India is dotted with all kinds of places, be it beautiful, rustic, charming or adventurous. Once you step out of your home, certainly, you will be on the way to some alluring places. It cannot be denied that there are innumerable weekend getaways in every state of India. One such weekend getaway around Chennai is Nagalapuram.
Located at an average elevation of 213 feet in Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh, Nagalapuram is famous for its Vedanarayana Temple with Vaishnavite shrine in form of Matsya, the first incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Over a period of time, Nagalapuram has become famous amongst trekkers and travellers too, on account of its natural beauty and adventurous hills.
A Little About Nagalapuram
The history of this tiny temple town dates back to the period of Vijayanagara Empire. As per the legends, it is believed that Nagalapuram was built by Krishnadevaraya in loving memory of his mother, Nagala Devi. The rich culture and lifestyle of that period can be seen reflecting through aspiring architecture and wonderful wall patterns of the temples built in this town.
Today, apart from temples and their history, Nagalapuram is extremely popular amongst offbeat travellers for its scenic charm. People from all over the country are attracted by its perennial beauty, thereby, making this place a stoppage for all trekkers, campers and photographers.
Best Time To Visit Nagalapuram
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If you want to savour the grand festivals in the town and enjoy the decoration and lighting of temples, then you'll have to visit during the festive months. Meanwhile, you can explore the history of Nagalapuram and get astonished by its legends.
However, if you are looking to spend your time around magnificent hills and marvellous nature, then the best time to visit Nagalapuram is from November until the end of March. As the weather is clear and cool during this period, you can trek, camp and roam around with favourable climatic conditions.
How To Reach Nagalapuram
By Air: If you are travelling to Chennai by air, then you can take a cab from the airport to Nagalapuram. The Chennai airport is located at an approximate distance of 82 km from Nagalapuram.
By Rail: There are no direct trains available between Chennai and Nagalapuram. However, you can take a local train from Chennai to Gummidipundi and from there a taxi to Nagalapuram.
By Road: Situated at a minimum distance of 70 km, Nagalapuram is easily accessible by road. As there are only private buses running directly from Chennai to Nagalapuram, which take more time and money, it is advisable to take a cab or your own vehicle.
If you are commuting on your own, then following are the three routes from Chennai to Nagalapuram.
Route 1 - Chennai - Puzhal - Periyapalayam - Nagalapuram
Route 2 - Chennai - Vengal - Nagalapuram
Route 3 - Chennai - Maduravoyal - Tiruvallur - Nagalapuram
However, the fastest and more interesting is route 1, as it filled with beautiful landscapes and temples. While on this route, you can enjoy the natural beauty of Puzhal Lake and get the blessings of Goddess Bhavani at Periyapalayam.
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Also known as Red Hills Lake, as it is located at the base of Red Hills, Puzhal Lake is one of the major rain-fed reservoirs in the state and has been supplying water to cities and towns around it. It was built in 1876 during the British era and since then it has been catering to the needs of surrounding cities and towns.
If you love sitting in a peaceful environment while being touched by the calmness of the water, then it is a must-visit place for you. The spectacular views of dawn and dusk will definitely leave you surprised. Today, it is a sure-shot stoppage for every passer-by.
Sri Bhavani Amman Temple
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Located on Arani river flowing through Periapalayam, Sri Bhavani Amman Temple attracts thousands of visitors every month. Dedicated to Goddess Bhavani, an incarnation of Parvati, this temple is the centre of attraction for everyone visiting this town. Temple walls are decorated with paintings and colourful patterns and numerous statues of Hindu deities can be seen here.
Every year devotees are gathered in thousands of numbers during festivals of Aadi, Aavani, Thai, Aippasi and Chithirai. If you desire to feel the rich culture and tradition of Periyapalayam, do not forget to visit Sri Bhavani Amman Temple.
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Once you have reached Nagalapuram, you will be able to find yourself in the quintessential place filled with beauty, charm and history. From historical places like Vedanarayana Temple to natural wonders like Nagalapuram Hills, this small town has everything that a traveller wishes for. You can trek to Nagalapuram Hills and waterfalls and camp on the plains of this delightful town.
Places To Visit In Nagalapuram
1) Vedanarayana Temple
Undoubtedly, the town is famous for this wonderful temple with incredible architecture. The Vedanarayana Temple is designed in such a way that during Brahmotsavam, also called Surya Pooja, the sunrays fall directly on the feet, navel and forehead of the main shrine. Thereby, making it one of the finest pieces of architecture.
It is one of the first temples in India to have Lord Vishnu in the form of Matsya. Devotees from all over the city and state come to this historical place to attain spirituality and get the blessings of Lord Vishnu.
2) Nagalapuram Waterfalls
On the periphery of Nagalapuram, you can find a large cascade of water gushing down and spreading positive vibes of tranquillity all around. Nagalapuram is a perfect weekend getaway for trekkers and photographers. While playing with the pristine water of Nagalapuram waterfalls, you can also feel the melody of nature through chirping of birds and whistling of the wind.
You need to trek a little bit to this waterfall and this factor places this spot on the bucket list of every offbeat traveller. If you want to spend your weekend amid the unceasing beauty of nature, then Nagalapuram is your calling.
3) Nagalapuram Hills
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Nagalapuram Hills is an ideal place if you are looking for trekking or camping at night. Even though you can also camp on the outskirts of the town, the thrill of camping comes only at these hills. Once you have reached the base, you need to trek for few kilometres before you reach a spot spacious enough to camp properly.
It is advisable to be alert at night because of certain incidents of teasing and disturbance by locals. If you are an ardent trekker or camper, then do not miss this wonderful place to refresh your senses and awaken your conscience through the history and beauty of this town.
You can also capture beautiful shots through the camera. The lush greenery and winsome surroundings make this place a haven for photographers.