The first boulders began appearing outside the bus window about an hour or so before we arrived. The closer we got, the more surreal and elaborate were the formations. From up close, the seemingly inanimate boulders appear to be starring at you in human and animal forms and if you are a cloud-watcher, you could easily lose yourself in the cartoon book of these rock faces. From the distance, the rocks, draped by palm trees, set a magical backdrop for the temples and palaces of the once formidable Vijayanagara Empire.
You can hire an auto to take you around all the ruins or you can walk the couple of km through the old bazaar and smaller ruinous temples, while taking in views of spectacular landscapes and completely avoiding touts, and most tourists for that matter.