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Although small, Mysore offers a good variety of hotels, ranging from business hotels, heritage properties, and resorts, to dirt-cheap establishments. If you're interested in the latter category, walk around Gandhi Square and take your pick, although expect nothing more than a bed and roof over your head. Or head for no-frills Hotel Siddhartha (Guest House Rd., Nazarbad; tel. 0821/428-0999 or -0888; siddhartahotel@hotmail.com), situated at a convenient distance from the palace, station, and bus stand. The rooms are small but are clean and functional. The range starts from Rs 860 to Rs 3,250 -- some rooms have Indian-style bathrooms (the toilet is sunk into the ground), so stipulate Western-style beforehand -- 203, 201 are the best in size and view. The in-house restaurant Om Shanthi has a great local atmosphere and is extremely popular with regulars, who have been coming for 25 years -- rawa dosai, mallige idli (in Kannada "mallige" means jasmine, and these slightly flattened balls of rice flour are reputedly as soft as the flower itself), and the filter coffee are all top class. Adjacent, Hotel Sandesh the Prince is loud and gaudy in appearance but has decent rooms and offers all the basic facilities including a pool and gym (Guest House Rd., Nazarbad; tel. 0821/243-6777; doubles from Rs 3,995). Regaalis is the best business hotel and combines a fair amount of luxury with value for the money. The poolside barbecue is popular, while Gardenia, its multicuisine restaurant, serves the best buffet in town (13-14 Vinoba Rd., Mysore 570005; tel. 0821/242-6426; www.ushalexushotels.com; doubles from Rs 4,600-Rs 7,500). Ginger (Nazarabad Mohalla tel. 0821/663-3333; www.gingerhotels.com; doubles from Rs 1,800), a new budget option available across the country and managed by the Taj group, offers spotless accommodation in its now-familiar orange and blue shaded rooms.

Finally, for those looking to turn over a new leaf in wellness, 20 minutes from the city center is the verdant Indus Valley Ayurvedic Centre (Lalithadripura; tel. 0821/247-3437 or -3263; http://ayurindus.com; ask about programs) offering excellent long-term therapies in peaceful surroundings. The pool is massive and cottages although simple, are more than adequate.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.