6-Mar-15 (Created: 6-Mar-15) | More in 'Humanities Current'

A letter for Hampi

This is a letter from one that is very dear to me. This is how a place hold sway.

Longfellow is the only American to be honoured with a bust in the Poets' Corner of Westminister Abbey.

Of all places that I have seen on this beautiful planet, Hampi is the best. No wonder that Hampi is believed to be the birthplace of Bhudevi. It is closely connected to Ramayana. It is believed to be the birthplace of Hanuman. There is a beautiful temple on a hill- top(ANJANADRI), dedicated to Hanuman. The views of the surrounding country from the hill-top are spectacular.

There are other hills in the close vicinity, RISHYAMUKA PARVAT, VALI PARVAT, TARA PARVAT and ANGAD PARVAT. But the most beautiful of all hills is MATANGA PARVAT.

Hampi is on the banks of Tungabhadra. Pampa is the earlier name of Tungabhadra. Hampi got its name from Pampa. "PA" is pronounced as "HA" in KANNADA.So palu (milk) is halu in KANNADA.

Hampi was the capital of Vijayanagara Empire. There are so many beautiful temples, Virupaksha, Vittala, Hazara Rama, Kodanda Rama, Achutaraya, Varaha, Virabhadra and many more.

Each temple is an architectural marvel.All of them were constructed between 1350 and 1550 AD. There are exquisite jain temples dating back to ninth century. We visited the palace of Krishnadeva Raya. We also went to a place on the banks of Tungabhadra, where he was cremated. A beautiful 60 pillored mandapa marks that place.

We also visited Purandara Dasa mandapa.This too is on the banks of Tungabhadra.Purandara Dasa (father of karnatak music) lived in Hampi for a better part of his life. He was a contemporary of Krishnadeva Raya. Most of his 75000 songs were written at this very mandapa. Rama mantrava japiso is one of his well known songs.

We need at least five days to get the feel of the place. Nov to Feb is the best time to visit.