11.01.2017 32 °C
Having gorged ourselves on freshly caught seafood for the week (life's tough!) it was time to leave the beautiful beaches of Goa and head inland to Hampi. We had heard many a tale regarding dodgy train journeys and had fully expected to be sitting opposite a cow or next to a chicken; in actual fact our journey consisted of beautiful scenery, friendly locals and half decent train thali.
We arrived in Hospet and waved down the nearest rickshaw. On route to Hampi everything seemed to be going to plan until up in the distance a broken down rickshaw and unhappy driver appeared. Fear not though as stranded rickshaws don't stay stranded for long! We both looked at each other in sheer disbelief as our driver with one foot out the door started pushing the other rickshaw. Our driver briefly turned to us with a grin and said 'This is incredible India, where anything goes'! He continued to do this all the away along the dual carriageway until we arrived. From this moment on we knew our time in Hampi was going to be a roller coaster and it didn't disappoint.
The next morning bright eyed and bushy tailed we spent the day looking round a selection of the many awe inspiring temples Hampi has to offer. The majority of the temples are free to look round which surprised us as they were beautifully created and if found in the UK would be fenced in and the public wouldn't be able to get anywhere near them (think Stonehenge!). Thankfully India's cavalier attitude towards public access meant you could get up close and really see the intricate detail of every carving.
The following day we were a bit 'templed out' so decided to get up early and head over north of the river to the infinite boulder field and try our hand climbing the rocks. In the 80's Chris Sharma (world famous climber) visited the area and really put it on the map as a potential world famous climbing destination. Today there are multiple shops selling and hiring climbing gear and guesthouses set up for climbers. We headed out to the rocks and spent the day realising how unfit we are (we've been eating too much curry!) and how sharp the rock is! We had a great day though and met loads of nice people in the process.
One of the top 'things to do' in Hampi is watch the amazing sunset. As soon as it gets to 5pm many tourists take a rickshaw to 'sunset point' to settle themselves in and enjoy the sunset. We liked the look of one particular hill though just to the west of the main town which looked less touristy but still looked high enough to enjoy the sunset. 40mins later we were at the top and witnessed one of the most stunning sunsets we had ever seen. The landscape looked like a cross between tomb raider, raiders of the lost arc and what we imagine Mars to look like. The boulder fields just go on for ever and are intertwined with banana plantations, rice paddies and countless temples. The sunset was so good we decided on on our last day to walk up the hill again and take in the view one last time.
We have had a great time in Hampi but its off on a 12 hour overnight train journey to the bustling city of Mysore next, so we will report back then.
Love Rob and Susie x