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A well known city, Vishakhapatnam is also called Vizag. An important industrial hub, Vizag attracts many tourists every year! Has beautiful beaches, parks and other scenic attractions,Vishakhapatnam can be a delight to any traveler! Don’t forget to stroll at the RK beach!
One of the frontrunners in Indian tourism sector, Andhra Pradesh is a beautiful state and a superlative mix of the old and new! Based in the southern part of India, this culturally rich state is the eighth largest in India. Spread across 160,205 sq kms of land, Andhra Pradesh’s north western part in 2014 was divided to form Telangana. It’s a treasure trove for exotic locations, bio diversity, religious places and mouth watering delicacies.
With one of the longest coastlines, Andhra Pradesh is surrounded by Telangana, Odisha, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu. The water body of Bay of Bengal surrounds this state like a necklace. This beautiful state is the home of many palaces, memorials, tombs and monuments which showcases its rich history, culture, art and crafts. Besides, this place is a hub of many hill stations, forests, sanctuaries and national parks, beaches and scenic landscapes making it an exclusive getaway for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts!
Nizami cuisine as the locals call it is famed for its royal taste and variety! It’s completely non-vegetarian with awesome flavor leaving a zing in your mouth! Amravati is the riverfront capital city of Andhra Pradesh. Hyderabad is the joint capital city of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana region. Most of the year this state experiences dry weather. The coastline has high humidity all through the year. It receives adequate rainfall in the month of June and October.
Known for its delightful and tangy taste, Andhra food has regional variation that’s rich in culture and heritage. Mainly Nawabi in style, Andhra cuisine is a charming mix of Muslim and Hindu way of food preparation. A common Andhra style breakfast includes Dosa, idli and pesarattu. Pesarattu looks like dosa but it’s taken with spicy ginger chutney.
Other common favorites like pulihara and tamarind rice are eaten almost every day. The world famous authentic biriyani of Andhra Pradesh is something that everyone cherishes to have at least once in their lives. Succulent meats, flavorsome spices and basmati rice are the core ingredients of this Nawabi dish. In addition, mangoes, local grapes, anab e shahi and custard apple are additional mixes of this delicacy.
A typical meal of the locals in this region comprises rice, dal, pickles, vegetable curries and yoghurt and papad. Apart from perugu, ghee is a common ingredient in most of Andhra cuisines. Some of the well known local curries of this region include vepudu, pappu koora, pulusu koora, karam petti koora etc. Dal or lentil is a regular side dish along with pickles made of locally grown vegetables and red chillies.
Here the locals eat fish and prawns prepared with coconut. When it comes to drinks, lime juice with ginger and honey are mostly sipped by the locals for a refreshing feel!
This multi-ethnic cultural state has many festivals and traditions with diverse customs and rituals. Some of the special festivals include Pongal – observed in January, a harvest festival where people participate in kite surfing and eating tilgul. It takes place for four days by observing different traditional rituals and customs. Ganesh Chaturthi is the day of the birth of Lord Ganesha. Observed with compete dedication all across the state, Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated for ten days. Various pandals are decorated in Hyderabad and other cities with enormous statues of the Lord. After the tenth day, immersion of the statue takes place with pomp and show! Ugadi, also known as Telegu New Year, is observed on the first day and the first month of the Telegu calendar with absolute grandeur. During this time of the year relatives visit each other’s houses, celebrate together and eat special dishes like abbattu. Maha Shivratri festival is observed by an all day fast. Close to evening, people visit the nearby Shiva temple and offer holy water and bael leaves on the lingam and break their fast thereafter. Varalakshmi Vratham is a celebration of Goddess Mahalakshmi. This festival is observed on the second Friday of sravan month. Women offer sweets and flowers to the deity and consider it an auspicious occasion for prosperity and wealth. Deccan festival, celebrated with ghazal, mushairas and quawalis, is a typical Hyderabadi festival. Different fairs and fests dedicated to food, arts, handicrafts and culture are organized in the Deccan celebration. It’s a five day festival observed on Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the month of April each year. Lumbini festival is celebrated in December in Hyderabad and Nagarjunsagar regions of Andhra Pradesh. This annual Buddhist festival is organized by the Tourism Department of Andhra Pradesh. Tirupati Tirumala Brahmotsava is one of the important celebrations of Andhra Pradesh which continues for nine days. Observed in the temple of Lord Venkateshwara, this Hindu festival is a gesture through which the commoners offer their gratitude to the Lord for protecting the mankind!
In addition to these, there are various indigenous tribal festivals that define the vibrant culture of this state as well.
Andhra Pradesh has a rich culture. Starting right from paintings, puppet theatre, art, architecture, dance, literature to lip smacking cuisine, this state has an exciting and deep culture to fall back on! Kalamkari and Nirmal paintings are famous of this place. Ikkat garments are renowned, dyed threads mixed with colorful fabrics are used in its making. Pochompolli, Narayanpet, and Venkatgiri etc. are some of the authentic sarees of Andhra Pradesh which were once the first choice for the noblemen. Kalamkari painting has got its name from ‘kalam’ meaning pen.
Kuchipudi is the traditional classical dance form of Andhra Pradesh performed with Telegu music and Sanskrit hymns. Dhimsa tribal dance and mask dance are equally famous in this region.
To get a hint of the Andhra Pradesh culture and traditions, explore Vizag, Borra Caves, Araku Valley, Indira Gandhi Zoological Park, Sri Venkateshwara Temple, Sri Vari Museum, Mogalarajapuram Caves, Kondapalli Fort, Udaygiri Fort, Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple, Ravadurg Gooty Fort among others.
Besides Ikkat weaving and Kalamkari paintings, Andhra Pradesh has other significant handicrafts like Banjara needle craft which is made by the gypsies of this place. Bronze castings and Budithi brassware are simply a striking art form of this state. Dokra metal craft is used in manufacturing different lamps, bells, local deities and other items. Kondapalli toys representing Gods and goddesses, birds and other animal motifs are authentic handicraft of Andhra Pradesh.
Vizianagaram district in Andhra Pradesh is well known for Veena manufacturing. The famous Gadwal sarees, Eluru carpets, Pochompolli sarees and batik prints are other traditional arts of this place. Also Durgi stone craft, Cheryala Nakashi paintings and bidri craft deserves special mention!
One would be spoilt for choice when it comes to shopping in Andhra Pradesh. There are loads of emporiums, shopping malls and centers all across Hyderabad, Vizag and Secunderabad from where one can easily collect any of these traditional hand works. Don’t forget to bring home the fabulous pearls from Hyderabad!
Telegu is the main language of this state, spoken by most. Many Hyderabadis also speak Urdu. There are people staying at the border regions of Andhra Pradesh who speak Tamil and Kannada as well. Besides, English is the next widely spoken and understood language of this region.
By Road: The city has direct bus services to Vijayawada, Kolkata and Bhubaneswar via NH 5. It has state run as well as luxury buses and taxi services.
By Train: Vizag railway station is one of the busiest rail heads with connecting trains to Tirupati, Kharagpur, Puri, Secunderabad and other cities.
By Air: Vizag airport is well connected to Mumbai, Chennai, Pune, Bhubaneswar and other cities.GET DIRECTION
The city has plenty of eating joints catering spicy fares like Daspalla Executive Court Flying Spaghetti Monster and lot more!
From October till March are the best months to visit the place!
RK Beach is one of the main attractions of this place! Besides, Yarada beach, Kambalakonda, the war memorial, Matsyadarshini Aquarium, Submarine Museum, Naval Museum and Bojjana Konda are the other attractions!
Araku valley: Araku valley is known for its scenic valley and landscape!