There is nothing like escaping to the seas from our busy, chaotic city lives. The feel of fresh air caressing our hair and warm waves splashing against our feet is one of the ideal forms of vacation. This exact dream like holiday destination can be yours in Visakhapatnam, also known as Vizag. A port city, it is known for its variety of industries, but beyond grey, concrete buildings are beautiful beaches, temples, caves and valleys.
The city is perpetually thronging with tourists, every one escaping to a few days of freedom and relief from hectic life. Imagine being able to visit a place that is nothing short of a treasure land. From history to culture to unlimited activities and unlimited places to visit, you have it all right here in Vizag.
The joys of Visakhapatnam lie in its subtle hints at history, culture with a whiff of modernism in the air. This perfect amalgamation of some of the best aspects of a holiday destination is what makes the city one of the best places to visit with ample places to discover. Some of them include:
1. Simhachalam Temple
The Simhachalam Temple in Visakhapatnam is one of the most popular places to visit. Also known as Sri Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha temple, it is dedicated to the Hindu deity, Vishnu. The legend is that Vishnu, manifested in the form of a half lion and half human form to save his devotee Prahlada from his murder by his own father, Hiranyakashipu.
Resembling a fortress from the outside, the temple consists of five gateways and three beautiful courtyards. The temple is a visual representation in the form of architecture of the reign of Kalinga, Chalukyas and Cholas.
2. Rama Krishna Beach
A famous beach popular among locals and tourists alike is the Ramakrishna Beach, named after Ramakrishna Mission ashram located nearby. A perfect place for enjoying fun filled activities such as swimming, sunbathing, surfing and playing beach volleyball, RK beach doesn’t disappoint you.
You can also enjoy camel ride or a ride in one of the fishing boats operated by the local fishers here. If not anything, you can simply sit and relax while enjoying the sunset.
3. INS Kurusura Submarine Museum
Vishakhaptanam, is a port city, built on the coast of the Bay of Bengal, hence, a submarine museum in the city is of little surprise. Set up in 2011, the museum houses the INS Kurusura that was constructed by Russians in the year 1969, reaching India in 1970.
It served the Indian Navy greatly until the year 2001, when it was decommissioned. The submarine has experienced and played a vital role in various wars, including the Indo-Pak war of 1971. It is the first submarine turned museum in Asia.
For all the history lovers, waste no moment in wondering whether you should visit this museum. Starting from the evolution of submarines in war, to equipment and artefacts, quench your thirst by peeking into the life inside a submarine.
4. Rishikonda Beach
Get lost in the sound of the waves splashing against the warm sand at your feet or swim away into the cool waters in the sea at the very famous Rishikonda Beach. Pocketed under Rishikonda hill, the beach is famous for its perfectly, serene beauty. It could not get any better than this.
The beach gives you a preview into the best of two worlds; hills and the beach. If you are the adventurous kind, do not forget to try out the various water sports that are offered on the beach. They are all under expert supervision, so there is no need to worry!
5. Araku Valley
Visakhapatnam is a place where you get to experience a variety of things. While there are ample beaches, waterfalls to explore, there is also no dearth of valleys. One such valley that you should not miss in your Vizag tour is the Araku Valley.
Araku is essentially a hill station, situated 120kms away from Visakhapatnam, which is rich in green fields, coffee plantations, picturesque landscapes and most importantly, wonderful weather. The valley is inhabited by tribes and it also contains a museum showcasing some of the best artwork by the localites. The journey to the valley by train is simply breath-taking. A must visit to all!
6. Kailasagiri Park
Ever wondered what it must feel like to have a bird's eye view? At this point, Visakhapatnam must feel like a wishing well. The city fulfils wishes before you even know what to dream of. Kailasagiri is nothing but a park on top of a hill. The best part about this hill is that it literally provides you with a panoramic view of the city of Visakhapatnam.
Overlooking beaches, forests and the city, Kailasagiri is a promising place to visit during your stay in the city. Starting from leisurely sitting on a bench and enjoying the view to participating in a variety of activities, you will undoubtedly have a lot of fun.
7. Borra Caves
An adrenaline rush, a sense of the unknown will grip you as you step into Borra Caves of Visakhapatnam. According to William King George of the Geological Survey of India, these caves are about one million years old. They are a sight to behold. Their origins are uncertain but there are several legends entwined with these caves and the local tribe of the area.
A very popular tourist destination, the borra caves are one of the must visit places in Visakhapatnam. According to some of the popular legends, when the caves were first discovered, they found a Shivalingam in its premises and turned it into a holy shrine with a temple outside of it.
8. Dolphin’s Nose
A hill that resembles a dolphin’s nose in its shape is another popular tourist spot in Vizag called the Dolphin’s Nose. There is a lighthouse that guides sailing ships to the port and away from harsh regions of the sea.
It was used by the British before the independence of India as a military camp. It is a crucial location because quite a few important wars had been fought in and around the place, such as the war of the British and the French, famously known as the Battle of Visakhapatnam.
9. VUDA Park
Located near RK beach, this is one of the popular places in Vizag that is definitely worth a visit. This is an urban park that was named after the then Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, N T Rama Rao at the time of its establishment. The park has recreational activities you can participate in along with an ice skating rink that has made its name all over the city.
10. Visakha Museum
If you want to explore more museums, you could visit the Vishakha Museum. The museum is dated back to about 260 BC, tracing through the history of the city and depicting the various aspects of culture that the city inhabits.
11. Victory at Sea Memorial
A glimpse into history, remembering the Indo-Pakistan war of 1971, this memorial was constructed in the year 1996. It was dedicated to the Indian Navy and Eastern Naval Command sailors. A moment of pride will imbibe in you in one visit to this memorial. It is located on Beach Road in Vizag.
12. Yarada Beach
Another popular attraction in Vizag, Yarada beach is one of the well maintained beaches of the city. The golden sand and pristine waters at the beach makes it one of best places in Vizag to spend some memorable moments with your loved ones.
The picturesque beauty of the surroundings and breathtaking views of sunrise and sunset will leave you awestruck.
13. Indira Gandhi Zoological Park
The two best places to visit in a new city are its museums and zoological parks. Keeping this in mind, Visakhapatnam does not hesitate in providing you with one of the largest parks in the state with a variety of eight different species. It is a favourite destination for children and animal lovers of all ages.
An entirety of six hundred and twenty-five acres, the myriad creatures available in the park is sure to surprise you. It also has a special section for moths and butterflies. A mini train runs through the premises to give you an ultimate view of the places, making sure you don’t miss out on anything.
14. Matsyadarshini Aquarium
Marine life is an important aspect of Visakhapatnam. The MatsyaDarshini Aquarium is one such place where the depiction of this importance is displayed. Starting with Butterfly Fishes to Perch Duskys, you have it all. Exotic aquatic animals and marine invertebrates are major attractions.
15. Tenneti Park
Located on the Beach Road in Jodugullapalem, Tenneti Park is one of the oldest parks in Vizag. The ideal location of the park makes it favourite among tourists and locals, as it offers sea view on one side along with lush greenery all around. It is a perfect place for capturing some amazing clicks with your loved ones.
16. Bojjana Konda
This is an ancient Buddhist heritage site dating back to the 4th century. It is situated on a hilltop and is a rock cave. It contains monolithic stupas made of rocks and relics and artefacts of the Buddhist influence over the village of Sankaram are still evident here.
17. Katiki Falls
Visakhapatnam is a land of endless surprises. The city is a hub for all kinds of travellers, providing something unique for everyone. Originating from the River Gosthani, Katiki Waterfalls is situated very close to Borra Caves. It is the ideal place to visit for all nature loving, adventurous travelers.
It requires a short trek until the waterfall through serpentine, rocky routes, adding thrill to the journey. There are pit stops to nourish you with sumptuous Bamboo Chicken and Coconut Water. Take a moment to elevate out of your worries, as you enjoy the sounds of the variety of birds singing, a bath in the cold river water or simple solitude.
18. Bavikonda Buddhist Complex
Buddhism is a prominent aspect in the history of religious evolutions of India. It had a major effect in Visakhapatnam, especially in the dynasties that ruled the city over the years. A shred of evidence of it is the Bavikonda Buddhist Complex.
The wells in the Bavikonda Buddhist Complex were constructed to store rainwater. Buddhism is a religion that preaches calm, sobriety in life and tranquillity. There is no better place in Visakhapatnam to experience just that.
19. Kondakarla Bird Sanctuary
The lap of nature is nothing but wondrous and that is what you will find at this bird sanctuary. Surrounded by an endangered evergreen forest, unique birds and a clear lake, this is the ideal place to skip out to and truly unwind. The lake is flanked by coconut trees on one side and hills on the other, providing you with scenic beauty.
20. Kali Temple
Located in RK Beach, is the famous Kali Temple. This is one of the few temples that receives the highest footfalls and darshans. Dedicated to Goddess Kali, the temple was built in the year 1984. Every year they celebrate Vijaydashami on a grand scale attracting visitors from all around the country and the world. This is one of the most prominent tourist attractions of Vizag.