Hanuman is one of the central characters of Ramayana. He's revered as a great devotee of Shree Rama and worshiped as an avatar of Shiva. He's also known as the son of Vayu. We see his images, statues, photos, sculptures, temples, etc. all over India and he's popularly depicted as a monkey. But what does Valmiki Ramayana say about Hanuman? Is he a vanara or a human being?
But what does Valmiki Ramayana say about Hanuman? Is he a vanara or a human being?
Valmiki Ramayana says that he is a Monkey - The most powerful divine monkey. Following are 3 verses which address Hanuman as kapi and vAnara - meaning a monkey.
Here in Ramayana, Baalkaand, Sarga 1, Verse 77. Narada gives a summary of the Ramayana to Valmiki and addresses Hanuman as MahAkapiH = The Great Monkey
अस्त्रेणोन्मुक्तमात्मानं ज्ञात्वा पैतामहाद्वरात् |
मर्षयन् राक्षसान् वीरो यन्त्रिणस्तान्यदृच्छया || १-१-७६ ||
ततो दग्ध्वा पुरीं लङ्कामृते सीतां च मैथिलीम् |
रामाय प्रियमाख्यातुं पुनरायान्महाकपिः || १-१-७७ ||
"Knowing himself to be free from the captivity of the weapon according to Brahma's boon, the valiant great monkey Hanuma enduring those demons with self-will who tied his tail with ropes with the intention of burning it, there after burning the city of Lanka while leaving from fire the Seetha of Mithila, got back again to convey the pleasant news to Rama ... [1-1-76, 77]
And here again in Bala-kanda, Sarga-17, verse-16-17, mention Hanuman as the celestial vanarah, the son of Vayudeva, with an indestructible body and with the speed of Garuda:
मारुतस्यौरसः श्रीमान् हनुमान्नाम वानरः | वज्रसंहननोपेतो वैनतेयसमो जवे || १-१७-१६ सर्ववानरमुख्येषु बुद्धिमान् बलवानपि | ते सृष्टा बहुसाहस्रा दशग्रीववधोद्यताः || १-१७-१७
The opulent/marvellous monkey son of Vayudeva known by the name Hanuman. Whose body is as indestructible as the Vajra of Indra and in speed only Garuda, the son of Vinita can match him. Among other vanara, he is the most intelligent and powerful!
And here in Kishkindakand, Sarga-3, Verse-2. Hanuman himself is thinking that my monkey form (kapi-rupam) no one would trust so I should change into a ascetic/sannyasi.
कपि रूपम् परित्यज्य हनुमान् मारुतात्मजः |
भिक्षु रूपम् ततो भेजे शठबुद्धितया कपिः || ४-३-२
Casting off his monkey's semblance Air-god's son Hanuma attained the persona of an ascetic, for that monkey is incredulous in mind about Raghava-s. [4-3-2]
There are many other verses but I think this much should suffice to answer the question.
Hope this Helps.