Andhra Pradesh, known as the ‘Koh-i-noor of India’ has a variety of tourist attractions which include beaches, hills, caves, wildlife, forests and temples; most of which are not all that famous and go unnoticed or underrated.
Here’s taking a look at 10 lesser known places to visit in Andhra Pradesh.
1. Lepakshi, Anantapur.
Lepakshi is a small village with its headquarters in the Anantapur District. It is 15 km east of Hindupur and about 120 km north of Bangalore.
The Hanging Pillar and the monolithic “Nandi” sculpture, which is said to be the biggest monolithic Nandi in India, are synonymous with Lepakshi. It is 4.5m high and 8.23m long.
2. The Dhyana Budhdha Statue, Amaravati.
Amaravati is a town near Vijayawada and is also referred to as Amareswaram; owing to the famous Amareswara Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva.
It is said that the region between Krishna and Godavari rivers was important for Buddhism from the 2nd century, with Amaravati being one of them to own a Buddhist stupa that was built during the reign of Ashoka in 200 BCE.
Being a subject of neglect for a long time it glory was resurrected by Dalai Lama of Tibet when he conducted a Kalachakra initiation at this location in 2006. The Dhyana Buddha statue was inaugurated and thrown open to public in May 2015.
3. Kondapalli Fort, Krishna District.
Kondapalli Fort, also locally known as Kondapalli Kota, is located in Krishna District, Near. The historic fort on the hill located to the west of the Kondapalli village was built by Prolaya Vema Reddy during the 14th century, initially as a relaxation area and a business centre, along with the Kondavidu Fort in Guntur District. In later years, it was used as a military fortification and the British placed a strong garrison here.
4. The Borra Caves, Araku Valley.
How often have we heard the name of Elephanta Caves, Mumbai? We have, haven’t we? They are famous all over the country.
But how many tourists know of BORRA Caves? Barely few!
Did you know that Borra Caves are called so because a formation inside the caves looks like the human brain, which in Telugu is called ‘Burra’?
5. Kumbhakarna Gardens, Penukonda.
Once ruled by several dynasties, Penukonda is said to have once been home to 365 temples each worshipped on one day of the year. However not many have survived today, of the many temples here some intriguing temples include the Temple of Lord Kasha Vishwanatha, Lord Yogarama Temple, Lord Yoga Narasimha Swami temple etc.
The Penukonda Fort is another tourist attraction, followed by the Babaiyya Dargah and the several Jain temples found here.
But the Kumbhakarna Gardens stands out!
6. Thimmamma Marrimanu, Kadiri.
Thimmamma Marrimanu is named after the famous banyan tree, which is also called ‘Thimmamma Marrimanu’. With its branches spreading over 5 acres, it is regarded as the biggest of its kind in South India. This tree was recorded as the biggest tree in the Guinness Book of World Records in 1989.
Under the tree, there is a small temple dedicated to Thimmamma. Local people believe that if a childless couple worship Thimmamma they are blessed with a child the very next year.Its branches spreads over nearly 5 acres. Located about 35 km from Kadiri, and 100 km from Anantapur.
7. Pulicat Lake, Border of A.P and Tamil Nadu.
Located at the border of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, Pulicat Lake covers an area of 500 km2. It is a brackish water lagoon, the second largest in India, and is situated along the coast of Bay of Bengal. The lake encompasses the ‘Pulicat Lake Bird Sanctuary’ which attracts many migratory birds, and is also a feeding and nesting ground for aquatic and terrestrial birds such as flamingos, pelicans etc.
The lake is said to be facing an ecological crisis now.
8. Sir Arthur Cotton Museum, Rajahmundry.
Sir Arthur Cotton Museum was constructed here in 1998. This museum was constructed in memory of Sir Arthur Thomas Cotton, a British irrigation engineer. Sir Arthur Thomas Cotton also known as ‘Cotton Dora’, was instrumental in the construction of the Dowleswaram Barrage and is revered in the Godavari Districts for his efforts in transforming River Godavari from a threatening and deadly natural force into a tame and fertile water resource.
The Museum narrates the construction of the Sir Arthur Cotton Barrage. It is the only civil engineering museum in the state. It contains many pictures describing the working of the dam and display of the tools used during the construction.
Rajahmundry is also the hub of some great Engineering and Architectural monuments such as the Godavari Bridge (Asia’s second largest Road cum Railway Bridge), Papi Hills, Iskon Temple, Tantikonda, Pushkar Ghat and Gowthami Ghat.
9. Belum Caves, Kurnool.
The largest tourist cave network in the Indian sub-continent, Belum caves in Kurnool are a must-visit on any traveler’s list. With a length of over 3 kilometers, the caves are the second largest naturally formed caves in the country.
10. Bhagwan Mahavir Government Museum, Kadapa.
This archaeological museum was established by the government in 1982 to protect the ancient artifacts of archaeological importance. It’s establishment was funded by a Jain businessman and hence was named after their deity, Lord Mahavira. The idols of Lord Ganesha, Lord Vishnu, Lord Hanuman and Lord Shiva are present inside the museum. Some of them date back to the period between the 5th and the 18th century. All these antiquities made of granite, dolomite, limestone, bronze icons were found in the excavations carried out at different places of Cuddapah, Hyderabad and Kurnool districts.