Located in the Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh, Belum Caves are the largest and longest cave system in India still open for the tourists. The second largest caves in India after the Krem Liat Prah in Meghalaya and famous for their unique formations such as stalactite and stalagmite formations, the caves were formed over a period of millions of years with the consequent formation of limestone. One of the centrally protected monuments of national importance, the Belum Caves has numerous pathways with intricate patterns of water stream on limestone which are bound to leave you awestruck over the sheer will of nature and the beauty it can create.
Yaganti, in the Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh in India, is a popular tourist site that is famous for its temple of Sri Yagantiswamy, which is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is the perfect way to get a feel of the Andhra Pradesh tourism. Also known as Uma Maheshwara Temple, the ancient Sri Yagantiswamy temple dates back to the 5th and 6th centuries. The temple houses the idol of Shiva and Parvathi fused together, called Ardhanareeswara. This fascinating idol is carved out of a single stone and is a marvellous idol of the deities to behold.
A wildlife sanctuary spread across an area of 614sq kms in the Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh, Rollapadu offers its visitors a journey into the wild, close to nature, amidst a number of diverse species of flora and fauna. Established in 1988, Rollapadu is especially known for being the home to the endangered species of The Great Indian Bustard and Lesser Florican. The wildlife sanctuary, spread across the huge area is the home to many birds and reptiles.
Endearingly known as the ‘Grand Canyon of India’, Gandikota is a twee village in Kadapa district of Andhra Pradesh. Flanked by River Pennar on the right side, the village is popular for the spectacular gorges formed by the river cutting through Erramala Hills. The narrow valleys with streams running between them and the steep rocky walls to give them company remind one of the renowned Grand Canyon in Arizona. It required a walk of almost a kilometre from the main gate to reach the boulder from where you can observe the mesmerising view from the viewpoint near the fort.
There are a few ordinary landscapes in Kurnool. One fascinating stretch is a park with igneous rock formations. Find here a restaurant, small ponds, boating facilities and a cave museum. A less ordinary hiking area and a bit unusual picnic spot, this one, is a must visit area in Kurnool.
Known For : Raghavendra Swami Temple Panchamukhi Anjaneya Temple
Mantralayam is a holy town situated 74 km from Kurnool district in Andhra Pradesh and 250 km from its state capital, Hyderabad. It is located near the border of Karnataka and on the banks of the river Tungabhadra. Mantralayam is known for Sri Guru Raghavendra Swami, a saint who entered into a samadhi alive in front of his disciples in 17th Century. He was a Madhwa saint who is considered to be a reincarnation of Prahlada (A daitya king who was saved by Lord Vishnu's Narasimha avatar).
Best Time: October to March
Ahobilam Temple, dedicated to Lord Narasimha Swami, is the only temple where all the nine forms of the deity are worshipped. Ahobilam is believed to be the middle of Adishesha who expands all over the Nalmalla Hills. The temple was built according to the Vijayanagara style of architecture and houses idols of all the nine forms of Lord Narasimha Swami.
Shivaji Spoorthy Kendra is where Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj meditated before becoming the king. The Kendra was built by historians Vadlamudi Ram Mohan Rao and Meero Panth Pingle when they had visited Srisailam and saw the dilapidated state of the location. The bhoomi pooja for the Kendra was done in 1983 and a 12 feet tall bronze statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj was installed later on. The main motive of establishing the Kendra is to inspire the youth of India with the ideals of Shivaji Maharaj and keep his historic achievements alive.
Sri Mahayogi Laxmamma Avva Temple is dedicated to Lakshmamma, also known as Avva. She was born in a poor Dalit family, had nothing to live off of and was considered insane because she was always found muttering to herself. Some, however, believed in her powers and offered her food and clothing till she was alive. According to a legend, Avva's limbs were mutilated but the next day she was seen doing her regular chores. Many such miracles stunned the people around and ever since she has been considered an avadhoot.
Ranamandala Konda is a religiously important attraction in the region. It is believed, this site is where, during their exile, Lord Rama shot an arrow and formed a lake to provide water to Goddess Sita. This is also where Lord Hanuman is believed to have fought demons while Rama was sleeping to ensure he doesn't get disturbed. The attraction also has the famous Ranamandala Anjaneya Swamy temple which is a shrine with no roof.
Adoni Fort is a 15th century historic monument built during the reign of the Vijayanagara Dynasty. The fort served as a military base and its walls stretch over 50 kilometres in length making it the largest fort in the country. After the downfall of the Vijayanagara empire, the fort was possessed by the Bijapur Sultanate and later, after the defeat of Tipu Sultan, came under the British Reign.
Nallamala Forest expands over a vast region of the Eastern Ghats of India. It is home to a wide variety of flora and fauna including Antelopes, Neelgai, Chinkaras and Leopards. The forest area also includes the Nagarjunasagar-Srisailam Tiger Reserve. The natural landscape, the dense forestation with several stupendous waterfalls and other water bodies, make the attraction perfect for nature lovers.
Known For : Ahobilam Temple ISKCON Temple, Anantapur Veera Bhadra Temple
Anantapuram is the headquarters of Anantapur District in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Anantapuram is not a cosmopolitan city. Neither is it a village. It is one of those towns in transition, that is at the confluence of the past and the future. Anantapuram reverberates with flashes of India's glorious history and the true ethnic traditions and values of India. Interestingly, Anantapur receives the second-lowest rainfall in India.
Best Time: November to February
₹ 2,450 onwards
₹ 1,800 onwards