Set on the banks of the Krishna River and anchored by a beautiful temple, Vijayawada is a lively city known for its fiery red chillies. Venture out of the city to hike in lush hillsides, explore an ancient fort and visit historic Buddhist sites.
Things to do in Vijayawada
Spread across four storeys, the Undavalli Caves date back to the 2nd century AD. They were carved into the hillsides by Buddhist monks and were converted into Hindu shrines hundreds of years later. You can peer into the caves, admire a reclining statue of Vishnu and take in sweeping views over the emerald rice paddies.
Don’t miss seeing the 14th-century Kondapalli Fort, which was built by Reddy kings and was later commandeered as an 8th-century British military camp. You can wander around the cavernous halls, stroll around the courtyards and explore the crumbling royal prison.
Perched high on a hillside, Kanaka Durga Temple has been welcoming pilgrims since the 12th century. It's dedicated to Durga, the Hindu goddess celebrated as the mother of the universe. At sunset, the gleaming white temple glows in shades of red, yellow and gold.
Andhra Pradesh is famous for its local cuisine and Vijayawada doesn't disappoint. The state is India's leading producer of red chillies, which means the food is fiery and flavoursome. Don't miss gutti vankaya koora”, a spicy rice dish featuring a peanut gravy infused with red chillies.
Getting around Vijayawada
Auto rickshaws are a fast way to get around Vijayawada, while long-distance buses depart from the Pandit Nehru bus station in the city centre. The Vijayawada Junction railway station is a five-minute drive north.