Hampi Travel Guide

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The most reliable & authoritative hampi travel guide, compiled by a team of locals & experts.

If you are looking for advice on how to reach Hampi. If you are looking for information on Things to do in Hampi, Hampi Hotels, Hampi Sightseeing, Travel Tips. Or if you are looking for information that will help you plan your Hampi trip then this article is for you!

How to REACH HAMPI

By Plane : The nearest airport is at Vidyanagar (45 Kms), which operates daily flight from Bangalore and Hyderabad. Check Trujet website for more details. We also have airports at Hubli (143 km – 5 Hours), Bangalore (360 Kms – 7 Hours) and Goa (360 Kms – 8 Hours) 

By train: The nearest railway station is Hospet Junction (IR station code: HPT), 13km away. Overnight trains run several times a week from Bangalore, Hyderabad and Goa. From Hospet train station it is very easy to hop on a local bus which goes between the railway station and the main bus station and onward to Hampi (same bus). If you don’t want to wait then you can also get an Auto Rickshaw to take you to Hampi (INR 300 – 350). Your booked hotel would be happy to arrange a pickup for you, please check with them.  If you book with us then we will arrange the same. 

By bus: Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation operates daily buses to Hospet from Bangalore, Goa, Mysore and Gokarna. Book your tickets in advance if you want a coach or an air-conditioned service. There are private bus companies operating buses on these routes too, in addition there are buses from Pune & Mumbai. From the bus station or drop point you can arrange a tuk-tuk or a car for transfer to your hotel.  

By Road: You can hire a cab from one of these cities or drive down yourself.  If you are booking tours/accommodation with us, we would be happy to arrange a pickup from any of these cities as well.  Please contact us for assistance or more information.

  • Bangalore: 350 km / 7 Hours
  • Hubli: 150 km /4.5 Hours
  • Hyderabad: 360 km / 8 Hours
  • Pune: 560 km / 11 Hours

You can browse our blog section for more information like various ways available to a traveller to reach Hampi from Goa or Bangalore.  

WHERE TO STAY IN HAMPI?

Hampi is a UNESCO world heritage site, as a result of which commercial activity within the core zone is heavily regulated. Which is why most licenced accommodation options are outside the core zone. Before you book your stay, it is important to know where your hotel is located and how far it is from Hampi’s main attractions. 

In this article we have listed the different areas within Hampi and accommodation available here.  For our recommendations on places to stay you can refer to the below article.

Janata Plot : Is as small shanty town next to the Virupaksha temple in the heart of Hampi village. This is the last surviving commercial area within Hampi village, most others have been demolished or moved to a different part by the government authorities.  Here you will find budget accommodation in form of guest houses. Rooms here are simple and comfortable. If you are a budget traveller who will be spending most of your time out exploring then this could be a good option. The location is a big plus because you are close to the center of Heritage sites in Hampi. No alcohol or Non Vegetarian food is served in this area due to its proximity with Virupaksha Temple. The area is under litigation so their status keeps changing, so check with the property owner before you book.

Virupapura Gaddi / Hampi Island / Hippie Island : This is an Island on Tungabhadra river, and is connected to Hampi by a ferry boat (or 30 Km route by road). It is partly agricultural, partly forest land and it comes under the protected core zone of Hampi. This area has the highest density of guesthouses near Hampi, set amongst paddy fields and along the river. If you are a budget traveller and would like to spend some time relaxing amongst beautiful surroundings then this is a good option. This is also a good option if your looking to go boulder climbing.

Kadirampur / Prakash Nagar / New Hampi : Some of the displaced residents from Hampi Bazaar have been allotted government land in nearby villages. Here they have started to build guesthouses and restaurants. Some have started calling this place “New Hampi”.  This area is a 15 minute autoride from Hampi. Another convenient location for budget travellers. 

Kamalapura / Malapanagudi : Just beyond the core zone of Hampi are villages of Kamalapura & Malapanagudi. You can find a variety of properties here. Standard category properties like KSTDC’s Mayura and Clarks Inn Hotel. Premium category properties like  Heritage Resort Hampi and Jungle Lodge’s Wilderness Resort. Luxury world class property like Evolve Back Resorts. All of these are within 5 to 8 Kms from Hampi.

Anegundi : This is a heritage village located on the northern bank of Tungabhadra. It is connected to Hampi via a ferry across the river at Talwar Ghatta boat point (Close to Vittala Temple) or alternatively it is 22 Kms by road to hampi.  If you want to immerse yourself in the cultural heritage of Hampi through its people, then this is a good option for you. You live amongst people in guesthouses or homestays, away from the mad tourist traffic but fully immersed in life of an idyllic Indian village.  The Kishkinda Trust (TKT) operates few properties here.

Hospet : This is the main town located 15 kms from Hampi. There are several properties catering to all kinds of budgets. This is where most visitors to Hampi choose to stay for its affordability and options. You can choose amongst Royal Orchid Hotel, Mallige Hotel, Krishna Palace, Priyadarshini Pride and many others

THINGS TO DO IN HAMPI

Most visitors are drawn to Hampi due to its historic importance as the erstwhile capital of Vijayanagara. But there is so much more to see and experience in & around Hampi that you’d need 3 to 4 days at minimum. We have listed various things to do in Hampi here.

For a more detailed look into different things to do in Hampi and corresponding tours offered by us, please read this article

Explore the Heritage sights of Hampi

Know the history of Vijayanagara, delve into its architecture & function of different monuments. Learn about the social lives of its medieval citizens

Coracle Boat ride over Tungabhadra river

Coracles are small circular boats weaved from bamboo. Traditionally these were used for fishing and ferrying people across the river. Today you can enjoy a boat ride on the river.

Ride mopeds & explore the countryside

Visit villages, lakes, agricultural fields and interesting sights to the north of Tungabhadra river on mopeds. This is the most fun and engaging activity

Catch a stunning sunrise or sunset

Hike up Matunga hill or Anjanadri hill for a panoramic view. Given the unique landscape the sunrise and sunsets in Hampi are pure poetry.

Enjoy a home cooked meal with local hosts

Catch a home cooked meal with local specialities like Banana Flower curry, Bjal Curry, Holige, Jowar Roti.

Buy local handicrafts & interact with the artisans

Meet local artisans in Anegundi village that make handicraft from banana fiber & water hyacinth. A art workshop can be arranged where the artisans will teach you the basics of their trade.

Discover the Ramayana connection

Hampi and surrounding villages together are believed to be the Mythical Kingdom of Kishkinda mentioned in Ramayana. Visit numerous places associated with the great epic and relive the stories

Try your hand at Bouldering

Hampi is the bouldering capital of the world. Every year thousands of professionals and climbing enthusiasts come to Hampi to master the unique boulders of Hampi.

Visit prehistoric caves and megalithic tombs

The earliest residents in this region were nomadic cattle herders from around 1000 BC, who would seek shelter in the boulder caves. Hampi's boulder hills have many hidden cave systems with prehistoric cave art, megalithic dolmens

Go on a birding tour

With over 230 species of birds documented in the region, Hampi is a birders paradis. You can spot rare birds like the yellow throated bulbul, paradise flycatcher, rose necked parakeet amongst others.

Day trip to Badami, Aihole & Patadakkal

The town of Badami, Aihole and Pattadakal, are celebrated for their magnificent rock-cut shrines and structural temples. Together these may be considered among the earliest, best preserved remnants of temple art in India

Visit India's only sanctuary dedicated to Sloth Bears

Daroji Sloth Bear Sanctuary is the only place where one can spot these Sloth bears, who are the honey-lovers endemic to India.

GETTING AROUND IN HAMPI

The sites in Hampi are spread over 42 square kilometers, use of local transportation therefore becomes a must. If you opt for a private tour or package then the operator will provide local transportation and pickup/drop services included in it.  Here are the different options to consider for local transportation. 

Hired Car : This is the most convenient option for travellers to Hampi. Specially if your accommodation is in Hospet or one of the distant villages. It also allows you to cover sites that are away like the Sloth Bear Sanctuary, Anjanadri Hills, Megalithic Tomb Sites etc. Hampi also gets warm during mid-day, having a comfortable air-conditioned car to get to in between places might be something you want to consider.

Hired Auto Rickshaws : The most popular way of getting around different sites in Hampi is the humble Auto Rickshaw or the tuk-tuk as some people call it. You can even book one for the entire day. You can find auto rickshaws at the stand near Hampi Bazaar anytime of the day. 

Bicycle Rental : This is a great way of exploring the monuments in Hampi as long as you have the energy & time on your side.  There are plenty of vendors in the Hampi Bazaar area that will rent cycles on hourly basis. Only single speed cycles are available as of today. Please inspect the condition of the bike before renting it. 

Mopeds / Motorcycles Rentals: Currently entry of rental mopeds or bikes are strictly regulated within the protected areas of Hampi. Only rental vehicles with appropriate registration papers are permitted. You will know if the rental vehicle is legitimate by looking at its registration plate, which should be in black colour with number displayed in yellow colour. If it is any other colour then do not rent it, as you will be denied entry.  Mopeds can also be rented at Hampi Island to explore the countryside. 

BEST TIME TO VISIT HAMPI

September to March: The season in Hampi starts in September and peaks in December/January and ends by March. This is the time when the weather is the best in Hampi and allows you to spend more time outdoors. It can get really crowded towards December end and January. So make sure to plan your travel ahead of time. 

April & May: The weather is unforgiving in the summer months of April and May. Most businesses that depend on tourist inflow shut down for these months in Hampi. Many guest houses, resorts and hotels run special promotion and drop prices as much as 30 – 50% during this time.

June to August: The temperatures drop during these months, but since it is still considered off season, the prices are low. The entire landscape transforms with the monsoon and there is lush greenery. This is a good time to visit Hampi if you are looking for a budget trip.

Things to remember

  1. Bring a good pair of walking shoes – There will be a lot of walking involved to cover different heritage sites at Hampi which is spread over a large area. A comfortable pair of shoes will make it easier for you. 
  2. Carry a Shawl or Scarf – It can be used to cover your head when the sun is beating down on you, some places do not have shade.  When entering temples or villages you can use it to cover midriff, shoulders or chest area. 
  3. Carry water bottles, sunglasses, sun protection lotion, hat/cap while you go out to participate in a tour or sightseeing.
  4. Carry Identity Card – If you are an Indian national then carry a government authorised ID card. For foreign nationals please carry your Passport, Visa and Insurance documents. 
Arjun Bhat

Arjun Bhat

Travel Entrepreneur who works on curating immersive local experiences of South India. TEDx Speaker. Yoga & Meditation.

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