Hampi is kind of in the middle of nowhere but don’t let that put you off visiting this majestic little hippie town. Once you do arrive there are lots of things to do in Hampi that will make the journey here worth it. Situated in Karnataka, south India it takes about 7 hours to get to from Bangalore and 9 hours from Goa. Once upon a time Hampi India was an important spiritual center becoming the centre of the Hindu Vijayanagara Empire capital in the 14th century. Today Hampi is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with many awe inspiring religious temples, monuments and not to mention dramatic big boulders dotted around town.
Here’s the top 5 things to do in Hampi India
Get your hippie on at the Hampi Bazaar
Shop until you drop (literally you may drop from heat exhaustion in March or April) at the Hampi Bazaar which is just next to the bus stand. The Hampi Bazaar has a similar vibe to Anjuna Flea Market in Goa.
Here you can find all sorts of trinkets, silver jewelry, clothes and ornaments. I bought some cute tops and trousers here for crazy cheap prices… love it! If you’re like me then shopping is one of the best things to do in Hampi for sure.
It will cost you a ten rupee note but who would turn down the opportunity to get blessed by Lakshmi the Virupaksha temple elephant. If you don’t try to short change her she’ll hoover up the note and then place her trunk on your head. A living incarnation of the god Ganesha, a symbol of success and a remover of obstacles you can also watch Lakshmi get bathed alongside the locals.
Visit the Royal Enclosure
Follow the winding paths to see lots of different temples and fabulous architecture. Make sure you take a break with a coconut and get some shade under the trees in the lawns of Lotus Mahal. While you’re here don’t forget to visit the Queen’s Bath. Hire a tour guide to show you around and prepared to be surprised by what you can learn about the place from the experts.Want to feel like you’re stepping back in time or onto the set of the Flintstones movie? Welcome to Hampi #India... you’re going to love this place! Click To Tweet
See Hampi on a bike
Hampi is a DIY destination which means you really can Do It Yourself if you so wish. So hire a bike and zip about discovering the wonders of magical Hampi in your own time. Make sure you stop for lots of tasty roadside snacks and chai served by the friendly locals. Don’t worry, it’s a very small town so you won’t get lost easily.
Admire the sunset from Monkey Temple
Not that the sunsets aren’t stunning everywhere in Hampi but they are extra special from Monkey Temple. Mainly because you’ve had to work for it by climbing the 600 steps up to the top. Monkey Temple is the birthplace of Lord Hanuman and it is situated on top of Anjayena Hill which has breathtaking views over Hampi. Bring water and a shawl because you may want to stay a while.
Take a boat to the hippie side
… and never return! Only joking, you can of course get the boat straight back again if drum circles aren’t your thing. This is the quieter area of Hampi called Anegundi. Taking the boat across is fun but don’t expect to find luxury accommodation here. The peace and quite and views of the rice paddies make staying in a hut well worth it though. The most popular guesthouses here are Shanti, Mowgli and Rambo. Be prepared to embrace your inner hippie and bring on the braids, bongos and banana pancakes like it’s 1999, no seriously.
Have you been to Hampi already? If so share any of your own recommendations for top things to in Hampi in the comments section below…
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Read more: My One Month South India Travel Itinerary
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