Tirupati Balaji Hindu pilgrimage
|| The Past || Don't Miss || Darshan || Festivals || When to Go || Getting There ||   
Tirupati, one of the richest temples in the country, is the most venerated Vaishnavite shrine of Lord Venkateswara. ‘Tiru’ in Tamil means ‘Sri’; hence Tirupati translates to Sripati or Sri Maha Vishnu. Perched on the 860 mts high peak of the Tirumala hills, the temple is a Dravidian masterpiece. The splendid gold plated Viman (spire) or 'Ananda Nilayam' rising over the sanctum is the most impressive feature in the temple complex. The innermost enclosure of the three prakarams, opened once annually, enshrines the two-metre high majestic  black  idol of  Lord Venkateswara, bedecked   with priceless
Tirupati Temple
glittering jewels, most striking of which is the diamond crown said to be the costliest in the world.

The two very important customs followed in the temple are anointing the body of the Lord with camphor (Karpoora), saffron and musk, and offering the tonsure of hair as a sacrifice to the Lord.

The temple here is said to be the busiest in the world, eclipsing even Rome, Jerusalem and Mecca with the number of pilgrims visiting it.

History of Tirupati Balaji


Tirupati Balaji
Tirupati was developed mainly by the contributions made by kings during their rule. Almost all the kings from great dynasties of the southern peninsula have revered Lord Sri Venkateswara in this ancient shrine of Tirupati. The Pallavas of Kancheepuram (9th century AD), the Cholas of Thanjavur (a century later), the Pandyas of Madurai, and the kings and chieftains of Vijayanagar (14th - 15th century AD) were devotees of the Lord and they competed with one another in endowing the temple with rich offerings and contributions.

During the rule of the Vijayanagar dynasty contributions made to the temple increased enormously. Krishnadevaraya had statues of himself and his consorts installed at the portals of the Tirupati temple, and these statues can be seen today too.

The decline of the Vijayanagar dynasty did not affect the contributions to this place as many nobles and chieftains from all parts of the country continued to pay their homage and offer gifts to the temple. Raghoji Bhonsle, the Maratha general, visited the temple and set up a permanent endowment for the conduct of worship in the temple. He presented valuable jewels to the Lord, including a large emerald, which is still preserved in a box named after him. Among the later rulers who have gifted large amounts are the rulers of Mysore and Gadwal.

After the fall of Hindu kingdoms, came the Muslim rulers of Karnataka and after their downfall the British took over, and many of the temples came under their supervisory and protective control.

In 1843 AD, the East India Company divested itself of the direct management of non-Christian places of worship and native religious institutions.

Places to Visit in Tirupati


The ancient and sacred temple of Sri Venkateswara, Tirupati Tirumala Balaji Temple is located on the seventh peak, Venkatachala (Venkata Hill) of the Tirupati Hill, and lies on the southern banks of Sri Swami Pushkarini. It is because of the Lord's presidency over Venkatachala, that he has received the title, Venkateswara (Lord of the Venkata Hill). He is also called the Lord of the Seven Hills.

In  Tiruchanur, 5-km  from  Tirupati, Padmavati  Devi Temple is a

Tirupati Tirumala Balaji Temple
temple  dedicated   to   goddess   Padmavati,  the   consort  of   Lord Venkateswara or Venkateshwara (Balaji). It also known as "Alamelumangapuram" and it is said that a visit to Tirumala is fruitful only after visiting the Sri Padmavati Devi temple. The deity, Sri Padmavati Devi is seated in 'Padmasana', holding a lotus in both of her upper hands. Her lower hands are in poses of 'Abhaya', fearlessness, and 'Varada', benediction. Also to be seen in this temple are the Deities of Sri Krishna, Balarama, 'Sundararaja Swami', and 'Surya-Narayana Swami'. It is traditional to first worship Sri Krishna and then to take darshan of Sri Padmavati. Sri Kapileswaraswami Temple is situated about 3-km to the north of Tirupati, at the foot of the Tirumala Hills, and is the only temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, in Tirupati. Annual Brahmotsavams and festivals like Vinayaka Chavithi, Maha Shivaratri, Skhanda Shasthi and Annabhishekam are performed in a grand manner. The sacred waterfall called "Kapila Teertham" (also known as "Alwar Teertham") is located here.
Tirupati Mandir Darshan


Every day pilgrims in thousands throng the temple. They wait patiently in long queues, offer cash and jewelry and tonsure their heads in fulfillment of their vows. The view of the deity completely ornamented from tip to toe is in itself awe-inspiring. Before entering the temple, devotees have to take a dip in the Pushkarini tank, the waters of which are considered sacred and highly praised in the Puranas. Devotees overflowing with bhakti (devotion), with prayer on their lips, move in single file with hands held high in salutation. The day starts with the suprabhata darshanam and ends with the ekanta seva when the Lord is put to bed in a velvet mattress spread over a swing cot suspended by gold chains.
Festivals in Tirupati


Brahmotsavam, the most important of the various festivals of the temple, is conducted usually in Bhadrapada i.e., in September for about 9 days. On account of Adika Masam, which comes in every third year, a second Brahmotsavam in the month of Aswayuja (Puratasi) will be held under the name, Navarathri Brahmotsavam. These Brahmotsavams attract thousands of pilgrims from various parts of the country.
Best time to visit tirupati balaji temple

The best time to visit Tirupati is between September and February.
How to reach tirupati


Airlines Airports Air Tickets to Tirupati Balaji

Direct flights to Tirupati are available from Hyderabad and Chennai only.

Railways Train to Tirupati

Tirupati is the nearest railway station. There are trains that travel via Renigunta or Gudur, but do not touch Tirupati. In such cases, Renigunta or Gudur, are convenient points to alight. From Renigunta / Gudur you can reach Tirupati by train, bus, or taxi.

Bus Taxi Cars to Tirupati

APSRTC buses run from all the important places in the state and between Tirupati and Tirumala. TTD also runs buses between Tirupati and Tirumala.

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