South India is an alluring tourist magnet that hosts some of the country’s most marvellous masterpieces. Hampi, declared a world heritage site by UNESCO, is one such marvel which is situated on the banks of Tungabhadra River in northern Karnataka. With around 500 ancient mountains, coconut & banana trees, sugarcane plantations, busy street markets & aesthetically carved temples; Hampi is one of the best places to visit in South India all year round. If you are a history buff, then treat yourself by visiting this beautiful temple town of India. Known for the best tourist assistance and hospitality, Hampi is one of those places which offer gems of Hindu architecture & infrastructure in their natural and untouched form.
The list of the best places to visit in Hampi include Hampi Bazaar, Virupaksha Temple, Vijaya Vitthala Temple, Lakshmi Narasimha Temples, Stepped Tanks, Pushkaranis, Royal Enclosure, Stepped tanks, etc. From enormous boulders, ruins of ancient monuments to monoliths; you are sure to find the most fascinating bits and pieces of history when here. Known as one of the most popular tourist places, Hampi always stuns visitors with its historic glory. There are more than 100 places to wander, shop, click and explore only within the frontiers of Hampi. They say, you never have enough of this historic & religious wonder and rightly so. Here’s a handcrafted list of the best places to visit in Hampi:
Hampi Bazaar: A Shopping Hub for Everyone
If you wish to take back home some beautiful souvenirs, then do visit Hampi Bazaar. Located in the foothills of Matanga Hill, here you will find everything right from ethnic bags, clothes to religious artefacts. Stretched over a kilometre, this vividly colourful place in Hampi is decked up with bustling shops, restaurants & residences on both sides. There’s also a huge Nandi bull statue at the east-end side. Do not miss to check out the photo gallery exhibiting the photos of ancient times.
Timings: 06:00 am – 11:00 pm (all days)
Key Attraction: Explore this bazaar which happens to be one of the most visited tourist places of Hampi Bazaar, on a rented bicycle
Sri Virupaksha Temple: One of the Most Sacred Temples of Hampi
Dedicated to Lord Virupaksha – an incarnation of Lord Shiva, Sri Virupaksha Temple is one of the oldest functioning temples in the country. Dating all the way back to the 7th century, this temple attracts pilgrims from all over India and is a significant site among the places to visit in Hampi for its centuries of existence and religious glory. The splendour of this temple can be experienced with a huge courtyard, gateway towers, and other ancient-style structures located on the campus of the temple.
Timings: 6:00 am – 6:00 pm (all days)
Key Attraction: Underwater Shiva Temple within the complex
Vijaya Vittala Temple: Hampi’s Biggest Architectural Magnificence
Make sure to add Vijaya Vittala, one of the largest historical structures from the 15th century, in your list of the best places to visit in Hampi. The stone chariot, arrays of huge pillars, and the intricate sculptures are sure to leave you enchanted. The architectural grandeur of this structure dates back to the Dravidian times denoting South Indian traits. This temple is dedicated to Lord Vittala – an incarnation of Lord Vishnu and is a must-visit place in Hampi to admire the detailing in its architecture. Can’t wait to see this temple? Book a Hampi tour package now!
Timings: 8:30 am to 5:30 pm (all days)
Key Attraction: Visit early in the morning to witness the stunning views of the temple
Riverside Ruins: An Enticing Place to Visit in Hampi
The Riverside Ruins is a one-of-its-kind experience – it is an aesthetically carved rock structure of Lord Vishnu in a reclining position along with over 100 Shiva Lingas crafted on the flat rocky surface. If you are an ardent history enthusiast or a photographer, then make sure to include this place in your list of places to see in Hampi. Numerous small shrines, statues, pavilions, and carved artefacts make this place worth exploring.
Timings: 06:00 am to 6:00 pm (all days)
Key Attraction: Historic tales by local guides
Queen’s Bath: A Symbol of Hampi’s Ancient Royalty
This ancient bathing structure built for the erstwhile kings and queens deserves to be on your list of top tourist places to visit in Hampi for its architectural brilliance. Balconies with small windows, dome-like roof on the top, a high courtyard in the front and a pool made with bricks in the middle; all make for the perfect sight to behold. This majestic structure is definitely one of the topmost places to see in Hampi for the lovely balance of historical quotient and surrounding serenity.
Timings: 6:00 am to 6:00 pm (all days)
Key Attraction: Stone-carvings and sculptures crafted by local artists
Matanga Hill: A Surreal Panoramic Experience to Live in Hampi
After you are done shopping from Hampi Bazaar, visiting the temples and exploring the architectural glory around; trek for around 30 minutes to experience a quiet sunset on Matanga Hill. This is one of the most exceptional places to visit in Hampi. The picturesque panoramic view from here is surreal in every way. If you time it right, you can witness the sunrise and sunset from the rooftop of Veerabhadra Temple which adorns the top of Matanga Hill.
Timings: All day, every day
Key Attraction: Sit back to experience solace like nowhere else
Tungabhadra Dam: Hampi’s Most Blissful Natural Treasure
Your travel checklist of places to see in Hampi is incomplete without the mention of the ethereal Tungabhadra Dam. Lovely flamingos flying around the beautiful garden is a highlight of visiting this place. This famous tourist spot also attracts many photographers owing to its captivating natural treasure.
Timings: 8:30 am to 6:30 pm (all days)
Key Attraction: Music fountain which starts around 7 in the evening
Archaeological Museum: A Noteworthy Exhibit of Hampi’s Exquisites
The Archaeological Museum is one of the most culturally enriched tourist places to visit in Hampi. There are four art galleries with distinct paintings, metal plates, ancient coins, statues, armoury, and sculptures of various Hindu deities. All the four sections have something to offer for tourists with great interest in history and even for kids.
Timings: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm (closed on Friday)
Key Attraction: Make memories by clicking pictures in the open lawn outside the art galleries
There are places galore in Hampi that you can visit and then revisit – the architectural prowess of this destination looks and feels perpetual, making it a haven which is inimitable in its virtue.