Hampi - Vijayanagar Empire had UX designers!

Sounds weird? But the reality is we can find great design insights in this UNESCO World Heritage Site. They created architectural excellence structures not only to show their expertise but also solved many problems in those days.

We started our cultural study as part of UXmint design program in Hampi surrounded by rocky hills on all three sides and Tungabhadra River on another side. This prevented the kingdom from the problem of being an easy target.
Bull statue placed at the top of mandapam

River having many bull statues

First, in our tour, we have noticed various size Nandi (Bull) statue placed at top of the rocks found in the river. Notably, the statue’s height from the ground is also not same. Why they made it like that?

Visibility of system status
Even today these statues are conveying the current status of a river flowing. Statues are visible from the very long distance also and avoids people persuasion to cross the river. Awesome right!

Horse and Elephant market

Magnificent temple and market

Then we moved to a big market for trading Horses and elephants present in front of Vitala temple. Naturally, the question arises here, the temple might have attracted locals crowds mostly during festival season but sale should open throughout the year for other empire’s traders also. Why they placed market in front of empire’s glorious temple?

Yep, this temple might have acted as a shelter and provided food to the traders from the long way. As a return, it might have increased their sale.

Temple has separate building structure for horse training and its efficiency. It might have acted as an advertisement for their sale.Also, it might have seeded safety feeling in minds of locals.

The stone chariot with movable stone wheels which might have shifted by using the elephants and this shows the strength of their elephants to the traders.

User control and freedom
 The dance mandapam with peculiar pillars using which anyone can make music by just tapping it. The traders might not have felt bad even no dance program scheduled.


Hampi was a very well planned constructed capital of Vijayanagar empire which teaches us designing is a lot more than creating boxes in a tool.

Journey continues.

Have a question/suggestion? Let me know in comments below!

Thank you!