Ooty beckons as Summer Vacations are just around the corner

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Ooty, the queen of hills has been a popular holiday destination for a long time. Many even complain that it’s become too touristy and the place is now devoid of its old world colonial era charm. Let me reveal, Ooty’s best kept secret, the Ferrnhills RoyaalPalace.

A summer palace of the the royal family of Mysore, Ferrnhills RoyaalPalace has been remodeled into an all suite luxury hotel. With just 19 suites, this palace is privacy personified. The large open lawns, private woods and the long winding roads are perfect for quite walks, cycling or even horse riding, all available in the hotel on request.

The colonial architecture and huge rooms offer the perfect blend of old world charm and modern day amenities. The properties expanse ensures that you are veiled from the city bustle, making it an oasis in itself.

With vacations fast approaching, the holiday plans must be on top priority. Visit Ooty this year and enjoy a vacation, regal style. Leave the stress and worries of the city life and loose yourself in the bygone era at Ferrnhills RoyaalPalace. Our summer packages, for this season have been unveiled – http://www.fernhillspalace.co.in/Ooty_Holiday_Packages.aspx

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Mysore Dasara 2012 procession at Mysore Palace

The world famous Mysore Dasara 2012 procession received great coverage even this year. The procession was complete with elephants decorated in grandeur and walking majestically from Mysore Palace to the Bannimantapa. The King of Mysore, His Highness Srikanta Datta Narasimharaja Wadiyar looked majestic dressed up in finery as he got into his silver chariot for the procession. The procession is popularly known as Jumbo Savari in Mysore.Here’s a clip from NDTV that shows the Mysore Dasara procession

Mysore Dasara 2012 procession from Mysore Palace

This year the Government of Karnatka had even arranged the live streaming of Mysore Dasara procession, enabling a lot of people to virtually experience the Dasara festival grandeur. This is how Dasara was celebrated in earlier days. It is heartening to see that the tradition is continued in similar fashion and with equal pride and pomp

Mysore Dasara 2012 culmination

Today is Dasara or Vijayadashmi, the grand culmination of Mysore Dasara celebrations. Dasara or Dusherra as called in North India is a day to celebrate the victory of good over evil. The nine days that celebrate Goddess Durga in various forms culminates today. Durga Pooja festival marks the victory of Maa Durga over Mahishasura. The festival is celebrated with great pomp and fervor in various Indian states like Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, Tripura,West Bengal, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Punjab, Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Kerala.

In North India Dasherra is celebrated by burning the effigy of Ravana. In East India, Durga idols are immersed in water, while in South India, especially in Mysore the nine-day long festivities end with a grand royal procession. On Vijayadashami, the traditional Dasara procession (locally known as Jumboo Savari) is held on the streets of Mysore city. The main attraction of this procession is the idol of the Goddess Chamundeshwari which is placed on a golden mantapa on the top of a decorated elephant. This idol is worshipped by the royal couple and other invitees before it is taken around in the procession. Colourful tableaux, dance groups, music bands, decorated elephants, horses and camels form a part of the procession which starts from the Mysore Palace and culminates at a place called Bannimantap where the banni tree (Prosopis spicigera) is worshipped.

Here is a video of the Mysore Dasara explaining the fanfare that surrounds the Dasherra festival.

Mysore Dasara 2012 Kite Flying Festival

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The Mysore Dasara 2012 festival saw a colorful response at the kite flying festival. Kites in lovely colors and imaginative shapes adorned the sky and converted a rather cloudy day into a cheerful one. The competition was held at Lalith Mahal grounds and saw a strong turnout by Mysoreans. Here are a few pictures that encapsulate the day for you.

Photo courtesy – MysoreDasara2012

Program schedule for today – 22/10/12

Program schedule for tomorrow – 23/10/12

Mysore Dasara – A celebration of legend, tradition and royalty

Mysore is a riveting destination for travelers, from around the world. During Dasara its beauty increases manifold’s as the city decks up to celebrate the State festival – Nadahabba, with great pomp and festivity. According to the legend, Vijayadashami denotes the victory of truth over evil and was the day when the Hindu Goddess Chamundeshwari killed the demon Mahishasura. Mahishasura is the demon from whose name; the name Mysore has been derived.

Mysore has a long tradition of celebrating dasara as an elaborate affair. Initially started by Raja Wadiyar 1 in 1610 at Srirangapatna, this festival of more than 400 years still continues to be celebrated with equal fervor and joy. Preserving the tradition, even today the current heir to the throne visits the Chamundeshwari temple and performs a special pooja, marking the beginning of Dasera festival.

This year’s Dasara celebrations began with His Highness Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar worshipping the family deity Chamundeshwari. In the year 1805, Krishnaraja Wodeyar III started the tradition of having a special durbar in the Mysore Palace during Dasara; which was attended by members of the royal family, special invitees, officials and the masses. This tradition has been continued even today with the current scion of the Wadiyar family, Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wodeyar performing a special pooja of the golden throne and holding a private durbar during Dasara. On the ninth day, or Mahanavmi as it is popularly known, the royal sword is worshipped and is taken on a procession involving elephants, camels and horses.