The Hampi Ruins – Travelogue – Part 1

This is a Travelogue of an exciting journey to Hampi in Karnataka from Hyderabad on Road

Remains of the capital city of the Vijayanagara Empire are spread out over a beautiful, hilly landscape along the Tungabhadra. Founded in the mid-14th century, Vijayanagara became most powerful during the reigns of Krishnadevaraya and Achyutadevaraya.

This was also the period of greatest architectural activity, as both these rulers commissioned several buildings in the royal capital and in other parts of their vast empire. Continuous conflict with the Bahmanis, then with Bidar, Bijapur and Golconda, ended in the Battle of Talikota, in which the Vijayanagara forces were defeated and the capital thoroughly sacked and burnt. Ruins of palaces, temple-complexes, monoliths, royal baths, and mosques still lie mostly deserted and dilapidated.

Route: Hyderabad: Jadcherla: Mahbub Nagar: Raichur: Gangavati: Hampi

We embarked on our journey to Hampi in the wee hours of morning which was really a good move due to the free flowing traffic which would help us cover maximum distance before the sunrise. Driving on the Hyderabad Outer Ring Road and National Highway 44 was a delight having your speedometer consistently touching above 100km mark.

Once you enter Mahbub Nagar district, then the road becomes bit narrow but filled with scenic beauty on either sides of the road, mountains and lush green grass decorating the land and clear sky with warm temperature. The beauty of Rural Andhra Pradesh is really striking and it looked pristine without any man made structures or over population of vehicles filling the atmosphere with poisonous chemicals.

There is no differentiation in terms of Rural Andhra or Rural Karnataka, you find lush green fields everywhere and driving through that gives you an absolute calming effect.

As you enter Karnataka and moved towards Hampi via Raichur, we were able to witness the changing landscape of the country where you find not much connectivity to the outer world and not so great infrastructure. People living there are so much disconnected from outside world which I found very unusual in this century.

We really loved the drive as we inched close to Hampi which has its majestic mountains with beautifully shaped Rocks by Nature. You will feel as if the mountains are man-made than nature. You want to stay looking at these rocks and mountains along with different structures on top of them which were built many centuries ago.

We drove for about 6 hrs from Hyderabad to reach Hampi and it was a pleasant experience except some patches of bad roads which really got my car crying for more care. We reached Hampi at around 10.30AM and decided to look for some place to stay which we eventually found after surveying most of the guest houses. Its interesting to note that every guest house have got a restaurant on the roof, so that you don’t have to search for food.

After a quick refreshing shower, we decided to step out to see Virupaksha Siva temple tower with its elegance. Its not just the height of the tower that surprises you but the sculptures and the carvings on each step are just breath taking. But the details in these sculptures are just unimaginable, I doubt if the experts our times can do something close to that.

My blog is to give you a personal account of what I saw in Hampi and the impressive architecture of Vijaya Nagara Empire of Sangama Dynasty which was prevalent during AD 13- 15 Centuries.

Hampi or Hampe lies on the banks of Thungabhadra River which was the major source of water for Vijaya Nagara Empire of Sangama Dynasty. Now also this river is a major source of water with Thungabhadra Dam being the reservoir which supplies water to the region.

Am not giving you a detailed account of all the structures here but I am putting up the images for you to see.

You can see the Medival Architecture at its best in Hampi, its a mix of Hindu and Muslim structures. Some structures you may find Domes at the top, but many of the structures you may find Gopuras. The structures have carvings inside and outside where the sculptors have left no place blank.

  • Virupaksha Temple Tower, Its majestic with the carvings and sculptures on the exteriors and interior, its a fully functional temple which happened to be built during KrishanDeva Raya’s period.
Tallest Structure in Hampi which is Functional

Tallest Structure in Hampi which is Functional

  • Vittala Temple Entrance, this temple is in ruins and but its very large complex with many structures and architectural wonders.
Vittala Temple - This temple is in Ruins, but the structures inside are mind blowing

Vittala Temple – This temple is in Ruins, but the structures inside are mind blowing

  • Vittala Temple Complex with Musical Pillars, these small slender stone pillars produces sound of musical instruments, it’s a wonder how the sculptors managed such a feat but you would be amazed from the outcome
The small pillars in this structure produce sound of musical instruments

The small pillars in this structure produce sound of musical instruments

  • Stone Chariot inside Vittala Temple, looking at the details on this structure you can never imagine how much effort the sculptors might have put into bring this beautiful piece of stone work alive. By the way this chariot is the symbol of Karnataka Tourism.
Stone Chariot of Vittala Temple

Stone Chariot of Vittala Temple

  • Lotus Mahal/ Kamal Mahal – This seems to be well made structure with unique design with many windows and balconies along with lime plastered exteriors. The shape of the structure is of a Lotus.
Lotus Mahal - A marvelous piece of architecture

Lotus Mahal – A marvelous piece of architecture

  • This collage has some of the beautiful stone work on Rama and Krishna, which has the utmost details coded on to each image which doesn’t need any elaboration
i am not sure if anyone can outdo these works

i am not sure if anyone can outdo these works

You can find lot many such images on the pillars and platforms of all the structures in Hampi

You can find lot many such images on the pillars and platforms of all the structures in Hampi

Here i end my post on The Hampi Ruins PART 1, i shall have the next PART published next weekend with more of images from Hampi, Thank you For reading


3 thoughts on “The Hampi Ruins – Travelogue – Part 1

  1. Its very nice..hope your next blog gives more details.. you missed talking about the fun we had, riding cycle n al.. bring it up in ur next blog:):)

  2. Nice pics.. We hv musical pillar in Suseendram too but thats not allowed for public visit now-a-days..

    Need to visit Vittala temple.. its interesting to knw abt it

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