Know your neighbourhood-19: Gavipuram & Chamarajpet

Overview: Tucked between Chamarajpet and Basavanagudi, Gavipuram is a historical area. Gavipuram is one of the oldest and traditional areas in South Bangalore, near the Western tower built by Kempegowda. Gavipuram was probably a very prosperous village with learned men, fertile land with huge lakes and beautiful temples. There are several old structures and homes in the area, the most popular attraction is Gavi Gangadhareshwara temple. Dating back to the times of Cholas, this temple was renovated by Kempegowda in the 16th century. The temple is an example of architectural marvel. On Makara Sankranti day every year, the sunlight passes through the horns of Nandi bull to the Shiva linga directly. Thousands of devotees throng this place at the time and this phenomenon is also telecast on Television channels. Down beneath the temple is a cave through which a passage can be seen which is believed to lead us to Shivagange, actually connects to the Kempambudhi Lake. Other than the temple there are several ancient structures and old homes which can be seen in Gavipuram.

Gavi Gangadhareshwara temple


Gavipuram is not only about historical temples, its narrow lanes and Agraharas still retain the old world charm. One can still feel the old Kempegowda’s city in this tiny little area of Bangalore, still traditional and culturally healthy. The Bande Mahakalamma temple in Gavipuram is known for healing people from black magic. Just opposite this is the 800 year old Pralaya Kalada Veerabhadraswamy temple. Kempegowda had installed the Western watch tower at Gavipuram near the Kempambudhi Tank. This Tank has now been converted into a park but the tower can still be seen. Apart from the Kempegowda tower, several other such medieval structures can be seen in the Gavipuram area.

Bande Mahakalamma & Veerabhadra temple
Kempegowda Tower, Kempambudhi Lake

Near Kempambudhi Lake

Haraihara Gudda is a small hillock in Gavipuram which is now developed into a beautiful park. This hillock has been a witness to all the changes Gavipuram and Bangalore has seen over centuries. One can still stumble upon old edifices belonging to the time of Kempegowda or even older period while taking a stroll in the park. Gavipuram also has a big dhobi ghat which has been in business for ages. 

Harihara Gudda

Masti Venkatesha Iyengar’s house: The 100 years old Jnanapeetha award winning writer Masti Venkatesha Iyengar’s house is now converted into a museum called Mast Venkatesha Jeevana Karyalaya Trust between Basavanagudi and Gavipuram. The museum has a collection of all his work and all the publication work is taken up from here. 

Masthi Venkatesha Iyengar house

Chamarajpet: Named after Chamarajendra Wodeyar, Chamrajpet or ‘Chamaraja Pete’ as it is pronounced, was created as a residential locality after plague struck the Pete area in the 1880s. Chamrajpet was the first extension of Bangalore and was laid out in 1892. With close proximity with the City Market, Chamarajpet is a mix of cultures. KIMS, Minto Hospital, Uma Theatre are some of the well known landmarks of Chamarajpet. Apart from Tipu’s legacy, Chamrajpet is home to the ancient Rameshwara temple, which was built around 800 years ago, though exact history is unknown, some old artifacts can be seen inside temple premises. Also Chamarajendra Sanskrit College, established in 1885 as Vani Vidyashala is still one of the oldest institutions in Bangalore. Chamarajpet also has a couple of British era churches and a few beautiful mosques making the locality truly multi-cultural. Opposite Minto eye hospital is the old temple of Hanuman, consecrated by Vyasaraja in the 15th century during Vijayanagara rule. The Albert Victor Road on Chamarajpet 1st Main was named after the former Prince of Wales.

Rameshwara temple, Chamarajpet
Minto Hospital

Minto Anjaneya temple: The main idol of Hanuman was consecrat- ed around 400 years ago by Vyasaraja, the guru of several generations of Vijayanagara kings. Later in the 1900s, a builder discovered the idol near the fort area and installed it opposite to the Minto Hospital. This temple was renovated in 1922 and is believed to be very powerful.

Minto Anjaneya temple

Uma talkies has been one of the most popular cinema theatres in South Bangalore since 1972. The theatre has played host to a variety of personalities like Dr Rajkumar,Ganesh, Sudeep, among others. 
Prakash Café: The restaurant in the centre of Chamrajpet was set up in 1943, originally catered to the market traders and transport establishments, but soon it turned out to be a big name in Bangalore with celebrities visiting the place. Apart from the ever popular food they offer, the building is a museum in its own, with pictures of old Bangalore dotting the walls highlighting important events in the history of Bangalore.

Uma Talkies

St Luke’s Church: The first church in Bangalore was built in 1803 in the fort premises called the Fort church. But in the mid 1900s, the need was felt to build a hospital in the fort area so the Maharaja of Mysore allotted a piece of land in Chamrajpet to build a church. This church was completed and dedicated to St Luke in 1935.

St Luke's Church

St Joseph’s Church: This church was built in 1857 in the memory of Fr Briand and the area around the church is also called Briand Square.

St Joseph's Church

Clock Tower with Hero stones at KSRP Grounds

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