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Hampi

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Set in an awesome boulder-strewn landscape along the banks of the Tungabhadra River, Hampi was the capital city of the magnificent capital of the mighty Vijayanagara Empire. Founded by Harihara and Bukka in 1336, it fell to the Muslim rulers of the Deccan in 1565, and the city was pillaged over a period of six months before being abandoned. The once-proud city of victory is now a city of desolation. However, the ruins of these historical monuments have withstood the ravages of man and time, and still evoke memories of the grandeur of a bygone era.

Classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, this historic town is also the “World’s Largest Open-air Museum” and covers an area of nearly 29 sq km. Vijayanagara Empire at its peak was very prosperous and was believed to be larger than Rome with palaces grander than of Lisbon  “The city is such that the pupil of the eye has never seen a place like it, and the ear of intelligence has never been informed that there existed anything to equal it in the world”, marvelled a 15th century Persian ambassador Abdul Razaak. There were opulent palaces, marvelous temples, massive fortifications, baths, markets, aquaducts, pavilions, stables for royal elephants, and elegantly carved pillars. This was a city whose merchants traded in diamonds, pearls, horses, fine silks and brocades.

Most of the important structures and ruins are located in two areas, which are generally referred to as the Royal Centre and the Sacred Centre. The Royal Centre in the south-west part of the site contains structures that seem to have been palaces, baths, pavilions, royal stables and temples for ceremonial use. The Sacred Centre stretches around the Virupaksha Temple and the Hampi Bazaar area and is along the banks of the holy Tungabhadra River.  

The ruins of Hampi are extensive and fascinating enough to absorb your attention for several days.

The best way to experience this UNESCO World Heritage Site is to take a leisurely stroll through the eloquent ruins or take a bicycle/ bike ride. If you are hard-pressed for time, a day or two will suffice  to see all the important structures. However, photography, archaeology buffs, yoga enthusiasts should plan on staying a little longer.

Quick Links

Hampi-stone- chariot
Hampi Virupakshi Temple

Fast Facts

When to go:
The monsoon (July-September) and winter (November-February).
In January-February check out the legendary Virupaksha Temple Car Festival and the annual Purandaradasa Aradhana Music Festival at Vittala Temple.

Tourism offices:

Office of the Deputy Director
Department of Tourism
Near Lotus Mahal, Kamalapura, Hospet
Cell: +91-9880404150

Tour Location

Ballari has an airport at Vidyanagara (35 kms from Hampi & Ballari) with limited flights. Hubballi is the next closest airport (217 kms) but Bengaluru is the major international airport (290 kms from Ballari)
Hosapete is the major junction providing connectivity to Hampi from other major cities in Karnataka. Ballari city also has train connectivity.
Ballari has excellent bus connectivity from major cities of Karnataka
Taxi can be hired in Ballari or Hosapete to explore local attractions. While good public transport is available in Ballari, having a vehicle at disposal is highly recommended. Two wheelers are available for rent in Hampi from private operators, a more convenient way to explore Hampi and nearby areas.
Hampi and Hospet have many accommodation facilities mainly at budget/ mid level. There are only limited high end/ luxury hotels. Within Hampi, there are many guests houses scattered all over the place that offer modest accommodation facilities.

Eco:

JLR Hampi Heritage and Wilderness Resort
Near Kannada University, P.K.Halli Road, Kamalapura, Hospet Taluk, Bellary - 583276 Karnataka, India Manager: Mr. Dheeraj N Contact Number:+91-9449597874 / +91-9591399969 Office No:+91-7019710511 Email ID: info@junglelodges.com Website:  Click here

Premium:

KSTDC Hotel Mayura Bhuvaneshwari
Kamalapur, Hampi, Bellary 583 221 Manager: Mr. Abhay Kumar Jha Contact Number:+91-8970650025 Office No:+91-839-4241574 Email ID: hampi@karnatakaholidays.net Website:  Click here

Budget:

KSTDC Hotel Mayura Vijayanagara,
TB Dam, Hospet, Bellary 583 225, Manager:Mr. Lakshmi Narayan Contact Number:+91-8970650002 Office No:+91-839-4259270 Email ID: vijayanagar@karnatakaholidays.net