According to the history, the city was named after the god of 'Valor-Vishakha'. It was a part of the Kalinga Kingdom, under Ashoka's rule in 260 B.C. It passed on later to the Andhra Kings of 'Vengi'. After this Pallava, Chola and Ganga dynasties ruled the city. In the 15th century, Vishakhapatnam became a part of the Vijayanagar Empire.
The Europeans, the Dutch, the French and the English established themselves from the 17th century onwards and used this as a major trading center to export textiles, ivory, tobacco, indigo etc. This port is well documented in the histories of these colonial powers as well as in Indian historical records. This coast played a major role during the reign of the Asaf Jahis and the Golcondas.
The City Of Destiny
Vishakhapatnam is built along the seashore of the Bay of Bengal, and is bounded and broken by the bold headland called the Dolphin's Nose (357m above the sea level). The city boasts of a beautiful beach with a long beach road ending at nearly Bheemunipatnam on the northern end. The surrounding area is dominated on the west by the well-forested Eastern Ghats and farther east is drained by numerous rivers, among them the Godavari and Indravati.
The city is also known as "Vizag" and is surrounded by three hills, each of which has a shrine dedicated to a different religion - Venkateswara temple (also spelt as Venkateshwara) on Venkateswara Konda, Baba Ishaq Madina Dargah on Dargah Konda and Church of the Virgin Mary on Rose hill.
Stylishly called Vizag, the port city of Visakhapatnam has now developed into a tourism paradise. Vizag is also one of those few tourist destinations that receive a number of foreign tourists. The city lies on the eastern coast of India in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh. Vizagis also very popular for its shipbuilding industry and oil refineries.
Accommodation and Connectivity
There are daily Indian Airlines flights to Visakhapatnam from Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Hyderabad. Private airlines also operate flights to this tourism hub from many Indian destinations. Visakhapatnam falls on the Chennai-Howrah and Secunderabad-Howrah railway route and therefore, all the important trains to the southern region pass through the city. The road network is also very well developed.
To cash in on the tourism boom, many different accommodation facilities have come up in the city. One can easily find a luxury or a budget accommodation here.
The Vizag Beaches
The beaches of Vizag enthralls the tourists and rejuvenates the mind and soul to the hilt. Away from the din and bustle of the city, the clean beaches attract tourists in great numbers. Swimming, sun bathing, playing beach volleyball or simply sitting under the cool shade of a tree and reading a book are the favourite pastime of many. Equally thrilling and esmerizing are the sunrises and sunsets here. Of the wide array of beaches in Vizag, Ramakrishna beach and Lawson's Bay are the oveliest. Water sports are also gaining popularity on the beaches.
Spread over an area of 50 acres, the park situated in the picturesque Kailasa hill overlooking the sea provides a panoramic sea view and an absolutely serene atmosphere.
The VUDA park has facilities like a musical fountain, boating facility and a skating ring and is a very big hit among tourists. Also are facilities like pleasure rides on horses and camels.
A strange but popular tourist attraction, Dolphin's Nose is a huge rock resembling the shape of a dolphin on the beach.
Indira Gandhi Zoological Park
Covering a huge 450 acre area, this zoo has many different species of animals and birds. There also are a separate deer park and a crocodile park.
More great attractions can be found in the Explore Wildlife in India page.