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A traveler’s favorite, Hampi is a fun and adventurous 2 days trip from Bangalore.
Backpacking Hampi is one of those adventures that you must take on solo. The itinerary provided in this blog post is a good start to do your own trip planning.
If you are still wondering what to see in Hampi, I can tell you that I have traveled across the globe and I can confidently say I have never seen such a place before. You will visit Hampi trying to explore the remains of the lost civilization but instead you will lose yourself in its charm and mystery.
I discovered fascinating places to visit in Hampi while I was on a Bangalore to Hampi trip with a friend. In this blog post I have accumulated a list of sightseeing places in Hampi as well as my personal tips to help you make your own hampi travel plan. For people coming for a weekend getaway from Bangalore, this post should serve as your Bangalore hampi itinerary.
The moment you arrive in Hampi it feels that you have stepped into another world, a world of fantasy straight from pages of Ice and Fire or Lord of the Rings.
Wondering what to see in Hampi while traveling solo? Based on my trip to hampi here’s a list of top attractions in hampi and some of the best places to visit in Hampi.
Hampi Tourist Places Map
Hampi Travel Tips
Sunset point in Hampi: Best place to view Sunset in Hampi is Mathanga Hilla. The location is on the other end of the Hampi Bazaar. I have Mathanga Hill Hampi sunset point on the above Hampi tourist map. It is best you get in half an hourly to get the best sunset view over the boulder hills of Hampi.
Map & Travel Guide: As soon as you reach Hampi, grab a map from the hawkers whom you will find everywhere on the road creating minor annoyance to the tourists.
They sell a small sized travel guidebook on Hampi which provides some basic information on the different ruin sites around the area; the booklet will cost you a mere twenty rupees. This Hampi guidebook also has a useful map which you can purchase separately if you don’t want to buy the guidebook; the map will cost you a whooping(!) five rupees.
Hampi ATM: Sadly, there is no ATM in Hampi so you need to be very careful with your cash. Nearest ATM is in Kamlapur and one in Anegundi (the other side of the river). Both the places are about four km from Hampi.
Take the bus to Kamlapur; the same Hospet bus goes there and takes 15 minutes (INR 7/-). In Kamlapur get down at the SBI ATM, it’s a bus stop. To come back get the bus from the other side of the road. Ask the conductor and he will drop you at the ATM.
Alternatively, if you are on the side of the river and have rented a motorbike you can ride to Anegundi village, it’s a tourist spot anyway.
Places to stay in Hampi
Staying in Hospet
Since Hospet is around 30km away I’d highly recommend you to stay in Hampi itself. Stay in Hospet only if you are on a day trip to Hampi, i.e. come in the morning leave by the evening. In Hospet you will find several decent hotel options in and around the bus station area.
Staying in Hampi
In the main Hampi Bazaar there is a very small settlement where you can easily find an accommodation for a day or two. The guesthouses themselves are pretty basic but comfortable.
Do negotiate the rate based on what they are offering, and check if they provide hot water and high-speed wifi, as many don’t. The accommodations (a simple fan room) will typically cost you an upward of 1200/- INR in the peak season. Expensive right? Good luck with budget backpacking in Hampi.
There are many options to eat around in the Hampi Bazaar with a wide variety of choice, so you shouldn’t have any problem.
Staying in Hampi island
Not really an island but actually the other side of the river.
Gouthami Guesthouse: Also known as German Bakery provides a range of cheap options starting from INR 600/- going somewhere upto INR 1200/- even in the peak season. The downside is the the bathrooms are not attached and you have to share with the other residents. Staying in the other guesthouses in the season time (Oct-Feb) would typically cost you 1500/- to 1600/- INR. On the weekends book a day or two in advance, otherwise you might find it tricky to get an accommodation.
Gouthami guesthouse has a pretty popular restaurant attached to it called German Bakery (or more formally Gouthami Restaurant.) Check my Hampi food guide for a detailed recommendation.
Jungle tree: This guesthouse is bit further away from Virupapuragaddi area. Go here if you are seeking solitude but at the same time mind it that it is very popular among backpackers too.
While going toward the Hanuman Temple (also known as monkey temple). Take the road to whispering rock, away from civilization. The area where Jungle Tree is located is called Anjanhalli.
How to Reach Hampi – Train, Bus and Flight
Hampi with its majestic ruins set amidst a mysterious landscape is a big lure to travelers all over the world. Add to its charm a thriving backpacking scene because of its popularity as a hippie getaway on backpacking India route, and you have got yourself a must visit place in India; a top travel destination in India, if I may say so.
Also due to the short distance to major cities (like Pune, Goa, Bangalore, Hyderabad), it is quite popular among travelers getting to Hampi from Bangalore for a weekend. You can easily get to Hampi from Bangalore and other places in India by Train, Bus and Flight.
How to Reach Hampi by Train
The nearest train station to Hampi is Hospet, which is well connected to Bangalore. There are several Bangalore to Hampi Trains available on the route. In Hampi Express Non A/C Sleeper ticket will cost you only 150/- rupees while the a/c sleeper costs 1300/- INR. The train starts from Bangalore at 10:00 PM and reaches Hospet at 07:10 AM. You can check the list of all train stations enroute here.
How to Reach Hampi by Bus
The nearest bus station to Hampi is Hospet. There are several buses from Bangalore to Hospet. There are even direct buses from Bangalore to Hampi but they are very limited. It is recommended to book the Bangalore-Hampi bus ticket in time as Hampi being a popular tourist destination tickets go off really quickly.
How to Reach Hampi from Hospet
If you are coming to Hampi by train chances are you will be getting down at Hospet as it is the nearest railway station to Hampi. Hospet is a small town about 30 km from Hampi. Hampi itself, is nothing but a very small settlement and a vast area comprising of ruins of Vijayanagar empire.
If you are looking for an accommodation in Hampi, I’d recommend not to stay in Hospet but continue your way to Hampi where you will find plenty of small guesthouses. There isn’t really any need to book in advance, but it is always a good idea in the peak winter season.
To reach Hampi from Hospet the best way is to take the local bus. From the Hospet railway station get in a bus going to the local bus station in Hospet (note, don’t go to the intercity bus stand), don’t worry you’ll find plenty of bus going to the bus station. From the local bus station simply hop on to the bus going to Hampi.
From Hospet bus station there are plenty of buses to Hampi every hour. The bus service is so continuous you won’t even have to wait for the bus. The bus condition is very good and the fair is dirt cheap (INR 13/-).
The bus station at Hampi is very close to the new Hampi Bazaar where you will find a plenty of guest house s. Alternatively, you can cross the river and go to the other side, the guesthouses in Virupagaddi are much more relaxed and spacious in comparison.
You can also go from Hospet to Hampi by shared auto which would cost you around 20 INR/- and you can find them near the intercity bus stand. I wouldn’t recommend shared auto to get to Hampi, unless you are looking for an ‘adventurous’ ride.
Alternatively, you can take an auto from the Hospet railway station or from the Hospet intercity bus stand which would cost you about 250 INR/-. You can get it for cheaper but that would depend on your negotiation skills.
Last bus from Hampi to Hospet – 08:30
Bus Hospet to Hampi – 13 INR/-
Crossing the river by foot in the night is quite possible as water level is quite low. Boat costs 10/- INR.
How to get to Hampi from Bangalore
In case you are wondering how to go to Hampi from Bangalore, this travel guide has got you covered. It is very easy to reach from Bangalore to Hampi, you either need to take a train or a bus.
Hampi Express is the most convenient train, though you need to reserve your seat at-least couple of weeks in advance. From Bangalore you can catch the train at the City Railway Station (Majestic). The train starts around 2200 from Bangalore and reaches Hospet at about 7 in the morning.
From Hospet railway station you can easily reach Hampi via a regular govt. bus. Alternatively, you can directly take an auto to Hampi which will cost you about 250-300 INR.
If the train is not available you can take KSRTC (Karnataka govt.) bus, these buses are amazingly comfortable and efficient at the same time. A ticket in sleeper bus will cost you about 600/- INR. There is a direct KSRTC bus service from Bangalore to Hampi, and hence a bit convenient than a train.
Also, there are several buses daily from Bangalore to Hospet, and most of the time you don’t even have to reserve a ticket, just show up at the bus Majestic bus stand and you are good to go.
Getting Around Hampi
Rent a Bike in Hampi
Since the historical sites in Hampi are spread apart, it makes sense to hire your own two wheeler. But note that rented mopeds or bikes are allowed only on the other side (Anegondi) of the river (where there are no ruins) so as to protect the local auto-rickshaw business.
Mopeds can easily be arranged by your guesthouse. Usually, you would find a rental shop right next to your guest house. Prices of the moped rentals are more or less same and would set you back around 150-200/- INR for a day. The same rental agent will sell you petrol as well, it’s important you take enough as you won’t find any petrol pump around. You can do an estimation based on how many kilometers you want to roam around, keeping in mind that the moped gives a mileage of about 20-25 km per liter. As a rule of thumb around 3-4 liters would be good enough to take you places.
Note: Don’t bring your moped to this side of the town as you would most certainly be caught and fined by the local police.
Hire an Autorickshaw in Hampi
To visit the Hampi ruins you can hire an auto-rickshaw for a fixed price. The auto-rickshaw for a day trip of entire Hampi ruins would cost somewhere around 250-300 INR/- Again use your best bargaining power to bring down the price.
Places to eat in Hampi
When it comes to food in Hampi there are innumerable options available to a traveler. In general the food quality is satisfactory but the prices are bit on the higher side. You can of-course try and look where locals eat, but to me it seemed everywhere a tourist’s price is charged. And yeah, if you going to shell out money, better get into one of those chilled shack, Goa style food joints and kill a few hours just lazing away.
In terms of food choice you will find almost everything on the menu, cuisines of the world so as to speak, don’t expect any ‘authenticity’ though. The reason for the wide range of food items is the sheer variety of the tourists who arrive here in Hampi.
Of all the food joints the two most popular ones are Mango Tree and German Bakery. Mango Tree is on the Hampi side of the Tungabhadra river while German Bakery is on the other side, Virupagaddi.
Both the places are quite spacious and offer a relaxed vibe. I cannot completely vouch for food though as it could be hit and miss, in any case it is passable by any foodie metrics. One thing is I’d not recommend ordering a Mango Shake at Mango, it’s pretty awful. The quality at Mango tree is dropping pretty fast while the prices are rising steadily. If you are really looking for good food, check out from several other options in the area such as Suresh, Ravi’s Rose Rooftop Restaurant or Funky Monkey.
At German Bakery a meal for two will cost you around 300/- INR. Wifi is decent and the owner as well the staff is friendly. For breakfast try Cheese Pesto Mushroom Toast (100/- INR) or Onion Tomato Omlet (60/- INR). Order a masala teapot along with food which usually serves four people.
They have good choices for coffee including cappuccino and black coffee but sorry no South Indian Filter Coffee. Should you want, they serve cold beer too!
For lunch/ dinner try one of the reasonably priced (150-180/- INR) Indian curries, lunch starts strictly afternoon.
Sun set points in Hampi
Seeing the Sunset at Hampi is one of those special moment which you will remain etched in your memory for long time. I have seen blessed to witness some of the most amazing Sunsets across the globe, including the one I saw from an airplane, and I will surely rate sunset at Hampi at top of the pile.
There are numerous hills in and around Hampi area proving the travelers with a plethora of choices for catching the sunset. Mathanga hill, Hemkuta hill and the Monkey temple (anjenya hill temple)
Matanga hill: The best among the lot is the Matanga hill. Bird’s eye view. It’s a bit of a trek to get to the top and you need to be in decent shape to complete the climb. Towards the end of the climb the path is dangerous, and to climb all the way to the temple you will really have to be careful.
It’s important to know your limits and to always put safety first. Don’t do it if you don’t feel comfortable. Views from the platform below are also excellent for viewing the sunset.
Hemkuta hill temple: Easiest way to get here is to follow the path left to the Virupaksha temple. It’s an easily uphill walk and hence the most accessible place in Hampi to watch the sunset.
Monkey temple: The monkey temple is actually located bit outside Hampi. Take an auto (tuk tuk) or rent a motorbike to get here. 500 odd steps and a strenuous hike really! Surely not for weak heart-ed. But for the ones who complete the climb the views from the top are rewarding.
It is true in fact that the region for thousands of years has been mired in myths and legends. This is where nature has wreaked havoc working relentlessly for millions of years, this is where a kingdom rose to glory and then fell apart, this is where the great monkey god was born and this is where the ideal King gathered his army to march against the Lord of asura.
Hampi was once a bustling capital of the powerful Vijayanagra Empire which extended its influence over the entire South India. Hampi also finds its reference in Kishkindha Kanda, the fourth of the seven kanda of Ramayana. As the legends has it Hanuman was born in Hampi and ultimately met Lord Rama and Lakshmana. Rama helped Sugreeva in reclaiming the kingdom by killing his brother Bali, in return for a promise of an army which would march to Lanka and fight against the evil asura Ravana.
The surreal landscape of Hampi casts an indescribable spell on its visitors. Today, you will find the majestic ruins of the lost empire which fits seamlessly with a backdrop of huge boulder hills that surround the town.
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