Hampi - Riverside Ruins & Other Temples (Ballari - Karnaraka)

Ahead from the Varaha Temple, we headed to the Narasimha Temple. This requires a slight trek onto a barren hillock and the first thing you'd spot is the Deepa Sthamba (the pole for lamps) and a two storied mandapa. Beside it, almost submerged into the ground is the Narasimha Temple (this is different from the monolith Narasimha!). As the rest, this too has no idols inside. It was closed but the lathe pillars made of black stone were a visual delight. This has a major Hoysala inspiration here with those perfectly cylindrical pillars!

Next our stop was the Hastagiri Ranganatha Temple. This was just at the base of the barren hill, making the hill, the back wall of the sanctum sanctorum! The Lord inside is a standing Vishnu flanked by Sridevi and Bhoodevi and as usual, defaced! There is a small mandapa in front of it! Just beside is another Rama Temple and this is still in worship!
Further ahead towards the riverside, is the Kodandarama Temple and in front of it is the Coracale Ride! Remember I told you about a coracle in my Talakkad trip? We didn't take the trip on coracle, however if trekking is to be avoided, this coracle trip is the best way to explore the river side ruins!

From the river, the next day we headed to the hills! Behind the Malyavanta Temple, is the gorgeous view of the whole of Hampi!!! Here were also several Siva Lingam and Nandi carved as relief sculptures on the ground and a tiny Siva temple as well. 

The Malyavanta Raghunatha temple's sanctum sanctorum has relief sculptures of Rama and Lakshmana sitting and Sita standing and Hanuman kneeling beside them, on a huge boulder. The actual temple was built around the boulder and a small shikara has been built atop the boulder as vimana!!! 
Our next stop was close to Lakshmi Narasimha Temple & Badavilinga Temple - the Krishna Temple. This was built in 1513 soon after Krishna Deva Raya won the battle at Orissa. The Bala Krishna in the sanctum sanctorum was brought here from Udayagiri in Orissa, which is not there like all other temples! 

The Maha Mandapa pillars are indeed exquisite! Esp one of it has the relief sculpture of all the 10 Dasavathara in it! Bang opposite to it, is the Krishna Bazaar!

Later in the evening, we climbed the Hemakuta Hill to watch the aerial view of Virupaksha Temple and watch the exquisite sunset in this location.

The Hemakuta hill itself has several small temples and shrines in it, most of which I didn't check out. The crowd that assembles here, both locals and foreigners, to watch the sunset is just so much!!! But still, the space is so vast that you won't feel the crowd!!!

My complete (all posts of) Hampi Travelogue: Zenana Enclosure, Hazara Rama Temple, Royal Enclosure, Achyuta Raya & Varaha Temples, Virupaksha Temple, Vittala Temple, Monolith Sculptures, Riverside ruins, Malyavanta Hills & other temples, Anegundi Pre-Historic Rock Art, Discoveries & Musings 

To Get There:
From Bangalore: 343km via NH48 & NH50
From Hyderabad: 373km via NH44
From Goa: 316km via NH67
From Pattadakkal (another UNESCO site): 135km via NH50
From Orange County Resort: 9km
Map of all important sites: hampi.in

These sites are covered in The  Tungabadhra Trek, Virupaksha Trail & Vittala Trail organized as a guided tour by Orange County Resort.
Each trail costs Rs.1000/- per head as a group.
If you want it exclusive just for you it costs Rs.4000/- for 2 trails (+ Rs.1000/- incl vehicle).
If you want a guide for yourself for the whole day it costs Rs.8000/-

Otherwise, KSTDC certified guides (they carry an ID card mentioning the same) can be hired at the Tourism Office or Ticket Office located in the premises of Virupaksha Temple, Sasivekalu Ganesha and Vittala Temple. The prices are Rs.1200 for 2-3hrs and Rs.1700 for 5-6hrs for upto 3 persons. For a larger group, the price would be higher. Also they are highly adaptable to your requirements / interest area etc and they could also meet you at your hotel and begin from there!
Ph no: of Prakash, one of the certified guides: +91 94820 61626

Dedicated to Venkat


An ardent traveler by passion. Being an ex - Art History Teacher, my area of interest especially lies in Nature and Heritage. Visited 78 UNESCO World Heritage sites as of Sept 2020. I've been listed among the Top 7 Women Travel Bloggers of India, Top 50 in UK. I have been interviewed in a couple of TV Shows, Radio Channels and Events as well. Read more about me and read the testimonials of different brands