Hidden like a jewel behind the lush green forests of Andhra Pradesh lies a serene and tranquil place named Nagalapuram. Surrounded by majestic hills and gurgling waterfalls, this place is ideal to take a break from the buzzing city life and spend some peaceful days amidst soft breezes, flourishing trees and gushing waterfalls. Famously also known as Nagala Hills, this is the place to pump up your adrenaline with the various adventurous activities proffered in this scenic village.
Nagalapuram was built by King Krishna Deva Raya, the magnanimous ruler of the Vijayanagar empire. He named the place 'Nagalapuram' in the loving memory of his mother, Nagamamba.
Flora and Fauna
Nagalapuram is a part of the Eastern Ghats, which means that the place is bound to be home to a plethora of flora and fauna. Trees with colourful blooming can be spotted and if you are lucky enough you will get a glimpse of chirping birds perched on the tree's branches. Animals like deer, bears, monkeys, rabbits and porcupines can be seen. The dense forest is filled with snakes and lizards, so be careful. The water bodies have a colourful life of itself which sustains a number of small fishes.
Places of Interest
i. Mini Courtallam
Mini Courtallam peacefully flows from the western side of the Nagalapuram hills. It is a must visit to see the beauty and you can even refresh yourself by taking a dip in it.
ii. Shiva Temple Waterfalls
Shiva Temple Waterfalls is the next that lies in the trail. As the name suggests, this waterfall is considered holy and hence all crowded with devotees.
iii. Ubbalamadugu Falls
Ubbalamadugu Falls lies hidden in the Nagalapuram Mountains. This waterfall exceeds every other by being the tallest. The splendid view of water falling from a height of 100 meters is truly magical.
2. Magical Pools
While trekking in the forest you will encounter a number of pools replete with fresh water. The trekkers call the pool ?Magic pool? as they are nothing short of being magical. You can take a dip in them to beat the heat and refresh yourself.
There are numerous gorges in Nagalapuram. The most popular among them is the Nagala eastern entry gorge. The gorges will try to act as a hindrance during the trek as you will have to swim between them to reach the next spot. But don't worry they add the element of thrill and adventure in the journey and are easy to cross.
4. Veda Narayanaswami Temple
This pious place will give you an insight into the grandeur of the Vijayanagar Empire. The temple was built in 15th century in Vijayanagara style architecture. The idols of Matsaya form of Vishnu along with Sri Devi and Bhu Devi on either side are sacredly placed inside the temple. Every year in March the sun rays descends on the idols creating a halo effect because of which Sun God is an integral part of the temple.
Things to Do
The Nagalapuram trek is the best and the only place to trek and get lost in the forest exploring new vegetation and wildlife. The trek is filled with enchanting waterfalls and picturesque beauty.
The option of biking is also available to those who do not want to travel by foot and get the help of a bike to explore the dense forests.
The best way to enjoy and feel the wilderness is by camping in the forest and enjoying being amidst nature. Imagine yourself living in a tent and waking up to see the majestic mountains and lush green trees. There can be no better way to unwind than this.
Nagalapuram is the best place to break away from the monotonous life. The place is full of adventurous activities that will pump up your adrenaline level. The place is absolutely stunning replete with greenery and clear water bodies. It is one of the best places to be near nature and listen to its music.
Photos of Nagalapuram
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Trekking in Nagalapuram
The trek to the waterfalls starts from the Arai Village the journey starts from the Nagala Dam. The dam welcomes the trekkers with a serene view and shows the way towards the waterfalls. The trek starts off on the simple plain ground until the water stream.
The water stream is where the difficulty level elevates considerably and trekkers need to concentrate on every step there onwards. The nature of water as we know it is beautiful but also harsh at the same time. The intermittent positioning of the Waterfalls and their pools are of great help to the trekkers and especially when the sun is right above the head. After sweating throughout the path, the sight of a cold water pool gives a joy uncomparable. Throwing the backpack down and getting rid of the shoes while running towards the pool and then taking off in the air to hit a perfect dive is not something that can be experienced often.
Camping & Precautions It is generally not recommended to camp in Nagalapuram, but some experienced trekkers do camp beside the trails after clearing out the camping grounds at their own risk. The region has been seeing some eve-teasing cases recently hence if females are recommended to be accompanied by guys just in case.
The trekkers visiting the trail are supposed to be registering themselves in the Nagalapuram Police station before entering the village and precautions must be taken during the trek.
Best Time To Visit Nagalapuram
The best time to visit Nagalapuram is between the months of October and March. The weather is pleasant and the sky is clear because of which trekking becomes pleasurable. Monsoon season should be avoided as it makes the trek difficult and full of hurdles because of which you won't be able to enjoy your trip.
Tips For Visiting Nagalapuram
Remember to carry a first aid box and mosquito repellent with you in case of emergency they will be helpful.
Carry water bottles to avoid dehydration.
Do not rely too much on GPS. Hire a guide instead.
Have a sturdy trekking gear.
Invest in good trekking shoes.
You can use trekking poles for stability.
Carry eatables with you as there are no shops nearby in the Nagalapuram trek.
How to Reach Nagalapuram
By Air: Tirupati Airport is the nearest airport to Nagalapuram at a distance of 37 km. from there rental cars are easily available to take you to your destination. By Rail: Arakkoram Railway Station is the nearest railway station at a distance of 38 km. Trains from all major cities of south passes from here. You can rent a car from here to reach Nagalapuram By Road: Distance between Chennai and Nagalapuram id 72 km.A number of private buses run from Chennai to Nagalapuram. You can even rent a car from Chennai or take your car to enjoy your stay at Nagalapuram.