1 Bengaluru

Booming silicon city offers the best shopping, nightlife and dining this side of Mumbai, not to mention a few great parks, plus the odd palace and temple.

2 Mysore

The sandalwood city oozes relaxed, old-world charm and has lots to see, including the opulent Maharaja’s Palace and a photogenic market.

3 Halebid and Belur

Two wonderfully ornate and architecturally unique Hoysala temples set deep in the slow-paced Karnataka countryside.

4 Gokarna

This vibrant Hindu holy town is blessed with atmospheric temples and exquisite crescent beaches and is ideal for serious unwinding.

5 Hampi

The crumbling remains of the Vijayanagar kingdom, scattered among a stunning boulder-strewn landscape bisected by the Tungabhadra River.

6 Bijapur

Known as the “Agra of the South” for its splendid Islamic architecture, most famously the vast dome of the Golgumbaz.

7 Bidar

Rarely visited Muslim outpost in the remote northeast of the state, famed for bidri metalwork and magnificent medieval monuments.

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