Bangalore Talkies: 36 things to do after the pandemic in Bengaluru
What will you do after Covid? A very specific Bengalurean take.
1. Go into Cauvery Emporium at the corner of M.G. Road and Church Street to buy some sandalwood oil. Walk-in without a mask.
2.Walk down Church Street without worrying about jostling around with the other million people that are there.
3. Go to Koshys and sit for hours shooting the breeze with the folks who have been coming here for decades — including naturalist M.B. Krishna, publisher Ramjee Chandran, singer Radha Thomas, actress Kirtana Kumar, historian Ramachandra Guha and the owner, Prem Koshy.
4. Walk down the road to Blossoms and Gangarams to browse through the latest books. Pick up a few.
5. Accompany a friend to Empire at the end of Church Street at 2 am for their chicken. I, as a vegetarian, will only smell the stuff.
6. Run through Cubbon Park at dawn and smile at the other runners.
7. Go to the Ritz Carlton spa for their heavenly aroma massages.
8. Have a North Indian meal at Royal Afghan in ITC Windsor. Have double servings of the Dal Bukhara and their Kulchas.
9. Go to Vidyarthi Bhavan for breakfast. Have a rave-vade and a masala dosa.
10. Have a benne dosai (butter dosa) along with a Mangalore bajji at CTR or Central Tiffin Room now called Sri Sagar.
11. Visit Natya Institute of Kathak in Malleshwaram to smell the champaka flowers on the tree right outside their studio. Walk downstairs to the Craft Council shop, Kamalini and buy handmade bags, puppets and trays.
12. Walk down Gandhi Bazaar and bargain freely with the street vendors for fresh vegetables.
13. Taste the freshest fruits at the markets of Malleshwaram.
14. Go to KR Market at 8am and smell the fragrant mallige or jasmine that arrives in bulk to be sold to Bengaluru’s flower vendors, who fan out all over the city with fragrant strings of jasmine, champaka, tulsi and davanam.
15. Stand in line outside Food Kemp in Malleshwaram for their Sunday lunch.
16. Spend a couple of hours at Angadi Silks and Angadi Heritage Centre in Jayanagar. Pick up a silk saree or two from their latest collection.
17. Go with friends to Byg Brewski in Hennur and sample their offerings. If you live in the other end of Bangalore, go to Red Rhino or Bier Library or Windmills Craftworks.
18. Catch a Kannada play at Rangashankara or Jagriti theatres.
19. Go to Lalbagh on the weekends for specialised walks offered by Ecoedu. Look for the walk about the creepers of Lalbagh.
20. Take an early morning motorcycle ride with the Harley Davidson riding club. Go to Nandi Hills with them for breakfast. Then work off the calories by climbing Nandi Hills.
21. On the way back, stop at the Four Seasons hotel for a champagne lunch.
22. Go to the Bangalore International Centre on any evening for scintillating panel discussions and company. Have a bite at their in-house restaurant after.
23. Visit any of the hoary old places of worship and Bengaluru has many. Trinity Church or Infant Jesus Church. The Bull Temple or Someshwara temple. The Jain temple of Ulsoor. The big mosque at the end of Nandidurga road.
24. Visit the Mythic Society in Chamarajpet for rare books and great atmosphere.
25. Sit with the music lovers of Bengaluru, either at Gayana Samaj in Basavanagudi or Chowdiah Hall in Malleshwaram. Wait for the Rama Seva Mandali concerts and nod en masse to Carnatic music.
26. Take a Vayu Vajra green bus to the airport. Have a tea at Chai Point before boarding the flight.
27. Have breakfast at the Oberoi. Sit in its garden and savour its omelettes.
28. Go to any of Bengaluru’s lakes for bird watching: Jakkur Lake, Saul Kere, Hebbal Lake or Hesarghatta Lake.
29. Drive out to Sowkya for a consultation with Dr Issac Mathai followed by an ayurvedic customised treatment.
30. Book a corner room at the Conrad hotel and enjoy the views of Ulsoor Lake.
31. Go to the NGMA on a weekday to enjoy the art without the crowds.
32. Walk down Lavelle Road and duck into any of the shops there. End your walk with a coffee or a swim at Bangalore Club.
33. Visit the Museum of Art and Photography (MAP) and ask for a tour. Walk across the road to the museum or Venkatappa Art Gallery.
34. Have a pizza at Brik Oven on Church Street or Sunny’s. While you are at Sunny’s, try their baked brie or any dessert.
35. Go to Olive Beach or Toast and Tonic to experience Chef Manu Chandra’s take on healthy food.
36. Hug someone and don’t let go.
Shoba Narayan is Bangalore-based award-winning author. She is also a freelance contributor who writes about art, food, fashion and travel for a number of publications