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Andhra Pradesh

Andhra Pradesh described as the Kohinoor of India, a state which has a variety of tourist attraction which includes beaches, hills, caves, wild life, forests and temples.

Heritage

Andhra Pradesh has a rich repository of cultural heritage with its classical and folk arts ranging from “Burrakatha” (ballad singing) to the refined “Kuchipudi” dance. The arts and crafts are unique and some of the items to carry back home are Kalamkari painting, Bidriwork, Chittor wood carvings, Dhamavaram silk. Amaravati near the city of Vijayawada where the new state capital is being built is also a Buddhist pilgrimage center best known for the grand stupa. The 5th Century Undavalli caves is another fine example of monolithic rock cut architecture located close by. Leepakshi temples are famous for its intricate Vijayanagar carvings.

Beaches

The beaches of Andhra Pradesh are seldom spoken in comparison to the beaches of Goa and Kerala, however they are glorious escape if you are looking to simply relish the beauty of a pristine uninterrupted coastline. Some of the most beautiful and secluded beaches on the east coast are found here. Yarada beach just outside Vishakhapatnam is one of the best seen in this region. Vakalapudi beach near Kakinada town is yet another secluded beach where you can also explore the mangrove forest. Bheemunipatnam beach with its shallow waters is a swimmers paradise and also a site of former Dutch settlement and these ruins are the oldest of its kind on the east coast. Embark on a journey of visiting some of the stunning beaches on Indian coastline.


Hill Stations

The state has some charming hill stations, though not as popular as others in South India but is equally beautiful. Lanbasingi also called “Kashmir of the South” where temperatures in winter touch single digits while the summers are cool. Araku Valley close to Vishakhapatnam is one of most scenic hill stations in the state with its pleasant climate, lush greenery, waterfalls, streams and coffee plantations. Horsley Hills is yet another quaint hill station accessible from Bangalore is a perfect retreat and if you are the adventure type then sports like Zorbing, rappelling and trekking is sure to get your attention.

Wild Life

The state has many Sanctuaries, National Parks, Zoological Parks such as Coringa, Krishna Wildlife Sanctuary, Nagarjunsagar-Srisailam Tiger Reserve, Kambalakonda Wildlife Sanctuary, Sri Venkateswara Zoological Park, Indira Gandhi Zoological Park etc. Atapaka Bird Sanctuary, Nelapattu Bird Sanctuary and Pulicat Lake Bird Sanctuary attracts many migratory birds.

Religious Destinations

The state is home to many pilgrim destinations. It has many temples and shrines, mosques, and churches. Some famous temples, mosques, Buddhist shrines and churches of religious importance which are often visited by many tourists include Tirumala Temple in Chitoor District, Simhachalam Temple in Visakhapatnam District, Annavaram temple in East Godavari District, Dwaraka Tirumala in West Godavari District, Srisailam temple in Kurnool District, Kanaka Durga Temple of Vijayawada, Kotappakonda in Narasaraopet, Amaravathi, Srikalahasti temple, Shahi jamia masjid in Adoni, Gunadala Church in Vijayawada, Buddhist centres at Amaravati, Nagarjuna Konda etc.

Cuisine

Telugu cuisine is known for its tangy, hot and spicy taste with liberal use of spices especially the fiery Guntur red chili making it one of the richest and spiciest food in the country. The cuisine is identified by three distinctive region types, Rayalaseema, Uttarandhra and Coastal Andhra. Some of the dishes you must try are Andhra style chicken curry, Panasa Puttu Koora (jackfruit curry), Gonguru Mamsam (lamb curry), Pesarattu (green gram dosa) and Andhra biryani. Try any of the authentic dishes and you are sure to fan your mouth cool after the first bite……its worth trying anyway!