The ruins of Hampi hold immense cultural significance in terms of India’s ancient history. Once the capital of the prestigious Vijayanagara Empire, Hampi was an affluent and majestic city situated on the banks of the Tungabhadra River. Today, the archaeologically rich place is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Every year, the gorgeous city comes alive with music and dance when the Government of Karnataka celebrates the Hampi Utsav to commemorate the splendour of the erstwhile Vijayanagara Empire.

Experts believe that the Hampi Utsav is among the oldest celebrations in the country, and has been observed since the heydays of the Vijayanagara Empire. Today, it has transformed into an annual festival that captures the glory, grandeur, and pageantry of that ancient Empire. Celebrated with huge pomp and show, the Utsav presents a unique opportunity for everyone to experience the magnificence of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can look forward to enjoy some great performances by India’s most renowned artistes, dancers, and singers along with activities such as Jumbo Safari, Rangoli competition, photography competition, and much more.

The Utsav attracts tourists from all across the world. They come to witness the breathtaking beauty of the ancient city. The backdrop of the Utsav is the ruins of Hampi, resuscitating the bygone city back to life. The festivities take place at the Virupaksha Temple, and the opulent culture of the region is showcased through Janapada Kalavahini, a concert of folk songs.

Hampi Utsav: Quick Info


Hampi Utsav 2024

Organised By

State Government of Karnataka


Dates to be announced yet


Gayatri Peetha, Virupaksha Temple, and Eduru Basavanna Temple

Things to Do

Jumbo Safari and Procession,  Janapada Kalavahini, Raja Marg, Cultural Shows, Shopping, Fireworks

Entry Fees


Hampi Utsav: Major Attractions

The Hampi Utsav is lavishly celebrated each year. Being a witness to the medieval splendour of the Vijayanagara Empire and beyond, the city relives the past in the three-day event with the following activities:

1. Jumbo Safari and Procession: This is one of the greatest attractions of the event wherein an elephant parade takes place to memorialise the legacy of the empire. People gather in huge numbers to march in a procession. One can see men dressed up in various unique attires, including as army men of the bygone time on horseback. The fact that even the elephants are fully decorated further sheds light on the ancient empire’s opulence and grandeur, which people still relive, even after ages.

2. Janapada Kalavahini: Janapada Kalavahini is a concert of folk songs that is another special attraction of the Hampi Utsav. The entire concept of the Utsav is to recreate the folk traditions of the Golden Era, and it only becomes possible with this event. Folk artists from across the globe visit Hampi and showcase their talent through songs rendered in their respective languages, along with playing traditional instruments such as flutes and pipes. The event is one of the most notable highlights of the Utsav and has visitors brimming with enthusiasm and interest.

3. Raja Marg: A large part of the Hampi Utsav festivities takes place at the Virupaksha Temple, the guardian shrine of the Vijayanagara Empire. It is a beautiful temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and was renovated during the Vijayanagara era. It was an important monument for the Empire, and therefore, the road leading up to the temple, known as the Raja Marg, is adorned with lights and decorations. These decorations are extremely beautiful and attractive, and must not be missed.

4. Cultural Shows: Many different types of cultural shows take place during the three-day Utsav. Music shows, light and sound shows, dramas, street performances, and puppet shows are some of the most popular displays. Watching these shows is an excellent way to learn about the traditions and cultures of the rich city of Hampi.

Participants in these shows are invited from different parts of the country. This is also a fantastic platform for artists to display their talents. The light and sound shows are especially popular and transport visitors to the golden days of the Vijayanagara Empire.

5. Shopping: If you are fond of traditional shopping, there just cannot be a better place than Hampi. Many traditional handicraft items are specific to the region, and the Hampi Utsav is the best time to get your hands on those. Additionally, you can explore the local delicacies of Karnataka and indulge your senses in a unique and highly palatable experience.

6. Fireworks: You can witness spectacular fireworks on all three days complimenting the festivities of the Utsav.

7. Exhibition and Sports: Last but not least, you can also enjoy some sports and exhibitions at the Utsav. Several exhibitions of books, flowers, paintings, art and crafts, and more are worth checking out. Also, sports events such as stone lifting, kabaddi, volleyball, table tennis, and mud field race are held at various venues. This is a great opportunity for youngsters to participate in engaging sports activities and enjoy the festival in full spirit.

How to Reach Hampi

The city of Hampi is located at a distance of 341 km from Bengaluru. It can easily be reached via road, rail, and air.

  • By Air: The nearest airport is Hubli Airport (HBX), which is approximately at a distance of 167 km. You can catch direct flights to the airport from almost all major cities such as Mumbai or Delhi. Upon reaching the airport, you can hire a taxi to get to Hampi.
  • By Rail: The nearest railway station is Hosapet Junction situated in the Bellary District of Karnataka. The station is approximately 13 km away from Hampi. If you are taking a rail service from any major city in India, you can also alight at the Bengaluru Railway Station. From there, you can travel to Hampi via car or bus.
  • By Road: Hampi is well-connected to all the nearby regions. You can board regular KSRTC buses to get to the city. Also, several bus services connect Hampi with Maharashtra, Goa, and Andhra Pradesh.