Today morning I woke up to the news that the monuments at the world heritage site in Hampi have been flooded with water. The places where I was wandering so peacefully just two weeks back are in a state of deluge. I hope it recovers from this difficult situation soon, without losing any of its glory.
So, Day 2 of our trip to Hampi started with a visit to the Lotus Mahal. An architecture marvel, you can spend good two hours to explore the ruins & the adjoining gardens.
|Lotus Mahal, Hampi|
From there, we moved on to exploring the Pushkarani, which unveils many glorious stories of the Vijayanagara Empire. The step-well was a scene to remember for a lifetime. Such precision in architecture is just spell-bounding. Take a guide to see this place as it has startling stories attached to it. Like this stepwell was discovered much later in the 1980s after the researchers found a water pipe which was leading to somewhere. They dig up the entire area, which was until then used for parking the tourist vehicles and discovered this beautiful step-well. Isn’t it amazing?
|Pushkarini Stepwell, Hampi|
The guide also took us to the secret cave where the King used to conduct his top-level meetings. The entry had two small elephants made of musical stones that could produce a bell-like sound when tapped lightly. Their food plates were also made from stones and also had music in it. It’s simply enchanting to visit this place full of mystical stories.
The highlight of the day was a visit to the VITTALA TEMPLE. Simply breath-taking. I have never seen something as beautiful as this temple. Rightly so, the locals of Hampi call this place as the Main temple. Everything about this place is fascinating. The grandeur simply took my breath away, right from the moment we reached the temple vicinity, which is by a small club car that is driven by women drivers – way to go women empowerment.
|Vittala Temple, Hampi|
It’s good to invest in a guide here as well, specially, to explore this temple, which has a rich history attached to its every stone and pillar. The entrance is fascinating and a few steps inside, you can see the GOLDEN CHARIOT. The craftsmanship over here is spellbinding. Every symbol carved on the chariot has a story to narrate.
|Golden Chariot, Hampi|
Moving close to the main temple, you can witness the most mystical aspect – the 56 musical pillars, so aptly arranged with symbols denoting the sound each pillar emits. Intriguing as it can be, the guide shared the story behind these pillars. The Queen used to love dancing and hence, the King built these pillars for her to practice dancing. While dancing, the whole place would be enclosed with curtains and the proof of it can still be seen as the rock hooks stand tall on the edges of the large Ranga Mantapa or the main hall. The symbols carved on these pillars depict the different dance forms and various activities that used to take place in that era.
|Musical pillars of Hampi|
The backside of this temple has a river which makes for the most scenic wallpaper image. Here, as well you can enjoy the coracle ride, which we did to end our amazing & memorable sight-seeing journey of this beautiful place called Hampi.
Peaceful, self-rejuvenating, mystical and full of rich history of the golden years. I plan to visit Hampi again but this time maybe for a longer period. A three-day trip is not enough to explore the town of ruins. If you want to soak in the peace, nature and the enchanting stories of the yesteryear era, plan a week’s visit to this postcard town called – HAMPI. I hope you enjoy reading this blog, stay tuned for more travel tales of our Incredible India.