16 January 2013

Top attractions in and around Tirumala

Floral decoration of Entrance Gate on New Year Day 2016
Tirumala - the abode of Lord Venkateswara - is the world famous temple located on the Tirumala Hills in the Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh. It is one of the most important pilgrim places for Hindus which is heavily crowded with devotees round the year. The temple is located on the 7th hill known as the Venkatachalam or Venkataadri which is one of the seven continuous hills, hence Lord Venkateswara is also known as the Lord of Seven Hills.
The names of the other six hills of Tirumala are Vrishabhaadri, Anjanaadri, Neelaadri, Seshaadri, Garudaadri and Narayanaadri. It is believed that all these seven hills are curved in a serpentine shape and these are considered as the Aadi Seshu which literally means the first serpent that forms the mattress for Lord Maha Vishnu.

Lord Venkateswara temple at Tirumala is world famous. It is well connected via air route, rail route and road route to almost all places of Andhra Pradesh and India as well. Being one of the most important Hindu pilgrim places, there is no dearth for accommodation.  The experience of climbing the seven hills by foot is a real enjoyable and memorable one. Through out the way while climbing the hills, the pedestrians enjoy listening Annamayya Keertanalu, Govinda Namalu, Vishnu Sahasranamam and other devotional music.

Places to visit in and around Tirumala

After the darshan of Lord Venkateswara, pilgrims visit the tourist attractions in and around Tirumala.

Paapanaasanam / Akasaganga

Papanasanam / also known papavinasam and and Akasaganga are the two most attracted places near Tirumala. These are waterfalls that are channelized. Most of the pilgrims visit this place to have a shower under the waterfalls. It is believed that having a bath under this waterfalls redeems one from all the sins. Hence the name papa (means 'sin' in Telugu) nasanam (which means destroy in Telugu). The place is easily reachable and there are good number of buses that ply to this place.

TTD gardens 

This is yet another important place to visit which offers a pleasant and colorful atmosphere particularly during spring when all the flowering plants are in full bloom. Pilgrim relax and refresh their minds, body and souls in these gardens.

Museum 

This is in the city limits and easily reachable is another main attraction of the place. Pilgrims can take the free bus service offered by TTD to reach this place.

Silathoranam

This place is famous as you can see the natural rock formation in an arch shape. The place is near Chakra Teertham. The place has no religious importance but it attracts tourists.

Chakra Teertham

This is yet another nice place where you need to walk down the rocky steps to see the beautiful fall of water surrounded by rocks. The place is quite cool and shady and rich in scenic beauty.

Sreevari Paadaalu

This is an important place as the stone carved feet of Lord Venkateswara are here. Most of the pilgrims do not visit this place. Next time when you happen to visit Tirumala make it a point to visit this place which is on a steep peak of the Venkataadri hill. From here the entire temple complex along with the Bangaaru Gopuram of the temple can be seen as a bird's eye view. It is believed that Sreevaaru (Lord Venkateswara) stepped at this place and hence the name Sreevari Paadaalu which means the foot prints of the Lord. Devotees bow down to the foot prints of the Lord which is a must see place.
Besides visiting the tourist places in Tirumala, pilgrims also visit the places in and around Tirupati

During their visit to Tirumala, pilgrims follow some of the important travel tips to make their trip an enjoyable and safe one.