Once the seat of the mighty Vijayanagara empire devastated by a six-month Muslim siege in the second half of the sixteenth century stands the “city of Victory” amongst a surreal landscape of golden-brown boulders and leafy banana fields. Hampi was once a dazzling Hindu Capital and the contemporary chroniclers who came from far off countries-such as Arabia, Italy, Portugal and Russia visiting the empire, have left graphic and glowing accounts of the city. It covers an area of nearly 26 sq km and is stated to be enclosed by seven lines of fortifications. Though the place is majorly ruins and remains, I'll give you seven reason to visit Hampi which is dawned by several temples, statues of deities, monuments noted for their large dimensions, florid ornamentation, bold and delicate carvings, stately pillars, magnificent pavilions and a great wealth of iconographic and traditional depictions which include subjects from the Ramayana and the Mahabharata.
1. For The Significant History
Heaps of giant boulders perch precariously over miles of undulating terrain. The Vijayanagara kings chose Hampi/Vijayanagara as their capital because of its location because surrounded by hills on three sides and fronted by the Tungabhadra; it offered enemies a difficult target. Today, the hillside and the river offer tourists some unforgettable natural and archeological splendour. Any visitor to South India should not miss this epitome of Hoysala architecture.
2. For The Magnificent Architecture
Hampi is charismatic even in its ruined state, attracting thousands of visitors every year. Vast stretches of boulder-strewn hills make the backdrop of Hampi unique. Dotted around the hills and valleys are 500 plus monuments. Among them are beautiful temples, basements of palaces, remains of aquatic structures, ancient market streets, royal pavilions, bastions, royal platforms, treasury buildings.., the list is practically endless
3. To Witness A Surprise At Every Turn
Every monument hides more than what they reveal. As an open museum, Hampi has numerous popular (100 plus!) locations visitors throng.
4. For A True Backpacker Experience
Hampi is a backpacker’s paradise, the same way a pilgrim’s delight. Unreal and bewitching, the forlorn ruins of Hampi, around 330km from Goa, make a highly worthwhile and popular, side trip from the coast. They lie scattered over a landscape that leaves you spellbound.
5. For The Temples
Hampi is also famous for its religious history rather than just the architectural beauty of its ruins. There are many well known temples here including the Virupaksha Temple, the Vittala temple and Anjeneyadri. The Tungabhadra, one of the major rivers of Karnataka flows serenely along this town, providing an awe-inspiring natural setting near the ruins.
6. For The Stone Chariot
The stone chariot at the Vittala Temple stands as an icon of the rock carving traditions of the Vijayanagara kings, and has been adopted as the emblem of the state's tourism department.
7. For The Newfound Sport
Thought it is not primarily known for climbing, Hampi has a number of places where the bouldering folks camp. There are even some guesthouses who rent out the basic gadgets.
The best time to visit Hampi is during the winters between November and February. Unfortunately quality hotels in Hampi are hard to find. Therefore, if you are looking for better facilities then Hospet is a better option.