Destinations - India Road trips from Bangalore

Road trip from Bangalore 8 – Wonders of Rayalaseema in Andhra Pradesh & Telengana!

Written by Poorna & Brinda

Road Trip from Bangalore 8 is the eighth in our series of “Road Trips from Bangalore – Exciting Options with Itineraries!”covering lovely places in Rayalaseema region of Andhra Pradesh and Telengana.

Yes, as road trippers we love to drive to destinations. We love the freedom road trips provide us to stop, look and explore.

We are sharing details of road trips from Bangalore with detailed itinerary to explore heritage, western ghats, wild life, beaches etc…….   These drives, cover not more than 300 KMs in a day. The plan is to cover for a week extendable for another two days. It also provide you an option to just plan for as many number of days you wish to.

This is the eighth in the series and this road trip from Bangalore covers the wonders of Rayalaseema region of Andhra Pradesh and Telengana.

There are many exciting tourist places in Andhra Pradesh  for a curious traveller to explore. From Buddhist ruins of Amaravati and Nagarjunakonda to beautiful beaches on the long coast to lovely rivers, marvellous temples and natural wonders. This post covers the Rayalaseema region of Andhra Pradesh & Telengana which is known for its dry and arid climate. At the same time, it also has some exciting places to explore.

The natural wonders Bellum (Caves), Gandikota (Canyon), Oravakallu (Natural stone formations) lovely forts at Chandragiri, Penukonda, temples at Lepakshi, Tadipatri, Alampur, Ahobilam, Vontimitta. And of course the famous temple town of Tirupati.

 The Circuit
Bangalore – Lepakshi – Penukonda – Anantpur – Tadipatri – Bellum caves – Yaganti – Kurnool – Oravakallu – Rollapadu – Mahanandi – Ahobilam – Gandikota – Kadapa – Horsely Hills – Madanapalle – Tirupati – Srikalahasti – Chandragiri – Bangalore
Total Distance – 1343 KMs
To help get the details on the map, we have spilt the circuit into two.
Circuit 1 – Bangalore – Lepakshi – Penukonda – Anantpur – Tadipatri – Bellum caves – Yaganti – Kurnool – Oravakallu – Rollapadu  (512 KMs)  Google Map
Circuit 2 – Rollapdu – Mahanandi – Ahobilam – Gandikota – Kadapa – Horsely Hills – Madanapalle – Tirupati – Srikalahasti – Chandragiri – Bangalore  (831 KMs)     Google Map
The road condition throughout is very good. You may find small stretches of bad roads but it is not a big deal. If you want to know the latest conditions then we strongly recommend you to become a member of this lovely driving community on Facebook H V Kumar forum
Day 1 – Bangalore – Lepakshi – Penukonda – Anantpur (Night Stay)
Distance – 245 KMs
road trip from bangalore

Nagalingeshwara Temple, Lepakshi

Start from Bangalore around 7 AM. You can have breakfast at Indian Parota Factory after airport and drive to Lepakshi. You should reach Lepakhi by 10 AM. Explore the beautiful temple for an hour – Check this post on Lepakshi our blog for more details – and proceed to Penukonda.
Penukonda has a nice fort with remains of the palace and other structures from Vijayanagar era. You should spend an hour exploring it. Have lunch in Penukonda or at any of the many dhabhas on the highway. If you are a devotee of Sri Sathya Sai Baba, then you can take a detour to Puttaparthi and visit his memorial and then proceed to Anantpur.
Reach Anantpur by evening. Visit the lovely ISKON temple in city. Retire for the night.
Day 2 – Ananatpur – Tadipatri – Bellum caves – Yaganti – Kurnool (Night Stay)
Distance – 215 KMs
road trip from Bangalore

Unfinished Gopuram at Bugga Ramalingeshwara Temple, Tadipatri

road trip from Bangalore

Fascinating interiors of Bellum Caves

An interesting day of exploring caves and some lovely temples.
Leave around 7 AM and drive to Tadipatri which has two beautiful temples of Vijayanagar period. The base of the incomplete main gopuram of Bugga Ramalingeshwara Swamy temple is so big that the acclaimed historian James Fergusson has mentioned that had it been completed then it would have been the tallest gopuram in te country.
After visiting the temples, have breakfast and then drive to spectacular world of Bellum caves. Explore the caves and it will take at least two hours to explore the cave. The next stop is Banaganapalli which has lovely fort now known popularly as “Arundhati fort” after the Telugu blockbuster “Arundhati” was shot here. After visiting the fort, have lunch as you won’t get anything in Yaganti. After Banaganapalli drive to Yaganti cave temple. Explore the cave temple.
From Yaganti drive to Kurnool and retire for the day.
Day 3 – Kurnool – Alampur – Oaravakallu – Rallapadu – Nandyal (Night Stay)
Distance – 171 KMs
Road trip from Bangalore

Sangameshwara Temple, Alampur

Road trip from Bangalore

Stone wonders, Oravakallu

After breakfast, explore Kurnool fort and Konda Reddy Burj. Drive to Alampur which is close to Kurnool and be mesmerised by the Nava Brahma temples of Vijayanagar era and exquisite Chalukayn temples. After Alampur – where you would spend 90 minutes – drive to Oravakallu. Get bowled over by the natural rock formations in this small little place.
Have lunch in the AP Tourism restaurant or any other place on the highway. After lunch drive to Rallapadu Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary, one of its kind in the country. Spending an hour or two here and drive to Nandyal.
Night stay at Nandyal.
Day 4 – Nandyal – Mahanandi – Ahobilam (Night Stay)
Distance – 87 KMs
Road trip from Bangalore

Holy tank, Mahanandi

Road trip from Bangalore

Natural beauty @ Ahobilam

After breakfast depart from Nandyal and Drive straight to Mahanandi temple. Visit the famous temple and after darshan of Lord Mahadeva, drive to Ahobilam. After lunch, visit the Navanarasimha temples in Upper and Lower Ahobilam.
Day 5 – Ahobilam – Gandikota – Sidhout Fort – Vontimitta – Kadapa (Night Stay)
Distance – 236 KMs
Road trip from Bangalore

Famed canyon @ Gandikota

Road trip from Bangalore

wonderful Vontimitta temple

After early breakfast depart Ahobilam and head straight to Gandikota. Spend an hour and a half exploring the lovely canyon of Gandikota and beautiful temples (See in this blog on Gandikota for details).
From Gandikota proceed to Kadapa. Check into your hotel, have lunch and after 4 PM proceed to Sidhout fort and Vontimitta. Explore the lovely Kodandarama Swamy temple at Vontimitta
Return to Kadapa. Night stay at Kadapa.
Day 6 – Kadapa – Thimmama Marimummu – Horsely hills (Night stay)
Distance – 185 KMs
Road trip from Bangalore

Banyan tree

Road trip from Bangalore

Lovely view from viewpoint @ Horsely hills

A nice drive from Kadapa after breakfast will bring you to the largest banyan tree in the world. Spread over 20000 sq mtrs, it is an amazing sight. After spending an hour here, drive to Horsely hills for late lunch.
Explore the hills and in the evening if interested visit the famous Rishi Valley School established by philosopher J Krishnamurti.
Night stay in Horsely Hills.
Day 7 – Horsely Hills – Madanapalle – Tirupati
Distance – 140 KMs
Road trip from Bangalore

Besant Theosophical college, Madanapalle

After breakfast, depart for Tirupati. On the way stop over at Besant theosophical College to check out the place where Rabindranath Tagore composed National anthem for the first time! Reach Tirupati for late lunch.
Depending upon the darshan timings, one can utilise the post lunch time to explore the next day options.
Night stay at Tirupati
Day 8 – Tirupati – Tiruchanur (Mangapuram) – Sri Kalahasti – Tirupati (Night Stay)
Distance – 79 KMs
Road trip from Bangalore

Lord Venkateshwara temple, Tirumala

Road trip from Bangalore

Srikalahasti temple

If you have completed darshan at Tirumala on the previous ay, then you can explore these places. If not, you can skip this or do it next time when you come to Tirupati.
Day 9 – Tirupati – Bangalore
Distance – 213 KMs
road trip from bangalore

Palace complex, Chandragiri fort (Photo Courtesy – http://gotirupati.com/ )

After breakfast, drive back to Bangalore. On the way, don’t forget to visit beautiful fort complex of Chandragiri.
Travel Tips
1. The best time to do this drive is in winter. Summers are very hot in this region. Monsoon is also good time to travel especially in the forested areas of Ahobilam where you can see some lovely waterfalls.
2. We have made this road trip from Bangalore an easy one to do with not more than 250 KMs drive a day. We would recommend that way as it will allow you to explore the places well.
3. You may not see good highway restaurants or dhabhas on these roads. Make sure you eat at any good places you find on the way. Same with loos. We are not sure of them except for major towns or National Highway.
4. There are many detours one can take if you have time. These are – Srisailam from Kurnool ( We avoided it here as it would take two full days for round trip), Gooty fort from Anantapur and then one can come to Tadipatri, Temple town of Kadiri are few examples. If you have more number of days, you can do them as well.

5. Ahobilam itself requires a full day to fully explore as it requires a bit of climbing. It depends on availability of time.

6. At Tirupati, we have left the option open for exploring nearby places as one is never certain about darshan of Lord Balaji.

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About the author

Poorna & Brinda

We are Brinda and Poorna from Bengaluru, the “Silicon city” or “Garden city” of India.

We travel together. We caught the travel bug 20 years back. On our honey moon, we traveled over the sea, in the train, by bus and in an aircraft! Our adventures probably started in that year. It continues, ever since.

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