Geography

Hampi is located in the Bellary district of Karnataka State in Southern India. Bellary occupies around 8,477 square kilometers of land in the Deccan Plateau on the eastern side of Karnataka. As of 2011, the population of this district numbered 24,52,595 with some 37 % of this residing in its urban centers.

The district is bounded by Raichur district on the north, Koppal district on the west, Chitradurga and Davanagere districts on the south, and Anantapur and Kurnool districts of Andhra Pradesh on the east. It comes under the administrative control of Gulbarga division and development jurisdiction of H.K.D.B, Gulbarga.

Bellary district is situated on the Deccan plateau. Its major geographical features include the Northern maidan region which has a monotonous, treeless and expansive plateau landscape. The Sandur hills are the main physical features dividing the district into eastern and western parts.

The principal hill ranges are Kumaraswamy hills, Ramanmalai, and Jambunatha hills. The highest peaks of these hills are in the Kumaraswamy range standing at 1084m amsl.

The major river is the Tungabhadra river, which runs along the border and forms the boundary of the district for about 300 kms. Chikkahagari & Hagari/Vedavathy are tributaries that drains south to north of the district. The Tungabhadra river was dammed in 1953 and the water is used for irrigation, electricity, flood control etc.

The average annual rainfall is 639 mms with June being the wettest at 71 mms and January being the driest at 1.3 mms. Temperatures range from a maximum of 42 degrees C to a minimum of 10 degrees C. The summer months stretch from March to May while November to Feb is the coolest season.

The principal town, and District Capital, is Bellary, with a population of around 409,644. Other significant towns include Hospet and Sanduru. The district has two revenue sub divisions, Ballari subdivision and Hosapete subdivision, which in all have seven taluks.

Geology

The landscape in & around Hampi falls under Eastern Dharwar craton which is believed to be 3.4 to 2.0 billion years old and highlights the major early pre Cambrian events in the craton. It consists of granite & greenstone terrain – One of the oldest exposed surfaces on earth.

Due to continuous erosion, at first underground, and later by exposure to sun, wind & rain, the surface of the monoliths cracked, split and eventually weathered into spherical shapes creating rounded and detached boulders, some perched in precarious positions giving the impression that they are about to roll over while some have devolved into random shapes and forms of sculptural merit!