According to the history, the city was named after the god of 'Valor-Vishakha'. It was a part of the Kalinga Kingdom, under Ashoka's rule in 260 B.C. It passed on later to the Andhra Kings of 'Vengi'. After this Pallava, Chola and Ganga dynasties ruled the city. In the 15th century, Vishakhapatnam became a part of the Vijayanagar Empire.
The Europeans, the Dutch, the French and the English established themselves from the 17th century onwards and used this as a major trading center to export textiles, ivory, tobacco, indigo etc. This port is well documented in the histories of these colonial powers as well as in Indian historical records. This coast played a major role during the reign of the Asaf Jahis and the Golcondas.
The City Of Destiny
Vishakhapatnam is built along the seashore of the Bay of Bengal, and is bounded and broken by the bold headland called the Dolphin's Nose (357m above the sea level). The city boasts of a beautiful beach with a long beach road ending at nearly Bheemunipatnam on the northern end. The surrounding area is dominated on the west by the well-forested Eastern Ghats and farther east is drained by numerous rivers, among them the Godavari and Indravati.
The city is also known as "Vizag" and is surrounded by three hills, each of which has a shrine dedicated to a different religion - Venkateswara temple (also spelt as Venkateshwara) on Venkateswara Konda, Baba Ishaq Madina Dargah on Dargah Konda and Church of the Virgin Mary on Rose hill.
A Prominent Shipbuilding Centre
Vishakhapatnam is an important shipbuilding centre; the first steamer to be built in India was launched in Vishakhapatnam's harbour in 1948. Vishakhapatnam's port has grown greatly in importance because it has the only protected harbour on the Coromandel Coast. Agriculture is the mainstay of the region's economy. There are major industries like Ship Building, Oil Refinery, Fertilizer, Petro Chemicals, Steel Mills and a Naval base. The suburb of Waltair, at the north end of the bay, is the site of Andhra University.
Vishakhapatnam is the true spot where one can find the beauty of Andhra. From lakes to cool beaches, from beautiful hill ranges to caves and valleys enclosures, Vishakhapatnam has them all. A visit to Vishakhapatnam will definitely be exciting, enriching and refreshing experience with all its sun kissed beaches, caves and temples.
Major Attractions of Vishakhapatnam
Kailasagiri is located on a hilltop and is a must to visiting place for all people visiting Vishakhapatnam. The charming hill on the seafront, affords a breath taking scenic view, especially towards Bheemunipatnam.
* Rishikonda Beach
Just 8-km from Vishakhapatnam is the Rishikonda Beach, a golden, unspoilt beach, washed by the sun-warmed sea.
* Ramakrishna Beach
One of the loveliest beaches on the East Coast, the Ramakrishna beach is a favorite resort for tourists visiting Vishakhapatnam.
* Indira Gandhi Zoological Park
The Indira Gandhi Zoological Park is located in Vishakhapatnam amidst the scenic eastern ghats of India, flanked by hills on either sides and Bay of Bengal on the east.
Excursions of Vishakhapatnam
* Ananthagiri Hills
Anantagiri is a breathtakingly beautiful resort sheltered in the lush undulating ranges of the Eastern Ghats. It is considered to be a perfect head off to get away from the blistering summer months. The Ananthagiri hills are on the way to Araku Valley and are famous for coffee plantations.
About 16-km from Vishakhapatnam is Simhachalam, famous for the temple of Sri Varaha Lakshminarasimha. Architecturally this ancient temple deserves high praise.
* Araku Valley
About 115-km from Vishakhapatnam is the beautiful Araku Valley, with its bracing climate, orchards, and the Ananthagiri Ghats, which present an enchanting view to the visitors, is attracting tourists not only in India but from abroad too.
* Borra Caves
Borra Caves At a distance of about 90-95-km from Vishakhapatnam are the Borra Caves, which attained historical and religious importance.
About 25-km from Vishakhapatnam is Bheemunipatnam. The most important aspect of interest at the place is the beach, which is perhaps matchless for its beauty all along the east coast.
Festivals of Vishakhapatnam
The annual tourism event, the 'Vishakha Utsav' is held in Vishakhapatnam for three days from the third Friday to Sunday in the month of January.
Shopping in Vishakhapatnam
Vizag is better known as an industrial centre, but in reality it is a city of shopkeepers. For some reason shops in the same trade tend to be located next to each other, which makes shop hopping and bargain hunting easier. Earlier the area around Kurupam market with its narrow lanes and poky shops, was famous for Gold and Silver shopping.
Of late jewellery shops have sprung up in the area in Dwaraka Nagar on the other side of TSR complex. The entire stretch of road extending from Jagadamba Junction to the Old Post Office has literally countless shops selling a wide variety of items. Chandana Brothers, Bommana, Puchala, are the famous shops, which sell almost all sari varieties. The government owned / run Lepakshi is the place for handicrafts.
Places to stay in Vishakhapatnam
* Daspalla Hotels Limited
* Dolphin Hotels Limited
* Green Park
* Hotel Jyothi Swaroopa
* Hotel Meghalaya
* Hotel Prince
* Palm Beach
* Hotel Taj Residency
Nearby Cities of Vishakhapatnam
* Simhachalam: 16 km
* Araku Valley: 115 km
* Borra Caves: 90 to 95 km
How to Get There
Vishakhapatnam has an airport. Indian Airlines flies to Vishakhapatnam daily from Mumbai, Kolkatta, Hyderabad and Chennai.
Vishakhapatnam is the centre point for the trains going between Chennai and Howra and Howrah and Secunderabad. It is well connected by rail to all the important places in and outside the state.
National Highway No.5 (Howrah to Chennai) passes through Vishakhapatnam. The Vishakhapatnam to Steel Plant - Anakapalli Road is most modern 4 Line Highway spans 45-km. The APSRTC runs buses and private buses connect major cities of the state and the cities in the neighboring states of Orissa and Madhya Pradesh with Vishakhapatnam.
General Information about Vishakhapatnam
* Climate: Tropical
* Temperature Range (deg C):
o - Summer- Max 36, Min 25
o Winter- Max 28, Min 19.6
* Altitude: 15 feet above sea level
* Clothing: Light Cottons in summers and light woollens in winters
* Best Season: August to October and January to March
* Languages Spoken: Telugu, Hindi, English
* STD Code: 0891
Andhra University | Anthropology Museum | Aquarium – Matsya Darshini | Dolphin’s Nose |
Fishing harbour | Hindustan Shipyard | Indira Gandhi Zoological Park | Kailasa Hill (Kailasagiri)
Kali Temple | Keertana Vanam | Lawson’s Bay & Beach Road | Mangamaripeta Beach (Creek)|
Mudsalova Water Park | Ramakrishna Beach |Rishikonda | Shivajipalem Park | Submarine Museum | The Three Hillocks | Rose Hill | Darga Konda | Sri Venkateswara Swamy Konda |
Victory at Sea | Visakha Museum | Visakhapatnam Port | VUDA Children’s Theatre | VUDA Park |