Monday, March 07, 2016

Exploring Hampi

Located near the Bellary district of Central Karnataka and close to Andhra Pradesh, India, Hampi is recognised by UNESCO as one of the World Heritage Sites in India.

Day 1:
An overnight journey from Mumbai will take you to Hospet. Hospet is about 13 kms from Hampi. To reach Hampi, take a local transport either auto or bus. Auto will charge you Rs.50 per head.
Then a ferry ride across the river that divides Hampi in two parts -the cultural side and the hippie side.

Boat Point
We started from the hippie side of Hampi, overlooking the paddy field, the guest houses and mud filled streets reminds me of Goa. Our stay was arranged in an adjoining guest house.

After taking rest and breakfast, we were finally ready to explore hippie side of Hampi. The best way to explore this side is by renting a scooter or moped for Rs 150-200.

Cliff jumping:  It was the first experience in my life. We rode around the hippie island searching water bodies -  a dam and a lake. Finally we selected Tungabadra Dam. Wearing a life-jacket, looking into the deep, counting 1-2-3, plunge into an unknown surface, being for a few seconds under water, then swimming through - It was truly a memorable experience.

When you reach Hampi, the first thing that catches your attention are the stone hills that surround the area. We rode ahead searching of water bodies. A bath and coracle boat ride through Gangavathi was awesome.

Each of the stones said different stories.  The stories of the lost kingdom of the heavens.

There are hotels on the way which supply all types of food include indigenous foods of Karnataka, Italy, Israel, Russia etc etc. The food is affordable as well.

After having a yummy lunch, we moved to Shabari Cave.  It is believed that footprints of Rama can still be seen at the place where Shabari seated him and washed his tired legs with water from the sarovar. Temple of Goddess Vijayalakshmi is located beside the Shabari Cave.

Our next plan was to enjoy the sunset atop a hill and we climbed to the top of the hill to witness the glory. When the sun is sinking down, you will get a mesmerising panoramic view of the surroundings - river, birds flying in pack just above the water - surely the view will mesmerise you.

Day 2:
Had early breakfast and left to the cultural side of Hampi. There are sufficient sign boards to guide you. Then we walked through the enchanting town Hampi, which housed spiritual pleasure.

When you pass through the huge rocky valleys, you will experience the pulses of rich country of yesteryear's.

We caught a coracle boat to reach Vittal temple.

And we rode through the vivid past of thungabadra river.
Boating on the Tungabadra River

Hampi was the great capital of the Vijayanagara Empire. According to the legend, it was renowned because of its immense wealth, flourishing art, literature and trade in ancient times. The streets now selling local items once sold precious metals.
Old Stone Bridge, Tungabhadra River

Vittal temple is a walking distance from boating point. Sheer magnificent Vittal temple will impresses visitors. If you go through the imagination and woven structures, history and scenery, you will reach ages ago.
Vittal Temple
Located in the middle of the compound, the design of the chariot  is outstanding.
Stone Chariot
The interior is noteworthy for its design and it's all built in stone. This is really an architectural marvel.

The interior is breath taking. The antiquity and beauty will mesmerize you. The designs on each stones tell stories of yesteryear's.

The temple compound is amazing and incredible as well.

You can take hybrid vehicle to reach bus stop from vittal temple. Had yummy lunch from Mango tree restaurant and returned to guest house for relaxing.

The top of the hill is worth visiting in the evening.  Friends comes to here for having a great time in the evening.

It is a photogenic place and is all about a walking distance from the boat point. When the sun is sinking down, you will get mesmerising panoramic view of the city.  You will get a distance view of Virupaksha temple. It is so easy to get lost when you sit here.

You can see hippies and travelers gathering near sunset view point on the rocks. They play drums and other musical instruments. The skyline view will mesmerise you.

For me it is one of the most perfect formula for a perfect evening. I saw people sitting on the rocks for the show to begin.

Day 3:
After having breakfast, we bid goodbye to the guest house. We moved to the cultural side and a long walk through paddy fields and rocky patches took us to an unknown place. A waterfall is a sight to be hold . The best part is to sit and watch the flowing water plunging from a height.

It is better not knowing more about the destination you are going, let the place take you when you reach the place and begin to enjoy.

Hampi is truly a magical experience and continues to charm and mesmerise the generations.