HUMPI is a village in northern Karnataka state in India, It is located within the ruins of Vijayanagara, the former capital of the Vijayanagara Empire. As the village is at the original centre of Vijaynagara it is sometimes confused with the ruined city itself. The name Hampi is evolved from Pampa, the ancient name of the river Tungabhadra. Also Pampa is the daughter of Bhramha, the Creator God. She was a devoted worshiper of Shiva, the God of Destruction. Impressed by her dedication Shiva offered her a boon and she opted to marry him! The place thus came to be known as Pampakshetra (land of Pampa) and Shiva as Pampapathi (consort of Pampa). India is the birthplace of many religions. Hinduism was born in India. So were Buddhism and Jainism. Islam was one of the most important religions of Hampi even during the empire’s peak. Hampi carries the marks of this ancient multi faith society. This is one of the places to see the religious aspects, especially of Hinduism, in a close proximity. The distance from Goa (Panaji) to Humpy is around 250km. From Goa one can Travel to Hampi by Train. Hospet is the nearest railway station for Hampi. It’s a very sought after route, but unfortunately the connections are few and a bit scattered. If you are looking for a train connection , opt for the Howrah Express (Train No:18048 , Tuesdays,Thursdays,Fridays and Sundays ). This train leaves Vasco Da Gama (VSG) by 7.10 am and reaches Hospet by 14:55 in the
In Humpy you can see an impressive array of Vijayanagara coins on display at the Archeology museum in Hampi. Each coin on the display kiosk is provided with magnifying lenses to take a close look at both sides of the coin. The typical version Hampi’s history starts with a popular folklore. Two local chieftains, Hakka & Bukka , reports to their guru an unusual sight they saw during a hunting expedition. A hare chased by their hound suddenly turns courageous and start chasing back the hound.
During the colonial period, Hampi evoked some curiosity among the western archeologists. Robert Sewell’s (1845-1925), seminal work aptly titled as A Forgotten Empire :Vijayanagar was a major attempt to narrate the empire that was. In 1917 A.H. Longhurst’s Hampi Ruins Described and Illustrated became the first travel guide for the visitors to Hampi. UNESCO’s World Heritage Site was conferred to Hampi in 1986. Currently Hampi’s monuments – hundreds of them – are popular among tourists, pilgrims and the area is one of the exotic locations for the Bollywood and local film shootings. Jackie Chan film “Myth” was shot in the Hampi.
Hindus treat Hampi as a sacred land. According to the folklore, a number of mythical events are associated with Hampi. Your understanding of what you see at Hampi would be greatly enhanced if you have some clues about the Hindu mythology and its themes.
The Hemakuta Hill in Hampi is the place, according to the myth, Shiva did his penance before marrying Pampa. Kama , the God of Love, felt sympathy for Pampa for her love towards Shiva. He disturbed Shiva from his deep meditation. That attracted Shiva’s wrath. Known for his anger, Shiva burned Kama with his third (fiery) eye. Rathi, Goddess of Passion and also Kama’s consort pleaded for mercy with Shiva. Shiva grants Kama’s life back, but only as a character and not as a physical being.
Temples are generously carved with mythical themes. May be because it was ( … and still is! ) the monkey’s kingdom, the images of monkeys are splendidly carved on the walls and pillars of the temples of Hampi. mythical themes in Hampi ruins as a tourist to this place all these places are located in a circuit that forms a typical itinerary.