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Located on the Banks of River Tungabhadra, Hampi is a UNESCO World Heritage site, an enchanting temple town bounded by the intriguing historical ruins of Vijayanagar city in the state of Karnataka. It is packed with wide vista of culture and detailed list of places which will never cease to amaze you. Hampi is a place of attraction for history buffs, photo enthusiasts and families. The best time to visit Hampi is from October to February.
In this article I am giving below the list of most riveting places to visit which you can cover in ideally three days:
Considered one of the most important temples in Hampi, Vijay Vittala Temple is a 15th century structure also considered largest of all historical structures in Hampi. It is devoted to Lord Vishnu and is now famous for musical pillars, eminent stone Chariot located at the center of the temple and splendid architecture. I would recommend taking a guide here.
It used to be the homes of erstwhile kings and queens occupying an area of 59000 sq. meters. It is believed to have housed over 45 buildings belonging to noble families of the Vijayanagara Kingdom. It includes:
We could also see the ancient water ducts which were used to supply water for usage.
It is the largest monolith statue in Hampi and about 6.7 metres high. The statue of Lord Narasimha-an incarnation of Lord Vishnu and a half man, half lion-depicts the deity sitting in a cross legged position. The original statue contained image of Goddess Lakshmi. It was vandalized in 1565 during a Mughal raid over Vijayanagara Kingdom.
This is one of my personal favorites. We were taken in coracle boats and we all loved the experience. An array of 108 Shiva Lingas carved on a flat rocky surface and finely rock-carved sculpture of Lord Vishnu in a reclining position makes river side ruins one of the most enticing places to visit in and around Hampi. The coracle is taken for a spin for fun. It is also passed through a cave.
It is constructed across the river Tungabhadra. There are 33 crest gates in this dam. There are buses plying from the entry taking you to the sunset point where there is a Government Guest House. The view of the Dam and the backwaters against the backdrop of the setting sun is enticing. A beautiful garden is laid out below the Dam with musical fountain (starts around 7 p.m.) and colorful lighting in the evening makes it a good place to take out your camera for some great captures.
The museum is maintained by Archaeological Survey of India and has 4 galleries that house wide variety of artefacts, ancient coins, statues, paintings, armoury and sculptures of various Hindu deities. Star attraction of the place is a scaled model of entire heritage zone clearly showcasing the must-see locations. This gives a good overview of the entire area and can help you plan the exploration of the city. I would suggest you go to this museum before starting the local sightseeing. The museum is closed on Fridays. Photography is not allowed inside the museum.
This tall 4 metres monolithic Ganesha carved out of huge boulder
It is located on the Anjaneya hill which is considered as the birthplace of Lord Hanuman. You have to climb 575 steps to reach the temple. It offers mesmerizing views of sunrise and sunset.
It is the most sacred living temple of Hampi. This 7th century Hindu temple is dedicated to Lord Virupaksha an incarnation of Lord Shiva. What makes the visit special for the kids is an elephant inside the temple compound whom you can feed bananas (sold outside the temple). The elephant is also trained to bless people with its trunk. Money offered to the elephant is promptly handed over to his master 🙂
About a kilometer long street is located in front of the Virupaksha temple and still has remnants of the bygone era.
The trip made me witness and ponder over two extremes of human nature – on one side you experience creative endeavor of humans at its best and on the other, the pitfall of human greed to destruct. It also surely amazed and made each one of us proud of our Indian Heritage. So go and explore…you will come back wanting for more 🙂
Image via Pexels
Happy Soul, believer in gift called life, avid traveler and explorer, sometimes restless but mostly
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