Sitting on a mighty stone gazing at the sunset glittering orange shades all over it’s circumference.It is almost impossible to watch a sunset and not dream.Sunsets are proof that endings can often be beautiful too.Reality struck and i grinned thinking about the thoughts of the adventure i had in past couple of days!
A jobless guy,a week’s time for next venture and a Solo trip before the new beginning.
That’s how Hampi was planned!
With no pre knowledge about the place i boarded a train without any hotel’s booking and return ticket.
What I found was at Hampi, the past comes alive. It’s a journey into the world of kings, battles, magnificent monuments and tales of the bygone era.
Hampi is a village and temple town recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was one of the richest and largest cities in the world during its prime. It is located within the ruins of the city of Vijayanagara, the former capital of the Vijayanagara Empire. The empire boasted a massive army comprising close to two million men. In around 1500 AD Vijaynagar had about 500,000 inhabitants (supporting 0.1% of the global population during 1440-1540), making it the second largest city in the world after Beijing and almost thrice the size of Paris.
The foundations of the palaces that remain along with the temples that stand mighty as ever tell you endless stories that bring alive the rich heritage and history of Hampi.
Why Hampi is so important:
I think, to truly cherish Hampi, you need to understand a little about the history and why it is such an important place.
Hampi features in Ramayana, the Hindu epic. Hampi is known as Kishkinda, and is the place where Rama mets the monkey king Hanuman, who helps him to rescue his wife Sita from the demon who has taken her away to Sri Lanka.
I found that the more you immerse up the tales that paint a intense picture of the significance of Hampi, the more you fall in love with this place. Learning about the myths and legends, and there big influence on Indian culture even today helps in gaining a better connection and that’s what makes hampi so special.
Things to do:
1. The first thing to do is Hire a bicycle and just paddle away exploring the temples with beautiful architecture and sensible stories associated with it.The Paddy-field view and calmness of surrounding sums up with one of the best ride of your life.
The seemingly innocent trip turned memorable when I couldn’t find my way back to civilization.With no food/water under the scorching sun, I kept moving without any destination in mind following mighty stones.
2. Don’t miss the lunch at Hampi’s most famous restaurant -Mango Tree,relocated to the bazaar inside an ambient tented restaurant but is still run by three generations of the same local family.
3. You might have seen many sunrise and sunsets till now.But wait..Have you climbed a mighty mountain to see countless stones from the aerial with attractive shades of nature glittering altogether to give you a scenic view?
The beauty of this destination is amplified in the dawn if you visit Anjanadri hill and Matunga in the dusk.A visual treat awaits you as you witness stunning sunsets overlooking the exquisite canvas of still life.
4. Wind up your day here with coracle rides on the ruins of the mighty empire on Tungabhadra river.
5. Stay in a hut in “Hippie Island”.Yes!You read it right. Hippie Island, the title itself feels with joy. This is a nickname for a small island known as Virupapura Gadde. And honestly, for a backpacker, I prefer this quite island over the hustle and bustle part of Hampi town. Luxury not guaranteed here. But the stay is serene and peaceful.
6. Laze by the edge of Sanapur Lake and enjoy the cool breeze!This beautiful lake is situated around 5 kms away from Hippie Island. It is surrounded by rocks and giant boulders.Enjoy the breeze, behold the sight.
Don’t worry, be Hampi,” said the touristy T-shirt on a local shop steal the evening for me.Yes a much deserved quote for a typically contrasting world.
Someone wise once said, “It’s not an adventure unless you’re miserable at some point.” This little cliche loves making itself known on almost every trip.
That’s just what magical Hampi does to you! Go, dawdle for a while and bathe up all the history, magic and myths. I’ll be back again for sure!