Friday, January 8, 2010
Hampi - A Travelogue
Vacation at Hampi- It was an idea to spend a few leaves left out for the year. Kavya and I were surprised while discussing on this regard, that we had same taste and never discussed about it. Reading couple of blogs helped as to know the real experience of people who visited the place and to accommodate our minds along with Guest house options available there.Still we went ahead and booked one guest house, it was a kind of home stay.Rahul Guest house. The planning was made within 1 hour. we first checked ticket availability in KSRTC service to Hampi. There is a service from Bangalore to Hampi night at 11:30 and it reaches Hampi at 7:00AM but there is a halt at Hospet. When the bus reached Hampi I was dazed since the place looked like a bus stop, Not a bus stand!!!. A lot of people bunched together at the door step to receive the tourists for Guide and auto services. Rahul guest house board was visible from the stand. It was just first floor of one house. I would say do not expect anything inside the room other than a bath room and a bed. It is better to carry bed sheet, towel etc. Another challenge was breakfast, I didn't have this much trouble in US with the menu. You can see varieties of cuisines for foreigners even at small food courts. We went to tourist info center and hired a guide for 700/- per day. He took us to Spiritual Enclave on the same day. It was a good walk and he explained the history mixed with Hindi and English. I liked trekking to Vithala Temple. He took us through a lonely route middle of rocks and stone temples. The top view of the ruins of Vijayanagara bazar and temples were just awesome. I wish I had a wide angle camera to capture the entire place. By the time we reached Vithala temple it was sundown. Along with a group of people from some Ashram, we were able to listen the saptaswara of different instruments using the stone pillars. I was amazed by the talent of ancient people. The guide took us back to the guest house saying the he was taking us through the main road and we were scared but at the same time couldn't control ourselves seeing the beauty of the place, river side of Thungabadra under moon light, the best trekking ever had. Never miss the walk back from Vithala temple to the Hampi bus stand.We were tired and went to the same Geetha restaurant where we had our breakfast and lunch. Second day, we hired bicycles to Royal Enclave, two for us one for guide. First time I was riding bicycle for more than 10 min. Good time at Royal enclave also. Many kids thought that we are from foreign nations and came and talked to us, they were touching us, strange though. By 3:00PM we dumped ourselves, rather guide dumped us at one restaurant called Mango tree. Good for ambiance. I liked only the Mango tree special fried rice. Third day we went to the other side of the river where Hanuman Temple is located. We hired one auto and made auto driver as our guide too.While returning the auto driver dropped us at one restaurant called "Laughing Budha", attractive place for foreigners. Sunset at Hemakuta hills would be one of the best options for photographers in Hampi. We vacated third day morning itself and kept luggages at office itself. You can relax at any of the restaurants, Santhi, Laughing budha or Mango Tree, since they provide bed, tv etc along with food. A perfect vacation, with no mobile, no mails.