Things to Do in Hampi & A Complete Travel Guide

Are you ready for an adventure of a lifetime? Look no further than Hampi – a hidden gem in the heart of Karnataka, India. Our Things To Do in Hampi – A Travel Guide will explore its breathtaking landscapes, ancient ruins, and vibrant culture; this UNESCO World Heritage Site is a dream destination for history buffs and wanderlust seekers alike.

But before you embark on your journey to this enchanting wonderland, we’ve covered everything you need to know! From must-visit attractions to top things to do and insider tips, get ready to dive into the ultimate guide for planning your trip to Hampi. Let’s make memories that will last a lifetime!

Achyuta Raya Temple in Hampi
Achyuta Raya Temple in Hampi | Photo by Harikrishnan P

Hampi, located in the southern state of Karnataka, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most captivating destinations in India. It is a small village once the capital of the Vijayanagara Empire, which ruled South India for over two centuries from the 14th to 16th century AD.

The ruins of this ancient city are spread across an area of about 26 square kilometres. They are surrounded by stunning natural landscapes, making it a picturesque destination. Despite being in ruins, Hampi continues attracting tourists worldwide due to its rich cultural heritage and architectural marvels.

A Mix of Culture, Nature & History

One of the main reasons why Hampi is a must-visit destination is because it offers a unique blend of history, spirituality, and natural beauty. The temples and monuments here testify to the grandeur and opulence of the Vijayanagara Empire. The intricate carvings on these structures depict scenes from Hindu mythology and showcase outstanding craftsmanship.

Apart from its historical significance, Hampi also has a spiritual aura that can be felt throughout the village. With over 500 temples scattered around its landscape, Hampi is considered one of the holiest places for Hindus. The Virupaksha temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is one of the oldest functioning temples in India and attracts thousands of devotees every year.

In addition to its cultural importance, Hampi also offers breathtaking views with its boulder-strewn hillsides, lush green paddy fields, and glistening Tungabhadra river flowing through it. It is a paradise for nature lovers and adventure seekers, with activities like trekking, rock climbing, and coracle rides available.

In conclusion, Hampi is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to experience India’s rich history and culture, along with its natural beauty. The village has something to offer everyone and promises an unforgettable trip filled with ancient wonders and enchanting experiences.

Getting There: Different modes of transportation to Hampi

Boulders and Paddy Fields of Hampi
Boulders and Paddy Fields of Hampi | Photo by Bhavinesh Bharathan

Hampi is a popular tourist destination located in the state of Karnataka, India. It is known for its rich history and ancient ruins, making it a must-visit place for history buffs and adventure seekers. However, planning your transportation mode is essential before embarking on your trip to Hampi. This section will discuss the various modes of transportation available to reach Hampi and their pros and cons.

1. By Air:

The nearest airport to Hampi is the Hubli Airport, approximately 160 km from the town. You can hire a taxi or take a bus to Hampi from there. The airport has good connectivity with major cities like Mumbai, Bengaluru, and Delhi.


  • Fastest mode of transportation.
  • Flights are available from major cities in India.
  • Comfortable journey.


  • Expensive compared to other modes of transportation.
  • Limited flights may result in higher airfare during peak season.

2. By Train:

The closest railway station to Hampi is Hospet Junction Railway Station (HPT), which is around 13 km away from the town. You can take a taxi or auto-rickshaw from there to Hampi.


  • Affordable option.
  • Trains are available from major cities in India.
  • Scenic train journey through rural landscapes.


  • Limited trains may require advance booking during peak season.
  • Longer travel time compared to flights.

3. By Bus:

Hampi has good connectivity with major cities in Karnataka, like Bengaluru, Mysore, and Hospet. You can take a bus from these cities to reach Hampi. The town also has local buses that connect different parts of the town.


  • Cheapest mode of transportation.
  • Good connectivity with nearby cities.
  • Local buses provide an authentic experience of the town.


  • Long travel time.
  • Buses may only be comfortable for a short distance.

4. By Car/Taxi:

You can also opt for a private car or taxi to reach Hampi from nearby cities like Bengaluru, Hyderabad, or Goa. You can either hire a self-drive car or book a chauffeured taxi service.


  • Flexible timings and routes.
  • Comfortable journey.
  • Allows you to explore nearby places at your own pace.


  • Expensive option if travelling alone.
  • Traffic may result in longer travel time during peak season.

In conclusion, your transportation mode depends on your budget, comfort level, and travel preferences. It is recommended to plan your trip in advance and book tickets accordingly to avoid any last-minute hassles. No matter which mode of transportation you choose, a trip to Hampi will surely be an enriching and memorable experience.

Best Time to Visit

Beautiful Sunsets of Hampi | Photo by Suraj Mangalassery

Hampi, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Karnataka, India, is a popular tourist destination known for its rich history and stunning architecture. This ancient city was once the capital of the Vijayanagara Empire and is now home to numerous ruins, temples, and other historical sites that attract visitors from around the world.

If you are planning a trip to Hampi, it is crucial to choose the right time of year to visit. The weather, festivals, and tourist crowds can significantly impact your overall experience. To help you plan your trip effectively, here are the ideal months to visit Hampi based on these factors.


The best time to visit Hampi is during the winter season, which lasts from October to February. During this time, the weather is pleasant, with temperatures ranging from 15°C to 30°C (59°F – to 86°F). The cool breeze makes it perfect for exploring the outdoors and visiting various historical sites without feeling too hot or uncomfortable.

Summer in Hampi starts in March and lasts till June, with scorching temperatures reaching 40°C (104°F). It can be scorching and humid during this time, making it difficult for tourists to explore outdoor attractions. Monsoon season begins in July and ends in September, bringing heavy rainfall, which can disrupt travel plans.

Tourist Crowds

Hampi receives a high influx of tourists during the winter season from October to February. If you want to avoid large crowds, planning your trip during the shoulder season is best, from March to June or September to October. There are fewer tourists during this time, and you can explore the attractions at your own pace without feeling rushed or crowded.


In conclusion, the ideal time to visit Hampi would be from October to February when the weather is pleasant, and plenty of festivals and events are happening. However, to avoid crowds, consider visiting during the shoulder season (March – June & September to October) . Plan your trip accordingly and have a memorable experience exploring this ancient city.

Where to Stay in Hampi

Birds Eye View of Hampi
Birds Eye View of Hampi | Photo by Bhavinesh Bharathan

Hampi, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in India, offers diverse accommodation options for various budgets and travel preferences. These accommodations include:

  1. Budget-friendly hostels: Ideal for budget travellers, hostels provide shared dormitory-style accommodations with basic amenities and a chance to connect with fellow travellers.
  2. Guesthouses: Family-run guesthouses offer more privacy than hostels and often provide simple rooms with attached bathrooms. Some may offer home-cooked meals.
  3. Heritage hotels: For a unique experience, heritage hotels provide a glimpse into the city’s history while offering modern comforts. Many also organize cultural activities and guided tours.
  4. Resorts: Luxury resorts, located away from the main tourist areas offer top-notch facilities, serene surroundings, and various activities like yoga, spa treatments, and outdoor adventures.
  5. Boutique hotels: Combining heritage charm with modern amenities, boutique hotels offer personalized services and attention to detail, often in or near the main tourist areas.
  6. Camping: For adventure seekers, camping is an option. Campsites offer basic tents; some provide luxury tented accommodations with attached bathrooms.

It’s advisable to book well in advance during the peak season (October-March) due to the town’s popularity. Hampi caters to travellers with various budgets and preferences, ensuring there’s a suitable place to stay for everyone.

Must-See Places in Hampi

Stone Chariot Hampi - Things To Do in Hampi
Stone Chariot Hampi | Photo by Shreenivas Yenni

Hampi is a mesmerizing destination with a rich history and cultural heritage. It is home to countless ancient temples, monuments, and ruins that will leave you in awe. If you plan a trip to Hampi, add these must-see places to your itinerary for an unforgettable experience.

  1. Hampi Bazaar – Stroll through this bustling market street, which was once the commercial hub of Hampi during its prime days. You can find everything from handicrafts, souvenirs, clothes, and traditional food here.
  2. Lotus Mahal – Also known as Chitragani Mahal or Kamal Mahal, this striking palace was used by the royal women of the Vijayanagara Empire during their recreational activities. The architecture of this palace resembles a lotus flower, hence the name.
  3. Matanga Hill – This is the highest point in Hampi and offers stunning views of the surrounding ruins and monuments. Many trekkers go here to catch a glimpse of the sunrise or sunset.
  4. Queen’s Bath – This is a large, well-preserved bathing complex built for the royal women of the Vijayanagara Empire. It consists of a central pool surrounded by arched corridors and balconies.
  5. Zenana Enclosure – This was the secluded area where the royal women lived in Hampi. The Lotus Mahal, Elephant Stables, and other structures can be found within this enclosure.
  6. Purandaradasa Mantapa – This memorial hall is dedicated to the famous poet Purandaradasa, a devotee of Lord Krishna. It houses a statue of him and his compositions carved on the walls.

Temples of Hampi

  1. Virupaksha Temple – This magnificent temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is one of the oldest functioning temples in India. The intricate carvings and sculptures on the temple walls will leave you amazed. Take advantage of the famous chariot festival held here every year.
  2. Hemakuta Hill Temples – For breathtaking views of Hampi’s landscape, head up to Hemakuta Hill. You’ll also find many ancient temples and shrines scattered across the hill, including the famous Virupaksha Temple.
  3. Vittala Temple Complex – This UNESCO World Heritage Site is known for its iconic stone chariot and musical pillars that produce different sounds when struck. The complex also houses beautiful mandapas (halls), shrines, and other structures.
  4. Achyutaraya Temple – Located on the banks of the Tungabhadra River, this temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is known for its beautiful architecture and intricate carvings. The annual Purandaradasa Festival is celebrated here with great pomp and show.

Hampi is a treasure trove of historical and architectural wonders. Each place has a unique story and is a must-visit for anyone interested in Indian history or architecture. Remember to carry your camera to capture the beauty of these magnificent structures.

Top 9 Things to Do in Hampi

Things To Do in Hampi
Coracle Ride | Photo by Alka Jha on Unsplash
  1. Visit the Temples: Explore the awe-inspiring ancient temples in Hampi, such as Virupaksha Temple, Vitthala Temple, and more, which offer a glimpse into the rich history and architecture of the region.
  2. Watch Sunsets: The surreal landscapes of Hampi make for stunning sunset views. Enjoy the magical sight of the sun setting behind the boulders and temples.
  3. Shopping at Hampi Bazaar: Hampi Bazaar is a vibrant marketplace where you can shop for souvenirs, handicrafts, jewellery, and traditional clothing. It’s a great place to pick up unique souvenirs.
  4. Indulge in Local Cuisine: Savor local Karnataka cuisine at the numerous cafes and restaurants. Try dishes like bisi bele bath, jolada rotti, and the delicious masala dosa.
  5. Bouldering: Hampi is a mecca for bouldering enthusiasts. The unique rock formations provide a challenging and picturesque backdrop for climbers of all levels.
  6. Cliff Jumping: If adventurous, indulge in cliff jumping by the Tungabhadra River. Leap into the clear waters and experience an adrenaline rush.
  7. Cycling in and Around Hampi: Rent a bicycle and explore the charming villages and stunning landscapes around Hampi. It’s a great way to immerse yourself in the local culture.
  8. Explore the Hippie Side in Anegundi Village: Anegundi, just across the river, offers a more relaxed and bohemian vibe. Discover the laid-back cafes, art scenes, and vibrant community.
  9. Take a Coracle Ride: Experience a traditional coracle ride on the Tungabhadra River. These circular boats offer a unique and serene way to enjoy the region’s scenic beauty.

Hampi, with its cultural richness and natural beauty, offers diverse activities that cater to all interests, from history and spirituality to adventure and relaxation.

An Ideal 5-Day Itinerary for Hampi

Hippie Culture of Anegundi Village in Hampi
Hippie Culture of Anegundi Village in Hampi | Photo by Vatsal Nandu

1: Arrival and Exploration

  • Arrive in Hampi and check in.
  • Visit the Virupaksha Temple.
  • Explore Hemakuta Hill.
  • Enjoy a riverside sunset.

2: Temple Tour

  • Explore the Vithala Temple complex.
  • Visit Royal Enclosure.
  • Explore the underground Shiva temple and the Lotus Mahal.
  • Sunset at Hemakuta Hill.

3: Adventure and Nature

  • Go bouldering among the unique rock formations.
  • Explore Sanapur Lake or Anegundi Village.
  • Evening in Anegundi for a taste of the bohemian side.

4: Riverside Activities

  • Enjoy a coracle ride on the Tungabhadra River.
  • Explore Anjanadri Hill and the Monkey Temple.
  • Return to Hampi.

5: Relaxation and Departure

  • Cycle around Hampi and explore the remaining sites.
  • Enjoy a leisurely breakfast.
  • Check out and bid farewell to Hampi.


In conclusion, Hampi is a truly magical destination that offers a perfect blend of history, culture, and natural beauty. Proper planning and preparation allow you to maximise your trip to this UNESCO World Heritage Site.

From exploring ancient ruins to trying local delicacies and indulging in adventurous activities, there’s something for everyone in Hampi. Therefore, pack your bags and prepare for an unforgettable journey filled with rich experiences and lasting memories with our travel guide.


While Hampi is a remarkable destination, two days can provide a taste of its beauty and history. During this time, you can explore the main temples, like Virupaksha and Vithala, and enjoy bouldering and local cuisine. However, to delve deeper into its richness, consider extending your stay to 3-4 days for a more comprehensive experience.

Absolutely, Hampi is a must-visit destination. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site with awe-inspiring temples, surreal landscapes, and vibrant culture. Hampi has something to offer, whether you’re a history buff, an adventure enthusiast, or someone seeking serenity. Ensure you check for the latest travel advisories and conditions before visiting.

Hampi’s uniqueness lies in its rich historical heritage, captivating architecture, and dramatic landscape of massive boulders set against a cultural backdrop. The Virupaksha Temple, the Vithala Temple complex, and the enchanting bouldering opportunities are some of its highlights. The town’s laid-back ambience and bohemian vibes in nearby Anegundi make it unique.

Ideally, to experience the essence of Hampi, you should spend at least 3-4 days. This will allow you to explore the numerous temples, enjoy activities like bouldering, and immerse yourself in the local culture. However, you can glimpse the main attractions in 2 days if you’re on a tight schedule. Still, a longer stay is recommended for a more enriching experience.

Did you like this travel guide for Hampi? 

We have 100s more such guides on similar off-beat experiences & we send out such guides, offers, hidden gems, and trekking destinations weekly via email. Subscribe to our newsletter to get them directly into your inbox.

Open chat
Want to be a part of our first ever experiential trip to Varkala?