|Tirupati - Amidst the thickly-wooded hills in Chittoor district lies the temple town of Tirumala with Tirupati at the foothills, the abode of Lord Venkateswara. The range of hills is said to resemble a snake with Tirumala forming the hood. Lord Venkateswara, the residing god, is known as ‘Lord of the Seven Hills' and ‘Balaji'.
Tirupati and Tirumala today are modern destinations of pilgrim tourists. Not only the bliss of a divine 'darshan' but added attractions provided by nature make them the ideal pilgrimage-cum-holiday destination.
While Balaji remains the main draw, the beauties of nature and the serene surroundings have made Tirupati today a much visited town. A beautiful road leads up across the Seven Hills to Tirumala.
Tiruchanur is of great importance in the history of Tirupathi region, particularly for the evolution of religious activity therein. This region came under the influence of Vaishnavism as early as the Eight Century. There was an important Vaishnava settlement at Tiruchanur by the beginning of the Ninth Century. Though Tirumala and Sri Venkateshwara were known by this time, the hill continued to be inaccessible and could not attract many pilgrims. The Vaishnavas at Tiruchanur established a Tirumantrasalai and carried on proselytising activity. They also constructed a Tiruvilankoil and set up in it an image of Sri Venkateshwara as a representative of the original God of the vedangam hill.
Sri Kalahasti Temple is located 36 km away from Tirupathi in Chittoor district of Andhra Pradhesh, India. The inner temple is constructed around 5th century and the outer temple was constructed in the 12th Century.
This temple itself is a great architectural piece of art. Spend some time exploring the temple. You can see that the inside pillars are fresh as they were hundreds of years back because they were hidden from natural degradation by sun and wind.
Kanipakam (Lord Ganesh) - Many visitors to this temple say that the this 11th century temple is truly a classical hindu temple as well as a tourist location that any tourist visit this part of the country can miss visiting. The Kanipakam Vinayak Temple has the swayam-bhu idol of Lord Vinayaka (Ganesh).
Sripuram Golden Temple (Vellore) - when uttered this word, immediately people thinks of Amritsar and the Highest Body of the Sikh's pride Golden Temple. But now it has got a good competition! Yes, an estimated over 600 Crores of Indian Rupees spent, to construct a true Golden Temple for Goddess Mahalakshmi , the presiding deity, (installed and maintained by Sri Narayani Peedam in this Temple at Sripuram , which is situated 6 km away from the District Headquarters - Vellore, North Arcot District in Tamilnadu. Now, the temple is complete, open to the general public; this town Sripuram.
A Mahalakshmi temple called 'Sripuram' and made of more than a ton of pure gold will glitter and gleam under the sun on August 24 when it is unveiled for consecration by the Sri Narayani Peetam headed by a 31-year-old godman who calls himself Narayani Amma. Devotees hail the temple as 'one of the wonders of the world' and say that it is the only temple covered fully with gold.
More than 400 gold and coppersmiths from the Tirupathi Thirumala Devasthanam are said to have worked for six years to craft the Rs. 600-crore golden temple located on 55,000 sq ft of land on a 100-acre salubrious stretch in Malaikodi, about 6 km from Vellore in north Tamil Nadu. According to official sources, the gold bars were purchased through RBI in "a transparent manner".