The Hampi Visit 170109

February 25, 2009

The visit to Hampi was undertaken as a postscript to the Daroji visit; but it is such a huge complex, that I realized very quickly that I was not going to do much more than just scratch the surface of this World Heritage Site. So here are some of the highlights of the trip….

The detail on the monuments is so incredibly beautiful, let me start with a closeup of the Lotus Mahal:

details of lotus mahal archway 170109 hampi

Santosh Martin first took us to the Vijaya Vittala temple complex, where this welcome sign (and list of admission fees!) greeted us: vijaya vittala welcome sign 170109 Please note that you can also drive to the complex in a tractor! Also please note: some "culturephobe" has written "bore, bore, bore" in Kannada, all over the left-hand-side of the bored board! Here's a video of our drive up to the Vijaya Vittala complex (no, we didn't go by tractor): You can get an idea of how rocky and arid the land is, in spite of the Tungabhadra river running close by. The way the buildings have been carved out of stone boggles the mind. Here is the chariot at the would almost expect it to move! ratha vittal temple hampi These are the famous musical pillars in the complex, with a guide explaining to the tourists, the musical notes they produce when struck... Photobucket The temples are full of the most intriguing figures and friezes sculpted on the pillars; I photographed many of them but here is just one sample, of an old man with a covering over his head: old man sculpted onvittal temple To give an idea of how difficult the sculpting must have been, here's a view of one temple, and the road leading up to the eyrie on which it is perched: temple on top and steps to it hampi We then went to the area where the Queen's Bath is situated; this is the building: queen's bath hampi 170109 Here are the ruins of the temple complex, remains of a mighty empire: temple complex hampi 170109 One can see the ancient Kannada inscriptions on the temple walls: ancient kannada inscriptions on virupaksha temple walls 1701008 The Mahanavami Dibba is also exquisite, and I enjoyed seeing the cavalry depicted on its sides: cavalry depicted on mahanavami dibba 170109 But of course, Nature always trumps Man; here are the natural rock formations at Hampi, which are even more awesome than the various parts of the complex: 170109 natural rock formation hampi We then visited the Lotus Mahal, what a beautiful building it is! lotus mahal hampi 170109 Close by are also the elephants' stables: elephants' stable bldgs hampi Here's how one of the ceilings of the elephant stables looks. Can you imagine someone decorating a garage (which houses today's steed) this way? detail of elephants' stables ceilings 170109 On top of a rocky outcrop are these multistoreyed buildings: multi storyed structure hampi 170109 The iconic image of Hampi, to me, was the image of Lakshmi Narasimha at the open-air temple: lakshmi narasimha temple Next to it is the Badavilinga Temple, where the lingam rests in a perpetual pool of water, much like the Jambulingeshwara at Tiruvanaikkaval : badavilinga temple (in water) There are two Ganesha idols, the Sasivekalu and the Kadalekalu's the Sasivekalu one: sasivekalu ganesa hampi 170109 We finally wound up at the Virupaksha temple complex near the banks of the river, where this map of the complex was very illuminating: hampi map virupaksha temple hampi

The beauty of the temple tower in the evening light was indescribable…

virupaksha temple evening sunlight 170109

I will close with this unusual three-headed Nandi idol that I found at the entrance of the Virupaksha temple. The treasures of Hampi would take one months to soak in….I need to go back there again…

three-headed nandi virupaksha temple 170109

Hope you enjoyed your Hampi e-tour! For photos that I have not put in here, click on one of these snaps, and it will take you to my Photobucket site where you can see the rest, too! I have included many snaps of the various signboards that describe the various heritage monuments.