Mysore and Dasara are magical,” says Berti, a Norwegian tourist, after witnessing the grand Dasara finale at the Amba Vilas Palace with her friends.
“I’m happy to be part of the celebrations.” This is her first visit to Mysore, but not her friend’s. Kirsti, also Norwegian, has come twice before. “I watched the last two Dasaras from the rooftops of buildings near the palace. I wanted to see it at the palace, so I am here.”
Ms. Kirsti, who is learning yoga in Mysore, visits the city once or twice a year as part of her yoga learning sessions. “Whenever I come to India, I make Mysore as my base camp and travel around India. This time, I visited Ladakh, Rishikesh and Kerala. Mysore is nice and so are its festivities.”
Ms. Berti and Ms. Kirsti bought tickets costing Rs. 2,000 each to get a better view of the procession.
There were other interesting impressions of Dasara on foreign tourists, who watched the festivities.
Nan Anderson and her husband John, US nationals, were spellbound by the beauty of Mysore and Dasara. The residents of North Carolina have been travelling across India since past six weeks. Tour operator from Bangalore Prashanth, who stayed with Andersons 22 years ago, invited them to India and brought them to Mysore to show how the city has erupted in celebration.
Ms. Nan, who moves around in a wheel chair due to knee pain, said: “I’m excited to be in Mysore. I’m impressed to see the city and the celebrations here. We must thank him (Prashanth) for showing us Mysore.” The Andersons had been to Agra, Jaipur, Delhi, Kerala before coming to Mysore. Prashanth’s wife and son had accompanied the American tourists.