Just a few hours away from the busy and hectic cities of Bangalore and Hyderabad, lies Hampi, a quaint little place with its own old school charm. A UNESCO global heritage, this place will transport you back into time and leave you awestruck with its beautiful temples and monuments. This is a great trip to take if you are looking to disconnect yourself from the internet and live a simpler life for a few days (The signals here are not very good and of course, no wifi) .
How to get there
Hampi is about 350 kilometres from Bangalore and 380 kilometres from Hyderabad. Though trains do go till the nearest railway station, Hospet from where you can easily get a taxi to Hampi, we would suggest driving there because the road is absolutely stunning. There are so many old monuments and legendary stories that you would discover on your way. If you start early in the morning, you should reach Hampi in 5-6 hours.
Where to Stay in Hampi
Though Hampi is just developing as a tourist place, there are still many options for accommodations. You could either get an affordable guest house in the city, which would cost you about 500-1000 INR or if you are looking to relax, you could opt for a high end resort. There are many options, just make sure you check the hotel online before booking one.
Places to see
Vithala Temple Complex
Built in the 15th century, this temple is dedicated to Lord Vithala, a reincarnation of Lord Vishnu. This is one of the biggest and the most important temples in Hampi and probably your first stop. The architecture is astonishing with pillars supporting every corner of the temple.
Just 4 kilometres from the main town of Hampi, this temple is believed to be the birth place of Lord Hanuman and staying true to its name, the temple has a lot of monkeys present inside. Since it’s situated on a hill, you have to climb through some steep stairs but you get a great view of the entire Hampi from top. We had recommend going here around sunset.
Now you might have seen horse stables before, but this is one of those few places in India where you get to see elephant stables. Now there aren’t obviously any elephants here now but the sheer opulence of the entire place is mesmerizing.
Lord Virupaksha was the main deity of Vijaynagara rulers, who reigned over Hampi. Though the temple was built in the 7th century, it was a small shrine back then. The marvellous architecture was created during the Vijaynagara reign.
However, most of the temple was destroyed during a war in 1565 and restored only in the 19th century.
Daroji Bear Sanctuary
This is a half an hour drive from Hampi and not to be missed! The sanctuary might not be as famous as temples but this is actually the biggest bear sanctuary in the country. There are no safaris here but there is a large viewing tower where you can go along with the binoculars and check out the animals.