Bhadrachalam is the Hindu pilgrimage in South India, located at the Khammam district of Telangana state. We visited this place from Hyderabad. It was an overnight journey on the train and 315km away from Hyderabad. If you choose a road trip, you can avail your own vehicle or you can go by Volvo bus. It is a town of temples and famous for its Lord Rama Temple and Rama’s devotee Ramdas. According to Ramayana, it is said that during the period of exile, Ramchandra with his wife Sita Devi and Brother Laxman stayed in the forest of Bhadrachalam, which is also known as Dandakaranya. Besides the temples and the forest Dandakaranya, Bhadrachalam offers a fantastic boat ride on the Godavari River. The boat takes you to the Papi hills of Papikondalu and Rajmundry.
Bhadrachalam Day Trip:
We boarded the train from Secunderabad in evening and reached Khammam station at 4 am. From there, we came to Bhadrachalam in the morning around 6 a.m. It was my husband’s third trip to Bhadrachalam. Hence, he knew the nitty, gritty of this town.
The tranquillity of the morning in this town was amazing. You can feel the wind of pilgrimage in your surrounding. The ringing of bells in the temples, the smell of flowers and garlands, the fragrance of the sandal, all create an amazing atmosphere around you. A layer of fog covers the pick of the temples and the surrounding hills. We recognized the temples by those blurry, colorful lights that decorate the temples. The steam of idli cookers and the smell of the dosha or idli batter, coming from the roadside shops, increased our hunger. We took the breakfast from a roadside shop and then came to our hotel.
After freshen up, we visited Ram-Sita Temple and some more temple nearby. The architectures of the temples are fantastic. We took a bus to go to Dandakaranya. It was a forest on the bank of the Godavari River. We had to do a small trek to reach there. We saw a Parna Kutir where Lord Rama, Sita Devi, and Laxman resided once. Beside the house, we saw the place where they used to take bath. The footprint of Lord Rama was conserved properly on the bank of the river. The villagers of the nearby village made a small temple and some local food stalls for the tourists. We took lunch from one of the stalls and came back to the hotel.
Papikondalu Boat Trip:
Next day, morning, after breakfast we started our journey for the boat trip on the Godavari River. It takes almost 2 hours to reach the stop, from where the boat starts. We booked the package for the trip from Bhadrachalam.The boat started around 11 a.m. It was the 5 hours of journey. The Papikondalu boat trip offered us a breathtaking view of the surrounding hills, which are teeming with wildlife and tribal villages.
The boat stopped first at a tribal village, which was known as Panchavati. Lord Sree Ramakrishna meditated here once in his life. There was a small temple and besides that, the tribal people were selling their handmade crafts for the tourists. The village was actually on the Papi hill and enriched with awesome natural beauty with its lush greeneries and waterfalls. As the boat was going on the river, the Papi hills revealed its mystic beauty and we just amazed with its awe-inspiring combination with the river Godavari and the clear blue sky.
After some time they stopped the boat on an island, where our lunch was served. The island covered with sand and some Bamboo huts were there for the night stay. The villagers of island served us an awesome traditional meal, that not only filled our stomach but it satisfied the souls also. We washed our hands in the river. It was really a nice experience.
When the boat started, we saw the river converged into a very narrow one in between the mountains. The total width of the river near Bhadrachalam is about 1.2 km and when the river reaches Papikondalu, its squeezed into a mere 500 meters by the mountains and making the currents stronger and the river deeper. If you avail this trip you can experience an awesome blending of the river and the mountain here.
It was just an unforgettable journey. After reaching Rajmundry, the boat returned to the boarding station. During the time of return, the boat owners offered us some entertainments with dance and songs. A good time passed with the afternoon snacks and tea.
Papikondalu is virgin, untrapped and an offbeat travel destination. It is heard that the boat trip will be closed soon due to the formation of a dam on the river. So, don’t late, plan a weekend trip at least for the boat trip. I’m sure if you visit this place, its amazing beauty will rejuvenate your soul and mind.
- Avoid Summer for this trip as the water levels drop in the Summer. But, the Best time to visit Bhadrachalam is Ramnabami if you need only a pilgrimage trip.
- You can also avail the boat trip from Rajmundry.
- You can book the package for the boat trip from Bhadrachalam or Rajmundry. You can book online also.
My theme for this Challenge is The OFFBEAT DESTINATIONS OF INDIA.