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Why Travel Hampi?

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General Information about Hampi

Situated about 343 kms from Bangalore, the city of ruins, the ancient capital of Vijayanagara Empire, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is popular for its religious prominence and amazing architecture. Hampi was the capital of the Vijayanagar empire around 1500 AD, and by some accounts, the second largest city in the world at that time. Surrounded by 500 ancient monuments, beautiful temples, bustling street markets, bastions, treasury building and captivating remains of Vijayanagar Empire, Hampi is a backpacker's delight. Hampi is an open museum with 100+ locations to explore and a favourite way to see the city from the perspective of its history. The terrain around Hampi is as mysterious as the ruins itself - the city is surrounded by boulders of different sizes, and you can climb to the top of them with a little effort to get a stunning view of the entire city and the geography. It is located on the banks of the Tungabhadra River. Famous for its massive, beautifully carved temples, especially the Virupaksha Temple, dedicated to the patron deity of the empire.

Hampi is a town known for its religious beliefs. Therefore, boozing and smoking are completely prohibited in the temple town. The town is dry and you cannot afford to drink during your stay as it would affect the religious beliefs of the natives. In case you want to then you have to travel to Hippie Island via boat which is 5 minutes away across the river. Sipping a bottle of beer with non-vegetarian food by your side is possible here.

Connectivity :

By Rail : The nearest railhead is Hospet, which is located around 13 kilometers away from Hampi. Hospet is well-connected to Bangalore and other major cities in Karnataka.

By Air : The nearest domestic airport is in Bellary. It is located around 60 kilometers away from Bangalore. Bangalore International Airport is located around 350 kilometers away from Hampi. Bellary airport is well-connected to Bangalore International Airport. Taxi cabs are available between Bellary to Hampi.

By Road : The National Highway 4 and Bangalore-Hyderabad Highway connect Bangalore and Hampi. By road, it will take approximately 5 hours to reach Hampi from Bangalore. Hampi is well-connected to all nearby cities including Bangalore via KSRTC bus services.

The best time to visit is the month of October, wherein you can participate in the activities and rites of Dussehra Festival. While in November, you can get engaged in the Hampi Festival celebrations.

An Ideal Itinerary

Day 1: Reach Hampi by mid-day. Visit the Virupaksha Temple and spend some time near the Tungabhadra river in the evening. If you are staying on the island, then take a ferry and go to that side and spend rest of your evening there. You can also visit the local handicrafts stores and spend some time in cafes.
Day 2: Rent a cycle or a moped and start on a city tour by yourself. Take a local city map and visit all the points by yourself at your own pace. If you have another day in hand, then you can spend more time at each of the heritage sites.

Few Places of Interest :

Virupaksha Temple
Also known as the Pampapathi temple, it is the most famous temple in Hampi and dates back to the 7th century.

It is dedicated to Lord Shiva and has beautifully carved walls, each telling a mythological story. The temple houses a shrine for Virupaksha and another for Sage Vidyaranya.
Virupaksha Temple is an important shrine for worshippers of Lord Shiva. It is located on the south bank of Tungabhadra. The temple, ever since its inception in 7th Century AD has never had a non-functional day, making it one of the oldest temples in an uninterrupted run in India.

Vithala Temple, Hampi
The most impressive structure in Hampi, the Vithala Temple dates back to the 16th century and is a truly splendid example of rich architecture. The famous stone chariot, which has become an iconic symbol of the architecture of Hampi, is located inside the premises of this temple.

The temple complex is spread over a huge area. The main gate has an impressive arch with carvings, and opens in a large courtyard which has the famous stone chariot in the center. The main temple is located just behind the chariot and has beautiful carvings. There are also several other smaller temples inside the courtyard, all of which are definitely worth a visit. The carvings on the walls/pillars of these structures depict various gods in different forms.

Hampi Bazaar
This bazaar is facing the Virupaksha temple and hence is also known as the Virupaksha Bazaar.

Various artifacts are available here including antique coins, shawls, bags etc. Most tourists purchase souvenirs here.

Elephant Stables
The Elephant Stables served as an enclosure for royal elephants back in the day of the Vijayanagra Empire. Eleven domed chambers are seen here with a particularly decorated one which served as an enclosure for the musicians during any performances.

Queen's Bath
A part of the Royal Enclosure, this aquatic enclosure was the Royal bath during the times of the Vijayanagra Empire. It was built in such a way that no outsiders could enter the bath, and has lost much to ruins at the date.

Lotus Palace
Close to the Zenana Enclosure, is a monument that stands out in its design and style from most of the structures of Hampi. Another complex, for royal women, this one gets its name from the lotus-like dome

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