Hampi Roadtrip from Bangalore, 3-day Backpacking itinerary
Hampi is one among the major getaways from Bangalore if you are looking for a 2 to 3-day backpacking road trip. Need a guide to help prepare the perfect itinerary? Let me help you plan that perfect Bangalore to Hampi itinerary…
Quick navigation to help you plan your 3-day backpacking roadtrip from Bangalore to Hampi:
Buried amongst the “Boulders of time” lies myriads of stories… ballads of rajas and their queens, tales of wit, bravery, and justice all waiting to be unveiled. Yes, Boulders yonder there stood a land that once flourished, where happiness reigned! Well, tempus fugit, it has churned itself into a major centre for a holiday getaway. So, pack your bags this winter and travel back in time to the prosperous kingdom of Vijayanagara – Hampi.
Yes, the must-do roadtrip from Bangalore to Hampi – here’s our complete Hampi itinerary and guide.
TIPS TO PLAN YOUR BANGALORE TO HAMPI ROAD TRIP EFFECTIVELY
“Who is the wittiest jester in the land? Tenali, he’s a poet, he’s a clown, Tenali…”
I still remember rushing back from school, getting into a ‘remote’ fight with my brother to watch ‘The Adventures of Tenali Raman’. Who knew, years later I’d be photographing those exact Mahals and pavilions 🙂
Let me now take you through our visit to the Shangri-La of Vijayanagara Empire, Hampi, once a palmy kingdom of King Krishnadevaraya.
HOW TO REACH HAMPI
The nearest station to Hampi: Hosapete Junction (HPT) which is about 13km from Hampi is the closest you can get by train. You can opt to travel overnight from Bangalore, Hyderabad, or Chennai. Buses ply regularly from Hospet to Hampi.
Nearest Airport to Hampi:Hubli airport, which is about 160 km, would be the nearest airport to Hampi. Those up for a road trip can always workaround by taking a flight to Bangalore and renting a car from there.
By road: My personal choice would always be to travel by road, a ride through nature’s heart. A road trip to Hampi from Bangalore is quite enthralling. The drive would round-out to 370km from Bangalore. You can also choose to go on a bike ride from Bangalore to Hampi. I’ve mentioned the different routes you can take to go to Hampi from Bangalore below.
Roads to Hampi from Bangalore:
A 370 odd km ride and open your eyes to get gorgonized by the view. Disclaimer (as of 2018), the roads can get pretty bumpy towards the end!
PLACES TO STAY AND EAT AT HAMPI: Hotels in Hampi
Being a tourist destination you sure won’t run out of options to stay, be it luxury, budget, or camping. There are umpteen choices for hotels in Hampi. Get more information on where to dine and stay in Hampi here. There are also many shacks in Hampi, which would be on the Hippie side of Hampi.
If you are a novice explorer who is not so well-versed at campcraft, Tutti Hampi tents and café is what I’d recommend (updated as of 2018). Experience the tent life with a tint of modernism to it. Tutti Hampi tents and café was where we stayed during our road trip to Hampi. And believe me, it was worth it!
Amidst the paddy fields, enveloped by boulders, Tutti Hampi tents and café offers the perfect view to wake up to.
PS: summer months do get mosquitoes as visitors!
A perfect disjune before starting to hunt down temples and ruins!
ITINERARY FOR A 3-DAY HUMPY-BUMPY HAMPI ROAD TRIP
How many days do you need to visit Hampi?
You would need to spend at least 2-3 days to get the best of this place. If you are an architecture/history buff spending a few more days would be advisable. We have outlined a three day Hampi road trip itinerary, one flexible for all ages!
When is the best time to visit Hampi?
Hampi, being the land of boulders, can be seen as a bit arid. Summer months can seriously melt you down to the Earth. It is not just summer, even winters can get pretty hot during the day too. Nights are cool though. Hence, it is always better to plan your trip to Hampi during the winter months – November to February. If you are into festivals, cultural celebrations and don’t mind a large crowd, I’d say February is the best time to visit Hampi. During this time you can also be a part of Hampi Utsav. There is a Hampi festival in November as well.
THREE DAY ITINERARY FOR BACKPACKING IN HAMPI
1st Day: Start your ride from Bangalore to Hampi
2nd Day: Go around temple-hopping at Hampi
3rd Day: Enjoy a perfect cockcrow
DAY 1 – START YOUR ROAD TRIP TO HAMPI FROM BANGALORE
Start early from Bangalore, maybe by 6:00 – 6:30 am. As I always say, the break of dawn is the best time to avoid Bangalore traffic.
There are three popular routes to Hampi from Bangalore, with each route offering a different peek into nature’s soul:
Bangalore – Tumakuru – Hiriyur – Chitradurga – Hampi
Tumakuru – Hiriyur – Challakere – Hampi
Bangalore – Lepakshi – Ananthapur – Bellari – Hampi
We chose to travel via Challakere, a route known to house endless fields of sunflowers (unfortunately our timing was bad). Having booked a four-sharing tent stay at Tutti Hampi tents and café, we decided to drive past the Tungabhadra dam, longer but worthwhile route! The roads leading from Challakere to Hippie island via Tungabhadra dam is kind of remote (as of 2018). Hence, I’d suggest you make a stop at some restaurant near Tumakuru,Kamat Upachar, Siri is recommended.
Things to see en-route on Hampi road trip from Bangalore:
If you are planning to take the Chitradurga route to Hampi make a pit stop at Chitradurga fort
Visit the Chandravalli caves, an archaeological site in the district of Chitradurga
Reconcile at the Sanapura Lake, a quick stop en-route hippie island.
You could also visit the Tungabhadra dam zoo and park, provided time and mood permits
Lepakshiis yet another must-visit for people twitterpated over temple architecture
Once you’ve reached your stay and still have some oomph left, go paseo along the paddy fields. Having taken the longer route and some detours, we managed to reach Hampi by tea time. We headed straight to sunset point Hampi after having a ‘sort of’ high tea at Benjamin’s music café.
Picking up small confabulations with these kids selling coffee at sunset point Hampi – A peaceful spot to enjoy the sun’s lullaby along with other fellow travellers.
With the sunset checked off the list you should probably let out the hippie in you. Nightfall is when Hippie island comes alive. In and out of stalls and shacks, buying hippie souvenirs, enjoy random hippie food, or even booze till dawn 🙂
PS: DO NOT bother ordering thali meals, roti, rice, or anything similar once in a shack.
DAY 2 – Tuk-Tuk’ing around in Hampi – Temple hopping
You can always opt to kick start your day watching the sunrise at either one of these hills – Hemakuta, Matanga, or Anjandhari. We, however, being lazy-heads decided to push it to the last day of our agenda.
Once you are done filling your breadbasket, arrange for an auto ride. Either rent one or pick up a guided auto tour as we did. Thankfully, our host at Tutti Hampi tents and cafe arranged an auto, or as they call it a ‘Tuk-Tuk’, ride. You can also coracle across (if you are staying at Hippie island) and rent a bicycle/bike. Beware of the scorching heat though!
We had our first stop at Vijaya Vittala Temple, most popular among tourists for its stone Chariot and musical (SAREGAMA) pillars. This was followed by the visit to Queen’s bath, Elephants stable, Lotus Mahal, and so on.
That’s my dad narrating some history on Hampi he picked up on the road.
Refresh yourself with “Naarial Paani”, you’ll find vendors selling Coconut water, soda lime, or fresh juice in front of almost every site.
Virupaksha temple was our last stop, a temple of might, grandeur, and of-course history – a shrine for Lord Virupaksha (Pampapathi).
What to buy? – Shopping in Hampi
Shopaholic? You’re at the right place. Beside the Virupaksha temple, you have the Hampi bazaar. Here’s a list of souvenirs that you can hoard back home. Few of the Hampi craft highlights include:
Lambini embroidered crafts – Lambini is a nomadic community, now settled in Hampi. Their exquisite embroidery works are a must-get if you own a collection of bags, purses, pillow covers etc.
Banana Fiber items
Handcrafted soft-stone figurines – these are mostly figures of Gods and Goddesses. You’ll also find ornately carved figurines of elephants, bulls, as well as various monuments.
Finally, don’t forget to get your Hippie styled clothes from Hippie island.
Enjoying the view on our way back towards Anegundi from Hampi.
Spend the evening lounging along the bounders/fields near your stay, enjoying your evening tea amidst the greens.
DAY 3 – Head back to Bangalore
Ease into the day watching the sun loom over the boulders. A suggested place for watching sunrise would be Anjandhari – the monkey hill, Anegundi. It is comparatively an easier climb for all ages.
Unfortunately, we had to skip the sunrise plan before heading back to Bangalore. But I’m super glad I got to witness this mesmeric sunset at Sunset point Hampi.
Head back to Bangalore choosing any one of the above-mentioned routes. If you have an extra day or two to spare, combine this road trip to Hampi trip with a road trip to Badami, Aihole, and Pattadakal.
WHAT TO PACK FOR YOUR HAMPI ROAD TRIP
Whatever the weather you choose to visit, it is always advisable to ‘summerize’ your clothes. Carry cotton clothes, preferably something loose. Also, don’t forget to dump in loads of sunscreen, caps/umbrella, water, and of course the road trip must – a sack full of snacks.