Hampi Ruins, Karnataka, India
Unreal and bewitching, the forlorn ruins of Hampi dot an unearthly landscape that will leave you spellbound the moment you cast your eyes on it. Heaps of giant boulders perch precariously over miles of undulating terrain, their rusty hues offset by jade-green palm groves, banana plantations and paddy fields. While it’s possible to see the ancient ruins and temples of this World Heritage Site in a day or two, this goes against Hampi’s relaxed grain. Plan on lingering for a while.
The main travellers’ ghetto has traditionally been Hampi Bazaar, a village crammed with budget lodges, shops and restaurants, and towered over by the majestic Virupaksha Temple. However, recent demolitions have seen tranquil Virupapur Gaddi across the river become the new hang out. Both offer different experiences, and recommendable to spend a few nights at each.
Hampi is generally a safe, peaceful place, but don’t wander around the ruins after dark or alone, as it can be dangerous terrain to get lost in, especially at night.
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