The Stone Trough in Hampi is an ancient water trough that was used to provide drinking water to the horses during the days of the Vijayanagara Empire. It is located just outside the King’s Audience Hall whose remnants exist within the Royal Enclosure in Hampi.
The stone trough is a simple rock object that was an item of utility during the days when the Vijayanagara Empire was at its peak. The stone trough attracts the attention of the visitors due to its unusually long size and distinct shape.
- Timing: 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM on all days of the week
- Entry Fee: No entry fee required
- Photography: Allowed
- Video Camera: Allowed
- Visit Duration: About 20 to 30 minutes
- Best time to visit: From November to February
History of the Stone Trough, Hampi
The Stone Trough is an object that dates back to the days of the Vijayanagara Empire. The utility item was constructed to provide relief to the thirsty horses while their masters attended to more pressing problems of the kingdom or solved other issues.
Its location outside the King’s Audience Hall indicates that it was used to provide drinking water to the horses of the noblemen who came to the King’s court.
Architecture of the Stone Trough, Hampi
The Stone Trough in Hampi is an item that exemplifies the fine craftsmanship of the Vijayanagara masons. It is a water-trough that has been carved out of a huge single granite block that must have been rectangular in shape.
The monolithic stone trough has a length of 12.72 metres and a breath of 0.70 metres. The trough has a depth of 0.55 metres. It has the capacity to hold more than 2000 litres of water. Around two dozen horses can drink water from the long trough at a time.
The trough has a tiny hole on one of the sides that must have been kept plugged while storing water in the object during the ancient days. The hole was meant to drain out the remaining water before cleaning the trough or filling it with fresh water.
Present Condition of the Stone Trough, Hampi
The monolithic stone trough is an object that has withstood the test of man, time and nature. The 500 year old water trough is in a better condition than most other objects of similar nature found in Hampi. The stone trough lies in a neglected condition just near the area containing the ruins of the King’s Audience Hall.
It is a plain trough that can be easily missed by visitors who are not aware of its existence or may be considered as a casual rock object lying around. However, the length of the trough often attracts visitors to give it a second look and try to realise its purpose within the Royal Enclosure.
How to reach the Stone Trough
The large stone trough of Hampi is situated within the Royal Enclosure and can be found towards the southern entrance of the famous Hazara Rama Temple complex.
The Royal Enclosure lies in an area that be easily accessed by vehicle from almost all parts of the town. The enclosure has remnants of several structures and monuments belonging to the period of the Vijayanagara Empire. So, it is better to keep some time in hand while visiting this fortified area and the Stone Trough.
Hampi is destination that cannot be reached directly by flight as it has no airport of its own. The closest town to have an airport is Ballari (Bellary) and it is located at a distance of about 64 km from Hampi. Visitors can reach Ballari by flight and proceed to Hampi by means of local transport.
Hampi is a town that cannot be accessed directly by the train route as no railway station exists in the ruined town. The nearest railway station is located in the town of Hosapete (Hospet). It has the Hospet Junction Railway Station.
The town of Hosapete stands at a distance of just 10 km from Hampi. One can easily take a bus or avail other means of local transport to reach Hampi from Hosapete.
Travelling by the road network is one of the simple ways to reach Hampi. The town has a good road network and is well connected to many towns and cities of Karnataka. There are several buses that operate between Hampi and many of the major towns and cities in Karnataka.
Visitors can hire private cars, cabs or other vehicles from major cities like Bengaluru (Bangalore) or Mysuru (Mysore) to reach Hampi.