VITTALA TEMPLE, HAMPI
Situated northeast of Hampi, opposite the village of Anegondi, this is one of the principal monuments of the city. It is dedicated to Vittala an aspect of Vishnu worshipped in the Maratha country. It is believed to date from the 16th century.
In the front of the temple is the famous stone chariot or ratha. This is itself a miniature temple, carved out of a single rock, to resemble the temple chariots or rathas in which temple idols are traditionally taken out in procession.
One of the notable features of the Vittala Temple is the musical pillars. Each of the pillars that support the roof of the main temple is supported by a pillar representing a musical instrument, and is constructed as 7 minor pillars arranged around a main pillar. These 7 pillars, when struck, emanate the 7 notes from the representative instrument, varying in sound quality based on whether it represents a wind, string or percussion instrument.
The temple is the venue of the annual Purandaradasa festival.