This was the seat of the Vijayanagar empire that ruled the region for over 200 years from 1336 AD. A World Heritage Center, Hampi is the most beautiful and evocative of all the ruins in Karnataka.


Important places to see are:

Virupaksha Temple, devoted Lord Shiva, the presiding deity of the Vijayanagar rulers

Narasimha, Shivalinga and Ganesha monoliths

Vithala Temple, with its musical pillars and stone chariot, considered the most splendid religious monument at Hampi.

Lotus Mahal, a beautiful example of the synthesis of Hindu and Islamic styles of architecture.

Queen's bath, an engineering marvel, with its arched corridors, projecting balconies and lotus-shaped fountains that once sprouted perfumed water.

Hazaarama Temple, a masterpiece of sculpture.

The once-powerful Vijayanagara Empire was compared to Rome by the Portuguese traveller Paes.

Around Hampi (Distances and directions from Hampi):

There are a number of places around Hampi that merit an excursion. On the highway linking Bangalore and Hospet is Chitradurga, a quaint town with a famous fort - a marvel of military architecture, made impregnable by the Nayak Paleyagars. It had 19 gateways and 38 postern entrances.


The nearest railhead is Hospet (12 kms). The National Highway No. 4 and 13 form the link between Hospet and Bangalore (343 kms from Hampi). Regular bus services from Bangalore and other major centers in the region operate to Hospet.


Taxis, bicycles and motorbikes are available from Hospet on hire to visit the ruins of Hampi.


Accommodation is available in lodges and guest houses. Karnataka State Tourist Development Corporation (KSTDC) maintains a hotel at Tungbhadra Dam, about 17 kms away is Hotel Mayura Vijayanagar. Tel: (014651) 48270.