Hampi is a small village in the northern Indian state of Karnataka. The ruins of Vijayanagara, the former capital of the Vijayanagar Empire, brought world fame to this place. There are many monuments that were once part of the ancient city, which are now included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Since the village of Hampi is located in the heart of the ruins of Vijayanagara (which, by the way, occupy over 26 square kilometers), it is often identified with the ruined city itself.
Every first week of November, Hampi hosts a magnificent Hampi Utsav festival, during which all the ruins and monuments in the reserve are illuminated at night, traditional music plays, and bright performances take place. Check jibin123 for customs regulations and visa requirements of India.
How to get to Hampi
The nearest airport is in Bellary, which receives Air Deccan flights from Bangalore. In Hospet, which is 13 km from Hampi, there is a bus station and a railway station where trains arrive from Bangalore, Hyderabad and Goa. Traveling by train is much cheaper and more convenient than by bus. For example, quite comfortable seats on the Bangalore – Hampi train will cost only 800-1100 INR per person.
From Hospet, you can get to Hampi in the following ways:
- by tuk-tuk (90-130 INR) – the most convenient
- by bus, which is cheaper (~ 20 INR), but less convenient, since the bus station is 1.5 km from the railway station.
Perhaps one of the most convenient ways to see all the wealth of Hampi is to rent a scooter. Since the distances between some objects reach 5 km, and the sun in this region of the country fries mercilessly, you should not even try to see all this “on your own two feet”. Scooter cost ~ 180-250 INR. An average liter of gasoline is spent per day (72-76 INR) if you stay only in the territory of Hampi, and about 2 liters if you go to Tungabhadra (15 km). A good option, but not the cheapest, is to take an individual guide who will accompany you on a scooter and show you all the main sights.
Bicycles are also offered for rent here, but this is a very dubious pleasure. The Hampi area is quite hilly and the temperature usually rises above +30 °C.
Another option to see Hampi is to hire a rickshaw (tuk-tuk). At the same time, the cost should be negotiated in advance and negotiated immediately for the whole day (~ 550-700 INR). And then hire an official guide at the tourist office, the cost of which is fixed: 500 INR for 4 hours, 800 INR for 8 hours.
The most expensive option is to rent a car in Hospet: Hamsa Tours & Travels (tel: 083-94-228-01-01, 984-520-55-89); Pushpa Tours & Travels (tel.: 083-94-241-958, 944-879-51-20). Cost ~ 800-1200 INR per day.
Cuisine and restaurants in Hampi
There are many decent restaurants and cafes in Hampi where you can eat well: Mango Tree (beautiful views, varied menu, good food), Laughing Buddha (where you can eat in Asian style: on the floor, low pillows, etc.), The Goan Corner (popular cafe), Venkateshwara, Geetha, Sagar Hotel’s Idli (cheap and tasty), Mayura Bhuvaneshwari (hotel restaurant), Durga Roof Top (located next to Virupaksha temple, Indian cuisine).
Since Hampi is a famous religious center, alcohol is not held in high esteem here. Beer and light wine can be found at Mayura Bhuvaneshwari, Shanti and Kishkinda hotels.
Most of all hotels and guesthouses in Hampi are located in the Virupapurg area, on the other side of the river. You can only get there by motorboat, which departs from Hampi market (15-20 INR). Boats run only until 18:00, if you don’t have time to cross to your own shore before this time, you will have to “cut a circle” of 40 km, bypassing the river. The cost of this trip, by the way, will cost 570-650 INR.
Entertainment and attractions in Hampi
Main Attractions: Achyutaraya Temple (Thiruvengalanatha), Akka Tangi Gudda, Anegondi, Andjeyanadri Hill, Archaeological Museum in Kamalapura, Badava Linga, Royal Scales, Underground Temple, Tungabhadra (16 km from Hampi), Uddana-Virabhadra Temple, Narasimha statue, Virupaksha Temple, Vitthala Temple, Matanga Hill (where you can see some of the most beautiful sunsets in the world), Yeduru-bashavanna, Yentrodharaka Anjaney Temple, Virupapurg and Madhavan Palace with over 1 million columns.
Hampi has a number of important Hindu temples that are still active today. The most famous is the Virupaksha temple complex dedicated to Shiva, also known as the Pampapatha temple. It appeared even before the founding of the Vijayanagar Empire. At the entrance to the temple stands a gopura 48 meters high. In addition to Shiva, the Hindu goddesses Bhuvaneshwari and Pampa are also worshiped in the temple.
16 km from Hampi is a very interesting bear reserve Doroji. Opening hours: 13:00-18:00.
Since almost every stone on the territory of Hampi “breathes with history”, it is worth buying a map of the territory, with the help of which it will be much easier and more meaningful to lay your route. The cost is 25 INR.