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Hampi – The Ancient City That Speaks – Part 2


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Duration: 2 Days

Day 2

DAY 2

The skeleton of the ancient city of Hampi expands over a vast area—as far as the eyes can see.

Photos of Vitthala Temple, Hampi, Karnataka, India 1/1 by Sheeba Kaul

Walking the passages cut through the dangerous crevices between huge boulders, we were now heading towards the banks of the Tungabhadra river.

Though October to March is considered the best time to visit Hampi, the winter sun of December continued to shine mercilessly on us.

Know How To Reach Hampi From Bangalore

The scorching heat and the dust make a nasty combination of sweat and dirt on your skin. However, if you are with friends, don’t worry, you all will appear equally tanned and covered with the red sand.

Keep your gear ready with these essentials—2 bottles of water per person, a cap/hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, good pair of shoes, some snacks.

We had rented cycles, from the locals—they had set up a small corner, renting two-wheeler on a small lease rate, for the whole day. The cycles did help us on the long stretches of roads linking different stone monuments.

The cycles were hired at rupees 150 per person.

Cycling is the most favourable way to discover places in Hampi though you won’t be able to reach all places or trek up dragging a bicycle along with you. Walking on foot comes second, but could be tiring and time-consuming. You could even hire a bike or taxi otherwise. You would still have to walk or trek to see few places that are on the hilltop.

Photos of  1/1 by Sheeba Kaul

Things changed quickly. It wasn’t a pleasant experience walking over a massive stretch of rock and carrying our cycles instead of riding them. We parked them in a corner with the hope that nobody would steal them and continued on foot from there.

The labyrinth through the gigantic boulders somehow opened into a stretch of a rock base that descended decently and not steeply into the river.

Photos of  1/1 by Sheeba Kaul

Laying our feet in the refreshing and cool muddy water on the slippery and rocky banks of the river, I released a breath of relief. The calm ancient breeze that flowed closer to the water along its ragged banks welcomed me in its territorial land.

Photos of  1/1 by Sheeba Kaul

There was an upturned coracle (a huge circular boat, which has a framework of bamboo sticks, reeds, and plastic sheets)—waiting for its passengers to be ferried to the other side of the river.

The charges for the coracle ride was 500 Indian Rupees per person.

We rejuvenated ourselves with a hot cup of sugary tea in small tea-shop built under the shades of a huge tree.

Photos of  1/1 by Sheeba Kaul

After regaining our strengths, we braved the sun to watch the ruins of Hampi, which is scattered over an enormous stretch of the land, belonging to the capital city of the Vijayanagar Empire.

Photos of  1/1 by Sheeba Kaul

We crossed the famous King’s Balance—of what remained only two gigantic 15-foot tall pillars. The balance was weighed with gold, silver, rubies and all precious things equal to the weight of the king who would sit on the other end of the balance. This was distributed among the priests and the people of the kingdom.

Vitthalla Temple

Photos of  1/4 by Sheeba Kaul
Photos of  2/4 by Sheeba Kaul
Photos of  3/4 by Sheeba Kaul
Photos of  4/4 by Sheeba Kaul

Our next stop was the majestic compound of the Vitthalla temple that was surrounded by stone walls on the four sides. We covered a little over a kilometre on foot.

Photos of  1/1 by Sheeba Kaul

Temples supported by stone pillars embellished with beautiful carvings. Below, these abandoned temples probably held sculpture of Gods and Goddesses which are nowhere to be seen now.

Photos of  1/2 by Sheeba Kaul
Photos of  2/2 by Sheeba Kaul

On our way, we saw lifeless ruins covered with dust and vegetation cropping from the unattended corners and gaps of the structures that seemed to be the places of worship in the ancient times.

When we reached the remains of the Vitthalla compound, the area was brimming with people while the architecture lulled us to the huge entrance gate.

We couldn’t take our eyes off the remarkable brick and stone work that offered a glimpse of the life of people who would have at one time lived peacefully under the roof of these ancient structures.

Here is the Full Story of Day 2 at Hampi which includes visiting the flagship of the Hampi's ancient ruins--The Stone Chariot.

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