South India’s – what South India’s, the world’s – awe, a place that speaks hundreds years, where columns are musical and carvings are ‘God-made’. Hampi should be cheek by jowl with the Taj Mahal on any traveler’s list to India.
The once flourishing Hindu empire was a thriving metropolis under the reign of Vijaynagara kings, a very happening spot for commerce and religion, culture and entertainment between the 14th and 16th century.
The excessive amount of ruins scattered over miles of open terrain still keep the secret of godly weddings, influential rulers and mysterious diamond merchants from faraway lands.
One could spend days and days breathing in culture and art wandering among stone relics – and to say days are enough is actually an understatement. If time is a concern you can get a brief guidance with a pretty good understanding on the World Heritage Site within just two days.
Wanderer lifestyle – Hampi
ALL STARTS WITH A PLEASANT STAY
If you want to eat well, sleep well and travel well Gowri Resort is an ideal place to stay in all aspects. The family-run accommodation of bamboo and colorful stone cottages are just a stone-throw away from river from ferry from gateway from Hampi. The whole-heartedly run resort sports simple rooms, irresistible hammocks, an enchanting paddy field and a spellbinding view. Don’t miss their restaurant where home-made dishes of mostly organic ingredients appease your hunger. For a great dine-in try matching Indian with Continental with Tibetan dishes. The landlords will surely go the extra mile to cater for your reasonable wishes and perhaps a bit beyond.
A melting pot for wandering
hippieshipsters, artistic souls, life-cherishing backpackers, bold adventure seekers and fascinating characters from all corners of the world. The resort but the whole place as well.
Tired travelers’ little oasis – Gowri resort, Hampi
Nomad farmer families complete the beauty of paddy fields – Gowri resort, Hampi
GET TO THE HOT SPOT
The best way to discover Hampi is with a local guide. Ask Gowri’s owners to arrange one for you on the motorbike or with the Rickshaw. The ferry is just a few minutes drive from the resort, the boats are running continuously from morning till 6pm (ticket costs 10 Rs. for locals and 15 Rs. for non-Indians). Adventurous souls can get to the other side by taking the ‘Coracle’ a round bamboo basket-like boat carrying 6-8 people (or motorbikes or animals) for just 2-5 Rs! If you are running late for the boat and the other floating object expect to pay a whopping 500 Rs. for the 40 km distance around the river by the Auto Rickshaw.
Sunset spin through the river – traditional Coracle in Hampi
CROSS THE GATE OF HISTORY
The entrance to some of the major sites of Hampi are subject to charges and on top of that you are not allowed to take your rickshaw guide with you in. Inside these premises you find skilled guides though who can walk you through the ruins sharing remarkable historical and architectural tidbits along the journey. Immerse yourself in the Gods’ marriage hall, play music on the columns, figure out the 2 in 1, 3 in 1 and 5 in 1 carvings, admire Vishnu’s ornate stone chariot and many more…
Coming up: Dawn to Dusk in Hampi