Most Bangalore neighborhoods today are a strange mix of the restful old and the bustling new. Indeed many of these ‘localities’ or ‘colonies’ (as neighborhoods are called in India) are the perfect, if slightly eclectic, mix of both elements. The city layout is a rough circle, with the typical old Bangalore neighborhoods at the center and modern suburbs unfolding towards the periphery.
Indiranagar: Indiranagar is a central and very happening Bangalore neighborhood. One of the older residential areas in the city, it is a mixture of single houses and high-rise apartment complexes, families and singles, and young and old. In the last ten years, Indiranagar has become a shopping hub with a large number of restaurants and pubs mushrooming across the locality. Whether you want to get elbow deep into clay making or let your feet do the talking at a salsa class, there’s something for everyone on that famous stretch of Indiranagar called 100-Feet Road. It is well connected by road, and now by the new metro, to other parts of the city. Indiranagar also has good hospitals, clinics and schools, and still remains affordable and safe.
Koramangala: Koramangala is close to the city center and home to one of the first and biggest of Bangalore’s new-age shopping malls, the Forum Mall. The eight blocks comprising Koramangala is a well-planned, leafy mix of houses and apartment buildings. Living here won’t break your purse strings, either. The Intermediate Ring Road runs through Koramangala, connecting it to distant destinations like Electronic City. This trendy neighborhood also has a variety of eateries and hangouts to choose from.
BTM Layout: Suburban BTM Layout is short for Byasandra, Taverekere, and Madivala Layout and houses a large number of techies who commute to Electronic City. Many students on small budgets also choose to live here. The renowned Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore is close by, along with several other school and colleges. There are good hospitals, gyms and eateries in the area, making it one of the more desirable places to live in Bangalore. Compared to other areas, BTM Layout experiences very high property value growth year-on-year.
Marathahalli: Once famous for its many factory outlets, Marathahalli has become a major residential destination in Bangalore. It is connected to central Bangalore by a six-lane over-bridge. Many IT offices have set up shop here and apartment buildings have sprung up in response.
Malleshwaram: This is one of the greenest neighborhoods in the city and one of the most historic. Malleshwaram has an old-world charm and is well suited to nature-lovers with its walkable sidewalks and leafy streets. Here you’ll find the true spirit of Bangalore, with religious centers and schools of dance and music, including the famous violin shaped performance space Chowdiah Memorial Hall, crowding the neighborhood. Malleshwaram is also one of the best places in Bangalore for shopping and eating the ‘South Indian’ way. The Indian Institute of Science, one of the best research institutes in India and the world, is located here.
Jayanagar: Wide tree-lined avenues and single-story houses with gardens are characteristic of this historic Bangalore neighborhood. Parts of Jayanagar are being modernized, maybe even commercialized, and it is supported by good public transport in the form of auto-rickshaws and buses. Jayanagar is close to Lalbagh Botanical Garden, a pre-independence era, 240-acre garden in the heart of the city.
Ulsoor: This neighborhood east of central Bangalore dates back to the 1500s and is notable for its lake and temples, like the impressive Halasuru Someshwara Temple, which dates back to the 16th century. Connected to the center by the M G Road, Ulsoor remains a sleepy, spread out suburb closely connected with nature.
Pulakeshinagar and Cox Town: Recently the subject of a name change, Pulakeshinagar is still better known by its historical name “Frazer Town.” This neighborhood was founded in the early 1900s. Well connected by bus and the Bangalore East railway station, this area is primarily commercial in character, but retains some colonial streets and is being conserved in places to preserve its low-rise, tree-filled character. Nearby Cox Town is another colonial era neighborhood. As a neighbor of Ulsoor Polo Ground, you might expect this to be one of Bangalore’s posher neighborhoods—and you’d be right. Cox town is much less commercialized than Frazer Town and residents are known to be liberal and open-minded.
HSR Layout: Hosur Sarjapur Road Layout is a planned community founded in 1984 on the southeastern outskirts of Bangalore. Although not very close to the center, electronic city is nearby, which has made this district an attractive location for IT workers. Beware the area is prone to seasonal flooding, although the authorities are working to address that.