Photo Credit : rohitvijay
Humpi, a village and temple town situated on the banks of the River Tungabhadra recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in northern Karnataka. It is located within the ruins of the city of Vijayanagara, the former capital of the Vijayanagara Empire.
In ancient times it was one of the richest and largest cities in the world. It is the most visited historical place in Karnataka.
The principal industries of the village are agriculture, the support of the Virupaksha temple and some other local holy places in the vicinity, as well as tourism.
The annual Humpi Utsav or “Vijaya Festival” celebrated since Vijayanagara reign is today organized by the Government of Karnataka as Nada Festival.
- Vittala Temple:
It is an ancient monument that is well-known for its exceptional architecture and unmatched craftsmanship. It is considered to be one of the largest and the most famous structure in Hampi.
The iconic temple has amazing stone structures such as the incomparable stone chariot and the fascinating musical pillars. This predominant monument is a major attraction of the ruined town and is a must-see for visitors and tourists.
- Matanga Hills:
The highest point situated at the centre of Hampi is the best spot to get an aerial view of Hampi.
The north part of the hill ends at the south bank of the Tungabhadra River where the Kodanda Rama Temple is located.
The eastern edge shares its border with the Achyuta Raya’s Temple. The south is generally an irrigated valley where the meandering Turthu Canal and a cart track is located.
The peak is located at the southern part of the Matanga hill. Two paths lead to the topmost point where the Veerabhadra Temple is located.
The most popular is a stepped ramp at the west; and the other, a tedious but thrilling trekker’s trail. The steps are practically intact and they are as old as the Vijayanagara kingdom.
- Hanuman Temple:
At the top of the Anjaneya’s hill is the temple devoted to Hanuman, the monkey warrior god. The temple is of high importance to the worshipers of lord Rama. The temple door is always kept closed (to prevent the cheeky monkeys enter inside
The icon of Hanuman is carved on the rock and also there is a small shrine for Rama and his consort Sita inside the temple.
The view from the hilltop is marvelous. The way to the hilltop is stepped. It’s quite a climb.
- Elephant Stables:
It is a major tourist attraction. This long building with a row of domed chambers was used to ‘park’ the royal elephants.
There are 11 domed tall chambers; some of them are inter- connected. It is located in the area that lies just outside the Zenana Enclosure.
It is one of the finest examples of Indo-Islamic style of architecture.
- Lotus Palace:
Lotus Palace or Lotus Mahal it is a unique structure located among the rich architectural ruins of Hampi. This majestic structure is a part of the Zenana Enclosure, a secluded area reserved for the royal ladies of the Vijayanagara Empire.
The highlight of the Lotus Mahal is its exceptional and distinctive architecture. The archways of the structure resemble petals of a lotus and provide the whole structure the shape of a half-open lotus bud.