|Nellore - Tirupati|
Nellore is the southern-most coastal district of Andhra Pradesh with a rich historical past. Dynasties such as the Mauryas, Cholas, Pallavas, Chalukyas, Kakatiyas, Pandyas, Vijayanagaras, etc, have left behind a vast religious legacy.Along with temples, the lakes, rivers and beaches offer a wide variety of interesting tourism locations. Though a part of Andhra Pradesh state, Nellore is easily accessible from Chennai due to its close proximity to the Tamil Nadu border. The district is divided into two by the Pennar River, which is the most important river here.
|Talpagiri Ranganadhaswamy Temple|
Sri Talapagiri Ranaganathaswamy Temple is located in Nellore city and is about 5 km away from Nellore bus stand. This temple that is more than 600 years old is situated on the banks of the river Pennar and is marked by a huge 29 metres tall Galigopuram with seven gold Kalasams. Every year during the month of March-April (varies according to Hindu calendar) a grand festival is celebrated along with the Rath Yathra, which is a much awaited ritual in Nellore.
On the, east is a seven storied Mahagopuram, on the south lies the Sri Ranganayaki Lakshmi Devi temple and beautiful mirror dais, on the west is the sacred Pennar river and on the north is the Sri Andal Ammavari temple.
|Sri Mulasthaneswara Swamy Temple|
The Temple of Sri Mulasthaneswara Swamy was built 1400 years ago, to the west of Nellore. As the Lord manifested Himself under a “Nelli” tree, a temple was built there. Manumasidhi rulers constructed the “Raja Gopuram” (royal tower of the temple). It is believed that the legendary Telugu poet Tikkana Somayaji translated Mahabahratam into Telugu on the banks of Pennar in this very temple, after making his obeisance to the deity.
|Venugopala Swamy Temple|
Venugopla Swamy temple is situated in the middle of Nellore town. Here the devotee is blessed by the the black stone idols of Sri Venugopala Swamy and Sri Rukmini Satyabhama.
|Ayyappa Swamy Temple|
An Ayyappa Swamy temple is located in Vedayapalem.
|Narasimha Swamy Temple, Narasimhakonda|
Vedagiri Lakshminarasimha Swamy devasthanam came into being nearly 500 years ago, on the summit of Narasimhakonda. According to the rock inscriptions, this temple was built by the Pallava king Narsimha Varma, in the ninth century. Legend goes that the sage Kasyapa established the temple on the southern bank of Pinakini. This holy place lies 15 km away from Nellore and every year “Brahmotsavams” are celebrated here in the month of May.
|Mallikarjuna Kamakshi Tai Temple, Jonnawada|
Mallikarjuna Swamy Kamakshi Tai Temple, Jonnawada, constructed in the year 1150 ( tretayuga), is located about 12 km from Nellore. This temple is dedicated to Goddess Kamkshi, an incarnation of Shakti. A ‘Sri Chakram’ was installed here by Sri Jagadguru Sankaracharya. Pilgrims take a holy dip in the lake known as Kachpateertham, near the temple, which washes away all their bad karma.
There is a bus service from Nellore to Jonnawada. For the convenience of the pilgrims there are choultries of the Devastanam, Tirupati Tirumala Devastanam and also private choultries. During the celebration of Brahmotsavam in the month of Vaisaka, lakhs of devotees throng the holy centre to attain salvation. A bathing ghat has been built on the bank of the Pennar, for the convenience of the pilgrims.
|Penusila Narasimha Swamy, Penchalakona|
Lord Narasimha manifested Himself here as a huge of rock in "Yoga mudra" (in an entwined contemplative posture) and hence it acquired the name of "Penusila" (huge rock) and in course of time became famous as "Penchalakona". Legend has it that after slaying the demon Hiranya Kasipa, Lord Narsimha bathed in Penchalakona and withdrew that "Avatara" (incarnation) of Narasimha, shedding His anger and ferocity. The Lord here goes by the name of Somasila Narasimhaswamy and has become one of the Nava Narasimhas (nine manifestations).
Penchalkona lies at the foothills of Veligondalu, at a distance of 80 km from Nellore. Narasimha Jayanthi is celebrated here in the month of May when devotees flock specially on Saturdays and the Devesthanam choultries provide facilities to the pilgrims. The temple was renovated in the 10th century.
|Vengamamba Temple, Narawada|
Located 64 km from Kanigiri & 150 km from Ongole, the remains of several rock-cut temples dedicated to Shiva and other Hindu deities, dating back to the 7th & 8th centuries A.D., can be seen here. The shrines have lingas and small images of Shiva as well as other Gods. The architectural style is similar to that of the Pallavas, which flourished further south in Tamil Nadu. The place is connected by road.
Vengamamba Temple is situated in Narawada and Vengamamba Perantalu is celebrated in a grand manner every year.
|Somalingeswara Swamy Temple, Somasila|
This 7th century temple is adjacent to Somasila Dam and the presiding deity here is Lord Siva.
|Bhagavan Sri Venkaiahswamy Mandiram, Golagamudi|
It is located at about 15 km from Nellore in the Venkatachalam mandal. A Sage called Venkaiah lived here during middle of the 20th century and attained Mahasamadhi at this place. People worship him as Venkaiah Swamy or Baghavan Venkaiah Swamy. Every Saturday there is a gathering to worship the Swamy and during August every year "Aradhana" or annual function is celebrated.
|Alghu Malluru Krishnaswamy Temple, Sullurpet|
Alghu Malluru Krishnaswamy temple is existing in the Mannarpoluru village, right from the time of Telugu Chola rulers. The village is near Sullurupet and located at a distance of 103 km from Nellore. It was built in the 17th century by Bangaru Yadama Nayudu. According to a legend, it was here that Lord Sri Krishna defeated Jambavantha in a duel and married his daughter Jambavati. Apart from the idol of Satyabhama and Jambavati, the two consorts of Lord Krishna, the idol of Jambavantha that creates the illusion of shedding tears amazes the visitors.
|Chengala Parameswari Temple, Sullurupet|
Goddess Chengalamma Parameswari manifested Herself in the village of Sullurupet which is 100 km from Nellore on the Kolkata-Chennai highway. The temple was built on the bank of the Kanlangi river during the 4th and 5th centuries. People also refer to the Goddess as "Tenkali". With the passage of time, she is being worshipped regularly by devotees as Chengalamma.
|Kasi Viswanatha Temple|
It is located at Venkatagiri village. Here the presiding deity is Lord Shiva who is worshipped along with Goddess Annapurneswari.
|Prasanna Venkateswara Swamy Temple, Bogolu|
It is well known as "Konda Bitragunta". This is a very famous temple in Nellore district and the presiding deity here is Lord Venkateswara.
|Lord Siva & Perumala Swamy Temple|
The ruins of Prabhagiripatnam lie on the Podalakuru Mohammadapuram at a distance of 45 km away from Nellore. The ruins of this temple of Lord Siva and Perumala Swamy belong to 1512 A D. An inscription denoting the royal gift of the Vijayanagara king Venkataryalu, enjoins that the income derived from the agricultural lands of the neighborhood should be spent for the upkeep of the temple. The sculptural and artistic pieces strewn around here have been recognised as the idols of Veerabhadraswamy and Shanmugaswamy. The unique feature is that the six heads, instead of being in a row are sculpted differently - three in the front and three in the rear.
It is located at about 60 km from Nellore city. This big Dargah here is ancient and is known as Khaja Rahamatulla Dargah. It is one of the unique places where Hindus and Muslims blend together and stand as an illustration of national integrity. Devotees from different parts of the country come to this place. The ornamental work of the dome is worth seeing. Every year Urusu is celebrated when large number of devotees gather here for blessings.
Udayagiri Fort located about 100 km from Nellore, is at a height of 3079 feet and boasts of great natural beauty, lush vegetation and beautiful waterfalls. During the rule of the Gajapathis and the Vijayanagara rulers, this town grew to great splendour and the ruins of 365 temples reflect the sculpture and architecture of various periods. The structures on the hill such as the Ranganatha Temple (Chola period), the Balakrishna Mandiram (Pallava period) and the Paruveta Mandapam (Vijayanagara period), reflect the respective styles and culture.
Other structures include Chinna Masjid and Pedda Masjid. A great Sufi saint belonging to the 18th century, Rahamathulla Nayab Rasool, got absorbed in the higher-self here. Every year the Sandal Festival is celebrated on the 26th of the Rabi-UI-Aval month.
Sriharikota is an island and a forest like area, situated on the National Highway No.5 to Chennai- Kolkata, to the east of Sullurupet in-between Pulicat Lake and Bay of Bengal. The ancient residents of this island were Toorpu Reddis and Challa Yanadis, who led a primitive way of life.Under the stewardship of Dr. Vikram Sarabhai of the Indian Space Research Organization a rocket launching space centre was established at Sriharikota in 1968.
Kandaleru Dam constructed across the Kandaleru river, is about 60 km away from Nellore. The destination is well connected by a State Highway from Nellore to Kadapa via Rapur & Rajampet. This river originates in Velegonda hills and flows across Gudur. This is the world’s biggest earthen dam with 68 TMC water storage spread over 11 sq km, supplying drinking water to Tamil Nadu. A pictorial spot with hillocks and forests around, it attracts many pilgrims. The dam is a part of Rapur Mandal.
Somasila, one of the biggest irrigation projects in the district, is constructed across River Pennar and is situated near Somasila village of Ananthasagaram mandal. Located in eastern ghats, its natural beauty is noteworthy. There is a temple of Lord Siva in the village called Someswara Temple, on the other side of River Pennar where an Ashram is situated.
Pulicat Lake is the second largest brackish water lagoon in India, spread over the two states of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, adjacent to the Bay of Bengal. It extends over 600 sq km in Andhra Pradesh and is a bird watchers paradise. Migratory water birds and other birds like Flamingos, Painted Storks, Egrets, Grey Pelican, Grey Herons, Pintails, Black winged Stilts, Shovelers, Terns etc., visit this lake during winter.
This lake is connected to the National Highway, and is only 80 km from Chennai. It is near the Sriharikota Atomic Missile Range (S.H.A.R).
|Nelapattu Bird Sanctuary|
Nelapattu bird sanctuary is one of the largest Pelicanary in South East Asia with more than 1500 Pelicans and other birds visiting every year. The big fresh water tank of Nelapattu Bird Sanctuary, the presence of good number of “Barringtonia Acutangula” trees which can tolerate inundation for long periods in the tank bed and fore shore areas make this sanctuary a haven for a broad spectrum of bird species for both breeding and roosting. It is a breeding ground for some of the rare and endangered species like Grey Pelicans, Open-billed Storks, Little Cormorants, Spoonbills, White Ibis, Night Herons, etc. A wide variety of birds, like Egrets, Tern, Ducks, Waders etc., also rest here.There is an Environmental Education Centre in the Sanctuary with a Museum, Library and Auditorium with Audio Visual Equipment for screening of slides, films etc, on wild life. Watch towers are also available to watch the birds at the Sanctuary.
Nellore District has a 165 km coastline. Krishnapatnam, Ramayapatnam, Ramatheertham, Kodur, Mypadu, Thupilapalem etc., are some of the beaches. Out of which Krishnapatnam, the port city is expected to flourish in the near future as was seen in the olden days. It is located about 25 km towards east of Nellore City. The beaches here are excellent.
This is Mypadu beach (Bay of Bengal), just 20 km from Nellore City. Those who want to have a refreshing change from daily life can visit this beach for an out of this world experience. Especially those who enjoy the beauty of nature and want to enjoy the fresh air of seashore will enjoy visiting this place.