The Other Side of Hampi
Hampi is the most searched destination in Karnataka. The world heritage sites, the ruins, the history and everything else about the grand Vijayanagara empire has attracted tourists from all over the world. The temples, the huge compounds, the chants that you hear in the morning and the evening, and the grandeur is worth experiencing.
However, there is a physical and experiential ‘other side’ of Hampi. The one that will amaze you by its mere existence. When we were planning our trip to Hampi, many friends had advised us to not miss this other side. So on our last day at Hampi, we crossed a small stream of the magnificent Tungabhadra River to reach the opposite side of the river.
Small motored boats ply between the two banks of the river and it takes just five minutes to cross the stream. You may have to wait to grab a place on the boat. It was encouraging to see children, going to school using these boats. It is also possible to load a cycle or a bike on these boats to be transported to the other bank. Coracles can also be seen on the river though we did not take one.
This part of Hampi has a very different look and feel. Once on the other side, it will feel as if you are visiting a new place. Small restaurants, shacks, bakery shops, and lots of shopping stalls will take you by surprise. As we walked along, paddy fields on one side made the area look very beautiful.
You can rent bikes to explore the area. There is no restriction on meat and alcohol in this part of the city. We spotted graffiti on many walls and this place seemed a melting pot of many cultures. I also got to know that many foreigners stay in this part of the city for their academic research. That explains the lifestyle and the easy pace on this side of the city.
Leaving you with some pictures and like everyone says – you have to experience what it means.
I visited Hampi early this year and this post is a part of series. The small city in North Karnataka has a lot of historical significance and is too grand and beautiful to be described in just a travelogue. Read the rest of the posts here. Happy Travelling!