Places in Hampi - Stage 1 (3-4 hours)
Sasvekalu Ganesh Temple
Sasivekalu Ganesha situated on the south eastern slopes of the Hemakuta Hillock, this monolithic Ganesha is referred to as the Sasivekalu (mustard seed) Ganesha it is about 2.4 meters high and is enclosed within an open pillard pavilion. The statue seated in half louts posture (Ardha padmasana). It is a four armed statue, the right upper hand holds the ankusa and right lower hand holds broken tusk, while the upper left hand holds a looped pasa (noose) and left lower hand holds bowl of sweets. The lower left hand and the trunk are broken. An inscription engraved on the rock nearby records that Vinayaka mantapa (pavilion) was built in 1506AD. By a trader belonging to Chandragiri (near Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh) in memory of Narasimha II (1491-1505 AD), of the Salava Dynasty. This four handed god is a fine example of the Vijayanagara's artistic skills.
Hemakuta Hill & Group of Hemakuta Temple
The hill is situated to the south of Hampi village. This hill is basically an expanse of rocky sheet with interesting undulations. A large number of pre Vijayanagara (the empire) from 9th to 14th century temples of note are located in this hilltop. The highlights are the sets of triple chambered temples with its pyramid like granite roofs. This is an important mythological site in the local folklore which explains the density of such temples on this hill. The hill was fortified when the main city was constructed, and a number of more recent temples, tanks, entrances, and gopurams exist on the hill, some of which were never completed.
The Virupaksha Temple rises majestically at the western end of the famous Hampi Bazaar. This temple dedicated to the Hindu god of destruction Shiva. The temple has an imposing 54 meters tall tower which is nine tiered on its eastern entrance. Virupaksha temple is believed to be one of the oldest active temples (from 7th century AD) in Hampi, Parts of this temple are older than the Vijayanagar kingdom itself. In 1510 A.D. Krishnadevaraya added the Ranga Mantapa and a Raya gopura. There is a temple elephant and her name called Lakshmi. Entry fee is Rs.2, camera fee is Rs.50 and video charge is Rs.500-00.
Hampi Bazaar is located in front of the Virupaksha temple. It is also known as Virupaksha Bazaar and is about a kilometre long, the east end of the temple ends at the foothill of the Matanga Hill. Both sides of the street are lined with a series of old pavilions, some of them are two storied. These structures were once part of a thriving market and residence of the nobles. A huge Nandi (bull statue) is located at the east end of the streets.