The incredible streets of Channapatana are filled with the colorful wooden toys which one cannot find anywhere else. The small town produces ample wooden toys which are so unique and showcases the unblemished talent of the craftsmen.
In Kannada, the place is known as Gombegala nagara which means “town of toys”. The Channapatna town is in the Ramanagara District in Karnataka. The town attracts ample attraction with the exquisite toys made by the small-scale industries in the town. On the way to Mysore from Bangalore city, the town of Channapatana is a sure attraction.
Channapatana was known as Chandapura in the earlier times.
History of Channapatana
The history of the toys of Channapatana can be traced back to the time of Tipu Sultan. Tipu Sultan had encouraged the Persians to come down to India to teach the artisans the art of making wooden toys. The Father of Channapatana toy is Bavas Miyan, known for his commitment to life to help the local artisans with the art of toy making and bringing in new technologies to improvise the toys in Channapatana.
Channapatana Toys – The art of Making
Channapatna town is popular for the cute and the impeccable craftsmanship depicted in these toys. The toys are made with wood mainly ivory wood giving a polished look to the wooden toys adding colors and another beautification. On the streets of the Channapatana, one can witness the numerous wooden toys displayed all along the road side shops. Big banners are hoisted showcasing the talent of the town.
The classy and the creativity are on the high end in these small-scale industries. The skilled artisans work in their small spaces and build these elegant toys. Channapatna toys are made of wood and vegetable dyes and are safe to be used unlike the toys available in the market.
The woodwork is colored using vegetable dyes and the wood used is the Dhoodi Wood (Milkwood) which is precisely white in color and easy to carve out the shapes. For the glazing of the toys, the polishing is done with high abrasive property grass. Hence the toys are completely environment-friendly.
Channapatana Toys in the market
The Channapatna toys are not just consisting of some dolls and horses, but also toys to enjoy mathematical games and puzzles. The specially designed soft wooden toys are quite challenging to be used in mathematics.
Various toys are even purchased by giant IT companies like Microsoft, as an initiative to provide education to underprivileged children in various parts of the world. Many movable kinds of toys are also made by these small-scale industries like the Rocking horse, Rabbits, Trains engines, motorcycles, cars etc.
Many kinds of showpieces are also adorned in the shops in the town like the vintage cars, beads like curtains, pen stands, snails, candle stands etc.
Growth of the Channapatana Toy industry
With Chinese toys coming up in the market, led to the downfall of these intriguing toys in the market. With the help of Karnataka Handicraft Development Corporation, the artisans made small prototypes, that were sold in the bigger markets. These prototypes brought in ample attention to the small town of Channapatana. Now more and more enterprises are seeking for such exceptional safe toys available in the town.
Other Major Attraction near Channapatana
The town of Channapatana contains the oldest temple of Varadaraja. The architecture is a clear depiction of the Vijayanagara empire. There are also other temples in the town which are built in the Mysore style architecture. Channapatana also has many monuments, erected during the time of Hyder Ali.
How to Reach Channapatana
The Channapatana town lies on the Bangalore-Mysore Highway. The place is 57 kms away from Bangalore. The small is town is located around 84 kms away from Mysore. The place is just 14.5 kms from Ramanagara, the land where famous movies were shot.
Channapatna has its own railways station, well connected with other cities and towns
The nearest airport is in Bangalore airport and Mysore airport.