The small historical town of Hampi located in Karnataka, India is known for its spectacular architectural heritage and amazing viewpoints setup amidst pristine natural backdrop. Hampi’s heritage includes more than a thousand ancient monuments like palaces, forts and temples.
Situated by the bank of Tungbhadra river, this UNESCO World Heritage Site scored a 2nd rank in the must see destinations of 2019 by New York Times.
Although Hampi has a lot of things to do, here is a list of exciting things you must try.
Explore the ancient temples and ruins of Hampi
You can spend hours exploring the numerous well preserved monuments of Hampi and yet not have enough of it. Centuries-old monuments like temples, statues, palaces, and passages are scattered all over the town. Some of the important landmarks to visit are Virupaksha temple, Krishna temple, Hemakuta hill monuments, Narsimha statue, and Hanuman statue. Guides are readily available and will tell you everything you need to know about the monuments. Getting around on foot in Hampi could be tiresome; you can either rent a bicycle or hire an auto rickshaw/taxi for a day trip.
Visit the famous Hippie Island
Originally known as Virupapur Gaddi, the Hippie Island is a small hamlet right across the Tungbhadra River. The island is a backpackers’ destination well known for its scenic natural beauty and quiet surroundings. While luxury hotels and resorts are available in and around Hampi, most of the travellers prefer to stay at peaceful little home-stays and cottages on the island. Crossing the river on a coracle to reach the island is quite an experience.
Climb Matanga Hill for a panoramic view of Hampi
Hills in Hampi are perfect viewpoints to admire the beautiful sights of this ancient city. Matanga hill, the highest point in Hampi, is a very popular vantage point that offers excellent 360 degree panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Early morning or an evening hike to the hill is recommended for breathtaking views of the sunrise and sunset. Veerbhadra Temple atop the hill is another major draw that several spiritually minded tourists often have on their list of things to do when visiting Hampi.
Hop around on a rented two-wheeler
Hiring a moped or a scooter and going about exploring the island is another one of the most fun-filled activities while you are at Hippie Island. The empty narrow winding roads with lush paddy fields on both sides are a pleasure to ride on. You can head to places like Sanapur Lake (a popular cliff jumping spot), Anjaneya Hill (known for its Monkey Temple), and Anegundi (a nearby village).
Shop for souvenirs at Hampi Bazaar
The Hampi Bazaar is a small flea market located right next to the Hampi Bus Stand. The market is a perfect spot to buy unique souvenirs for family and friends. You can shop for hippie clothes and jewellery, bags and footwear, antiques and other interesting articles at this market. Haggling is quite common at the market so don’t be afraid to bargain hard.