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Hi team, 

 

Last week my friends have been here and camped at this view of the Gandikota gorge.. Sharing the pictures here 😊

 

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Nice share Sudhir, SO this was the camping ground on the edge of the gorge which everyone were talking about all this while :D 

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Yes, after going through this discussion, I wanted to share these pictures of the campsite. Looks beautiful. These were clicked with their mobiles so, couldn’t get them well but I can imagine the kind of sunrise they have enjoyed at this site 😍

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7 minutes ago, hsudhir said:

Yes, after going through this discussion, I wanted to share these pictures of the campsite. Looks beautiful. These were clicked with their mobiles so, couldn’t get them well but I can imagine the kind of sunrise they have enjoyed at this site 😍

 

True. They might have woken up to a beautiful sunrise view at the gorge. Could you share the price details of the campsite at this place ?

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3 hours ago, hsudhir said:

Last week my friends have been here and camped at this view of the gandikota gorge.. Sharing the pictures here

 

Thank you for sharing.
Moving it to a separate post.

So that it will be helpful for other members. 

 

Can you get more information about pricing and facilities?

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Gandikota changed a lot since my last visit. 

I went there in 2014,

Place is almost empty, we are the only people in Harita resort.

 

Now it is very difficult to find an accommodation during a weekend. 

It became very commercial.

 

Camping is exciting.

Hope ID team plans a meetup to Gandikota. 

 

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    • By LoneRanger
      Precursor to the trip(Skip if you want to know Only about the trip) :
       
      All five of us went on to a trip nearly 10 years ago. And in all these 10 years , all of us together haven't met even once. We were working at various places - Hyderabad , Chennai , Pune , New Delhi & Bengaluru. As years passed by, 4 of us moved to Hyderabad due to various commitments. Only one was left out in Chennai. 
       
      At the end of Jan 2018 , Mr.Chennai , gave me a call ans started discussing about his boring and torturous boring IT life. He suddenly pops up the idea of a weekend trip from Hyderabad, only guys trip without wives. Over the next couple of days , we made whatapp group and discussed various options and finalised Belum Caves and Gandikota. We planned to go at the March 2018. As weeks passed by , each one had to drop off due to some or other reason. At the start of March , only Mr.Chennai and me were onboard ( My wife had to go to her parents place).
       
      But Mr.Chennai , was very adamant, he used to share the photographs of 10 year old trip on the whatsapp group. People became nostalgic , First to say yes was Mr.Microsoft , Then Mr.NRI and a day before the trip we have a confirmation from Mr.Daddy.
       
      Day 1 of the Trip : 
       
      Plan was , Mr.Chennai would reach my house by 6 and we would have an early breakfast and leave by 7 from my house. But Indian railways have another plans. Mr.Chennai arrived at my house at 7:45. After freshening up we started at 9:00 A.M to pick up Mr.Microsoft and Mr.Nri. And last pick up of the day was Mr.Daddy , from ORR Gachibowli.(We wanted to give more time for him to spend with his daughter). By the time we picked up Mr.Daddy , it was 10:00 AM and we started cruising on ORR , towards Kurnool. 
       
      My car has Fastag, and i zipped past the traffic on ORR and the Highway. At 12:00 P.M we stopped at Food Pyramid to have brunch. We had heavy lunch and then off to our first destination Belum Caves. 
       
      The road till Kurnool was NH and was good , After Kurnool we has to take Rayalaseema Expressway(Toll Road) , this was beyond good. It is better than national highway.

      (Rayalaseema Expressway - Road work going on the Left lane)
       
      By 3:00 P.M we were at Owk reservoir, MR.Chennai was mesmerized by scenic beauty and wanted to stop for few photographs. And indeed the place was super scenic. Its just that it was mid afternoon in Rayalaseema. The cool breeze flowing from the reservoir was a bit of relief from the hot Sun.

      (From L-R : Mr.Chennai, Mr.Daddy, Mr.NRI & Mr. Microsoft, Im Mr.Driver & designated photographer for the trip)

      (Panoramic view of the Owk Reservoir)
       
      The owk reservoir has APTDC center , with restaurant , and has boating and other activities. But we wanted to head to Belum Caves before they close it down. We next stopped directly at Belum Caves. The caves close at 5:30 P.M , and you have to exit the caves before that. We Reached Belum caves at 4:00 P.M. There is an entry fee and parking fee. We were charged somewhere around R.s 285/- for the 5 of us. 
       
      This is the first time im entering a cave system , and i was amazed. The caves were neatly maintained, and properly ventilated with the help of electric fans. They were well lit too. I'll tel the pictures do the talking from here. And if you are planning a trip to Belum caves , be ready to carry a huge water bottle , as it is humid as hell, and also wear stretchable clothes , You have to bend and crawl through some spaces. 

      (Map of the caves )

      (Entrance to the caves)
      The entrance has a flight of stairs , at the start of which the security checks for your tickets. Once you show his the tickets , you have to walk down nearly 40-50 steps. Any body can do it, both old and young. Once you get down the stairs you will see this plaque.


      (This is where the Plaque is posted. After this its all dark)

      (Notice the pipe behind, circulating fresh air)

      (L-R - Mr.Daddy & Mr.Driver-Me, you must be wondering why i was wearing goggles in a pitch dark cave, i have sight , those are powered , and i forgot my normal glasses, and yes i put this picture only to point that out  )


       
      Soon it was 5:20 and we were off to the entry/exit. And while we were ready to leave , suddenly there was a small power cut and everything went dark. It was pitch dark , and even with cell phone torch we couldn't figure out the exit. Luckily for us it was just intermittent power loss. And the power cut lasted for a maximum of 45 seconds to 1 minute. 
       
      After coming out of Belum caves , we went to the Budha statue near by to click some sunset pics.

      (Mr.Chennai Tried to be creative)

      (Budha Statue at Belum Caves)

      (Last Pic of the sun set into the clouds)
       
       On our way we stopped at a small place called Kolimigundla to have some tea. There is a APTDC restaurant at Belum caves , it closes at 5:30 P.M along with caves. 
       
      Next day we planned to visit Gandikota , and wanted to stay as close as possible. We couldn't get a reservation from APTDC Gandikota. And place nearest to Gandikota was Jammalamadugu. But we could find any hotels online to book. However during the trip we found that there are a lot of lodges and small hotels available at jammalamadugu. You can directly go and take a room for rent , without pre-booking. We could only reserve a room at Prodattur. Our reservation was at Sri Devi palace. Imagine the shock of our life when we found out that Sri Devi Palace is actually Sri Devi Palace Function Hall , and there was a wedding happening when we went there.


      (Surely made our trip memorable  )

      (Full scale wedding with Guests outside)
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      (Chicken Navya - Boneless Chicken curry , made in butter with roasted cashew's and stuffed in an omelette and sprinkled with grated cheese , roasted cashews & coriander)
       
      Day 2 - Gandikota , Orvakal Rock Garden , Alampur.
       
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      (First shot of the Canyon , when we reached there by 7:20 A.M)


      (Sunrise reflection on Penna River)
      (Mandatory Group Pic)

      (Mr.Microsoft, Mr.Daddy & Mr.NRI were happy looking at the scenery and dint want to explore any more)

      (Mr.Chennai on the other hand doesn't want to leave any nook or corner. 

       
      We stayed for more than an hour and we are way away from shade. It was getting Sunny and hot , hence we decided to explore the Gandikota fort. There is nothing left at the place. Only places remaining are Ranganatha Aalayam , Gandikoda Granary , and kathula Koneru. The places in pristine condition are Juma Masjid. Heard from locals that it has been redone in recent times by archaeology department, and they will soon improve the other remaining places too. 

      (Juma Masjid)

      (Inside the Masjid)
       
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      (The view of the fort is towards the left of the pic , with penna reservoir in the background, not quite visible)
       
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      Entrance to the Rock Garden , stairs are neatly cut , and anyone can reach it without any difficulty

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      The road to Alampur was well paved , and Telangana tourism has provided drinking water and other amenities to pilgrims. Mr.Daddy who was here some years back was surprised to see the roads and amenities provided. 



       
      The temple has Medieval architecture , and even if you are not a religious person , but interested in history , you should visit this place. There is a Museum for History buffs. 
       
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      We reached Hyderabad at 7:30 P.M , went to DLF to have chai. And after chai , everyone went their own separate ways . May be all 5 us will together be on a trip in 2019 next. 
       
      Signing Off 
      Mr.Driver
       
      P.S : This is my first post , please provide feedback , on Pics , mistakes , Spelling , writing style , any thing which you felt is out of place.
       
       


    • By Shekar
      Hampi, Aihole, Pattadakal and Badami tour was indeed a three years dream ultimately became true in the first week of Jan, 2019. 
       
      I took the same route as our ID group travelled in December, 2018. Hyderabad-Kurnool-Bellari-Hampi. 
      Return I came from Badami-Lingsugur-Raichur-Desugur-Mahaboobnagar-Jadcharla-Hyderabad. 
       
      I may not be able to put up all the story at one go. I will try to post it day wise.
       
      Team
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      Vehicle- Uncle's own Xylo
       
      Day One-05-01-2019
      With a little delay than we planed we started from Vanasthalipuram just before 6.00 AM with a cofee break at M Food Court before Jedcharla and reached Kurnool by 9.15 AM. 
      We had Buffet Breakfast at Hotel Suraj Grand @ Rs.120/- Per head and the breakfast was very good. 
       
      We started just before 10.00 AM from Kurnool and reached  Mayura Bhuvaneswari KSTDC Hotel at Kamalapura by 2.30 PM. 
       
      My wife became sick by the time we reached the destination with three vomitings between Kodumur and Kamalapura. I was told its an infection in intestine and simple medication was told by our family doctor over phone. Every one was in anxiety and after medicationction she slept in the room forcing me to continue with visiting places. I was in a real dilemma not ready to leave her alone in that condition and other side My uncle, aunty, sister with two kids who came from Australia and depending on me for the tour. At one stage I thought of asking my uncle to go ahead by engaging a guide but my wife insisted me to go. As the distance of Vijaya Vittala Temple is close to the Hotel, We left hotel by 4.10 PM. 

      We reached Tallari Gatta Gate by 4.25 and took a snap and proceeded to Battery car point.  

      Due to paucity of time I could not stop over by Gajjela Mandapa. We saw all the ruins and places on drive in battery car. 
       
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      Full team minus my wife 😥

       

       

      Full temple Left side view through Wide angle lens

       

      Sun set time Right side of the Temple. 
       
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      My wife also called me and informed me that she is feeling better. 

       

       

      Vishnu Temple on the way to King's Balance

      King's Balance
      Few other structures near by 

       

      We returned in the last battery car and reached the Hotel by 7.15 PM. 
       
      We had dinner at the same hotel and went to bed early. Food is good at the hotel but the service is very slow. Room service is not available. 
       
      End of day One 

    • By Ravi
      Right from childhood, I always had this inner desire to stay alone for a certain period of time, do my chores, live my life all by myself, without my mother helping me nor my dad telling me what to do. I wanted to lead an independent life. This was because I never left home for any part of my life. So I took up this oath for myself that I would travel solo for at least 1 week of the 52 weeks in a year.
       
      This year,2017, was no different. It was 4 day trip within the Telugu states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.

       
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      The numbers :
      Car : Hyundai elite i20
      Mileage : 16.5kmpl (tank full to tank full)
      Total trip : 935kms
       
       
      It was not a pre- planned trip. Just as when things at home were at peace, a little effort to persuade mom paid off, a quick search in the India-drive paved the way for this trip.
       
      A Teaser !

       

       
      Day 1
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      Started at 5 am, and the plan was to reach Srisailam Dam before crowd sets in and explore the route from Srisailam temple to Nalla Malla Jungle resorts
       
      Gachibowli ORR - Dindi Reservoir- Srisailam

       
      Smooth roads and early morning fog made the drive refreshing!

       

       

       
      Reached Dam by 8:30am, crowd was sparse

       
      Clicking ample pictures, chugged along at a leisurely pace

       

       

      Moving along reached the top of Srisailam. I wanted to savour the moment, found a calm place over looking the dam. Spent a moment in tranquility and drove on.
       
      I am a self proclaimed atheist, so skipped visiting the temple and drove down the hill towards Dornala.

       
      With smooth tarmac and winding Ghats, the roads up until Dornala Junction were smooth as silk

       

       
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      Stopped by a thick canopy of heavily grown bamboo trees/plants on either side of the road, turned off the engine, windows rolled down and a breath of fresh air brushes your hair.
       
      Blisss!! Savour the moment!The canopy was so dense, even sunlight couldn’t peek through, hence no photographs!
       
      Reached Nalla Malla Jungle Camps by 2:30pm. The manager was kind enough to arrange for some home made meals for my lunch.
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      This was my allocated cottage!

       
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      Day 2
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      A quick breakfast and off we went

       
      The safari vehicle

       
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      He got down with the axe and did this ..

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      Walking along..

       

       
      “Its a female” the driver reckoned!

       
      How? I spurted out!
       
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      We decided to leave the vehicle behind and start walking.
       
      In excitement left my Camera in the vehicle (Facepalm Moment!)
       
      As we walked along, we found more pug marks and we were sure to find a few a small distance ahead.

       

       
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      We came across one of the bunkers/ rest areas for men who patrol the forests. There is one such bunker for every 40sqkm and they have 8 men guarding the area round the clock from poachers!
       
      Sadly though there have been reported cases of deaths caused by Tiger attacks on these men.

       
      This is the path taken by people who visit the Holy shrine of Srisailam during Maha Shiva ratri.This path transverses through the thick jungle, amassing a distance of 80kms.
       
      Enroute they have 3 pitstops, each at a temple which provides free food.They would cover the distance in about 11hrs flat.

       
      We were already Walking along the thick forests for almost 3hrs now and I was almost drained.

       
      Spotted a few deers here and there

       
      We sat down at a small pond under the shade of a tree.
       
      I asked Saidulu more about his life and what do they do to survive.
       
      He very simple replied “ government free rice isthadi, avi udakapedithe ganji osthadi, ullipaya & mirapakaya ikkada pandistham, aviti tho tinestham.dabbulu sampadinchali ani em undadu saaru ikkada”
       
      (Translation: Govt gives free supplies of rice, we cook and extract porridge. We grow onions and chilli, we eat rice along with it. We don’t think about earning money)
       
      He was very vivid in whatever he told us, what problem they often encounter, how his childhood was.
       
      After a while he was kind enough to invite me to his ‘Gudem’
       
      It was an hour walk through the forest again. My eyes never stopped trying to spot a tiger though.
       
      There were about 35 people living in the ‘gudem’. They seemed content with what all they had, the kids were smiling and the ladies had their own avagatxion of either raising kids or singing their daily chores away.
       
      Lunch, was their staple food. A bowl of rice porridge, onion and chilli as accompaniment!
       
      (Left my camera in the vehicle & phone battery drained out. Hence no pictures)- Sorryyy
       
      After spending time with the local ppl , we started our long walk back to the resort. While we were walking back i was fortunate enough to spot a few cubs playing at a distance.
       
      No means to capture, it was just see and enjoy.
       
      After a long day, dozed off early as I had made plans to visit Gandikota the next day.
       
      Day 3:
      Plan was to reach Gandikota as soon as possible and relax during sunset time at the view point.
       
      After breakfast, spoke to the manager there and bit adieu to the staff.
       
      Bairutly- Atmakur-Jammalamadugu- Gandikota
       
      It was a 3.5hrs drive with roads varying from single late to beautiful 4 lanes.
       
      Reached Gandikota by 2pm.
       
      Explored the surrounding area of Kottalapalli, famour for windmills

       

       
      The service road leading to the Windmills

       
      It was too hot and humid, and I drove back to the resort to rest till evening.
       
      Made it to the view point by sunset time, and it was heavily crowded.

       

       

       

       

       

       
      Had an early dinner and dozed off. The beds and rooms were ill maintained at Haritha resort. I could barely sleep.
       
      Day 4:
      Woke up early, had little breakfast at the resort and started my drive back to Hyderabad by 8 am
       
      Gandikota-Kolimigundla-Belum Caves-Owk-Betamcherla-Orvakal-Kurnool-Hyderabad
       
      All the rounds were either 2lane or 4 lanes opening upto beautiful lush green fields on either side of the roads.
       
      Stopped by Owk Resevoir, which was full owing to bountyful rains they received this year

       

       

       

       

       
      Had lunch at food pyramid at Kothakota.
       
      Reached hyderabad by 1:30pm
       
      The car was battered to the maximum extent with dust and mud and it was cleaning time in the evening.

       
      It got all the pampering it deserved

       

       
      All in readiness for the next drive!!!

       
       
      Until then, Drive safe!!!
       
      P.S : After I forgot to carry my camera during the safari, I have decided to make this " All Mobile camera pictures only" trip. Sorry for the shady images if any  
       
       
    • By varunc
      This was in August 2014 after a very boring and hardworking week which meant we had to get away on a drive to chill out. So after browsing for places nearest to Hyderabad, we narrowed down on Gandikota, popularly known as the Grand Canyon of India. Gandikota is located in Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh and got its fame due to the gorge formation caused by the river Penna. 
       
      Planning:
       
      When: August. 1
      Drive: Ford Fiesta
      Fuel Type: Petrol
      Route: Hyderabad - Kurnool - Gandikota
      Distance: ~400 kms
      Local Tour Distance: ~100 kms
      Time: 9 p.m. (August 1st) - 1 a.m. (August 2nd) {4 hours including breaks}
      Mileage: Avg. 16 kmpl (with AC)
       
      Places:

      Orvakal (Natural rock formations)
      Belum Caves
      Gandikota - The Grand Canyon of India
       
      Route: Hyderabad ---> Kurnool ---> Orvakal ---> Belum Caves ---> Gandikota ---> Gooty ---> Hyderabad.
       
      Execution:
       
      Our initial plan was to start in the wee hours of Saturday and reach Gandikota by evening but changed our plan and left on Friday night. The journey began at 9:00 p.m. from Manikonda and got onto the brilliant ORR and Bangalore highway. After a seamless drive till Jadcherla, stopped for dinner at our favorite restaurant called 'Drive-In' which is on the highway after crossing the toll at Jadcherla. After a sumptuous dinner, we continued our journey and reached Kurnool town at around 12:30 a.m.
       
      Not having made any prior reservations, we went in search for a hotel to crash for the night. Based on suggestions in Google, we zeroed in on DVR Mansion near SBI circle. It was a pretty decent deluxe AC room. With lot of driving to be done the next day, we dozed off and got up fresh at 7:00 a.m. in the morning. After some nice complimentary breakfast and coffee, we checked out and started our journey to Orvakal Rock Garden, our first destination of the day.
       
      Orvakal is a place situated about 30 kms from Kurnool on NH-18 which is the Kurnool-Ongole route. It is famous for its natural igneous rock formations. Although the AP Tourism website claims to have boating and rock museum, we couldn't find either and there was construction work going on. After a slight drive up-hill, we had a decent view from the top with the rocks in the background. We started to get some clicks with our new Nikon D3200. Next on the list was Belum Caves.
       
      Glimpses of the rock garden

       
      Beautiful natural igneous rock formations

       
      Our drive up the picturesque landscape

       
      And our principal photography began

       
      Orvakal rock gardens is a mix of sandstone & limestone all over

       
      We got involved in some 'Rock Climbing' activities

       
      We stopped at a longer crack, probably about 20-25 ft high

       
      Belum caves, supposedly the longest caves in India after Borra, is about 80 kms from Orvakal. The route is decent not the 4-lane highway so took us about 2hrs to reach the place with breaks. There was an entry fee of about Rs. 50 and we went exploring deep inside the caves. People with breathing problems have to be careful as the caves are quite deep with not many air vents. After taking several pictures of the beautiful caves, we were completely exhausted by the time we finished our exploration.
       
      Few pictures of our journey down to the Belum Caves

       

       

       
      Entrance to the caves, Tunnels inside the caves and broken stalactites.

       
      And our underground rocks tour begun

       
      The second largest cave and one of the longest caves of the Indian Subcontinent

       
      Sculpted by nature, Belum caves have spacious chambers, passages, all creations of the water flow

       
      Main Sections of the Belum Caves

       

       
      A stone pillar inside the Belum Caves

       
      Carves formed by the flow of underground water

       
      One of the small caverns

       

       
      The lighted up narrow pathway

       
      Caves photo-walk

       

       

       
      Muted lighting adds to the mystery and beauty of these caves

       

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