Spirit of Hampi

An itinerary curated for visitors who want an immersive local cultural experience of Hampi.

Hampi is known for its extensive built heritage spread over 42 square kilometers comprising of stunning structures & monuments. Amongst the ruins of the medieval city are 28 village settlements, the people living in these communities are descendants of erstwhile citizens of Vijayanagara. Through their festivals, cuisine, artforms, rituals, folklore & oral tradition they are still connected to their past. This is why Hampi is often referred to as a living heritage site.  

Through this curated itinerary we hope to give you a glimpse into the lives of people in these communities, their shared heritage and its connection to Hampi.  We will explore all the heritage sites, learn about architecture and do all the usual things, but we will also meet people from local community, share a meal with them and get a glimpse into their lives. 

For more details please refer to the detailed itinerary section.

  • Covers all the important heritage sites and monuments at Vijayanagara Hampi at a leisurely pace. 
  • Hemakuta Hill & Virupaksha Temple:
    • Origins story of Vijayanagara Empire & Stories from Pampa Mahatme Sthala Purana
    • Visit to the only functional temple complex at Hampi and the oldest shrines dating to 7th Century
  • Sacred Area of Hampi 
    • Riverside walk along Tungabhadra river discovering hidden gems and several temple shrines.
    • Pinnacle of Vijayanagara temple Architecture style at Vittala Temple with 56 pillared ranga Mantapa with musical columns and the stone chariot to Garuda. 
    • Learn about the great philosopher saint Vyasa Tirtha and his disciples Kanakadasa & Purandara Dasa who resided here on the banks of Tungabhadra river. 
  • Urban Core of Hampi 
    • Social life of Medieval citizens of Vijayanagara. Festivals they celebrated, layout of the city.
    • Unique courtly architecture style of Vijayanagara.  
    • Cover different monuments whose function vary from residential, ceremonial, administrative, defensive, pleasure and military. 
  • Anegundi Cluster 
    • Monuments and sites that pre-date Vijayanagara. 
    • Visit functional temples, old palace structures, cave shrines and hear stories from local folklore. 
 DAY 1

01:00 PM – Arrival & Check-in 

On arrival check-in to your hotel/resort room.  Have lunch at the restaurant at your property. Take it easy in the afternoon.

05:00 PM to 07:30 PM – Hemakuta & Virupaksha Temple 

As per the local tradition, we will start out visit of Hampi with a visit to the monolith of Sasivekalu Ganesha.  We then climb our way to the entrance of Hemakuta Hill.  Hemakuta hill was a fortified hill where the founders of Vijayanagara first set up their residence before moving it few kilometers to the south.  On this hill we find several shrines ranging from 8th to 16th centuries with distinct architectural styles. 

We then head to the Virupaksha temple complex.  Within the Sacred area of Vijayanagara, there are 4 Major temple complexes, of which Virupaksha is the oldest and only surviving one.  The much older shrines of Pampa Devi, Bhoodevi & Durga dating to 6th & 8th centuries are incorporated into the current temple complex.  Here we will learn about the origin of  the name Hampi & story of how Vijayanagara was founded.

08:00 PM: Return to Hotel/Resort in Hampi

Overnight stay at Hotel/Resort 

DAY 2

07:30 AM to 08:30 AM:  Breakfast 

09:00 AM to 04:30 PM: Heritage Hampi Tour 

On this engaging Hampi tour we will explore the rich history of Vijayanagara empire, learn about unique architecture of various monuments, hear stories of victories and defeat. Hampi today is a protected UNESCO world heritage site, whose core zone is spread over an area of 42 square kilometers encompassing ancient temples, basements of palaces, remains of aquatic structures, ancient market streets, royal pavilions, bastions, royal platforms, treasury buildings and more. Within the core zone of the site there are several clusters of monuments, the most important amongst them are the Sacred Center, Urban Core, Islamic quarters, Kamlapura and Anegundi. On this Hampi Tour we will attempt to cover all the important monuments in the Sacred and Urban core areas. In the morning we will first cover the Sacred Center. Sacred Center as the name suggests is the religion center of Hampi, a number of ancient temples and structures are in this area. After lunch break we continue our exploration with the Urban Core area. This area was the Citadel of the Vijayanagara kings, it encompasses courtly and military structures of the core zone. 

05:00 PM: Return to Hotel/Resort in Hampi

Overnight stay at Hotel/Resort

DAY 3

07:30 – 8:00 AM – Breakfast 

08:30 AM – Checkout of Rooms

9:00 AM to 2:30 PM: Village Life Tour – Hampi through eyes of its people

On this Hampi Village Life Tour, we will embark on a journey of exploring & experiencing the local way of life in rural communities around the UNESCO world heritage site. There are around 29 village settlements within the protected core zone and people living in these communities are an essential part of the cultural heritage of Hampi. The traditions, festivals, social life of people here is deeply intertwined with their shared heritage and the landscape. This is why Hampi is often referred to as a living heritage site. On this tour we will immerse ourselves in lives of people from these communities, understand how they contribute to the richness of the cultural heritage of this site. 

03:00 PM: Transfer for onward journey

Premium Boutique Property
Premium Resort Property
3 Star Standard Hotel
Budget Local Guest House

INCLUSIONS

  • Accommodation as per preference – 2 night stay.
  • All transfers and local transportation
  • Tours & Activities
    • Day 1 – Local guide, entry fee, evening tea. 
    • Day 2 – Battery Cart Fee, Expert english speaking heritage guide
    • Day 3 –  Bullock Cart Ride, Craft Workshop, Local guide, Refreshments, Entry Fee, Vegetarian meal with a local family

EXCLUSION

  • We do not provide bottled drinking water to avoid single-use plastics on our tours. Please carry a water bottle or buy one on the way.
  • Entry fee to monuments is NOT included in the price. We do this so as to keep the price same for foreign and Indian nationals
Francisca, Australia
@853franciscaa
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Having read previous reviews and comments I had high expectations and Explore Hampi did not disappoint. I booked two tours – the heritage tour, which covered all of the important monuments of the sacred and the royal centre, and the mythical landscape tour, which included a ride on mopeds through the countryside. Both tours covered the best parts of Hampi, with the highlight being a delicious home cooked breakfast. A big thank you to my amazing tour guide who was extremely knowledgeable and went out of his way to make sure that I had a memorable experience. I highly recommend Explore Hampi.
Amena, France
@Amena004
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At first we did the Hampi Heritage Tour, it was absolutely amazing! We saw a lot of beautiful temples and thanks to our great & very knowledgeable guide, we learned a lot of the indian mythology! The next day we did the Sunrise at Matunga Hill Tour. We climbed up early in the morning on the hill and were rewarded with an incredible view over Hampi! We also enjoyed the coracle boat ride through the Tungabhadra river. We highly recommend Explore Hampi Tours to any traveller, because you get to a lot of background knowledge and get to see a lot of beautiful things in compact time!
Mita, India
@mitBlr
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We , the gang of three friends visited Hampi for short two nights trip. As we had limited time, we decided to take a guided tour to make the most from our trip. I went through the trip advisor s rating on all the various tours and picked up this. After my interaction with Arjun and his professional and prompt response on all my concerns and queries, we zeroed down to go with these guys. First day of our trip was exploring the ruins of Hampi with tonnes of information on history of this once glorious empire. It was a wonderful exhaustive day and we enjoyed it every second of it in spite of hot sun all along. The second day was exploring villages on the bikes, caves, paintings and coracle ride along with amazing picnic lunch on the rocks.
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