Hampi, a village and temple town in India’s south is one of India’s most interesting cities. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and was, once upon a time, one of the richest cities in the world when it was at its peak.
The history of Hampi dates back to the 2nd century and several dynasties ruled the city throughout history, including the mighty Vijayanagara Empire in the early 1500s which controlled most of South India at the time.
Multiple temples and structures were built, comprising the awesome world heritage site that stands today. One iconic example here is the Achyutaraya temple (pic #2 & #3), built in 1534 - a classic example of the Vijayanagar style of architecture and actually the last grand temple to be built before the empire fell and Deccan Sultans conquered Hampi in 1565.
These Sultans partly destroyed what would have taken them forever to rebuild. The temples of Hampi were damaged and most of the markets were robbed, leaving the ruins you can visit today. After the attacks, the empire was ruled by various Kings and the city regained some economic strength, however nobody really could bring back the lost glory from the golden era before them. Awesome to walk through this place and imagine how it must have looked centuries ago.