Posted 10 March 2023 in Art and Festival

Here’s what makes Hampi the perfect weekend getaway destination

Hampi is renowned for being a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the state of Karnataka. This ancient village of Karnataka is popular for its ancient temples. In the 14th century, Hampi was the capital of the Vijayanagara Empire and one of the richest cities of India by 1500 C.E. This attracted many traders to Hampi from Portugal and Persia. The outstanding architecture and workmanship of the ancient temples of Hampi, its monuments, and sculptures attract visitors from across the world. 

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1. Virupaksha Temple

The Virupaksha Temple is an ancient temple built on the banks of River Tungabhadra. The exquisite architecture of this 7th-century temple is phenomenal. The beauty and the history of Virupaksha Temple has earned it a spot on the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites. 

The temple is known to be the oldest functioning temples of India and is one of the must-visit places of Karnataka. The architectural brilliance of the Virupaksha Temple, dedicated to Hindu God Shiva, allures tourists from all over the world. 

Tourists will get a chance to see the 7th-century stone inscriptions on the walls of the Virupaksha temple. The temple is proof of the rich heritage and culture of the royal Vijayanagara Empire. This place is a must-visit for history buffs and architecture lovers. 

The Virupaksha temple belongs to Pattadakal monuments which is a set of Jain and Hindu temples in Karnataka. All the Pattadakal monuments are world heritage sites. Among all the temples of the Pattadakal monuments, Virupaksha Temple celebrates being one of the most artistic monuments. 

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2. Vithala Temple

Built in the 16th century, Vithala Temple is an exquisite and remarkable structure in Hampi. The temple is an impressive proof of rich architecture and is located at a distance of 1 km from the city centre. The popular stone chariot of Hampi is nestled inside the compound of the Vithala Temple. The stone chariot is an iconic symbol of Hampi’s architecture. 

The compound of the Vithala Temple is sprawled over a large area. There is an impressive arch with intricate carvings at the main gate of the temple. The famous chariot is just behind the main gate and then comes the main temple. The architecture of the temple is one of the finest with beautiful carvings on it. The carvings on the pillars and walls of the temple represent different gods in various forms. 

The pillars of Vithala Temple are one of the most attractive sights of the temple. If you tap the pillars delicately, it will chime. These pillars are named SAREGAMA Pillars as there are 56 melodic pillars in the temple. 

3. Lotus Palace

The Lotus Palace is named aptly as the structure looks like a lotus in shape. It is one of the most remarkable landmarks of Hampi. The Lotus Palace was used by the royal women of the majestic Vijayanagara Empire and was a designated area for them. The palace is located within the boundaries of the Zenana Enclosure. 

Due to its architecture, Lotus Palace is one of the major tourist attractions of Hampi. The palace is located at a distance of just 2 km from the city centre, and open from Monday to Friday.

4. Yantrodharaka Hanuman Temple

The Yantrodharaka Hanuman Temple is located 2 km from the popular Virupaksha Temple, on the Anjaneya Hill. The temple is also called Monkey Temple. One of the ancient temples, it is dedicated to Hindu God Hanuman, and is 500-years-old. The idol of Lord Hanuman was installed in the temple during the reign of Vijayanagara Kingdom.

The temple is considered sacred for Hindus and is one of the major tourist attractions in Hampi. Since the temple is nestled on the top of Anjaneya Hill, tourists need to climb over 550 steps to reach it. Witness the raw beauty of the hill, surrounded by greenery, while climbing up for the temple.

Even though the temple is located on the top of the hill, it is visited by all with enthusiasm. Tourists can spot monkeys at the temple. There are few snakestones in front of the temple, below a fig tree. These snakestones are also worshipped. The Yantrodharaka Hanuman Temple attracts both nature lovers and religious tourists. 

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5. Hippie Island

Located just 1 km from the city centre, Hippie Island is an island on the northern banks of River Tungabhadra. The island has a vibrant and vivacious hippie culture. This small island is also known as Virapapur Gadde and famous with backpackers. Epitome of scenic exquisiteness, this island is popular for its laid back ambience and lodges. You can reach the island in just 5 minutes via a boat. 

The Hippie Island is dotted with cafés and shacks that come to life from October to March. If you want to enjoy some great views, Hippie Island is the place for you. You can even stay at some of these cafés as they offer guest houses for tourists at cheaper rates. You will have a different experience staying at the Hippie Island, in small huts away from the regular options. This island is full of backpackers who wish to explore the ruins of Hampi. The cafés at the island are owned by Indians and foreigners who are settled in Hampi. However, monsoon season is not the best time to visit the island and it is advisable to opt for a taxi to the other end of the island rather than taking a boat or a ferry. 

6. Hampi Festival

Known as the festival of lights and colour, Hampi festival is one of the most important festivals of Karnataka. Also known as Vijaya Utsava, it is celebrated in the month of November on a grand level in Hampi. During the festival, musicians and artists showcase their talent. 

The festival is a magnificent affair, and visitors can find little trinkets and handicrafts at the stalls here. The festival brings positivity and unity among the people. Hampi Festival will give a glimpse of Karnataka’s vibrant culture and rich heritage.

Travel tips

  • Footwear is prohibited inside the temples. If you are uncomfortable walking without footwear, wear a clean pair of socks.
  • Photography of the idols inside the temples is not allowed.
  • Avoid roaming around in secluded areas of the city at night.
  • It is advisable to travel light as the temples are sprawled over acres of land. 

How to reach 

  • By air: Belagavi Airport is the nearest international airport to Hampi. Located at a distance of 206 km from Hampi, the Belagavi Airport is situated at a distance of 10 km from Sambra city centre. The airport is connected to several major cities of the country via regular IndiGo flights. 
  • By train: Hospet Junction is the nearest railway junction to Hampi. The railway station is located at a distance of 13 km from Hampi. 
  • By road:  Hampi is well-connected with major cities via regular state-owned and private buses. There are both luxury and economical buses that run from and to Hampi regularly.

Best time to visit Hampi

However, the best time to visit Hampi is in the winter season from early October to late February. The weather during this season remains pleasant for sightseeing. 


Hampi enjoys a dry and hot climate. The summer months are from March to June and the average temperature is around 40°C. Early-July to August is the monsoon season. The winter season in Hampi starts from November and stays till February. The average temperature during winters is around 20°C. Hampi experiences low but recurrent rainfall. The showers keep the weather in Hampi pleasant with the temperature ranging between 25°C and 33°C.


Other than being a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Hampi is known for offering a serene and peaceful ambience. A tour to Hampi will at least take two days. Tourists can plan a weekend trip for a cultural and religious tour to Hampi. After visiting the ruins of the ancient temples and palaces, you will come back with a lot of knowledge. 

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