Riding into Vijayanagara Empire – Hampi : Day 1

Day 1 – 1st October 2016

A long weekend always gives a window to wanderlusts to explore the unexplored…. Moving away from routine weekend destinations, we group of seven riders decided to visit Hampi – UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located within ruins of erstwhile Vijayanagara Empire, we were all the more excited to walk back into history.  Not being routine destination, it wasn’t easy task to decide on the Bangalore- Hampi Route. We opted for Bangalore- Chitradurga – Hospet 370Kms in total. We covered this stretch in 8 hours which includes our breaks during the ride. First half of the ride Bangalore- Chitradurga on NH50 4 lane highway wasn’t exciting one as you hardly get to move your body other than keeping steady throttle. Halted for breakfast @ Pavithra Idli Hotel and it was flooded with weekend travellers. We ordered for trademark Thatte idli + vada combo and Masala Dosa. First mouthful of Butter Thatte idli with sambar (Lentil Dish) & chutney (Coconut dish) was all it took to hit cloud nine… Awesomeness is understatement. Blend of Spicy chutney with idli made you crave for more. Sambar to be honest was so full of spices and had right balance of lentils to give that perfect taste… unlike the watery sambar available is most food joints.  Have already planned to do breakfast ride to this place down the line!

Continuing our sojourn to Hampi, our second half of the ride on State Highway 50 proved to be most stressful as we took almost 5 hours to cover 170kms. Almost the entire stretch 4 lane expansion work was in progress. Poor condition of SH and heavy vehicles traffic made the ride all the more tiring. Towering Windmills along the hillocks on this stretch reminded one of renewable sources of energy and it provided a perfect backdrop as we made in roads along farmlands – dominated by millets, sunflowers, onions. Small time farmers spread their produce on roads to ensure vehicles passes over it- typical Indian method of separating millets from harvested crops. Larger farm lands adopted machinery for the same process.  Life of people is what you get to experience during such journeys, kind of takes you to agrarian society we most often read and hear about. We halted at roadside Dhabha and surprisingly it was a Vegetarian one!! Belted Roti & range of side dishes to gain some sanity post the 5 hours ride on SH50.

Our destination was 30kms away, and that was solacing for mind as we started for final phase… Out of the blue vast expanse of water body popped up – River Tungabhadra!!!!  A riveting sight that made 100km per hour zipping bikes to halt in seconds. Around the corner, we entered the tunnel that was constructed in collaboration with china. Fertile lands provided green landscape all over as we winded our way crossing irrigation canals brimming with water , to resort located near Anegundi. Rows of small resorts dotted the street tucked away from hustle bustle along the river Tungabhadra and it reminded one of Goa with foreign backpackers. Tourist season is between Nov-Jan during this period, the tourism department hosts Hampi festival which is annual affair.

Dinner by River Tungabhadra at place called “Laughing Buddha” was icing in the cake after long ride to Hampi…Dim lighting with low tables and beds to sit on proved perfect setting to unwind with steady breeze. Famous Virupaksha temple was bang opposite on the other side of river. What more could one ask for???? We were all excited to explore the City which was once the richest kingdom in the world in 13th-15th centuries.


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