Thirupathi

The most popular destination for destination for Hindu pilgrims in India, is Thirupathi the site of Shri Venkateshwara Temple situated in Thirumala hills 700m above the town. The temple dates to the 9th century, although it has often been expanded and renovated from the 15th century onwards. The seven “sacred hills” of Thirumala are believed to symbolize the seven – headed serpent God Adisesha on whose coils Vishnu sleepa. The aura that surrounds Lord Venkateshwara as the bestowers of boons has made this temple the most visited and the richest in India.

The jet black stone image, 2m high stands on a lotus and is adorned with rubies, gold and diamonds. Devotees wait patiently in long queues for a special Dharshan and make offerings of money and jewelry that net the temple an annual income of nearly 1.8 billion rupees. Located between two steep hills on the Southern bak of the Svarnamukhi river banks this town is one of the most important pilgrimage centers in Andhra Pradesh. Dominating one end of the crowded main street is a 36. 5 m and 120 feet high free standing gopura erected in 1516 by Emperor Krishnadeva Raya of Vijayanagar. Worshippers have thronged to this temple for generations to seek relief from the evil effects of Saturn. Some pilgrims also come here with unmarried daughters in the hope that a special Puja at the temple will help them find good husbands.

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