Brainstorming on which destination to go to, on your next vacation? Well, Hampi is here to the rescue. If you’re somebody who loves adventure, the Indian history and architecture, and who would love to travel back in time, then Hampi is the place. All the beautiful aspects of travel come together at this quaint village. Hampi is a village of ruins, and is yet a whole new picturesque world in itself.
Hampi is located in the Northern Karnataka, and once formed the Vijayanagara Empire, that was established in the year 1336, which lasted until 1646. It is said that a sage named Vidyaranya, along with the brothers Hakka and Bukka, founded Hampi and decided that it was the right place to vest all their knowledge on Hinduism in and hence, the kingdom of Vijayanagara came into being.
So how exactly do I reach Hampi?
Hampi is very close to the Hospet city in the Bellary district of Karnataka. If you want to avail the air transport, you’ll have to reach Bangalore, and then catch another airplane to either the Bellary or the Belgaum airports. From there, you’ll have to reach Hampi by road.
If you want to take a train, there are two trains from Bangalore to Hospet. The rest of the journey has to, again, be made by road.
By road, Hampi is 353 km from Bangalore, 74 km from Bellary and 13 km away from Hospet. Also, the distance between Belgaum and Hampi is 243 km, Hassan and Hampi is 310 km and between Mysore and Hampi is 427 km. So reaching Hampi from Hospet is the most viable option.
What about the stay and accommodation?
Since Hampi doesn’t have the best choices, when it comes to accommodation, Hospet is a better option.
Okay, so what are the fun things that I can do at Hampi?
Hampi is always bustling with activity and life. The Virupaksha temple is the main tourist attraction. It is dedicated to the Indian God Lord Shiva. It is believed that, the inscriptions in this temple date back to the ninth and tenth centuries, and that the temple existed even before the Vijayanagara capital was located here. Many other temples, like the Lakshmi Narasimha temple, exist around this area too. The Tungabhadra dam, which is closer to Hospet, is a must-see place. The drive to the dam is scenic, which gives your cameras a lot of work! The Hampi bazaar, as the name suggests, is the shopping area, where you find many collectibles and mementoes to take back home, and treasure. Anegundi, which is believed to be older than Hampi, is located on the Northern bank of the Tungabhadra. It is around 5 km away from Hampi. Anegundi, again, has many stunningly designed ancient structures, that can make you wonder about the Civil Engineering and Architectural knowledge that existed at that time. The first four km have to be travelled by road, and then a boat needs to be taken to cross the Tungabhadra River. Another architectural beauty-filled place isBadami which is nearly 147 km away from Hampi. The aerial distance between Hampi and Badami is 107 km. The cave temples at Badami are without doubt, the things of beauty. There are also these coracles (boats) at Hampi that carry around 12 people each, and take you on a boat ride along the Tungabhadra River. Row, Row, Row your boat!
The best time to be at Hampi?
The Hampi Utsava or the Hampi festival takes place sometime usually in November or December. It involves dance, drama, fireworks and everything entertaining, organised by the Government of Karnataka. Also, on the arrival of monsoon in the months of May and June, all the gates of the Tungabhadra dam are closed, to store water. The trip has to be planned accordingly.
Hampi has lots to offer, right from Indian dance, drama to Indian history and architecture. Being there, it helps you have a look into the past, and wish you existed during those prolific periods – A journey into the past, that I know you will not want to forgo. So put an end to the brainstorming, and start packing your bags, you have a ruined village waiting to receive you. Bon Voyage!