Hampi Hot Air Balloon
The ancient metropolis of Hampi is replete with fascinating architecture and cultural wealth. The sky looked nothing less than a bejeweled spectacle studded with colorful balloons with excited tourists on board. It is incredible how the scene matched what I had been envisaging for ages! I got to see my balloon getting readied right before my eyes, and could hardly contain my excitement. The guide then took us through the instructions and direction of the ride. A pilot steered each balloon, but he could only control the altitude because the route was mostly decided by the wind. Below, a jeep with support staff followed our balloon wherever we went. Hampi’s beauty is unparalleled, but it takes on a whole new grandeur when viewed from up above. I was amazed at the panoramic views of the magnificent ruins, rocky terrains and temples of this beautiful city from the balloon.
HOT AIR BALLOONING IN HAMPI
What better way to see the monuments and cave sites at Hampi than to observe them from hundreds of meters above the ground. Karnataka offers the perfect setting for a quaint and peaceful time raised on the West coast of India; catching up as one of the top destinations to enjoy hot air balloon rides in India. The balloon takes its passengers to the height of 500 m. The ride in a hot air balloon offers a once in a lifetime opportunity to view the ancient ruins like never before.
Cost of Hot Air Ballooning in Hampi
The ride will take you to a height of around 500 meters and the cost ranges between INR 8,000 to 12,000 per person.
THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT HOT AIR BALLOON
- Flight can accommodate 8 - 11 passengers at a time.
- Flight usual timings is 6 am for morning flights and 6 pm for evening flights.
- Balloon flies at different heights up to 5000 ft.
- Parking and doctor on call available.
- One can carry camera.
- One should avoid skirt, loose jewelry and synthetic fiber.
- Minimum age limit 8 years, no upper age limit.
- Minimum flight time is one hour and may extend to one hour twenty minutes. During this one-hour flight, balloon travels approx. 10 to 15 kms depending upon wind speed and landing possibilities.
- The temperature drop is approximately 3.5 degrees per 1000 ft.
- Virupaksha Temple – Also known as the Pampapathi temple, it is the most famous temple in Hampi and dates back to the 7th century. It is said that this temple has had a continuous run since then, making it one of the oldest functioning temples in India.
- Hippie Island – Virapapur Gadde or Hippie Island is a small island situated across the Tungabhadra River. It takes 5 minutes to travel to the island via coracle or boat. The island is an epitome of scenic beauty and is known for laidback ambient and lodges.
- Queen’s Bath – A part of the Royal Enclosure, this aquatic enclosure was the Royal bath during the times of the Vijayanagra Empire. It was built in such a way that no outsiders could enter the bath, and has lost much to ruins at the date. Although built around 500 years ago, this magnificent structure still remains intact in its construction. It’s simplest exterior perfectly blends with an ornate interior to embrace its overall appearance.
It a rectangular building admeasuring around 30 square meters and has a large sunken bath at its center. It may interest you to find arched corridors all around this Royal bath.
- Lotus Palace – Close to the Zenana Enclosure, is a monument that stands out in its design and style from most of the structures of Hampi. Another complex, for royal women, this one gets its name from the lotus-like dome. The central dome of this Mahala resembles the bud of lotus and the balcony and passages as petals. The roof illustrates a multi-layered design reflecting and Indo architectural style. There are around 24 pillars to provide excellent support to the arched windows of this palace.
- Elephant Stables – The Elephant Stables served as an enclosure for royal elephants back in the day of the Vijayanagra Empire. These chambers are around 11 in their total count; some of which are interconnected. The whole building gives a symmetrical appearance, and the central hall tower reflects the shape of most of the temples here. This central hall has five domes on either side of it which reflects an Islamic style of architecture.
- Coracle Ride – When in Hampi, you absolutely have to get hold of a coracle and ride in one. It is one of the few places in the country where you can get such an experience and we guarantee that it is going to be a lot of fun. You can rent a coracle at really economic rates and cross the rates in the ferry that looks exactly like the one in olden days. Coracle rides can be arranged for Rs. 50 or around that price and this is one of the most definitive experiences amongst things to do in Hampi. Coracle rides can be arranged at Tungabhadra River boating area, Sanapur Lake, or at Sanapur waterfalls.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit Hampi is the winter season from October to February. The weather remains moderately cool except for peak afternoons but mostly perfect for exploring the World Heritage Site. Some of the most important festivals including Vijaya Utsav (Festival of Hampi) is celebrated in the month of November.
How to Reach
- By Flight – The nearest airport to Hampi, Bellary is 60 km away from the temple town. Hubli Airport is another airport which is 143 km away from Hampi. Also, JSW Vidyanagar Airport in Toranagallu is located approximately 40 kms from Hampi.
- By Road – There are buses to Hampi (or to Hospet) from major cities like Bangalore, Mumbai, Pune and Bellary. NH4 connects Bangalore to Hampi and it takes around 7 hours to reach here. From Hospet, it takes around 40 minutes by a local state-run bus to reach here.
- By Train – Not having its own railways station, trains halt at Hospet Junction (13km). However, there are very few trains to Hosapete Junction (HPT) and they are mostly sold out well in advance during the season.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)
What is the best time to go hot air ballooning in Hampi?
The best time for hot air ballooning in Hampi is either early in the morning or evening. However, the best time to visit Hampi is between the months of October and February.
How much does hot air ballooning in Hampi cost?
The cost ranges between INR 8,000 to 12,000 per person.