Culturally, one of the most important cities in South India, Mysore (or Mysuru) is located 140 kms from the Karnataka state capital of Bengaluru. Starting in 1399 to 1947 it was the capital of the Mysore kingdom, of which the then Bangalore was a part. Named after Mahishasura, the troublemaker demon who was slain by the Goddess Chamundeshwari, Mysore' s early history was dominated by the Wodeyar dynasty which ruled Mysore, first as a vassal of the mighty Vijaynagar Empire, and starting mid 16th century on their own. A brief aberration was in the 18th century, when it was controlled by Hyder Ali and then his son Tipu Sultan, who moved the capital to Seringapatnam, before being moved back to Mysore.
Mysore is home to some of the country' s most attractive palaces, buildings, lakes, parks, temples, and its famous celebration of Dussehra festival, much of it the legacy of the enlightened rule of the Wodeyars. Earlier a laidback town, today' s Mysore is slowly transforming itself into a modern metropolis. It is now home to sprawling complexes of IT giants like Wipto, L& T Infotech, Infosys and Hinduja TMT. But despite all these developments, the unique thing about Mysore is that it is still a small city by Indian standards, with a population of less than a million.