Andra Pradesh and Telangana are the states which are true to the essence of our ancient history. Both these places have many stories to narrate and lure us with that. earlier these two states were together. It was the fourth largest state with a combination of old traditions of Dravidian Hindus with the Muslim cultural heritage.
Andra Pradesh and Telangana are known for their cultural art forms such as dance and handicrafts also. The state was earlier also known as the “rice bowl of India” as some of the finest varieties of rice grew here.
Rastra Kutas , Kakatiyas ruled Telangana in times. Here many tourist attractions are there. Come let us explore them one by one.
It is the abode of Lord Laxmi Narasimha swami. You can reach herefrom Hydrabad as it is 61 Kms from the capital city. The lord commands the devotion of the residence of Hyderabad like no other deity. In fact they have crowned him as their pattern. You can go to this temple anytime and there are no restrictions on anyone based on any caste, gender etc. As you will climb the hill, you will feel that all your worries are melting away. No wonder this place has been for worship for sages for ages. The temple is actually a cave on a hill top and is surmounted by a Shikara covering the main deity. In this temple five forms of of lord Narasimha are worshiped.
It is located 140 Kms from Hyderabad and is historical city. There is an abundance of history is this place. Actually this place with Hanamkunda are known as Twin cities. It is very pleasant is winters but very hot during summers. SO you can better plan a trip here in winters.
1000 pillar temple:
The main attraction for you here is the 1000 pillar temple. It was built in 1163 AD by the Kakatia King. The temple has three shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu and Lord Surya. The main festival in this temple is Shivaratri festival during February march.
It is equally important and attractive. “The Hydari Darwaja” at this 13th century fort will attract you with its magnificent structure. Inside the fort is a museum where the state archaeological department has put excavated figures, pillars. Lord Shiva and Nandi idols are also there for your display.
It is located 172 Kms north of Hyderabad. It is also the former capital of Rashtra kuttas and it lies close to the Maharasthra border. Let us see the major attractions in the town one by one.
1) Qilla Ramalayam
You may note that this place is technically known as Raghunath swami temple. It is a temple and a jail built inside a fort. You may find it interesting that originally it was a fort of the Rashtra Kuttas but it was converted by Saint Raghunath who used to come here frequently during his cross-country ventures. The temple lies in the heart of Nizamabad and is an important landmark. You should visit the temple towards the afternoon when the priest is free as he will take you around and show you the temple in detail.
2) Ali sagar
This is a lake and is the most popular weekend spot in the town Nizamabad. Lush forest with a summer house well maintained lawns and a restaurant are set on an island in the lake. To reach the island, you have to take a peddle or speed boat and also there is also a deer park nearby that you may enjoy.
3) Ashok sagar
This lake is like a twin of Ali sagar, 7 Kms from Nizamabad town. You will spot a rock garden and a Goddess Saraswati Idol in the middle of this lake.
4) Born again Banyan tree
This will be your little stopover, 33 Kms away from the town. As the name says, you must note that the Banyan tree was born again after it died. On the day when the tree got uprooted in flood and storms, miraculously it rose and stuck back to its roots. The tree may seem to you like Lord Ganesha and is worshiped now.
This small town is 215Kms north of Hyderabad. You may find that it is located near the Maharashtra Border. This place welcomes the Godavari river to Telanagana. It is mainly home to Goddess Saraswati.
1) Goddess Gyana Saraswati Temple
The main deity is of Goddess Saraswati and she is covered with turmeric. Eating the same turmeric is believed to enhance your knowledge and wisdom, and hence that is why children prior to starting their education are brought here for ” Akshara Abhishekam” ceremony.
2) Vyasa gumfa
It is near the Saraswati temple on the top of a hill. You will find that there is a cave where sage Vyas has performed Penance. The entrance to the cave is Narrow and you need to get down to enter but the cave is quite wide. Veru importantly, on way to the cave you have to be careful about the Monkeys in the area.
It is known as the hill of sage Bhadra. The temple town is 33Kms from Hyderabad. You may note that Lord Rama spent part of his 14 years Exile here. Sage Bhadra is said to have attained moksh here. A full day and night stay is sufficient to go around this town.
Main attractions here
1) Sri Sitaramachandra swamy temple
The temple to Lord Rama exists due to the efforts of Bhakt Ramdas. Another devotee Varada Ramdas placed all his wealth in the service of the Lord. The temple is on a hill up in the middle of a thick forest by the Godavari river. The temple has four Gopurams in each direction. The front one is the largest. You may note that the main festival here is the day long RamaNavami ( March/ April) so you may visit here during that time. The ten days long Vaikuntaekadasi is also celebrated here with equal zeal and you may not want to miss it (December/ January).
2) Abhaya Anjaneya Temple
You may visit here too as it is nearby to the Sitaramachandra swamy temple. The idol in this small temple poses in the gesture of protection.
It is an island in the Nagarjun Sagar dam built on the river Krishna. You can travel here from Hyderabad as it is 146Kms from there. Nagarjuna sagar is the township where the hotels are located and from here you have to take a ferry to the Island. The island has some original remains , a few relocated monuments, an Amphitheater and a museum containing Sculptures and inscriptions ranging from 200 milinia to 200 years in age. To reach the island you have to take the motor launch from the right bank of the lake. As you approach you can see the ruins of a wall embracing the entire hill. The replica of a larger than life Budhha stands at the island.
There are three fifteen century temples here. Nageshwaralinga temple is near the museum. There are other two temples also which you can visit while at this town. You can visit this town anytime of the year.
This city is Andhra Pradesh in a nutshell. It is located at the base of the eastern ghats on the banks of the River Krishna. You may note that it is 267Kms from Hyderabad. You might be interested to know that friday is special for the city. This city comes alive every friday when all its gods and goddesses are worshiped. It has 22 temples and many cinema halls. Celebration of life begins every friday in Vijayawada.
The city on that day is like surfing television but amusing all the while. Almost every attractive spot in the city is located on mountain top and every place be it a temple, a park or a historical monument offers a bird’s eye view of the city. This city has many beautiful places to view. Come let us see them one by one:
1) Kanakadurga temple
This is a huge temple where fridays are always crowded when the goddess is dressed in all her silk and glittering best. The temple is also walk able and you may take about an hour to reach the summit. One can also drive up the hill to the temple provided there is parking available there.
2) Prakasam barrage
this barrage on river Krishna regulates the water levels in between the city and the series of hills. That water is used for drinking , irrigation and transport purpose. En route the tall barrage, you will see wide angle view of the city.
This hill temple is thirteen Kms fom Vijaywada. It is the abode of Lord Narasimha swamy with his mouth wide open. This is certainly a shrine where facts back legends. Here the offering to the lord are in liquid form. The temple priest directly puts the offerings into the mouth of the lord. Just when half the offering has gone in, you can hear a gulping sound and the rest of the offering will not go in. The sweetened liquid will simple flow back in you try to force it in inside the Lord’s mouth. Mystery or miracle, visit and know yourself?
It is one of India’s most important ports of eastern Bay of Bengal. It is located 649Kms north east of Hyderabad and the second largest city in Andhra Pradesh and occupies an important location because it has the most protected natural harbour in Asia.
1) R K beach
This beach to Bheemunipatnam is a 28 Kms coastal road. The harbour and the fisheries are to the south of the road and the beaches to the north. R K beach gets its name from R K mission Ashram that is nearby. It is a busy place with snacks and balloon sellers. All this makes the beach very enjoyable.
2) Kailasagiri hill
This spot is Visakapatnam’s most popular picnic spot. You should come here early in the morning or near sunset time so that you can see magnificant views of the sea. The best part of the visit here for you will be riding the ropeway up the slopes.
3) Araku valley
It is a special hill station but mainly a Village with most of amenities of a town. The valley is at a hight of 3100ft in the eastern ghats. The best point in this valley is the Duduma falls which is 82Kms from Araku valley. This is the site of the mach Kund power project on the Odisha- Andhra Pradesh border. Here you will find two spectacular water falls cascade down from over 2000 feet. Each falling into a different state. Here you will only find Taxis to travel.
9) Sri Sailam
This place is located 233 Kms south of Hyderabad. It is one of the 12 Jyotilingas in India. Rolling hills and Green forest rise in the backdrop.
1) Malikarjuna swamy temple
This well kept temple with its imposing Gopurams is a spectacular site seeing for you. A large idol of Nandi facing the sanctum presides over a pillared hall. The main Shiva linga has a hooded golden cover to the north of the Sanctum. The important festivals celebrated her are Makar Sankanti (January), Shivaratri (February), Ugadi (March-April) and Kartika ( November). Behind the this temple there is a temple for Bhramaramba Devi temple who is Mallikarjuna swami’s wife. In this temple Pillars are exquisitely carved and add to the aesthetics. Other temples near are Sakshi Ganapati and Shikhareshwara.
2) Shikareshwar temple
It is a tough climb of 150 steps to this temple. It is another 20 steps to the summit which is at a height of 2811 feet. This is the highest point in the region. You can get a nice distant view of the Sri sailam temple from here.
3) Sri sailam Dam
It is 20 Kms from the town. It is one of the biggest hydal projects in the country on river Krishna. This place set amidst hills and you can visit its greenery best during the day.
This state is so wide that it cannot be covered in one article. Stay tuned in the next one to know more about this wonder city. Till then, read this and virtually travel Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. Also read https://buzzofthehour.com/india-the-beauty-of-diversity/