Road Trip 2011: Hampi, Karnataka

A long weekend was enough for us to venture out of Hyderabad for the first time since we moved here. I am sad to learn that there are no great places around Hyderabad and in close driving proximity for day trips. But that did not stop us from exploring further and beyond. Here are a few snapshots of our trip down south to Hampi.

Please excuse me for making this post too long, this is the shortest I could make it!

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My friend Sagar filled my brain with thoughts of Hampi, the Vijaynagar Kingdom and Krishnadevaraya to be precise! Hampi was the capital of the once flourishing Vijaynagar Kingdom, that was ruined almost completely by an alliance of the Deccan sultanates. It never recovered from that, and what we see today in Hampi is remnant of the same. It is like travelling back in time, and the only questions which remained in my mind after the trip was ‘what did the people look like back then – and what did they eat?’.

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The Virupaksha temple, seen above, is perhaps the best known landmark of the place.

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The people of Vijaynagar Kingdom were very religious. This is evident from the hundreds of tiny temples all over the place. Also seen are scores of statues of deities, such as the monolithic statue of Ganesha (above).

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Many relics got buried deep under layers and layers of mud, that went on to become soil for farmlands, only to be excavated in the late 20th century by ASI.

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Few carvings have been preserved as well as the Shiva’s family (above).

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Most of the Virupaksha Temple survived the attacks. The paintings above are from the ceilings of the main chamber of the Virupaksha Temple

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Of the many surviving monuments, is the Pushkarni, or the Stepped Tank.

Overall, the place provides huge volumes of history and along with that a number of awesome captures…

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The awesome Tungabhadra river…

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The awesome lush green landscape dotted with awesome pre-Cambrian rock structures… (pic taken from top of Anjeyanadri Hill, believed to be the birthplace of Hanuman)

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Awesome crowds…

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Awesome guest houses…

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Awesome food!!!

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Awesome us Smile with tongue out

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Awesome roads…

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And our awesome dear Figo…

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All in all, an awesome destination, combined with 800 km of driving pleasure (well, almost – apart from the Telangana trouble in Mehboobnagar), good food and nice crowd…! Hampi is definitely a must visit place in India, but make sure you visit after November and before February!

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10 thoughts on “Road Trip 2011: Hampi, Karnataka

  1. hey, what a fantastic memoir! am planning to visit hampi late sept-early oct. was wondering why did you recommend it post nov? and those cottages look gorgeous, per chance you remember the name?

  2. Lovely photographs and write-up. I had been to Hampi from school years back. This makes me want to go and explore the place all over again.
    10’th photo – perfect spot.
    My favorite story about Hampi is how gold & diamonds were being sold on the streets (there still remains the gold market area – series of pillars, etc). Didn’t you visit the lotus mahal?

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