Alleys lined with eclectic stores, markets filled with colourful flowers, and bylanes dotted with old-school pubs – every corner of Bengaluru has a story to tell. Immortalise each one by heading to these street-photography spots in the city with your camera. By Eshita Srinivas
Bengaluru seamlessly blends old-world charm with cosmopolitan sensibilities. While here, you could go from sipping coffee at a century-old establishment to clinking flutes of champagne at a fine-dining establishment within the same hour. That, combined with its bustling shopping destinations and colourful vegetable and flower markets, lends the city a certain character that few other cities can lay claim to. Naturally, shutterbugs, professional or otherwise, enjoy exploring different nooks and corners of the region. And if you’re keen on discovering all the little tales Bengaluru has to offer, head on over to these street-photography destinations in the city.
This expansive space is believed to be the largest flower market in Asia. Reportedly built on an old battleground, you’ll also find a few vegetable and fruit vendors as well as stores with other commodities. KR Market is also one of the busiest places in the city, and the chaos is what appeals to most photographers. Head here early in the morning (we’re talking 6:00 am) to spot vendors setting up shop and early birds going on a grocery run. You could also capture the dew setting on jasmines and orchids here.
As the day progresses, the calm is replaced by a flurry of action, from haggling to goods being exchanged. While here, expect to be surrounded by cows, carts, auto-rickshaws, vendors, street animals, and people. It’s easy to get lost here as well so be sure to chart out enough time in your schedule to explore.
Popular amongst younger locals of the city, Church Street is one of the busiest spots in the city, particularly over the weekend. Cobblestone streets and narrow footpaths are dotted with a throng of swanky restaurants, Insta-worthy cafes and pubs, souvenir stores, old-school book stores, exciting gaming arenas, boutique clothing spots, and more. Not to mention, there are several colourful art installations that will have your jaw on the floor. The metro station mural, in particular, is a photographer’s delight.
This is the spot where musicians host impromptu street performances, activists stage demonstrations, and social media influencers film their next viral dance video. Naturally, there’s a myriad of emotions and pockets of activities to capture. If you’d like to capture the mood of the space at its most authentic, head here on a weekend where the flurry of people will leave you feeling like you’re at Times Square. For a more leisurely shoot, weekday afternoons are perfect.
Right off Church Street, this spot is a busy location that houses newspaper offices, old-school restaurants, and clothing brand stores. The lane that houses MG Road Metro station is dotted with a throng of art installations that make for fascinating captures. However, what draws most photographers is the busy street that always has a car or a vintage bike whooshing past. While afternoons are when the space is at its busiest, we recommend heading here at night to experiment with light painting and capture the moods of people heading home after a long day.
Another busy commercial space in the city, this spot houses street vendors who offer everything from garments to used books. You’ll also find several churches, pawnshops, and street food hawkers here. Naturally, the packed sidewalks offer plenty of opportunities to get in some interesting shots. There are also iconic landmarks, like the Maramma temple, the Ranganathaswamy temple, and an old post office here.
Like KR Market, it’s easy to spend hours exploring everything the lanes here have to offer and when you’ve snapped enough faces, you could always switch over to the busy streets packed with cars and carts. Not to mention, the central location also makes it easy to head over to other spots on this list within the same day.
Slowing things down from the pace of the other places on this list, Pottery Town is a hidden gem that many photographers in the city often frequent. While the lane itself can be difficult to find, the vibe is unmistakable once you’re there. As the name suggests, this spot is a settlement of the city’s potters, and you can witness clay being transformed into vases, bowls, and plates while you’re here.
Capture the old-school magic of the neighbourhood by getting up close and personal with the artisans and exploring every narrow lane in the region. You’ll also spot goats saunter past you every now and then. Photographers enjoy capturing fresh-off-the-wheel earthenware, the emotion of artisans and their children as they create something new, and the hues of the streets lined with pots and pans. This part of Bengaluru is a must-visit if you enjoy street photography.
From the serenity of Pottery Town, we’re heading straight back into the action of the city with this spot that lights up during Ramzan and Eid. Dotted with food stalls selling biriyani, haleem, kebabs, and other delicious fares, this is the perfect place to capture the lives of street food vendors and visuals of smoke wafting from their temporary grills. Head here at the right time, and you’ll find yourself being surrounded by a throng of people, some satiating their late evening cravings and others getting their dinner sorted after a busy day at work. The spot itself is small and easily explored within a few hours. Do head here over an evening if you’re in the city, particularly during Ramzan.
Bengaluru’s well-connected network of local buses all converges in this region, which houses the city’s largest bus stations. Naturally, the space is packed with people, each with their unique stories and choice of destinations. In fact, you’ll find people from all walks of life here, from school children to tourists.
Built on a former lake, the spot is perfect for leisurely exploration. Capture the colourful buses, moods of ticketing officers, and signages with instructions on buses and ticket counters while here. There’s also a host of movie posters and advertisements plastered across walls that might make for intriguing captures.
The city’s go-to for street shopping, commercial street is one of the oldest and busiest shopping districts in Bengaluru. In fact, it features across most Bengaluru itineraries, making it a must-visit spot, regardless of whether you take your camera with you. Here, you’ll find narrow lanes with knockoff brands of clothing, quirky souvenirs, artificial jewellery, and little holes in the wall that offer better-tailored jeans than most big brands.
There’s also a string of street food vendors offering coconut water, sweet potato chaat, and more. With every turn, you’ll find yourself discovering a street dedicated to a specific set of products. Some are known to offer electronics and quirky bulbs for your home, others are lined with stores that have the best deals on tattoos and piercings. The further you decide to explore this region, the more likely you are to get lost so be sure to chart out enough time in your schedule to do it justice. That aside, this might just be one of the best spots for street photography in Bengaluru.
Feature and hero image: Courtesy @layers_of_a_vagabond/Instagram
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