Picturesque Hampi – Top 5 Photo Spots
Hampi is one of my favorite places in the world. This real-life history book takes you a time-travel to not just the glorious Vijayanagara Empire, but also to the mythical Kiskinda – the monkey kingdom of Ramayana, and even earlier to Pampa Kshetra – the land of Goddess Parvati. Hampi for me is a Wonderland for history-buffs, an inspiration for writers and a paradise for photographers. In this post I take you through some of the best photography spots of Hampi. These are not the obvious heritage monuments that we will talk about here. But spots where you can enjoy and capture the drama and essence of Hampi.
Danaik’s enclosure or Dannanayaka enclosure is adjacent to the Royal enclosure, and an area which historians are divided on. Some believe it to be the mint area of Hampi, some the seat of administration (Danaik meaning chief administrator), while some say it is the military training area. Most of the monuments here were completely destroyed, hence the ambiguity.
Besides the ruins and the rugged landscape, the farm animals and indigenous birds form an interesting subject of photography in this area.
From the Mohammedan Watchtower at Danaik’s Enclosure
The coracle ride is one of the least advertised, yet most amazing attractions in Hampi. At a walking distance of around 500 meters from the Virupaksha Temple with no signboards around, lie the cave that descends into the Tungabhadra basin. This is where the round-shaped boats were waiting to take us on a memorable tour.
Interesting subjects here are the boats, the boatmen, the dangerously balanced boulders – one on top of the other, the cave temples that can be seen on a coracle ride, the worshippers and the large Indian monkeys.
Behind the Vijaya Vittala Temple
The stone chariot at the Vijaya Vittala Temple is an icon of not just Hampi but also India. It’s certainly the most photographed monument in Hampi. At any given day you’ll struggle to take a neat picture of it because of the crowd around it. However, a secret photo spot for some unusual photography and an excellent time is behind the Vittala Temple Complex.
The notable themes here are the ruins, the boulders and the river.
View from the old temple behind the Vittala complex
Daroji Wildlife Sanctuary
While Hampi is famous for the rocky landscape and heritage monuments, it has a surprise hidden for wildlife lovers too. The Daroji wildlife sanctuary is home to the endangered sloth bear among other species like peafowls, mongoose, etc.
We spent more than an hour at the watchtower trying to spot a sloth bear, but they were nowhere to be seen. Anyone into wildlife photography would know that one-hour is nothing when it comes to spotting predators in the wild. But we managed to take some beautiful photographs of the forest and birds there.
Also read: Best Jungle Safaris in India
The theme here of course is the wildlife of Hampi.
Personally, this is my least favorite area in Hampi. Long ago this place was obscure, tucked away from the heritage ruins. But now it is the hub of Goan-style shacks infamous for smoking weeds and other intoxicating substances. It’s a great place for delicious food and nightlife, but not the kind of ambience I came here for.
However, it is an interesting place for photography. The primary subjects here are not ruins, but the green paddy fields, coconut trees, and colorful artefacts of Hampi.
This is the 16th post in the series “My Fabulous Five” for Blogchatter A2Z 2022. I hope you liked it. If you did, please share the post. See you tomorrow with another fabulous list.