Mysore, the city of palaces is a popular travel destination in South India. It is a leading center for traditional arts and crafts, music, dance and literature. The city is known for its magnificent palaces, majestic buildings, sprawling gardens and tree-lined boulevards. Major tourist places in and around Mysore are: Mysore Palace or the Mysore Maharaja Palace which is one of the most visited monuments in India. And it is one of the largest palaces in the country, also known as Amba Vilas Palace. Chamundi Hills can be viewed from a distance of about 8 to 10 kms and from all the corners of Mysore City. Chamundeshwari temple is dedicated to Sri Chamundeshwari, the titular deity of the Mysore Royal Family also described as ‘Mahishasura Mardini’. Brindavan Gardens lies adjoining the Krishnarajasagara damwhich is built across the river Kaveri. Mysore Zoo or Shri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens is one of the oldest zoos in India. It is home to a wide range of wild species and takes the credit for alluring vast number of visitors with its rich breed of flora and fauna. The beautiful St. Philomena’s Church was built in 1956 and is one of the largest churches in the country. The illuminated church in the evening is a wonderful site not to be missed. The Railway Museum in Mysore was the earliest railway museums set up in India, established in 1979 by Indian Railways it is the second such museum after the National Railway Museum in Delhi. The Jaganmohana Palace, the original home of the royal family, was burnt down in a fire and the construction of a new palace in its place was started in the year 1897. Jayalakshmi Vilas Mansionwas constructed for the royal comforts of his eldest daughter Jayalakshammanni. The Lalitha Mahal Palace is the second largest palace in Mysore. It is located near the Chamundi Hills. Karanji Lake is a picturesque lake located at the footsteps of Chamundi Hills and behind Mysore Zoo. The lake attracts painted storks, pelicans and darters and a host of other winged beauties. Kukkarahalli Lake is reckoned to be a jewel in the crown of Mysore; the picturesque lake, which inspired poet laureate Kuvempu to pen many of his works, provides the much-needed lung-space to the city. Mysore city is famous and also synonymous for Mysore Silks, Mysore Jasmine, Mysore Sandalwood and Mysore Eggplant. Shopping in Mysore is also a fantastic experience.