In a fast-paced city like Bangalore, it’s not always easy to make friends, especially if you’ve just moved here. Or you want to just make new friends (it’s OK, we won’t tell your old crew). But Bangalore is also a rather friendly city. So be it over a pint of beer, a dramatic play or just good old Cubbon Park, here are some of our suggestions on where you can meet new people in Bangalore.
Where To Make Friends And Meet New People In Town
Koshy’s is an iconic hangout spot in Bangalore where you’re bound to meet new people. Its old world charm means that you can stay as long as you like sipping just a cup of coffee. But this also luckily means sharing tables with people you’ve never met before. The place is known to be an artsy, intellectual, lawyer, politico, writer, hangout, so expect to hear all kinds of opinions on current times and get an update on life. Tables are close enough to each other to hear the others talk, and if it’s an interesting banter, feel free to join in. Also, the smoking area (the space outside the restaurant on the street!), is another fine place to get chatty.
Read more about what to order when at Koshy’s here.
Alliance Française de Bangalore
Alliance Française de Bangalore is the perfect place for those who love everything French culture. Sign up for their French classes, where you can expand your French vocab if the only French you know is an Omelette du Fromage or Bonjour. You can even meet film fanatics at their many French film screenings and fellow art lovers at plays that happen here. After a day full of activity you could head on over to the cafe where you can continue your heated discussion on whether Monet was a better artist than Renoir. Learn more about Alliance Francaise De Bangalore here.
Arbor Brewing Company
Arbor Brewing Company is the ultimate destination for beer lovers. They serve up amazing craft beers at their massive bar space, which is also a lovely place to just say hello to a brand new face. Hey, what better way to strike up conversation than beer? Bond over stouts, ales and lagers, at their large sharing tables, or wander to the foosball table for a friendly game. Sports games are screened regularly here (they are also the official brewpub of the Bengaluru Football Club, you see), and there’s no better meeting ground than that.
The Human Library is essentially a library where the books are people. Bangalore’s Human Library chooses people who will narrate their stories out to you, mainly personal experiences, and it is a two-way experience where you can have conversations with your ‘books’ about their story, helping you understand them better. Look out for their events that happen in different parts of the city. You never know whose story might be similar to yours.
If you have a penchant for poetry, Poetry Social is a community that organises open mics around Bangalore. They go on something they call “Poets On The Move”, where they take you on a short trek to a scenic location, not far from town, to perform your poetry at. Don’t worry, even if you don’t write poetry you can still attend their events. You can join the community by just dropping them a message on facebook and if you want to perform you can register with them.
Bengaluru Biryani Club
If your biryani is bae, you know nothing compares to a good tuck-in of this divine rice dish. Now imagine a Facebook group of people dedicated to discussing their love for biryani. It’s called the Bengaluru Biryani Club and their Facebook group is already 8,000 people strong. They organise Biryani walks where they delve deep into what makes a good biryani. Trust us, the pictures on that group are enough to make you hungry. They even eat biryani for breakfast sometimes! Yes, please, go request to join the facebook group NOW because biryani friends are best friends.
Nestled in JP Nagar, Ranga Shankara is the perfect place for theatre geeks. With plays nearly every day there’s always something to watch. They have plays in both English and Kannada. Shakespeare lovers, look out for their shows of classics like As You Like It. Even their cafe and bookstore on the ground floor are perfect places to make friends and interact with theatre lovers while you nibble on some delicious cafe eats before or after catching a play. Also, they don't entertain late-comers, so considering the traffic you might have to leave a bit early than you usually do.
TherPup - The Dog Cafe
Imagine ending your stressed day with unlimited access to cuddles and cuteness, over a steaming cup of coffee in perfect Bangalore weather. If you’re a dog lover, there’s no other place you’d rather be! TherPup in Whitefield becomes an ideal destination to bond with other pet parents and gush over how adorable your babies are. And hey, if you don’t have a pet, worry not, you can always play with the cute little doggos at the cafe. Nothing like meeting fellow pet lovers. It’s the best!
How about a Sunday picnic with your doggie? The lush gardens of Bangalore: Cubbon Park, between 8 AM to 11 AM, offer a sight to behold. The park transforms into a dog haven on Sunday and takes you straight back to scenes from 101 Dalmations, with dogs running all over the Dog Park. You can show off your babies and their training skills at the pet show hosted there. If you aren’t a dog lover (you’re in the minority here), you can bond with your human buddies over a jog or a yoga session too. A lot of people also play frisbee and there’s almost always a slackline group set up so and a poetry group called Poetry In The Park that meets up once a month here plus there are many little groups you can call your own.
Sports enthusiasts, listen up! Imagine getting the chance to make pals over a cool game of sport? Head to Decathalon right away. From organising matches, training sessions and sports meet, this place is every fitness freak’s dream. Since they have smaller versions of footy pitches, basketball courts, and skateboard parks, go an learn a skill from a pro or perhaps teach someone who looks interested. They also have great deals on their sports merchandise which you just shouldn’t be missing out on.
Check it out here.
Art and literature buffs, there’s always a plethora of events lined up for you at Atta Galata. You’ll find writers, poets, artists and performers presenting their best works over here and it’s a sight to behold! They also have over 10,000 books to read from when you feel like indulging in some good literature. This cultural space in Kormanagala gives you quaint vibes and is one of the best places to bump into like-minded people.
Social totally defines the new cool in the city! From eating, drinking, chilling to providing the perfect co-working space, they’ve got it all. Their food and drinks menu along with their warehouse-like ambience is the apt place for some after-work relaxation or party. Look out for their events, as they host anything from open mic nights to gigs by indie artists and your favourite band.
This old world charm never dies down in a city like Bangalore. The Airlines hotel is known for its iconic coffee, piping hot dosas, idlis and other South-Indian delicacies, that transport us back in time. Set up with wooden tables in an open lush green garden, it makes for the perfect breakfast spot for runners, bikers and travellers. Don’t forget to check out Corner House – the adjacent ice cream parlour that serves the best DBC in town!
Rangoli Metro Art Centre
Sunday afternoon and you don’t know where to head to? Make a stop at the MG Road station for a totally different experience. Rangoli Metro Art Centre hosts the talents of amateurs from across the state along with art displays, outdoor performances, exhibitions and stalls. It’s always bustling with enthusiastic people who are constantly encouraging artists and performers. Isn’t this a perfect mix of boho and culture that you find right in the middle of the city?
If you are new to the city or just looking to meet new people with similar interests, hit up Myscoot. This website helps people organise and attend house parties of different themes such as chai and charcha, speed dating, poker nights and even karaoke nights. These are organised by verified Myscoot members and you can pick the one you like on their website and pay a small fee. Plus there's a three-step verification for the guests making sure there's no stranger danger!
If you live in and around Jayanagar and are a running/fitness enthusiast, then you can meet like-minded people by joining the Jayanagar Jaguars. This running group started by Coach Pramod Deshpande and a few of his friends almost a decade ago is one of Bangalore's oldest and biggest running group. This 500 odd member group consists of fitness enthusiasts, full and half marathon runners. You can join the Run 2 Fitness and Run Your First Marathon programs with them. Learn more about the group here.
That Extra Step
Not a party person or just grew out of that phase? That Extra Step is the community for you. Shubha and Harihara, along with their mentor Abhay started That Extra Step as a medium to build communities. From game nights to karaoke sessions, this community has tied up with various initiatives and organises meetups in the city. Follow them on their social media and stay updated about the next activity they have in store for you.