Located on the top of Nallamala Hills, Srisailam is a pilgrim town in the Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh and is known for housing one of the 12 Jyotirlingas of Shiva and a Shakti Peetha. It is a historical town with significant religious importance and attracts the interest of religious travellers. It’s considered to be a nature-rich destination and is bound to win you over with its natural beauty.
If you or someone you know is planning to travel to Srisailam, here is a list of some of the top places you must visit.
A List of the Most Popular Places to Visit in Srisailam
Take a list of some of the best places to visit in Srisailam to explore the town at its absolute best.
Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple
This is perhaps one of the most sought-after places to visit in Srisailam owing to its religious core and prestigious history. There are two shrines in the arena of the temple that are dedicated to Lord Malikarjuna and the Diety Bhramaramba, who is considered to be a reincarnation of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati respectively. The architecture of the temple is intriguing with the Prakaram wall being the highlight. During the Mahashivrarti festival, there is a large number of devotees who visit the temple.
Akka Mahadevi Caves
This is a popular natural cave that attracts ascetics and yogis. Akka Mahadevi was a popular ascetic lyricist who did penance here and you can experience serene boat rides across the Krishna River. You may also enjoy the beauty of the grand Rock Arch which is a natural formation that stands without any visible pillars. You can offer your prayers and also explore the nooks and crannies of the cave for an enriching experience.
For nature lovers, this is an awe-inspiring experience with a beautiful waterfall. It is located at a distance of 58 kilometres from Srisailam and is popular among those looking for a quaint natural getaway. Moreover, there are numerous legends attached to this waterfall and the water is considered to be sacred and holy by many. The best time to visit this location is during October and February.
Bhramaramba Devi Temple
Another shakti peetha, the Bhramaramba Devi Temple is located on the banks of the Krishna River and is a key landmark in the town. It is dedicated to the goddess Parvati (Goddess Bhramaramba) and is situated within the premises of Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple. The key festivals that are celebrated and hosted within the temple are the Kumbham and Navratri.
The Shikharshwara Temple is located on the highest peak of Srisailam and is dedicated to Lord Shiva who is said to have taken the form of Shikhareshwara Swamy. Visitors have the chance to perceive devotion and spirituality and they can also experience breathtaking sceneries with panoramic views from the top of the temple. The way to the temple is well-maintained and highlights the beauty of the place.
Sakshi Ganapati Temple
This temple is located along the way to Srisailam and is located 3 kilometres before the location. An idol of Lord Ganesha has been carved out of black stone and placed in the temple. Many believe that it is auspicious to visit the Ganesh Temple before they visit the Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple. And, there are many more that believe that the idol keeps an account of every pilgrim who visits the temple. So, people must pay their respects in the temple while they are on their way back.
Srisailam Wildlife Sanctuary
Also referred to as the Nagarjunasagar-Srisailam Sanctuary, it is sprawled over 3,568 square kilometres across five districts of Telangana – Nalgonda, Guntur, Prakasam, Mahbubnagar and Kurnool. It is also India’s largest tiger reserve which is home to numerous rare species of flora and fauna. The best time to visit the reserve is between October and March. Some of the most commonly sighted animals here are leopards, tigers, sambars, Indian pythons, Indian giant squirrels, Indian peafowl, king cobra, sloth bears and wild boars among various others.
The dam is constructed across the Krishna River and is one of India’s largest hydroelectric projects located on the outskirts of Srisailam. Along with serving its purpose of power generation and irrigation, it’s a popular tourist attraction. The dam has a beautiful landscape with scenic and peaceful surroundings. And, it’s amazing to witness the floodgates opening during the monsoon season.
This is the holy abode of Sri Shankaracharya and is famous for being one of his treatises. The temple also holds the distinction of being a popular place for different Shaivism sects. It is situated on the foothills of Nallamala Hills and holds a significant position among devotees. While it may be smaller in structure, the temple has beautiful architecture and is consisted of an open Mukha-mandapa with numerous pillars and a Garbhagriha. Another one of the best features is the stunning view of the river and surrounding hills from here.
The Kadalivanam caves are a historical treasure and are one of the most popular places to visit in Srisailam. Similar to the Akka Mahadevi Caves, these caves have also formed naturally over many years. The best way to reach the location is by boat ride followed by a short trek. The journey and location are the perfect blend of spiritual seeking as well as adventure.
This is a part of the backwaters of the Krishna River and is where devotees come to take a dip in the holy river before heading to the Srisailam temple. It is located at a distance of approximately 1 kilometre from the Mallikarjuna temple and is popular for its scenic backdrop. It provides a view of the wide reservoir along with the surrounding forest. It’s a boating centre and visitors can either trek 500 steps from the Hanuman temple or hitch a ride on the ropeway operated by the temple.
Chenchu Lakshmi Tribal Museum
The Chenchu Lakshmi Tribal Museum provides a glimpse of the tribal lifestyle and is a must-visit. Tourists can purchase the honey that is collected by the tribes living in the area. The collection within the museum includes idols of various gods, weapons that were used for hunting and hand-made musical instruments along with many others. The museum also has a beautiful garden where children can play around statues of dinosaurs and boats among various other figures.
It is located in the valley of Nallamala and the name translates to “a river that flows from the Lord’s forehead”. The stream can be seen flowing throughout the year and it joins the holy Krishna River. Travellers can reach it by climbing 160 steps and while hiking, visitors can distinctly hear the sound of the stream that flows through the forest.
The temple is said to have been built somewhere between the 8th and 10th centuries and is believed that the presiding goddess can grant devotees any wish, even if they only visit it once. It is one of the most rustic temples in town and travellers need to hike through a heavily forested area to get there. One of the most interesting things about the temple is that even though the idol is made out of stone, its forehead is as soft as human skin.
Saleshwaram Cave Temple
This is a cave temple that is located around 60 kilometres from Srisailam and is a hidden natural gem worth visiting. It has a distinct scenic beauty and religious significance and is dedicated to Lord Shiva. An alluring feature of this cave temple is the mesmerizing waterfall that is located opposite the temple with twinkling streams of water flowing down a hill. It’s an ideal place for adventure seekers and the best time to visit the temple is on the Chaitra Purnima.
28 kilometres away from Srisailam and amidst the forest area, the temple structure speaks of its ageing and the number of Gods and dynasties associated with it. The historical location is considered to be a perfect combination of architectural and historical excellence, breathtaking beauty and religious aura.
Hemareddy Mallamma Temple
This temple is a popular shrine in Srisailam and is named after Mallamma, who was an ardent devotee of Sri Saila Mallikarjuna Swamy. It depicts the greatness of the devotee along with the determination with which she spent her life in complete devotion. There is a small water stream between two natural rock formations and is known as the Mallamma Kanneeru, meaning the “Happy tears of Mallamma”.
As you can see, the town of Srisailam has its history and holds religious significance for many. And, it has a lot to offer in terms of exploration and adventure. Visiting and exploring the southern part of India can be an enlightening experience and you will get to see the preserved Indian heritage and history in a praiseworthy way. It’s a beautiful town that should be explored in all its traditional glory.
Frequently Asked Questions About Srisailam
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about Srisailam and the places to visit there.
What is Special in Srisailam?
The quaint town is popular for the Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga Temple and is a holy pilgrimage site for Shaktism and Saivism sects of Hinduism. It is classified as a Shakti Peetha. Some of the top attractions include the Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple, Akka Mahadevi Caves, Pathala Ganga and Ista Kameshwari Temple among others.
Which is the Best Time to Visit Srisailam?
The winter season is considered to be the best time to visit Srisailam as the temperature is comfortable for long hours of sightseeing. The best months to do the same are from November to March.
How Can I Plan a Trip to Srisailam?
Here’s an itinerary you can follow:
- Visit Mallikarjuna Temple
- Enjoy a boat ride across the Pathala Ganga
- Go to the Akka Mahadevi Caves
- See the Phaladhara Panchdhara
- Don’t miss the largest tiger reserve
- Experience the sunset from the Srisailam Dam
Where is Srisailam situated?
Srisailam is situated on the banks of the Krishna River in the Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh. More accurately, it is 180 kilometres from Kurnool and 230 kilometres from Hyderabad, 527 kilometres from Bangalore and 263 kilometres from Vijayawada. It’s one of the most important pilgrimage sites for the worshippers of Lord Shiva and one of the top places visitors must go to.
How Can I Reach Mallikarjuna Temple?
There are no direct trains to the town of Srisailam. The nearest railway station is located in Makrapur which is around 81 kilometres away. Kurnool is the nearest major railroad which is 180 kilometres away.
It is connected to the nearest metro of Hyderabad by SH 5 and NH 765. A drive from the city to the town will take about four and a half hours. Visitors can use private and state-run buses from Kurnool, Vijaywada, Guntur and Hyderabad. You can also book a private car or taxi for a road trip.
Furthermore, there are no flight services to Srisailam and the nearest domestic airport is situated in Kurnool. The nearest international airport is in Hyderabad. If you are looking to visit Srisailam from another city, you can get a flight to Hyderabad and hire an airport taxi or a private car to drive to the town of Srisailam.