From Goa I took a 9 hours night bus to Hampi. I didn´t know what to expect except lots of temple ruins. After arriving at the bus station in Hampi I heard already a second time from a TukTuk driver that the accomodation I booked in advance is far away one the other site of the river and there are only few TukTuks on that site. They´d charge 1000 rupees for the ride. Therefore I decided for another Homestay in the small city centre for 300 rupees a night. The driver (Jilan) drove me for 50 rupees to my Homestay that is managed by the wife of his cousin. For 2 nights it was completely fine! A big bed, a moscito net, a shared bath room and a toilet – that´s all I needed! Jilan took me for 800 rupees during the whole day (we started at 11 am) to all the important sights, explained the history as well as the backround to each temple and clicked some pictures of me. For sunset we drove to his favourite spot, the Malyavanta Raghunatha temple. Having a stunnng view over the whole valley we enjoyed the last sunrays of the day from the magical rock formations. A little Shiva temple growing from within the rock seemed being more a hybrid between a cave and a temple.
On the next day I had a long sleep, visited a café at the other site of the river which is known as Hippie Island and prepared my mind already for the next day: for the sunrise at 5 am in Anjaneya hill which is also known as the birthplace of Hanuman. He´s the God of monkeys in Hinduism and a loyal friend of God Rama. He helped Rama to get his wife Sita back from the demon Ravana. Because of this Hanuman is known as symbol for dedication and loyality.
The next morning Jilan and Raquel, a traveller from Portugal, picked me up and we drove to Anjaneya Hill. After around 30 min hiking and trekking we reached the hilltop and found a nice place to welcome the next morning. It was magical! We observed the reflections of the sunrays in the river being a sign of the rising sun. After quite a while the red fireball moved up behind the mountains. That was/is magic!! The following hours we drove to a Durgha- and several Hanuman temples and a big lake where we stopped for a while. Jilan dropped us for lunch back in the old city centre. It´s quite fascinating that 500000 people lived there 500 years ago and now the population decreased to 8000. I made a looong break from getting up and hiking so early and decided to explore Hippie Island a bit. It´s good to know that the last ferry tot he other site of the river is leaving at 5:30 pm! I almost missed it during waiting for the Momos I ordered. A friend told me that she got lost for 2 weeks while observing the rice fields. I did the same for 2 hours and I understand her now.
After I almost missed the ferry while waiting for the momos and after being driven on a motor bike to catch the ferry I finally could prepare to going for sunset. I decided to visit the same mountain for sunset I already went 1 evening ago but I had much more time than before. The day before I stopped hiking at the point I thought the view would be the most beautiful one (and I had to stop because it was too late to hike more up). This time I only wanted to enjoy and to find a nice peaceful location with few tourists. Having more time I could not only hike a bit more up the mountain but also I discovered a big cave hiding in the mountain. In between I had to use my torch because I couldn´t even see my hand in front of my eyes! After leaving the cave a climbed a bit more up and reached a temple ruin that was more used as a sunset point than a temple. The view on the calley was stunning from there! I observed the green rice fields changing slowly into a brownish moon landscape and from there changing back again to green forrests. Hampi is a magical place; one of the most magical places for me so far in India! After I sat there for a while enjoying the setting sun on the valley a female traveller I met already in Jodhpur joined me. We walked back to my Homestay, I showered, gave her some clothes that I didn´t need anymore and she accompanied me to the bus station. When I arrived in Hospet, which is the city the train would leave from, I got a foodgasm on the way tot he train station in one of the local restaurants. Fully satisfied I went tot he train station for taking my first train in India: from Hospet to Mysore; 12 hours in the sleeper class in the lowest bed. After I had booked the train one day before other friends told me that I should sleep, as a woman, on the upper bed. You can read in my blog post about my experiences in night trains in the sleeper class in India.
“The view on the calley was stunning from there! I observed the green rice fields changing slowly into a brownish moon landscape and from there changing back again to green forrests. Hampi is a magical place; one of the most magical places for me so far in India!”
The next day after arriving in Mysore I walked a bit out of the train station region to avoid the tourist and rikscha traffic. I walked aroung 500 m and then I took a rikscha to my hostel (by doing this you can also save some money). A friend fromm y hometown Lübeck recommended this hostel. She lived there 1 month and I was already very excited on my own experiences. When I arrived I enjoyed a nutricious breakfast, checked in, bought some organical soups, an organical shampoo and a metal straw at the reception and relaxed in the female dorm where I stayed. Not after a long time I got to know my room mates and some other people. We decided to explore the Mysore palace and the bazars the next day. On my arrival day a decided to enjoy the sunst on Chamundi hill and to explore the temple over there. I was lazy so I took a rikscha tot he temple, wandered around it and decended at dawn to enjoy the sunset from a more chilled out area than from the hill top. On the first third of walking down I found a nice place where I relaxed for the sunset. After I continued the walk down and reached the beginning of the hill in 20 min. Fun fact: the Chamundi Hill is known for being the location where the spiritual leader SadhGuru had his spiritual enlightment.
The day after I discovered Mysore with some guys from the hostel. We visited the palace and the bazar. On the bazar we went to a certain stand that was a recommodation by a friends friend. When we found it we stayed around 2,3 hours. It was so nice and relaxed! I sat down at a gallery and loved watching the people crossing by as well as I loved to smell all the oils and inscene stickst he owners offered. The shop is run my 2 brothers from Mysore and is already known by volunteers who take their lunch break there. So I did and I even got some coal tablets against diarrhea and some iron tablets. The following evenings at the hostel were very relaxed and lovely! 5 of us planned to go to Ooty, which is a bit more south in the mountains, the next day. We decided to move on together. You can read more about Ooty in my blog post from Tamil Nadu – another beautiful state in south India!