Just 8Kms from Vizag, Rushikonda beach is a picture perfect setting with golden sands, surf, sea and hill cottages overlooking the grand vista. For lovers of swimming and water sports like skiing and wind surfing, Rushikonda is an ideal destination. At the end of a grueling session, one cans always chillout at the bar cum restaurant attached to the cottage.
The 25 Kms stretch of road literally hugging the coastline from Visakhapatnam is simply breathtaking. On the way one can venture into "Erramattidibbalu", beautiful formation of red sand, or the shallow waters of the unending beach. Bheemili a sleepy little town is the second oldest municipality in the country. The colonial past of the town is evident in the remains of a once thriving Dutch Settlement. River Gosthani at the mouth of which Bheemili lies forms an alluring recess to the town. The important landmark of Bheemili includes, pilgrimage centers, temples, old churches, clock tower, light house, port and more.
Erra Matti Dibbalu
Red sand hilla are sand formations found in Vizag. On the way to Bheemunipatnam from Vizag, one cans exeperince the beauty of these natural formations.
Dolphin’s Nose & the Port
It is the most prominent and unforgettable landmark in Visakhapatnam. It is a single and massive hillock of more than 350mts height, resembles the Dolphin’s nose hence the name. It protects the Visakhapatnam Harbour as well as the Head Quarters of Eastern Naval Command. Visakhapatnam Port Trust’s, Light House is situated on top of the hill and guides the approaching ships to Visakhapatnam. The port channel cuts in between three hills which emphasis the lovely topography of Visakhapatnam. Ross Hill, the highest mount named after Mr. Ross, local authority, who built a house on it in 1864, Darga konda, has a mosque and a shrine of a Muslim sage Ishaque Madina, who was revered for his prophecies. Sri Venkateswarakonda has a temple, which was built by Capt. Blackmoor in 1886.
A beautiful beach that falls on the way to Kailasagiri Hill, Lawson’s Bay is an ideal spot for sea bathing surfing.
Legacy of the Buddha
Visakhapatnam is surrounded by ancient Buddha sites, most of which have been excavated recently.
Ramakrishna Mission Beach
It is one of the most prominent beaches on the East Cost. It is the most happening place in Visakhapatnam one of the crowed pullers in the city. It is commonly called as R K Beach, which derives its name from the Lord Ramakrishna Mission. The important landmarks in the city viz. Submarine Museum, Visakha Museum, Aquarium, numbers of road side parks with children play equipments & lawns, War Memorial, statues of eminent personalities and many more are situated in this beach only.
The Buddhist Complex on the hill-top of Mangamaripeta, locally known as Thotlakonda lies about 16Kms from Visakhapatnam on Vizag Bheemili beach road. It is picturesquely located on the hilltop at about 128mts. high above the MSL. The existence of Buddhist site at Thotlakonda came to light during an aerial survey undertaken by the Indian Navy. After its discovery, the Government of A.P has declared the site measuring an area of 120 acres on the summit as protected monument during 1978.
One of the most exquisitely sculpted shrines of Andhra Pradesh, Simhachalam temple is situated 16 km from Vizag among thickly wooded hills. The beautifully-carved 16-pillared Natya mantapa and the 96-pillared Kalyana mantapa bear testimony to the architectural brilliance of the temple. The image of the presiding deity, Sri Lakshminarasimha Swamy, is covered by a thick layer of sandalwood paste.
A Britisher Alexander Rea unearthed Sankaram, a 2000-year-old Buddhist Heritage site in 1907. Located 40 km from South of Vizag, locally it is known as Bojjannakonda. The three phases of Buddhism viz. Hinayana, Mahayana & Vajrayana flourished here. This complex is famous for its numerous Monolithic Votive Stupas, Rock cut caves, and brick build structural edifices. Excavations yielded several historic potteries, Satavahana coins dating back to the 1st century A.D. several clay tablets bearing figures of Buddha etc.
Other Attractions are a Maha stupa nearby which yielded a relic casket, 3 chaitya halls, votive platforms, stupas and vajrayana sculptures. A gold coin of Samudragupta dating to 4th century AD was also found at this place. The Vihara was active for about 1000 years, spanning the Theravada, Mahayana and Vajrayana phases of Buddhism. This place offers a glimpse into the rich Buddhist heritage and culture is a must see for any tourist.
Pavuralakonda or 'the hill of the pigeons' is a hillock lying to the west of Bhimli, at about 24 km from Vizag. The Buddhist setllement found here is estimated to have witnessed human habitation between 1st century BC to 2nd century AD Sixteen rock cut cisterns for impounding rain water are found on the hillock, which offer a panoramic view of the coastline.
Gopalapatnam, situated on the left bank of River Tandava, is a village surrounded by brick built stupas, viharas and other Buddhist remains. Ancient pottery was also excavated from these sites.
Indira Gandhi Zoological Park
Indira Gandhi Zoological Park, situated in between the National Highway -5 & Beach road, spreading over an area of 625 acres, exhibits about 700 animals belonging to about 89 species. The important attractions of the Zoo are Deer Safari, Nocturnal animals, Toy train, Shanty Sarovar view, Zoo van drive and Bay of Bengal view points.
Kailasagiri Park located on a picturesque hill is truly an outstanding tourist spot in Visakhapatnam city. Located at an altitude of 130mtrs.this hill park faces the Bay of Bengal. The ranges are appropriately named Kailasagiri owing to the presence of the statue of the celestial couple (Siva-Parvathi statue).
While all this makes the ambience suitable for tourism, the presence of huge idol makes the place worth seeing for the devotees. The Titanic view point, manicured lawns and flower beds, food court, a jungle trail, souvenir shop, telescopic viewpoint and many more. The other major attractions are the introduction of Ropeway to the hill, art gallery, and air conditioned Conference Hall & Capsule Lift to the highest view point.
On the way to Araku Valley, 90 km from Vizag, Borra Caves house spectacular, million-year-old stalactite and stalagmite formations, standing as a testimonial to its pristine glory and age woven into intricate design through the centuries. The nature made Borra Caves are a million and odd years old and said to be discovered by William King in 1807. The river Gostani, beautiful hills and valleys surround these caves. The local tale says, the tribals discovered the caves, when a cow fell into the caves through the hole of the cave.
These caves are said have their origin from the river Gosthani. It was said, due to the flow of the river Gosthani through the layers of lime earth, the caves were formed, over the course of millions of years, The 300 ft. thick roofed Borra caves spread over one square km., presenting a mind-boggling and breath-taking display of naturally sculpted splendor. This is truly a worth seeing.
This place is located at the highest altitude place in Andhra Pradesh. Located on the way to Araku Valley, the entire village is surrounded by coffee plantations, giving you a pleasant feel of nature’s beauty. Several waterfalls, adorn the hillocks around the Village. A. P. Tourism has developed a beautiful wayside restaurant to cater the needs of the tourist passing through Anantagiri towards Araku.
A walk down Visakhapatnam’s memory lane will take you through heritage sites that speak of a history, rich and classic.
The Dutch, one of earliest settlers in Visakhapatnam, first came calling in 1682 A.D. as traders. They stayed on and their constructions can still be found quite in abundance-homes, offices and even a cemetery that is a poignant reminder of traders, visters, soldiers and their families who once called Visakhapatnam.
Araku is one of the most important tourist destinations in Andhra Pradesh. A pleasant hill station famous for its scenic gardens with lush green nature, valleys, waterfalls and streams. It is situated at a distance of 112 km from Visakhapatnam, The journey to Araku valley on the Eastern Ghats with thick forest on either sides is itself highly interesting and pleasant. The place is over 3200ft. high with a bracing climate. The Botanical Garden at Padmapuram, Government Silk Farm with Mulberry gardens is the live examples to know the socio-economic conditions of the area.
Jagdalpur is considered the gateway to the forest and tribal areas of Bastar in Chhattisgarh. Jagdalpur is well-know for its handicrafts, especially wrought iron work, wood, terracotta crafts and bamboo work.
The Indian Navy has installed a decommissioned Submarine I.N.S. Kurusura on the sands of R K Beach, Visakhapatnam as a Museum for the display to the public and tourists as well. This is the first of its kind in the Asia. The aim of setting up of this museum is to create awareness among the public to know how the submarines work during wartime and how the crew takes action etc.