Vijayawada (also known as Bezawada) is a city in the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh , situated on the banks of the mighty Krishna river and surrounded by the Indrakeeladri hills of Eastern Ghats in the district.
It geographically lies in the centre of Andhra Pradesh state. It is the second largest city in the state, and also its commercial and educational capital.
Vijayawada city has various caves, temples and other ecological and historically significant attractions . Some of the top places to see in the city are –
- Prakasam Barrage
- Bhavani Island
- Rajiv Gandhi Park
- Akkanna Madanna Caves
- Gandhi Hill
- Undavalli Caves
- Kondapalli Fort
- Mogalarajapuram Caves
- Hazratbal Mosque
- Kanaka Durga Temple
- Hinkar Thirtha Jain Temple
- Gunadala Matha Shrine
- ISKCON Temple Vijayawada
- Subramanya Swamy Temple
- Paritala Anjaneya Swamy Temple
- Victoria Jubilee (Bapu) Museum
- APCOST Regional Science Center
The major festivals celebrated in Vijayawada include the following –
- Maha Shivaratri – A festival dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva, where people observe fasts and pray to the Lord.
- Sankranthi – A harvest festival celebrated in January (also known as Pongal).
- Ugadi – A festival that marks the beginning of a new year according to the Telugu calendar; this is celebrated all over the south Indian states of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
- Navratri and Dussehra – A 10-day Hindu festival, where Goddess Durga is worshipped – Navaratri is the first 9 days and the 10th day is Dussehra).
- Deepavali – The festival of Lights; India’s most popular and widely celebrated festival.
- Christmas – A major Christian festival commemorating birth of Jesus; most Christians and Hindus also celebrate this famous festival here.
Vijayawada has many great shopping spots which will appeal to the shopaholics. The city is known for its handicraft items, antique artefacts and furniture pieces; and people can but these souvenirs and other items such as textile (clothes), fancy jewellery, paintings, etc from various top shopping spots in the city such as -
- MG Road Markets
- Old City Streets
- Eluru Road
- Besant Road
- LEPL Centro
- Kondapalli Shopping District
- Bang Shopping Mall
- MVR Mall
- Ripples Mall
- Trendset Mall
Public transport within the city of Vijayawada includes buses, taxis, auto-rickshaws. Besides these, a metro train rapid transit system called Vijayawada Metro was proposed and is now being built to serve the city, connecting to various major areas within it. The system is proposed to further reduce traffic congestion that exists in the city today.
Vijayawada’s food scene is filled with south Indian delicacies, street foods and traditional Andhra dishes. Some of the must-try foods in Vijayawada include –
- Pulihora – A tangy and spicy tamarind turmeric rice.
- Chicken 65 – Andhra's version of fried chilli chicken; with local spices and seasoning.
- Mirchi Bajji – A top favourite snack in Andhra, Mirchi Bajji is a popular spicy chilli fritter, filled with onions and peanuts, and served with a tangy chutney.
- Rava Dosa – A crispy rice flour batter crepe topped with cumin, chilli and onions; and served with some coconut chutney. A popular breakfast item.
- Gutti Vankaya – Spice-stuffed small brinjals fried in oil and cooked in a flavorful onion gravy.
Following is a list of some of best restaurants in Vijayawada to try the local delicacies as well as other interesting foods and sumptuous meals –
- Sweet Magic
- GAD Restaurant (The Gateway Hotel)
- Minerva Grand Restaurant
- Babai Hotel
- Crossroads Restaurant
- SSS Idly
- Barbeque Pride
- Barkaas Arabic Restaurant
- Idly N Idly
Some of the best hotels in Vijayawada for a comfortable stay include the following –
- Novotel Vijayawada Varun
- The Gateway Hotel MG Road Vijayawada
- Lemon Tree Premier Vijayawada
- Fortune Murali Park
- The Kay Hotel
- Treebo Trend N Square
- Hotel City Central
- Hotel Midcity
- The Butterfly
- Hotel Vybrant
- Hotel Vasanth Marg
- Treebo Trend Olive Tree
- The Metropolitan
Vijayawada also has some good bars and pubs with good food, drinks and ambience, for people to out or entertain themselves during late hours. These include –
- Neptune Bar & Lounge
- Midtown Sports Bar
- Cuba Libre
- The League Sports Bar
- Vijayawada STD Code – 0866 (to be used before dialling numbers from a device that is not locally registered)
- Police Control room – 100, 0866-25762956, 9440906878
- Fire emergency – 101
- Child Helpline – 1098
- Women Helpline – 181, 1091
- Ambulance/Medical help – 102, 108
Telugu is the official language of Vijayawada but language like English is spoken as well.
- Welcome - Susvaagatam
- How are you? - Meeru aelaa unnaaru?
- What's your name? - Mee paeraemandi?
- Where are you from? - Meeday vooru?
- Good morning - Shubhodayam
- Good afternoon - Shubha dhinan