Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Abu Dhabi – A Stunning Architecture

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Abu Dhabi – A Stunning Architecture

Tourists visiting Dubai generally keep one day of their plan for Abu Dhabi trip. This one day trip is specially planned to visit Grand Mosque which is one of the best architecture of modern world. Being in Dubai for more than 3 years, I always planned to visit this holy place but it never got formalized. Finally the day arrived when we could make it out and witnessed this beautiful place.

This stunning piece of art was completed in December 2007 and was designed by Syrian architect Yousef Abdelky. The project was launched by the late president of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. His final resting place is located on the grounds adjacent to the complex.

This astonishing architecture has capacity to accommodate over 40,000 worshipers. It also carries 24 carat gold gilded chandeliers and the world’s largest hand knotted carpet.

Visiting Hours: Opened daily to visitors from 9 AM to 10PM (last entry is at 9.30 PM) except on Friday morning which is for worshipers only. On Friday, Tourists can visit the Mosque from 4.30 PM to 10 PM.

Ramadan Timings: Open daily From 9 AM to 1 PM except Friday.

Tips: Best time to be there is evening time around 4-5 PM. You can have both the views of day and night time.

Dress Code: Ensure your legs and arms are covered – no shorts or skirts above the ankle. Also it should not be tight fitting and garments should not be see-through. Female visitors need to cover their hair so it is advised to carry headscarf. Abaya and headscarf are also available for Female visitors at security check.

Here we bring some of the pics from our repository. This time we could manage to make our plan in day time and wish next time we can be there at night time to bring more pics for our readers.

 

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The Golden Temple

The Golden Temple

Located in the city of Amritsar in the state of Punjab in India Harmandir Sahib or Darbar Sahib is popularly known as the Golden Temple.
GOLDEN TEMPLE (image courtesy A Little Adrift)

GOLDEN TEMPLE (image courtesy A Little Adrift)

It gets the name Golden from the gold plated dome visible from a distance as you approach the sanctum. The Golden Temple is the most sacred Gurdwara and important pilgrimage of the Sikhs . It spreads the message of equality and brotherhood . All people irrespective of their caste, creed, colour or race can visit the spiritual place and embark in its aesthetic brilliance. The Golden Temple was designed by the 5th Sikh Guru Arjan Dev Ji who  later on after the construction was completed installed the holy scripture (Adi Granth) of the Sikhism inside the Harmandir Sahib built at the center of the holy tank the Amrit Sarovar . The holy shrine has four entrance signifying the four directions.
GOLDEN TEMPLE

GOLDEN TEMPLE AT NIGHT (Source: Tripoto)

The glorious past , the architecture and the scenic beauty of the Golden Temple is like a pandora’s box which never ceases to amaze you. The AMRIT SAROVAR at the Harmandir Sahib is a very large pool surrounding the central temple. The Sarovar is very sacred to the pilgrims who take a dip to cleanse their mind and body.

AMRIT SAROVAR

AMRIT SAROVAR (image courtesy Global Gallivanting)

The common kitchen or the Guru Ka Langar at Harmandir Sahib serves pure vegetarian food to all visitors for free . It serves around 40,000 to 100,000 people per day without any religious bias. The Langar is served in the community kitchen on a daily basis . All the preparation , cooking , serving , and washing is done by volunteers or sewadars. The Langar brings all people rich – poor , big – small on the same pedestal which helps bringing in the feeling of oneness.
Langar

LANGAR AT THE GOLDEN TEMPLE (image courtesy Adventures of Goodman)

THINGS TO KNOW:-
  • Best time to visit Golden Temple is in the morning for the Palaki procession at 4:30 am.
  • Keep your head covered within the complex.
  • Hand and feet should be washed before entering the temple.
  • You can carry cameras but pictures are not allowed in all areas.
  • Backpacks can be deposited at the cloak room.
  • There are no washrooms inside the complex . The closest washroom is in the dharmashala outside the complex.
  • A special note for people with disability –  WHEELCHAIRS are available and much of the site can be accessed

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Ujjain travel guide

Ujjain travel guide

Travel Guide

Ujjain the ancient city of Madhya Pradesh is situated on the banks of holy river Kshipra. It was also the capital of ancient Avanti kingdom. Also known as the city of lord Shiva is among one of the twelve Jyotirlingas. Every twelve years kumbh mela is organised here in which millions of devotees appear to take shahi snaan(bathing). This Ujjain travel guide will give you a complete list of tourist attractions.

Asoka the king of Ujjain has all his memories everywhere and every corner of the city. The city was later reined by Chandragupta II who adopted the number system including negative numbers and zero. The renowned Navratnas were the gems of his court. The great poet Kalidas said that the city is the town fallen from heaven to bring heaven to earth.

Mahakaleshwar temple:

Eternal Shivlinga of lord Shiva situated at the garbh of the temple gives a soothing sight and the silence in the temple makes you feel calm and peaceful. Even in the busy routine of people, mahakaal dominates their life and connects then with the past traditions. There is no need to wait in the queue for hours except for Mondays as it is assumed to be the sacred day of mahakaal and on normal days you can take your time to worship and get a good view of Jyotirlinga.

Kaal Bhairav Temple:

The temple was built in praise of one of the eight bhairavs and the master of all, kaal bhairav. The temple is said to be built by King Bhadrasen on the banks of river Kshipra. Unlike any other temple, the tradition is totally different here as the devotees offer Liqour to the idol as a ritual. The worship of Kal bhairav is done by Kapalika and Aghora sects and the city is the main center for these sects

Bade Ganeshji Temple:

A new addition to the attraction list in Ujjain is the Bade Ganeshji temple which is situated at a walking distance from Mahakaleshwar temple. The temple is located over the tank and the enormous idol attracts many tourist as the size and beauty is rarely found. Learning of sanskrit and astrology is also followed at the temple as Lord Ganesha is known as the most intelligent god and attaining knowledge here is always admired by one and all.

Bhartrihari Caves:

Bhartrihari Caves are situated near the temple Gadkalika at the bank of river Ksipra. It is believed to be the spot where so called step brother of Vikramaditya, Bhartrihari lived and meditated his entire tenure of life. He was a great scholar and poet known for his famous works such as Shringarshatak, Vairagyashatak and Nitishatak. These works are famous for their intense use of sanskrit.

Siddhavat:

The enormous tree at the banks of river Kshipra is believed to be under the authority of religious sanctity. Most of the pilgrims take dip in the river as it is believed that once Goddess Parvati made her confessions here. The place is also used for performing hte last rites in hinduism and as per another believe, lord Ram came here to perform the last rites of his father.

Sandipani Ashram:

Ujjain apart from political and religious importance, is also known a great place of learning and this ashram is one of the places. It is said that Lord Krishna and his friend Sudama were instructed by guru Sandipani. The area nearby is known as ankapata, where lord krishna used to wash his writing tablet. The Gomti kund is supposed to be the source of water supply to the ashram. There is a stone engraved with number from 1 to 100 and it is believed that it was done by guru Sandipani.

Gadkalika Temple:

The temple is situated two miles away from the city and is believed that Kalidasa used to worship the deity here. As per sayings Kalidasa was an illiterate and idiot and through his devotion he acquired the literary skills afterwards. The temple was renovated many times by emperor Harshavardhan during paramara period and lastly in modern times by Gwalior state.

Manglanath Temple:

Away from the hustle bustle of the city the temple could be reached through peace. According to Matasya Puran the place is believed to be the birth place of Mars and in the ancient time the planet could be seen from here with naked eyes and was also used for astronomical studies.

Gopal Mandir:

Beautiful example of Maratha architecture, the huge temple of Lord Krishna also called as Dwarkadheesh Temple is located in the midst of the big market square. Constructed by Bayajibai Shinde, the queen of Maharaja Daulay Rao Shinde in the 19th century is inlaid with marbles and the doors are plated with pure silver.

Navgrah Mandir:

The temple is dedicated to the nine planets and is located away from the old Ujjain town and situated at the Triveni ghat of Kshipra river. There is no reference of the temple with ancient times then too the religious importance has increased in the recent years the reason being that one or the other planet is the Lord of Sun sign that plays major role in peoples life. There is large rush on new moon days falling on Saturday due to its importance.

Ved Shala:

Ujjain holds a considerable importance in the field of astronomical studies. Great works such as Surya Sidhanta and Pancha Sidhanta on astronomy were written in Ujjain. Indian astronomers reportedly said that Tropic of Cancer passes through Ujjain and the observatory also forecast weather condition. There is a small planetarium and a telescope to observe Moon, Mars, Jupiter and their satellites.

  • By air

Ujjain is very well linked with entire India by road and train but unfortunately there is no airport in the ancient city but yes, the closest airport is in Indore which is 52 km away from city.

  • By road

In comparison with other cities Ujjain is very well connected to the nearby cities. It is 52 km from Indore connecting the NH3 road which is a 4-lane road covering the distance within an hour or less. Indore is connected to Agra-Mumbai national highway to other cities of India.

  • By train

Ujjain is linked with major cities of India, some are not so good for a direct journey so it would be a better option to get a break in between at Bhopal. Some trains that are available are; Avantika Express (daily) and Pune-Indore Express (thrice a week) from Mumbai, Hazrat Nizammudin Intercity Express from New Delhi and Jaipur-Mysore Express from Bengaluru.

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A weekend trip – Hyderabad to Nanded

A weekend trip – Hyderabad to Nanded

It was time to hit the road again, after a long working haul there was some breathing space and I was excited about travelling somewhere there was no preference just a thought that it should be a self driven road trip, and which can be accommodated in a weekend. Having some of my relatives visiting during that period they suggested to visit Nanded. I too gave a quick glance on google maps and some other information sources and finally decided to give it a go. Google maps suggest 2 routes, I preferred a longer but comfortable route as I was accompanied by family & an infant.

The routes suggested from Hyderabad to Nanded are:

  • Via NH 161
  • Via NH7

We started early in the morning so as to cover as much ground in the morning hours and have some rest in the afternoon, since it becomes very hot during the afternoon. The road conditions from Hyderabad to Nizamabad is pretty good as most of the part is NH7 a well maintained highway with lots of scenic views. Once can easily cruise at 100 kmph. The road after Nizamabad around Bodhan are damaged with lots of potholes here and there. We had packed some food for breakfast which we had in the car itself. We stopped at Nizamabad for food and apart from that there were stops only for baby care and natural calls only.

Around 2 pm we reached Nanded, we had already booked a room through a known person in Nanded which made our life easy as the scorching heat in the afternoon was unbearable. We stayed in the hotel till 5 pm, there are lots of budget hotels available in addition to the accommodation provided by the Huzur Sahib gurudwara.

Nanded is one of the oldest and historic cities in the Marathwada region of Maharashtra situated on the north bank of Godavari river. It’s history goes as old as 1st century BCE. It was also under Ashoka’s rein. The city was formerly known as Nanditat, Nanded gains prominence from the Sikh Gurdwara which is erected at the place where Guru Gobind Singh, the last Sikh Guru, died in 1708.  In 1708, after Aurangzeb’s death, Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth spiritual leader of the Sikhs, came to Nanded. He proclaimed himself the last living Guru and established the Guru Granth Sahib as the eternal Guru of Sikhism, elevating the reverence of the text to that of a living leader.

We straight away headed  towards the Takhat Sachkhand Shri Hazur Sahib gurudwara, I could still feel the warm wind blowing from all directions but we continued, we took an auto from our hotel. The complex was undergoing construction and maintenance activities though it the place was clean and open for the devotees. The peaceful and serene environment in the gurudwara mesmerized me, it was a moment of finding the inner peace, the calm that we never find in the cities and our busy lives. The chanting of Gurbani and the kirtans in the complex is enough to wake up the god in you.

After spending some tranquil moments it was time to move ahead for another famous attraction of Nanded, the Laser show spreading the message of Oneness, that no matter what religion we follow no matter where we belong to the almighty is one. The show is approximately one hour long but it will keep anyone with any faith spellbound and will make him think atleast for once about humanity.

After the show we headed for dinner, we came to know there at some places the devotees and the gurudwara committees arrange langars (serve free meals to anyone and everyone), there is one specific place where the langars go on 24X7. The next morning we woke up early to go around some more places and taste the langar. By noon we decided to start for the return journey as staying in the extreme sun was difficult. This time we took minimum stops as we already had lunch we stopped at a restaurant called Zayka in the evening to have tea. It is a nice place with some play area for the kids, a good parking lot and a decent food. We came back to Hyderabad around 7 pm rejuvenated and happy to find the inner peace.

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Places to celebrate holi in India

Places to celebrate holi in India

Holi commemorates the victory of good over evil. The festival came into existence after the Hindu god of preservation, Lord Vishnu killed the demon Holika. Holi, Festival of Colors was named by Lord Krishna, a reincarnation of Lord Vishnu, who liked to play pranks on the village girls by drenching them in water and colors.The festival marks the end of winter and the abundance of the upcoming spring harvest season. The holi celebrations vary from region to region in the country, here we list the best places to celebrate Holi in India. The festivities range from traditional temple rituals to modern parties with DJs, bhang, and plenty of colors.

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  • Lathmar holi – Barsana: The women of Barsana village near Mathura in Uttar Pradesh symbolically beat men from neighboring Nandgaon village with sticks, to term this celebration as Lathmar Holi. Lathmar Holi takes place around a week before the main day of Holi. In 2016, it will happen on March 23.
  • Traditional holi – Vrindavan and Mathura: Holi celebrations begin on Vasant Panchami (which marks the end of winter), approximately 40 days before the day of Holi, in the temple towns of Mathura and Vrindavan. Mathura is where Lord Krishna was born, while Vrindavan was where he spent his childhood. The festivities and celebrations continue throughout this period across the cities, on the closing day people play with colors with eachothers.
  • Basanta utsav – West Bengal: The celebration of Holi as Basanta Utsav (Spring Festival) in Shantiniketan was started by famous Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore. Inspired by spring and the colors of Holi, he introduced the occasion as an annual event in his Vishva Bharati University. Students put up a cultural program for visitors, including dances to Tagore’s songs. Followed by the people playing colors with each other.
  • Warrior Holi – Punjab: Hola Mohalla is an annual fair that dates back to 1701. It was first organized by Sikh Guru Gobind Singh to celebrate Holi. However, instead of throwing colors, expect to see a demonstration of physical agility, wrestling, martial arts, mock sword fights, acrobatic military exercises, and turban tying.
  • Royal Holi – Udaipur: On the eve of Holi people light bonfires to mark the occasion and ward of evil spirits in a ritual called “holika dahan” (the traditional sacred fire will be lit to burn an effigy of Holika the demon). The main attraction of the celebration will be the magnificent palace procession from the royal residence to Manek Chowk at the City Palace, including bedecked horses and royal band.
  • Holi with elephants – Jaipur: An elephant festival marks the beginning of Holi celebrations in Jaipur. Elephant parades, elephant beauty contests, folk dances, and tug-of-war between elephants, locals and foreigners are all regular events. (This event is not been held since 2012 due to the opposition by the animal rights groups travelers are requested to gather information before proceeding)
  • Modern day Holi – Delhi: The spirit of Holi in Delhi has changed to a rowdy affair now, be prepared to be soaked in color by shopkeepers and children alike if you step outside on the day of Holi. If you can, try and get tickets to the Holi Cow festival. A festival of color, music and madness, it’s is held a short distance outside the city. The environment is safe, and non-toxic colors are provided, along with bhang, lassis, street food, and sprinklers to get everyone in the mood. Both DJs and bands perform. Plenty of expats, as well as locals, attend.
  • Peaceful Holi – Hampi: Holi is primarily a north Indian festival. However, Hampi in Karnataka is an exception! The whole town turns out to play Holi in the morning (perhaps for the benefit of the many western travelers there), amid drumming, dancing, and the evocative ruins of the grand Vijayanagar empire.

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Puri explore the gates to the heaven

Puri explore the gates to the heaven

Travel Guide

Puri is a coastal District on the eastern part of Odisha, India. This district is famous as the abode of Lord Vishnu, most popularly known as Lord Jagannath. The district derives its name from the heritage city of Puri, one of the four pilgrimage centres of India. The number of rivers flowing through the district helps in sustaining the agriculture. Being in close proximity to the Bay of Bengal, this district has tropical climate.

Handicraft and cottage industries of this district is very famous around the world, its original source being the temple craft of Lord Jagannath and the Sun Temple at Konark. The rich traditional culture and heritage of the District gives a boost to this industry. The important products of this industry are in applique, stone carving, patta chitra, wood carving, modern patch work, terracotta, bell metal, and sea shell items etc.

Jagannath Temple

Shree Jagannath Puri temple, is one of the most impressing monuments in Puri. It was constructed by the king Ananta Varman Chodaganga Deva of the Ganga Dynasty in the 12th century at the seashore of Puri. This astounding Vaishnava temple is an enshrine to Lord Jagannath, Devi Subhadra and Balabhadra. The main temple of has an amazing structure constructed in Kalinga architecture, with a height of 65 meters placed on an elevated platform.

Lord Jagannath is believed to be the symbol of Universal peace, love and brotherhood and is a manifestation of Lord Krishna. The important annual festival here is the Rath Yatra, during which hundreds of thousands of devotees throng to this temple.

Ganesh Temple

Puri has numerous temples that have archaeological significance. One of them is the Ganesha temple, dedicated to Sri. Vinayaka. The temple is assumed to be built long back and has many carvings showcasing Hindu religious beliefs and cultural heritage. Hindu devotees frequently visit this temple to offer their prayers.

Lakshmi temple

A small temple situated near to Jagannath temple is dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi, the temple plays a very important place in Rath Yathra. It is believed that the marriage of Lord Siva and Goddess Parvati took place on the sixth day of bright fortnight of Jyeshta, (during May-June), on the day known as Jyestha Sukla Sasthi.

Chilika Lake

Chilika is largest brackish water estuarine Lake of Asia in the Satapada district. It sprawls over an area of 1100 sq kms. Covering parts of three districts of Odisha i.e Puri on the East, Khurda on the North and Ganjam on the South. It is the largest coastal lagoon in India and the second largest lagoon in the World. Satapada is one of the most popular tourist place of Odisha. Irrawady Dolphins are major attraction of Satapada.

Apart from that the scenic beauty of Sea Mouth, Islands like Nalabana, Honeymoon, Breakfast & Rajhans attract large number of tourists throughout the year. It has the second largest congregation of migratory Birds in the world after Lake Victoria in Africa.

Pipili

Pipili is a small town with an area of 6.4 Square Kms and is famous for applique works which is a traditional craft of the local People. They prepare Chandua (colorful Arts on clothes), umbrella, cloth bags, purses, wall hangings, carpets, garments for ladies & other applique works which have a good market in India and abroad. During the world famous Ratha Yatra, the chariots (Raths) are decorated by colorful clothes made in Pipili.

Sakhigopal

Sakhigopal or Satyabadi is famous for the shrine of Sakhigopal. It is one of the pilgrimage centre in the district and it is widely believed that the pilgrimage to Puri is incomplete without visiting Sakhigopal. The name sakhigopal literally means witness Gopal (Srikrishna). The temple of Sakhigopal is 60 ft height & the image of Shri Krishna and Radha is 5 ft & 4ft height respectively.

Sun Temple Konark

The 13th century Sun temple is situated in Konark, which is a small town in the Puri District in the state of Odisha. It is also known as the Black Pagoda, built in black granite during the reign of Narasimhadeva-1 a distinguished ruler of Ganga Dynasty. The temple is declared as a World Heritage Site. The temple is now mostly in ruins, and a collection of its sculptures is housed in the Sun Temple Museum, which is run by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).

Chandrabhaga beach

The Chandrabhaga beach is about 3 kms from the Sun temple. The beach provides a picturesque view of the sunrise and sunset and is very famous among the tourists. An International Sand Art Festival held on 1st to 5th December of every year at Chandrabhaga Beach.

Puri beach

Golden sands, amazing sceneries of sunrise and sunset, soothing effect of sunbath and seclusion in tranquility, Puri Beach offers all these to her most privileged guests. A favorite tourist spot, Puri beach is very lengthy and quite wide. This place offers physical and spiritual calmness for the body and soul.

Swargdwar beach

Swargadwar, literally means the door to heaven is a secluded beach and a holy place in Puri. This beach is unaffected by the modern cultural offing and still maintains the sacred nature. Many Hindu devotees visit this beach to have a dip at sea. Legends claim that this was the bathing place of Sri Chaithanyadev who attained the state of Brahma stands for the divine soul.

  • Air: The nearest airport is Biju Patnaik airport at Bhubaneswar is the nearest airport to Puri, which is nearly 56 km away from the heart of the Puri city. The airport is connected to Delhi and Mumbai.
  • Train: Puri is a major railway junction. Regular direct train services are available from Puri to many cities in India, including Bhubaneshwar, New Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore and Kolkata.
  • Road: Puri is connected with all major cities in Odisha, There are frequent bus service offered by the Odisha road transport corporation from Bhubaneshwar, Cuttak and Konark.

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  • State: Odisha
  • District: Puri
  • Famous for/as: Religion
  • Languages: Oriya, English, Hindi
  • Best time to visit: October to March
  • Weather: Summers 19 to 45°C, Winter 3 to 32°C
  • Pincode: 75200x
  • STD code: 06752
  • State Govt. tourism website: http://www.ordistricts.nic.in/

 

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Srisailam, Bhramarambha Mallikharjuna Swami Devasthanam

Srisailam, Bhramarambha Mallikharjuna Swami Devasthanam

Travel Guide

The shrine of Lord Mallikarjuna picturesquely situated on a flat top of Nallamalai Hills, Srisailam is reputed to be one of the most ancient kshetras (area) in India. It is on the right side of the River Krishna in Kurnool District of Andhra Pradesh. This celebrated mountain is also named as Siridhan, Srigiri, Sirigiri, Sriparvatha and Srinagam. It has been a popular centre of Saivite pilgrimage for centuries.

The presiding Deities of this kshetram Lord Mallikarjuna Swamy is one of the twelve Jyothirlingas and Goddess Bhramaramba Devi is one of the eighteen Mahasakthis and both are self-manifested. The unique feature of this kshetram is the combination of Jyothirlingam and Mahasakthi in one campus, which is very rare and only one of its kind.

There is a common belief in vogue that this Holy Kshetram exists from times immemorial. The antiquity and origin of God Mallikarjuna Swamy and Goddess Bhramaramba Devi is not known.

The Mallikarjuna Linga is accessible to each and every devotee and anybody can go into the sanctum sanctorum of Mallikarjuna, touch him and perform Abhishekam and Archana himself to recitation of Mantras by Archakas without caste or creed or religion. This clearly reveals that socialistic pattern of society started from this place and it is still in existence.

 

 

Panchamatams

These are popular as the Panchamathas namely Ghantha Matham, Bheemasankara Matham, Vibhoothi Matham, Rudraksha Matham and Sarangadhara Matham. The Mathas played an important role in the History and Cult of Srisailam. They are well associated with the religious and social activities of the temple in the medieval times.

These Mathas acted as educational institutions dedicated to higher learing in various branches and catered to the intellectual and spiritual needs of the society. Srisailam became a powerful saivate centre because of the existence and activities both spiritual and profane of these Mathas. The origin of the Mathas seems to be as early as 7th Century A.D. The historical inscriptions related to Srisailam speak about eleven Mathas in Srisailam however, only 5 Mathas are still in existence but are in dilapidated condition.

Sikharam

This most sacred spot is located at about 8 Km from the main temple at a height of 2830 feet above the mean sea level. It is the highest peak of Srisailam Hills. The Skanda Purana proclaims that a mere glance of this Sikharam frees the human soul from the fitters of rebirth. In ancient days people used to come to Srisailam on foot and those who unable to reach the shrine returned back by seeing this peak. The Sikhareswaram temple is an ancient stone structure consisting of Garbhagriha, Antaralaya and 16 pillered Mukhamanda. The deity here is named as Veera Sankara Swamy and locally popularized as Sikhareswara Swamy. This place give a panoramic view of the entire temple complex of Srisailam including the meandering river Krishna.

Hatakeswaram

This picturesque spot is on the way to Srisailam of about 5 Km away in a serine atmosphere. Tradition hopes that at this place God Siva appeared to a potter devotee in Atika (Piece of Pot) and hence named as Atikeswaram and later it became as Hatakeswaram. Another tradition gives the name to this place from a particular yogic school known as Hatayoga, one of the form of Astangayogas (the eight yogas). Some historians located a laboratory of Akhemy (Rasayoga) at this place during medieval times.

Phaladhara Panchadhara

This most beautiful scene spot in surroundings of Srisailam is located about 4 Km from the main temple. Tradition records that Bhagavan Adisankara performed penance at this place and composed the famous Sivanandalahari here. Marble statues of Sarada Devi and Sankaracharya are installed there and daily regular Poojas are offered.

This spot is located in a narrow valley approachable by a flight of steps where subterranean streams of pure water with musical sound reverberating the surroundings. According to local folk these streams are known as Phaladhara Panchadhara and these two signify their origin from the fore head of God Siva the Phaladhara.

Sakshi Ganapathi

This small shrine located about 3 Kms from Srisailam and is one of the sacred spots frequented by pilgrims since times immemorial. The traditional belief is that the Ganapathi in this temple keeps regular account of all the pilgrims to tender Sakshyam (evidence) of their visit to this Kshetram and so named as Sakshi Ganapathi. The sculpture of this deity is exquisitely made holding a book in the left hand and a pen in the right hand in such a way as noting down the names of devotees. It is in practice that devotees during their return had the darshan of this Ganapathi and informed their name and gotra to him. Srinatha the renowed poet of 14th Century A.D. in his Kasikhandam states that this Sakshi Ganapathi is visualized by sage Agasthya during his pilgrimage to Srisailam.

Temple of Istakameswari

The ancient temple of Istakameswari is located in a dense and picturesque forest environment about 21 Km to the east of Srisailam. The sculpture of the Goddess has a serene and beautiful smiling face which at once captures the attention of one and all.

Akkamahadevi Caves

The Nallamalai Hill ranges are studded with innumerable natural caves and caverns which were known to human beings since the prehistoric times. One such among them is the Akkamahadevi Caves. This naturally formed cave, just above the flow of the river Krishna at a distance of 10 Km from Srisailam. This cave is endowed with a geological marvel of natural Rock Arch measuring nearly 200 x 16 x 4 feet which stands majestically without any support.

The wind weathered rock in and around the cave keeps the visitor spellbound. The surrounding of the cave and its journey through the river Krishna from Srisailam provides a wonderful experience to one and all. Exploring the meandering cave to 150 meters deep is also very adventurous.

Nagarjunsagar-Srisailam Tiger Reserve

The largest Tiger reserve in India . The reserve spreads over five districts,Nalgonda District, Mahbubnagar district, Kurnool District, Prakasam District and Guntur District. State highway passes through this tiger reserve and gives a very good view of forest. If traveled with ample time and patience, people can see lot of wildlife wandering in the forest. If planning to visit, please verify the timings as the highway is close at night.

Patala Ganga

As the River Krishna turns down hill, it is surrounded by a certain spirituality in the air. Enjoy the sceneries around you and take a dip into these sacred waters, believed to have medicinal properties for healing skin diseases. One can also try the enjoyable ropeway car ride and look down at the majestic river and lush green beauty all around.

Tribal Museum

Find yourself fascinated as you witness instances of the livelihoods and cultures of the tribes of Andhra Pradesh at the Chenchu Lakshmi Museum. Also, honey collected by the tribes and packaged by the state government is also available at the museum for sale and is a true specialty to take back home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Air: The closest airport to Srisailam is located at Hyderabad, at distance of about 232 kms from the city. Hyderabad has its own airport, which is connected to Vishakapatnam, Bangalore, Chennai, Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Mumbai, Delhi and various other cities of India.
  • Train: Nearest railhead to Srisailam is the Markapur Road, in the Guntur-Hubli metre gauge rail route. The major broad-gauge railway station nearby is at Hyderabad at a distance of 232 kms.
  • Road: Srisailam is well connected with near by cities such as Hyderabad, Mahaboobnagar, Hyderabad, Devorkonda, Mahanandi, Anantapur, Chitradurg, Guntur, Mantralayam, Tirupati and Vijayawada by road.

 

 

Chirala, An Unexplored Beach

If you are planning a weekend getaway to a peaceful beach, then Chirala is the place to be. It is a relatively unexplored beach in Guntur, Andhra Pradesh (Telangana).

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Papikondalu, Nature at its best

Looking for a weekend getaway in Andhra Pradesh? Papikondalu offers you the ideal camping location with a view of Papi hills, a scenic gorge on the Godavari.

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Hyderabad city of pearls

Hyderabad city of pearls is the capital of newly formed state of Telangana and is the fifth largest city in India, being the former seat of one of the world’s richest monarch dynasty known as the Nizams. It is a major center of Islamic culture and is a harmonious amalgam of the South and the North India.

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  • State: Andhra Pradesh
  • District: Kurnool
  • Famous for/as: Pilgrim, Jyotirlinga
  • Languages: Telugu, Hindi
  • Best Season: Nov – Mar
  • Weather: Summer 22-41°C, Winter 15-30°C
  • Altitude: 409 m
  • Pincode: 518002
  • STD code: 08512

 

 

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Katra

Katra

Travel Guide

Katra is located in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. This region is very famous among tourists. The region is mainly famous for being a base for pilgrims from all around the country, and is one of India’s most visited pilgrim destinations. The town is famous for Vaishno Devi temple. Katra is a base camp for the trekk to the holy shrine of Vaishno Devi.

The temple is mainly dedicated to Goddess Vaishno Devi. Vaishno Devi is yet another name for Goddess Shakthi, more popularly known as Lord Shiva’s consort. The temple is located at a distance of fourteen kilometres from Katra, and the journey uphill can be carried out either through foot, or through palanquins and ponies.

 

Temples/Shrines

  • Baanganga
  • ArdhKuari
  • Vaishno Devi temple
  • Bhairo Baba temple

Shop

  • Local handicrafts
  • Religious items
  • Air: Nearest Airport is Jammu.
  • Train:  Katra is now connected via train from New Delhi & Jammu. A new train service has been recently initiated connecting the Capital of India & some other cities to Katra.
  • Road: Katra is well connected by roads with Jammu & Srinagar.

Leh

Leh is an embodiment of natural beauty, picturesquely nestled by Karakoram and Himalayan ranges. Perfectly located on the banks of the renowned Indus River with all its majesty and amazing sceneries.

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Srinagar – Paradise on earth

Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu & Kashmir is perfectly placed in the center of the Kashmir valley. Srinagar has a special place in the history of ancient India.

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Pahalgam

Breathtaking panoramic views of the beautiful Himalayan Ranges, unexplored undulating hilly

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Gulmarg

Gulmarg literally means meadow of flowers. It is a majestic hill station in the district of Baramula of Jammu and Kashmir. The hill station was earlier known as Gaurimarg, where…

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Patnitop a sweet honeymoon spot

Patnitop is located in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The state is known for many picturesque locations and landmarks…

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Jammu

Jammu is located at the foot hills of great Himalayas and is the winter capital of the state Jammu and Kashmir. It is believed that Raja Jamboolochan founded this exotic city in 14th century BC.

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  • State: Jammu and Kashmir
  • District: Udhampur
  • Famous for/as: Pilgrim
  • Languages: Hindi, Urdu, Kashmiri
  • Best time to visit: Throughout the year
  • Weather: Summers 5 to 40°C, Winter -14 to 10°C
  • Pincode: 182301
  • STD code: 01991
  • State Govt. tourism websitehttp://www.jktourism.org/

 

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