Hesaraghatta Grasslands and Nrityagram

Situated at an arm’s length from Bangalore, one would not expect to see the surroundings transform from the bustling urban to something completely different on the way to this place – the Hesaraghatta Grasslands. This is (sadly) the last surviving grassland near Bangalore. After escaping the urban jungle limits, one can see rustic villages, farms, vineyards and grasslands. In monsoons, this area is lush with vegetation, hues of green in every direction. Even having started really early in the morning, the sluggishness was gone and I was wide awake in no time, thanks to the air that was clean, crisp and invigorating.

The grassland itself is a vast expanse of plane land (almost 2 sq kms). There are lots of trees which seem to be restricted to the periphery of the area. It is highly advisable to go there early in the morning for various reasons – that’s the best time for watching birds, that’s the best time for photography and as the day goes by, there is not much protection from sun/rains.

Nrityagram is situated very close to the grassland. Its a unique dance Gurukul. They have tried to keep the premises natural as far as possible. One can get in with a entry fee of Rs. 50. The area is serene with lots of flowers and stone paths amidst trees. We could witness dance lesson sessions when they started.

Below are a few more details of the place:

From Yeshwantpur, head towards Nelamangala until you see a traffic signal showing Hesaraghatta on the directions board. Take a right turn here and proceed towards Hesaraghatta village. En route, you will pass via Chikkabanavara railway station. After the Hesaraghatta village, proceed till you see a Jnana Bharati institution. (If in doubt, ask for Dasenahalli) Take a right turn immediately after this. Drive on till you see a large gate at what would look like a dead-end from a distance. Go till the gate, the road curves left. After this, the second right turn leads you into the vast grassland. For Nrityagram, take the same way out, as you came in from the grassland and turn right. Follow the directions to reach Nrityagram 
  Again personal preferences take precedence. Monsoons are great. Winter should be fine too, if you can brave the cold. Summer is the least preferred time. As mentioned earlier, early mornings are the best time!
Not much options to eat around the here. There is a Taj Kuteeram opposite Nrityagram. Plan ahead and carry food if needed. I would recommend carrying some food and eating it for breakfast at the grassland – please DO NOT litter the surroundings!
The grassland offers something for every type of photo enthusiast. There are lots of birds in the morning, expansive landscapes, bugs, flowers, etc. I’d suggest carrying a ultra-wide (for unique perspectives of subjects), a prime (sure, you’d like portraits here – if not you, may be your girlfriend/wife :D), a long tele (birds). There are things to photograph in Nrityagram too, though they disallow photographing dancers while lessons are in progress

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