Venkateswara Temple | Image Resource : holydham.com
Tirupati, a city in the state of Andhra Pradesh, is considered one of the holiest Hindu pilgrimage sites in India. This city lies at the base of Seshachalam Hills of Eastern Ghats and is famous for the Vaishnavite shrine Venkateswara Temple and many other ancient temples. All the temples Tirupati are highly regarded as a pilgrim destination and hence Tirupati is also called the Spiritual Capital of Andhra Pradesh. Tourism is the major industry in Tirupati. Since it is a major religious destination, the hospitality sector is also a major industry here. The economy of the city is dependent on the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD), which was established in 1932 as an independent Trust to manage Tirumala Venkateswara Temple and other temples in Tirupati as well as worldwide. TTD is also involved in a lot of social welfare activities as well. Most of the residents here are employed with TTD. Tirupati is also known for its world-famous Tirupati Laddu. It is the prasadam at the Venkateswara Temple and only the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam has the rights to make or sell this laddu.
Sri Venkateswara Temple
The Tirumala Venkateswara Temple is the most visited temple by the Hindus and is one of the richest temples in the world. This temple is dedicated to Lord Venkateswara an incarnation of Vishnu. The temple is located at a height of 853 metres on Tirumala Hills. The Temple is constructed in the Dravidian architectural style and is said to be constructed over a period of time starting from 300 AD. The Temple premises has two modern queue complexes to manage the crowds of pilgrims, Tarigonda Vengamamba Annaprasadam complex for free meals to pilgrims, hair tonsure buildings and quite a few pilgrim lodging areas. It is the richest temple in the world in terms of the value of donations received and wealth. The temple is visited by about 100,000 pilgrims daily. But on special occasions and festivals the number of pilgrims increases by more than 5 times, which makes it the most-visited religious place in the world.
Tourist Places in Tirupati | Image Resource : onefivenine.com
Other temples and tourist places in Tirupati
Other popular temples in Tirupati are Sri Govindaraja Swamy Temple, Sri Varahaswami Temple, Sri Kapileswara Swamy Temple, Sri Veda Narayana Swamy Temple, Sri Kalahasti Temple, Sri Padmavati Samovar Temple, Tataiahgunta gangamma Temple, Kalyana Venkateswara Temple, Prasanna Venkateswara Temple, Parasurameswara Temple, Agatheeswara Temple and Radha Govindha Mandir(ISCKON). Besides the religious temples, there are some other tourist places in Tirupati. The Chandragiri Fort located in Chandragiri is a historical fort built in the 11th century. This fort also houses an Archaeological Museum maintained by Archaeological Survey of India. There is also a zoological park in Tirupati.
Sri Venkateswara Zoological Park which was established in 1987 is the second largest zoo park in Asia and covers an area of 5532 acres. Tirupati also hosts a Regional Science centre. Sri Venkateswara Gosamrakshana shala was established in 1956 to protect the indigenous cows and also to share the rare breeds of cows among similar organization. It houses the cattle received as a donation and is maintained by the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams.