Andhra Pradesh abbreviated A.P., is a state situated on the southeastern coast of India. It is India's fourth largest state by area and fifth largest by population. Its capital and largest city by population and smallest by size is Hyderabad. The State has the second-longest coastline of 972 km (604 mi) among all the States in India. The official languages of Andhra Pradesh are Telugu and Urdu, while other languages spoken in Andhra Pradesh are Kannada, English, Tamil, and Hindi.
Andhra Pradesh is promoted by its tourism department as the "Koh-i-Noor of India."
Andhra Pradesh is the home of many religious pilgrim centres. Tirumala Venkateswara Temple in Tirupati, the abode of Hindu god Venkateswara, is most visited religious center of any faith in the world. Srisailam, nestled in the Nallamala Hills is the abode of Mallikarjuna and is one of twelve Jyothirlingalu in India. Amaravati's Shiva temple is one of the Pancharamams, as is Yadagirigutta, the abode of an avatara of Vishnu, Lakshmi Narasimha.
The Ramappa temple and Thousand Pillars temple in Warangal are famous for their temple carvings. The state has numerous Buddhist centres at Amaravati, Nagarjuna Konda, Bhattiprolu, Ghantasala, Nelakondapalli, Dhulikatta, Bavikonda, Thotlakonda, Shalihundam, Pavuralakonda, Sankaram, Phanigiri and Kolanpaka.
The Badami cave temples in Karnataka are an excellent example of Chalukya art and sculptureThe Vijayanagara Empire built number of monuments, including the Srisailam temple and Lepakshi temples.
The golden beaches at Visakhapatnam, the one-million-year old limestone caves at Borra, picturesque Araku Valley, hill resorts of Horsley Hills, river Godavari racing through a narrow gorge at Papi Kondalu, waterfalls at Ettipotala, Kuntala and rich bio-diversity at Talakona are some of the natural attractions of the state. Kailashagiri is a park near the sea in Visakhapatnam. Visakhapatnam is home to other tourist attactions such as the INS Kursura S20 Submarine museum (the only one of its kind in India), the longest beach road in India, Yarada Beach, Araku Valley, and Indira Gandhi Zoological Gardens.
The Borra Caves are located in the Anatagiri Hills of the Eastern Ghats, near Vishakapatnam. They are at an altitude of about 800 to 1300 metres and are famous for million-year-old stalactite and stalagmite formations. They were discovered by British geologist William King George in 1807. The caves get their name from a formation inside the caves that looks like the human brain, which in the local language, Telugu, is known as burra. The Belum caves were formed due to erosion in limestone deposits in the area by the weakly acidic water of the Chitravati River millions of years ago.
The Papi Hills are located in Khammam district, near Bhadrachalam. Boat cruises are available on the river Godavari.
The Belum Caves in Kurnool District have a length of 3,229 metres (10,594 ft), making them the second largest natural caves on the Indian subcontinent. The Belum Caves derive their name from Bilum, the Sanskrit word for caves. In Telugu, the caves are known as Belum Guhalu. The caves have long passages, spacious chambers, freshwater galleries, and siphons. The caves' deepest point is 120 feet (37 m) from the entrance and is known asPatalganaga.
Horsley Hills, elevation 1,265 metres (4,150 ft), is a summer hill resort in Andhra Pradesh, about 160 km (99 mi) from Bangalore and144 km (89 mi) from Tirupati. The town of Madanapalle lies nearby. Major tourist attractions include the Mallamma temple and the Rishi Valley School. Horsely Hills is the departure point for the Koundinya Wildlife Sanctuary at a distance of 87 km (54 mi).
Nirmal is famous for its handicrafts and paintings. Kuntala waterfall, at 45 metres (148 ft), is the biggest in the state. Charminar, Golconda Fort, Chandragiri Fort, Chowmahalla Palace, and Falaknuma Palace are some of the monuments in the state.
Kanaka Durga Temple in Vijayawada in Krishna district, Venkateswara Temple in Dwaraka Tirumala, West Godavari District, and Surya temple in Arasavelli in Srikakulam District are also places to see in Andhra Pradesh. The Annavaram Satayannarayana Swami temple is in East Godavari, near Kakinada.Konaseema is another place in East Godavari for nature lovers with scenic greenery of lush paddy fields and coconut groves. All along the banks of river Godavari and its canals.