's been written to know that people are being told not to tease animals in cages. So while the lion has the man's leg in his mouth, and the elephant has his trunk in the man's mouth, and the monkey is pulling the dude's hair, the bear seems content to watch the show...

Caiman crocodiles. And none of them shedding tears.

Monkeys above the queue for the bus rides. More photos later.

© 2006, Abhinav Agarwal (अभिनव अग्रवाल). All rights reserved. Re-posted to this blog July 2013.

Sunday, July 2, 2006

Kargil Hilton

The Kargil Hilton in Bangalore - yes, that's right. This is neither Kargil, nor is this a Hilton by any stretch of the imagination. And to top it all, this is Bangalore - Southend Road in Basavangudi to be precise. And to hell with trademarks and copyrights. I am sure the proprietor's last name is not Hilton either.
© 2006, Abhinav Agarwal (अभिनव अग्रवाल). All rights reserved. (Posted to this blog June 2013)

Oracle Travel, Really?

Oracle campus as a travel vendor?? No, not quite. This is just some innovative fella who decided that the Oracle campus in Redwood Shores would make for a nice shop hoarding. I found out this is a travel vendor, so in some ways it makes sense - after all, who wouldn't want to travel to Redwood Shores? Nice glass buildings, with a nice lake frontage. Sounds like a vacation idea, doesn't it?

© 2006, Abhinav Agarwal (अभिनव अग्रवाल). All rights reserved. Re-posted to this blog July 2013