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Where to cross the Tungabhadra river in Hampi? Well... you can do it right here on the motorboat

Tungabhadra is an important river in the South India. Hampi is located on the south bank somewhere in the middle of this river's path. In this area the river takes a number of twists are turns owing to the rocky terrain. The river has immense significance in forming the political and religious history of Hampi. The river along with the boulder-strewn hills formed the northern barrier of the capital. It was not easy for an invading army cross the river without the fate of a sure defeat.

Virupaksha Temple view from the Tungabhadra river
Virupaksha temple view from the Tungabhadra river.
south bank of the Tungabhadra river
South bank of the Tungabhadra river.
motorboats on the north bank of the river
Motorboats on the north bank of the river.

Tungabhadra river is in fact formed by the union of two rivers Tunga and Bhadra and hence the name. Both Tunga and Bhadra rivers are originated on the eastern slops of the Western Ghats. Tungabhadra flows in a more or less northwest direction before joining the eastern river Krishna. The Krishna river finally ends into the Bay of Bengal.

people wait the boat on the south bank
People wait the boat on the south bank.
stairway on the south bank of the Tungabhadra river
Stairway on the south bank of the river.

In modern India a huge dam and hydroelectric project is constructed across Tungabhadra (about 20 kilometers southwest of Hampi), curtailing the original vigor of the river in this part.

The Vijayanagara kings took advantage of the river by constructing a host of irrigation canals and aqueducts. A highly networked water supply system fed the manmade water bodies in the urban core of the palace area. Many of the ancient canals are still in use to irrigate the surrounding agriculture fields.

The ancient name of the river was Pampa. According to the legends, Pampa, the daughter of Brahma (the God of creation) did penance to please Lord Shiva. Impressed by her devotion Shiva married her and taken the name Pampapati (means husband of Pampa). The name Hampi has origin in Pampa. On the banks of the river, there are numerous shrines and idols associated with the worship of Lord Shiva.

Nowadays, the Tungabhadra river is a source of drinking and irrigation to many towns and cities. Unfortunately, the river is being polluted due to discharge of domestic and industrial wastes.