'Coracles' in Hampi

1st May 2017
Photo of Sanapur, Karnataka, India by Gokul Gopinath

When I look back to my Hampi trip now, all the images that comes to my mind are concrete static images of structures, apart from the flowing Tungabhadra and the floating coracles.

My first coracle ride was at 2 am in the middle of a chilling night from Sanapur to Hampi ,crossing the tranquil Tungabhadra. Me along with my five friends had gone to Sanapur from Hampi by taking a motor boat early in the day for spending some time there, as Sanapur was one of the most happening places around. So by completing all the so called 'To do check list' in Sanapur we came back to the banks of Tungabhadra hoping for a boat to take us over to Hampi as our hotel rooms were there. But there was no boat and only a coracle laid there in the dark welcoming us and and a small boy was on board with an oar in his hand.

The coracle thing was not in our checklist and we had to improvise it, if we had to make it to the other side of the river and get to sleep. We hopped into the coracle after negotiating the night rates. Yeah! you know it, nights are costly.

The coracle thing was made out of interlaced bamboo strips from side to the bottom. Obviously I coudn't see whether it was made of bamboo or plastic or whatever in the middle of a dark night . But you know what ,I figured it out the next day, and the day after as it turned out , I had never waited for a motor boat again in that trip, because that coracle ride in the middle of the night was pure bliss. It was not much far from floating in Tungabhadra .

Photo of Hampi, Karnataka, India by Gokul Gopinath

So next time when you visit Hampi, take a leap of faith into one of these coracles if you had not tried it before. It certainly is a better way to connect with the serene Tungabhadra unlike the crowded and noisy motorboats.

Photo of 'Coracles' in Hampi by Gokul Gopinath
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