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Old 27th January 2010, 12:55   #1
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Default Tirumala-Ahobilam-Mahanandi-Srisailam: A 1350 KM trip from Chennai

The Plan:-

Day 1 (21st Jan) - Start from Chennai and reach Tirumala. Halt at Tirumala.
Day 2 (22nd Jan) - Spend a day in Tirumala and night halt at Tirumala.
Day 3 (23rd Jan) - Start to Ahobilam early in the morning; reach Ahobilam before noon; Start from Ahobilam after noon and reach Srisailam by evening. Halt at Srisailam.
Day 4 (24th Jan) - Spend the day in Srisailam and night halt at Srisailam.
Day 5 (25th Jan) - Start to Chennai and reach by evening.

This was our plan. I was not sure about the road conditions and wasn't sure if the plan was a really good one. Since we had booked accommodations only at Tirumala the plan was flexible and it really helped us because we found that it was impossible to stick to the plan.

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C - Tirumala
D - Ahobilam
E - Mahanandi
F - Srisailam
G - Markapur
H - Ongole

I will give a detailed account of the trip and will try to answer any questions so that it would be easier for others to plan a similar trip. I do not see many travelogues to Ahobilam and Srisailam from Chennai.

Total kilometers covered - 1350

Chennai - Tirumala = 175
In & around Tirumala = 110
Tirumala - Ahobilam = 315
Ahobilam - Nandyal = 60
Nandyal - Mahanandi = 18
Mahanandi - Srisailam = 197
Srisailam - Ongole = 175
Ongole - Chennai = 300

Car Driven - Hyundai I20 (1 Month old with just 500 kms on the Odo).
Number of Passengers - 5 Adults, 1 Kid (3 years old) & 1 baby (8 months old). The car was fully loaded and the trip was fully enjoyed .
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Old 27th January 2010, 14:48   #2
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wow.... my parents have been asking me to plan a trip to ahobilam, mahanandi for almost a year. Thanks Crossroads, now I can go and give a good plan to them. Eagely awaiting the updates and the snaps.
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Old 27th January 2010, 15:04   #3
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Wonderful. Waiting for the details.

Quote:
Since we had booked accommodations only at Tirumala the plan was flexible and it really helped us because we found that it was impossible to stick to the plan.
Starting your trip without any proper bookings, especially with family and kids in a way, yes this itself will be a thrill
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Old 27th January 2010, 15:10   #4
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Will keep my eyes out on this thread for sure ! Waiting to read and see more !
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Old 27th January 2010, 15:46   #5
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Crossroad I am hooked to the thread now. By the by how did you manage to fit in 5 adults & 2 kids in a hatchback for such a long journey my friend.

Last edited by ElantraGT : 27th January 2010 at 15:50.
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Old 27th January 2010, 17:10   #6
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Day 1:- 21st January, 2010

We started from Chennai at 11 AM after having a nice meal at a marriage party. I was the only one who could drive; so the driver seat was reserved for me. My father played the role of the navigator; wife,mom & uncle occupied the rear seats with the baby and the kid on their laps.

I had already booked the accommodation for 22nd and 23rd January using the TTD online facility. The reservation receipt mentioned that accommodation can be availed only from 00:00 hours to 24:00 hours on the day of booking.

We took the Kalahasti route since the traffic is normally less compared to the Tiruttani & Oothukottai route. The roads were good except for few kilometers after Tada. Please watch out for the unmarked speed breakers. After a coffee break at Tirupati we reached Tirumala around 3 PM. We went to the accommodation office and as expected they turned as back and asked us to come after midnight since the booking was valid only after midnight.

With no other options left, we decided to have the darshan of swami first. We parked our cars near the vaikuntam queue complex and found that the 300 Rupees darshan line was relatively thin. We entered the darshan line around 4:45 PM and came out after having darshan around 6:15 PM. We had a very nice darshan. It was a Thursday and we had the nethra darshan ( Swami with no decorations)

Note:- 300 rupees darshan line is closed between 6-9 PM. It is open from 9 AM - 6 PM and 9 PM - 11 PM.

With still 5 hours left for midnight, we decided to visit Thiruchanoor and have the darshan of Goddess Padmavathy. Our initial plan was to visit Thiruchanoor the next day but the Lord willed otherwise. We climbed down to Tirupati, had the darshan of Padmavathy, had our dinner and then started our climb back to Tirumala at 10 PM. The Ghat roads are closed between 12 AM - 4 PM.

We reached Tirumala around 10:45 PM and strolled around till midnight. The temperature was around 14 degree Celsius and we had hot tea for company.

After midnight we visited the accommodation counter and were assigned the ATGH (Alwar Tank Guest House) cottage. I had booked the 750 rupee category rooms and I was surprised when I entered the room. The room consists of a hall with a sofa and 2 single beds, 1 small dressing room with an attached bathroom & 1 bedroom with a king size bed and an attached bathroom. It was very comfortable. We were very tired and promptly hit the bed around 1 AM while Lord Balaji was being awakened with Suprabatham since the following day was Ratha Sapthami and it was supposedly a busy day for the Lord.

The allotted guest house
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Side view of the car
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Another view of the car in the parking lot
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Son with the car
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Old 27th January 2010, 17:21   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by venki.bala View Post
wow.... my parents have been asking me to plan a trip to ahobilam, mahanandi for almost a year. Thanks Crossroads, now I can go and give a good plan to them. Eagely awaiting the updates and the snaps.
@Venki - Ahobilam and Mahanandi are a must place to visit. Lot of trekking needs to be done in Ahobilam, so take your parents earlier.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mjothi View Post
Wonderful. Waiting for the details.
Starting your trip without any proper bookings, especially with family and kids in a way, yes this itself will be a thrill
@mjothi - Yes, it was a thrill. Actually I wanted to start with booked accommodation but since most of the places were new to me, I wasn't sure if I would be able to stick to the plan.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kannan666 View Post
Will keep my eyes out on this thread for sure ! Waiting to read and see more !
@Kannan - Thanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by ElantraGT View Post
Crossroad I am hooked to the thread now. By the by how did you manage to fit in 5 adults & 2 kids in a hatchback for such a long journey my friend.
@Elantra - Thanks. Since there were two ladies, it was not a problem for 3 adults sitting in the rear seat. The person sitting on the middle seat felt uncomfortable especially during the ghat section.
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Old 27th January 2010, 18:02   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crossroads View Post
The person sitting on the middle seat felt uncomfortable especially during the ghat section.
This is exactly what I was trying to point Crossroads. The person who sits in the middle will be the one who will suffer. Especially in the ghat section they will have a hard time with body rolls of the car in hair pin bends. You ride is really neat. Just out of curiosity how did you manage to keep you son in the back seat all the time. Mine is 1 1/2 years old and on my trip to kanyakumari last weekend, I had tough time keeping him in the back seat. Your travellouge is templting me to make a trip to Thirumala.
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Old 27th January 2010, 19:57   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElantraGT View Post
Just out of curiosity how did you manage to keep you son in the back seat all the time. Mine is 1 1/2 years old and on my trip to kanyakumari last weekend, I had tough time keeping him in the back seat.
Hari - 50% of the time he was sitting in the back seat and the rest he was sitting in the front. He had the baby giving him company in the back. So he was happy to be in the rear seat.
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Old 29th January 2010, 11:58   #10
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Day 2:- 22nd January, 2010

It was Ratha Sapthami day and the Lord was taken around the Mada streets in 7 different types of chariots and needless to say Tirumala was crowded with lots of devotees. We visited Papanasam in the morning, and we had the rest of the day for relaxing.

Below are pictures taken on the way to papanasam.

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Day 3:- 23rd January, 2010

The plan was to start early and reach Ahobilam before noon. After completing the check-out formalities we started to Ahobilam around 6:30 AM. We had to make a detour and visit one of our friend's house in Tirupati. So effectively the start from Tirupati was around 8 AM.

The route taken to reach Ahobilam was Tirupati -> Raychoti -> Cuddapah -> Allagada -> Ahobilam. There is an alternate route to reach Cuddapah via Rajampet. Since the Raychoti route was indicated as a national highway in the maps, we thought that the roads might be good and took that route. The traffic was very less and the roads not that good. There were also two ghat sections on the way to Cuddapah. We were able to reach Cuddapah around 11:30 AM. We spent close to half hour in Cuddapah in search of a good vegetarian restaurant. We found only fast-food joints and non-veg hotels. Tired of searching, we bought parcel food from one of the fast-food joint and proceeded towards Ahobilam. On the outskirts of Cuddapah we found Hotel Haritha, an AP Tourism hotel. The lack of sign boards frustrated us till Ahobilam. Some were written in Telugu and some boards that seemed to be written in English was plastered over by political notices.

After Cuddapah, one has to take the Nandyal-Kurnool route (NH18) to reach Ahobilam. We found a small Hanuman temple on the wayside. We parked our car and had our parceled lunch in the temple premises. After the refreshing break we proceeded towards our destination. There is a town named "Allagada" which is around 80 kms from Cuddapah. We need to take a right turn in Allagada to reach Ahobilam. Ahobilam is around 25 kms from Allagada. There is a sign board in Allagada but it's easy to miss it. So watch out for the Allagada town and turn right to Ahobilam if you are going from Cuddapah. We reached Ahobilam around 2 PM. Ahobilam is famous for the 9 Narashima temples and is situated in the Nallamalla hills.

Note:- Nallamalla hills is considered as Adisesha (the snake on which Lord Narayana rests) with the head at Tirumala, tail at Srisailam and the middle portion in Ahobilam.

Tirumala-Ahobilam-Mahanandi-Srisailam: A 1350 KM trip from Chennai-img_4332_1024x768.jpg
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Old 31st January 2010, 23:57   #11
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Hi friends,

Any one who can give the shortest and safe route from Chennai to Nagarjunasager in AP.
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Old 1st February 2010, 07:38   #12
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Hi friends,

Any one who can give the shortest and safe route from Chennai to Nagarjunasager in AP.
Hi Navan,

The best route will be Chennai - Nellore - Ongole - Chilukuripet ( Exit NH) - Narasaraopet - Karempudi - Macherla - Nagarjunasagar. You can find updates in

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/route-...itions-11.html
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Old 1st February 2010, 09:01   #13
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Thank you Venki,

It is a long lasting desire of mine for years to visit the Nagarjunasagar and Konda about whom I read and taught. The great Buddhist king of South India. Always I get guests from the Buddhist countries. I wanted to take them and visit myself once. I will see the thread you mentioned.
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Old 5th August 2014, 10:49   #14
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Default Re: Tirumala-Ahobilam-Mahanandi-Srisailam: A 1350 KM trip from Chennai

Quote:
Originally Posted by crossroads View Post
Day 2:- 22nd January, 2010

It was Ratha Sapthami day and the Lord was taken around the Mada streets in 7 different types of chariots and needless to say Tirumala was crowded with lots of devotees. We visited Papanasam in the morning, and we had the rest of the day for relaxing.

Dear crossroads.

I was searching for the road details between tirupati and srisailam and then noticed this travelogue. Looking for the remaining portion also.

regards
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Old 6th August 2014, 16:34   #15
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Default Re: Tirumala-Ahobilam-Mahanandi-Srisailam: A 1350 KM trip from Chennai

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Originally Posted by bbhavan View Post
Dear crossroads.

I was searching for the road details between tirupati and srisailam and then noticed this travelogue. Looking for the remaining portion also.

regards
I visited Ahobilam and then Srisailam. So I took the Tirupati-Cuddapah-Nandiyal-Srisailam route. If you are going directly to Srisailam from Tirpati, then I would suggest the Tirupati - Ongole - Markapur - Srisailam. It will be shorter and you have better roads.
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