Hampi is the world heritage site in the Northern part of Karnataka state, with 50+ mind-boggling places to visit in Hampi. Magical Hampi attracts tourist from all over the world due to its famous laid-back hippie’s culture. Also, It’s backpackers Paradise as there is lot to explore, you just need to have time. People visit Hampi and get to know the architecture of Hindu temples, history of the lost city, go for rock climbing, dive into the river or go for sunset trek.
Hampi Travel Guide
Few say that, Hampi is the city of boulders strewn, lakes and rivers to enjoy surreal countryside destination during your holiday. There are so many things that one can’t add everything in one – Hampi travel guide. In Hampi, every stone tells a story. Every monument shares some history. Hampi is divided into two parts by Tungabhadra river – Hippie side and Cultural side.
Hippie side is more kind of laid-back culture to stay and relax amidst nature. Most of the foreigners prefer this place from many years to chill and enjoy the magical Hampi. Many tourists also go for Sloth bear Safari in Hampi. Apart from that, there are many bird species which you can easily spot while exploring Hampi. Similarly, there are many things to do in Hampi or I can say places to visit in Hampi.
Top 21 Places to visit in Hampi
- Virupaksha Temple – The oldest functioning temple in Hampi and in India as well. Since its inception i.e. 7th century, said to be functioning uninterruptedly. This is the Principal temple of Lord Shiva which attracts tourist and pilgrims during the festival times.
You can hire a guide which is all the time available at the entrance and charge Rs. 50 to show all intricacies of the Temple. Temple is situated on the south bank of Tungabhadra River. Undeniably, it marks the center place of the lost city Hampi and thus tops the list of best places in Hampi.
When I visited, it took me 2 hours to explore & capture. Moreover, I was completely into the mythical stories of Virupaksha Temple and surrounding sub-shrines.
- Sanapur Lake – Sanapur lake makes the Hampi more beautiful. Hampi is full of boulders and hills of boulders. Yes, the lake is also surrounded by many boulders which makes it a very interesting place for photography. Places are less crowded with visitors, but you will see nature lovers relaxing or swimming or camping in and around the lake. Cliff jumping is the famous things to do in Hampi. There are locals who offer coracle ride in the Lake.
- Matanga Hill – On the other hand, Matanga hill attracts crowd during sunrise and sunset time. Next to Hampi Bazar, there is a short trek to Matanga hill. Within half an hour, you will reach the top and will be mesmerized by the beautiful landscape views of Hampi.
- Coracle ride – Hampi never let you down and keeps sending the message – “Be Hampi” i.e “Be Happy”. Here, we met the very helpful local guy, offering us a very unique coracle ride in Sanapur lake.Coracle Ride
- Cliff Jumping – This was the more interesting activity in Hampi. But, someone told us that it is banned from last one year. You need to check with the locals if you visit next time.
- Moped ride – To explore the hip side, you have this option of a Moped ride. In fact, this is the best way if you have less time and if you are planning for all the places to visit in Hampi. Charges are per day basis Rs. 250-350 depending upon the bike you choose.
- Cycle Ride – Best way to explore the Cultural side of Hampi. Variety of cycle available in Hampi Bazar or in Hampi Village. It will help you to reach where vehicles can’t reach. In comparison to the vehicle, it will cost you nothing.
- Mango restaurant – In the meantime, while exploring the cultural side of Hampi, take a lunch break at Mango restaurant situated in Hampi Village. Fortunately, this is the only restaurant that offers amazing dishes at a reasonable cost.
The ambiance of the restaurant is well maintained which keeps the tempo of a photographer and traveler HIGH. Very good service and tasty food, keeps the place crowded all times.
- Hampi Bazar – Hampi Bazar is a long stretch of footpath. It starts from the Virupaksha Temple and at the monolithic Bull. Both sides are surrounded by old fashioned Mantapas build in line. Hampi Bazar is the place to shop and purchase souvenirs.
- Lotus Mahal – Vijayanagar was very much planned city of that time. There was a separate area called Zenana for royal ladies of the empire. Two storied Lotus Mahal was built inside Zenana Enclosure. The whole structure looks like a half-open lotus from the top. Thus, for tourist, it is also one of the best Hampi places to see.
- Pushkarni – Black rocks framed in four tiers making the marvelous symmetrical structure of the tank. These stepped tanks were used by royals for religious and ceremonial purposes.
- Elephant Stable – Another, Major tourist attraction in UNESCO world heritage site is Elephant Stable. Actually, it was a shelter for Royal elephants of Vijayanagara Empire in 1565 A.D. Like, Lotus Mahal it is also built in Indo-Islamic style. The huge structure shows the importance of elephants during the reign.
- Vitthala Temple – Ancient Monument is known for its splendid architecture and unmatched craftsmanship. Basically, Vitthala temple is famous for its musical pillars that one should not miss. It is one of a kind place to visit in Hampi.
- Kadalekalu Ganesha – The giant structure crafted in one stone resembles Bengal Gram Dal (Kadalekalu – means Bengal Gram Dal in local language) and hence the name. Beautiful pillars and the location of Temple attracts the majority of the tourist.
- Lakshmi Narasimha – The most impressive sculpture found in the ruins Hampi. No doubt, Hampi is known for the Temples and Boulders but such creativity is also a part of the Lost City. Reason for this place to visit in Hampi is the largest monolith statue in Hampi. According to Hindu mythology, Narasimha is the fourth incarnation of Vishnu and appeared on earth in the form of half human (Nara) and half lion (Simha).
- Stone chariot – The worldwide famous, extravagant architectural wonder, The iconic Stone Chariot, built inside Vitthala Temple is a surreal beauty which now represents Karnataka Tourism. There is folklore that the world would come to a halt when the chariot moves from its place.
- Wooden chariot – In Anegundi village, on the main square, you will be able to spot the very old wooden chariot. Mostly, villagers decorate it during festivals.
- Monolith Bull – Monolithic bull mainly called as Nandi in a local language built straight in front of Virupaksha Temple and approximately 1 km from the main gate. It is covered by two storied Mantapas.
- Monkey Temple, hike to Anjaneya hill – Undoubtedly, the most beautiful hiking place to visit in Hampi. Mesmerizing landscape views will blow away your mind. The place is full of hippies, guitarist during sunset time. During Sunset, Music is coupled with the surrounding scenery of Hampi to make your hike memorable.
There is stone kept in Hanuman Temple which floats on water. Place share the great links with the “Ramayan” and “Ram Setu” which was built to bring Sita back.
- Sister Stone – Beautiful structure formed by two gigantic stones which is visible while entering into Hampi. It is also one of the top places to visit in Hampi. Majority of photography sessions and camera flashes around this place.
As it is said that, every stone in Hampi shares a different story. Similarly, there are many stories associated with “Sister Stones”. It is said that two sisters visited the Town when it was at its peak and became jealous of the same. Both said something bad about the town. After that, the reigning deity of the city cursed them in anger and turned them into stones.
- Bhojanshala – Community dining area for Soldiers –
How to reach Hampi
Belgaum is the nearest airport i.e. 270 Km from Hampi whereas Hospet is the nearest station. There are many trains and buses from Mumbai, Goa and Bangalore to reach Hospet. State transport buses regularly ply from Hospet to Hampi.
To summarise, this is the top 21 places to visit in Hampi. Besides, there are many things to explore in and around Hampi. One can go for camping and bouldering in Hampi. Also, the list of things to do in Hampi is also big, it’s just that you need to have more time & patience for your Hampi tour. Hope you have liked my Hampi travel guide blog. Importantly, do comment and subscribe. You can check out Hampi virtual tour video.