Visakhapatnam

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Visakhapatnam
విశాఖపట్నం
Metropolis
Clockwise from top left: Buddha Statue at Appughar, Simhachalam Temple, Bay of Bengal from Kailasagiri, Rajiv Smrithi Bhavan at Beach Road, Visakhapatnam Port, King George Hospital (KGH)
Clockwise from top left: Buddha Statue at Appughar, Simhachalam Temple, Bay of Bengal from Kailasagiri, Rajiv Smrithi Bhavan at Beach Road, Visakhapatnam Port, King George Hospital (KGH)
Nickname(s): City of Destiny[1]
Visakhapatnam is located in Andhra Pradesh
Visakhapatnam
Visakhapatnam
Coordinates: 17°41′18″N 83°13′07″E / 17.68833°N 83.21861°E / 17.68833; 83.21861Coordinates: 17°41′18″N 83°13′07″E / 17.68833°N 83.21861°E / 17.68833; 83.21861
CountryIndia
StateAndhra Pradesh
RegionCoastal Andhra
DistrictVisakhapatnam
Named forViśakha
Government
 • BodyGreater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation
 • Municipal commissionerT.Sree Vatsav, IAS
 • Commissioner of PoliceAtul Singh IPS,Incharge Commissioner
Area[2]
 • Metropolis544 km2 (210 sq mi)
Elevation[3]54 m (177 ft)
Population (2011)[4]
 • Metropolis1,730,320
 • Rank17th
 • Density2,537.28/km2 (6,571.5/sq mi)
 • Metro[5]2,091,811
DemonymVizagite
Languages
 • OfficialTelugu
Time zoneIST (UTC+5:30)
PIN530 0XX, 531 1XX
Telephone code+91-891-XXX XXXX
Vehicle registrationAP–31,32,33,34
WebsiteGreater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation
 
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Visakhapatnam
విశాఖపట్నం
Metropolis
Clockwise from top left: Buddha Statue at Appughar, Simhachalam Temple, Bay of Bengal from Kailasagiri, Rajiv Smrithi Bhavan at Beach Road, Visakhapatnam Port, King George Hospital (KGH)
Clockwise from top left: Buddha Statue at Appughar, Simhachalam Temple, Bay of Bengal from Kailasagiri, Rajiv Smrithi Bhavan at Beach Road, Visakhapatnam Port, King George Hospital (KGH)
Nickname(s): City of Destiny[1]
Visakhapatnam is located in Andhra Pradesh
Visakhapatnam
Visakhapatnam
Coordinates: 17°41′18″N 83°13′07″E / 17.68833°N 83.21861°E / 17.68833; 83.21861Coordinates: 17°41′18″N 83°13′07″E / 17.68833°N 83.21861°E / 17.68833; 83.21861
CountryIndia
StateAndhra Pradesh
RegionCoastal Andhra
DistrictVisakhapatnam
Named forViśakha
Government
 • BodyGreater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation
 • Municipal commissionerT.Sree Vatsav, IAS
 • Commissioner of PoliceAtul Singh IPS,Incharge Commissioner
Area[2]
 • Metropolis544 km2 (210 sq mi)
Elevation[3]54 m (177 ft)
Population (2011)[4]
 • Metropolis1,730,320
 • Rank17th
 • Density2,537.28/km2 (6,571.5/sq mi)
 • Metro[5]2,091,811
DemonymVizagite
Languages
 • OfficialTelugu
Time zoneIST (UTC+5:30)
PIN530 0XX, 531 1XX
Telephone code+91-891-XXX XXXX
Vehicle registrationAP–31,32,33,34
WebsiteGreater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation

Visakhapatnam, also known as Vizag, is the largest city in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh and the third largest city on the east coast of India (after Chennai and Kolkata). It is a port city on the southeast coast of Bay of Bengal and often called as The Jewel of the East Coast and the City of Destiny. As of 2011, the population was recorded as 2,091,811 and occupying 681.96 km2 (263.31 sq mi), it is the administrative headquarters of Visakhapatnam district.[6] Visakhapatnam is the largest city and a commercial hub of Andhra Pradesh, with a GDP of over $26 Billion (USD).[7][8] The prominence of the city got highlighted once again when it figured along with Ajmer and Allahabad during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's US tour. The three cities have been identified for development with the funding and assistance of the U.S. as smart cities.[9]

It is situated in the Eastern Ghats and on the coast of Bay of Bengal on the east. The city is known for heavy industries, steel plant, largest seaport of India and oldest shipyard. It has the only natural harbour of India and headquarters of the Eastern Naval Command of the Indian Navy.

History[edit]

Famous Beach Road in the city
Beach road at Vizag

The city was ruled by Andhra Kings of Vengi, Kalinga and after that to the Pallavas. The city is named after Sri Vishaka Varma, Legend has it that Radha and Viśakha were born on the same day, and were equally beautiful. Sri Vishaka Sakhi, is the second most important gopi of the eight main gopis. She carries messages between Radha and Krishna, and is the most expert gopi messenger. Local residents believe that an Andhra king,built a temple to pay homage to his family deity Viśakha. This is now inundated under sea water near R K Beach. Another theory is that it is named after a women disciple of Buddha named Viśakha.Later it was ruled by Qutb Shahis, Mughal Empire (between 1689–1724), Nizam (1724–1757) and France (1757–1765) before being captured by the British in 1765.

Buddhist influence[edit]

Corner of light-coloured, angular stone ruins
Third-century BC Buddhist ruins of Totlakonda
eramic sculptures of guardian Yakshas
Yaksha Relief at Pavurallakonda near Bheemunipatnam

Hindu texts state that during the fifth century BC, the Visakhapatnam region was part of Kalinga territory, which extended to the Godavari River. Relics found in the area also prove the existence of a Buddhist empire in the region. Kalinga later lost the territory to King Ashoka in the bloodiest battle of its time, which prompted Ashoka to embrace Buddhism. Visakhapatnam is surrounded by ancient Buddhist sites, most of which have been excavated recently and illustrate the legacy of Buddhism in the region.

Pavurallakonda

Pavurallakonda ("pigeon hill") is a hillock west of Bhimli, about 24 km (15 mi) from Visakhapatnam. The Buddhist settlement found here is estimated to date back from the first century BC to the second century AD. On the hillock (which overlooks the coastline) are 16 rock-cut cisterns for collecting rainwater. Gopalapatnam, on the Tandava River, is a village surrounded by brick stupas, viharas, pottery and other Buddhist artefacts.

Bavikonda Buddhist Complex
Bavikonda stupas
Sankaram

In 1907 British archaeologist Alexander Rea unearthed Sankaram, a 2,000-year-old Buddhist site. The name "Śankaram" derives from the Sangharama (temple or monastery). Located 40 km (25 mi) south of Visakhapatnam, it is known locally as Bojjannakonda and is a significant Buddhist site in Andhra Pradesh. The three major schools of Buddhism (Hinayana, Mahayana and Vajrayana) flourished here. The complex is known for its monolithic stupas, rock-cut caves and brick structures. The primary stupa was initially carved out of rock and covered with bricks. Excavations yielded historic pottery and Satavahana coins from the first century AD. At Lingalakonda, there are also rock-cut monolithic stupas in rows spread over the hill. The vihara was active for about 1,000 years.

Stone seated Buddha at Bojjannakonda near Anakapalle

Nearby is another Buddhist site, Bojjannakonda, with a number of images of the Buddha carved on the rock face of the caves. At Ligalametta there are hundreds of rock-cut monolithic stupas in rows, spread across the hill. Among other Buddhist attractions are a relic casket, three chiatya halls,[further explanation needed] votive platforms, stupas and Vajrayana sculptures.

Bavikonda

Bavikonda is an important Buddhist heritage site located on a hill about 15 km, northeast from Visakhapatnam city. Here the Buddhist habitation is noticed on a 16 ha flat terraced area. The Hinayana school of Buddhism was practised at the monastery between the 3rd century B.C. and the 3rd century A.D. Bavikonda has remains of an entire Buddhist complex, comprising 26 structures belonging to three phases. A piece of bone stored in an urn recovered here is believed to belong to the mortal remains of the Budda. The word Bavikonda in Telugu means "a hill of wells". Fitting its name, Bavikonda is a hill with wells for the collection of rainwater. It is located 15 km (9.3 mi) from Visakhapatnam and is a significant Buddhist site. Excavation carried out from 1982–1987 revealed a Buddhist establishment including a mahachaitya embedded with relic caskets,[clarification needed] a large vihara complex, numerous votive stupas, a stone-pillared congregation and rectangular halls and a refectory. Artifacts recovered from the site include Roman and Satavahana coins and pottery dating from the third century BC to the second century AD. A significant finding was a piece of bone (with a large quantity of ash) in an urn, which is believed to be the remains of the Buddha. The Bavikonda site is considered one of the oldest Buddhist sites in Asia. It is a reminder of the Buddhist civilisation which once existed in southern India, and also reminiscent of Borobudur in Indonesia.

Thotlakonda

About 16 km (9.9 mi) from Visakhapatnam is Thotlakonda, a Buddhist complex situated on top of a hill. The Buddhist Complex on the Mangamaripeta hilltop, locally known as Totlakonda, lies about 16 km from Visakhapatnam on Visakhapatnam-Bheemili Beach Road. After its discovery (during an aerial survey), the Government of A.P. declared the 48 ha site as a protected monument in 1978. Excavations in 1988 to 1992 exposed structural remains and artefacts, classified as Religious, Secular and Civil. These structures include the Stupa, Chaityagrihas, pillared congregation halls, bhandagaras, refectory (bhojanasala), drainage and stone pathways. The site covers an area of 120 acres (49 hectares), and has been declared a protected area by the government of Andhra Pradesh. Excavations have revealed three kinds of structural remains: religious, secular and civil. Structures include a mahastupa, sixteen votive stupas, a stone-pillared congregation hall, eleven rock-cut cisterns, well-paved stone pathways, an apsidal chaitya-griha, three round chaitgya-grihas, two votive platforms, ten viharas and a kitchen complex with three halls and a refectory (dining hall). Apart from the structures, Buddhist treasures excavated include nine Satavahana and five Roman silver coins, terracotta tiles, stucco decorative pieces, sculptured panels, miniature stupa models in stone, Buddha padas depicted with ashtamangal symbols (i.e. the eight auspicious symbols of Swastika, Shrivasta, Nandhyavarta, Vardhamanaka, Bhadrasana, Kalasha, Minyugala and Darpan) and early pottery.

Later history[edit]

martyrs memorial construction
War Memorial at vizag beach road

The territory of Visakhapatnam then came under the Andhra rulers of Vengi, and Chalukyas and Pallavas ruled the land. The region was ruled by the Eastern Ganga king- SuryaVamsa Kshatriyas and the Gajapati kings of Odisha from the 10th century to the 16th centuries AD (when the region came under the Visakhapatnam rulers). Based on archaeological evidence, the Prabhakar and the Eastern Ganga Kings of Odisha built temples in the city in the 11th and 12th centuries. The Mughals ruled the area under the Visakhapatnam Nizam during the late 15th and early 16th centuries. European merchants from France, Holland and the East India Company used the natural port to export tobacco, paddy, coal, iron ore, ivory, muslin and other textile products.

Local legend tells that an Andhra king, on his way to Benares, rested at Visakhapatnam and was so enchanted by its beauty that he ordered a temple to be built in honour of his family deity, Viśakha. Archaeological sources, however, reveal that the temple was probably built between the 11th and 12th centuries by the Cholas. A shipping merchant, Shankarayya Chetty, built one of the mandapams (pillared halls) of the temple. Although it no longer exists (possibly washed away about 100 years ago by a cyclonic storm), elderly residents of Visakhapatnam remember visits to the ancient shrine by their grandparents (although author Ganapatiraju Atchuta Rama Raju denies this).[10]

During the 18th century Visakhapatnam was part of the Northern Circars, a region comprising coastal Andhra and southern coastal Odisha which was first under French control and later British. Visakhapatnam became a district in the Madras Presidency of British India. In September 1804, British and French squadrons fought the naval Battle of Vizagapatam near the harbour. After India's independence it was the largest district in the country, and was subsequently divided into the districts of Srikakulam, Vizianagaram and Visakhapatnam.

Part of the city is known by its colonial British name, Waltair; during the colonial era, the city's hub was the Waltair railway station and the surrounding part of the city is still called Waltair.

Geography[edit]

Areal view of Visakhapatnam city

Visakhapatnam is located on the sea shore of Bay of Bengal in the East, bordering on the North with the State of Orissa and Vizianagaram district and East Godavari District to the South. The city coordinates lies between 17.6883° N latitude, and 83.2186° E longitude. It's periphery consists of plains along the coast line while the interiors boast of the beautiful hills of the Eastern Ghats which surround it on the North and the West. This region is also called the Agency Division. It occupies an area of approximately 11,161 km2 (4,309 sq mi).

Climate[edit]

Visakhapatnam has a tropical savanna climate (Köppen climate classification Aw), with little change in temperature throughout the year. May is the hottest month with an average maximum temperature about 36 °C (97 °F), and January is the coolest month with an average maximum temperature near 28 °C (82 °F). The city has very hot, humid summers and warm, humid winters. The lowest temperature ever recorded in the city was 10 °C (50 °F), while the highest was 45.5 °C (113.9 °F). With the city's location on the Bay of Bengal, the humidity is high throughout the year, highest in September and lowest in December, however with a difference of only 10%. Total annual rainfall is about 1,265 millimetres (49.8 in), most of which falls during the southwest monsoon. October is the wettest month, with about 254 millimetres (10.0 in) of rainfall. November through February is the best time to visit Visakhapatnam weather-wise, since temperatures are moderate.

Climate data for Visakhapatnam
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °C (°F)34.8
(94.6)
38.2
(100.8)
40.0
(104)
40.5
(104.9)
45.0
(113)
45.4
(113.7)
41.4
(106.5)
38.8
(101.8)
38.2
(100.8)
37.2
(99)
35.0
(95)
34.2
(93.6)
45.4
(113.7)
Average high °C (°F)28.9
(84)
31.3
(88.3)
33.8
(92.8)
35.3
(95.5)
36.2
(97.2)
35.3
(95.5)
32.9
(91.2)
32.7
(90.9)
32.5
(90.5)
31.7
(89.1)
30.4
(86.7)
28.9
(84)
32.49
(90.48)
Average low °C (°F)17.0
(62.6)
18.9
(66)
22.0
(71.6)
25.1
(77.2)
26.7
(80.1)
26.3
(79.3)
25.1
(77.2)
25.0
(77)
24.6
(76.3)
23.3
(73.9)
20.6
(69.1)
17.6
(63.7)
22.68
(72.83)
Record low °C (°F)10.5
(50.9)
12.8
(55)
14.4
(57.9)
18.3
(64.9)
20.0
(68)
20.6
(69.1)
21.0
(69.8)
21.1
(70)
17.5
(63.5)
17.6
(63.7)
12.9
(55.2)
11.3
(52.3)
10.5
(50.9)
Precipitation mm (inches)21.4
(0.843)
17.7
(0.697)
17.5
(0.689)
37.6
(1.48)
77.8
(3.063)
135.6
(5.339)
164.6
(6.48)
181.2
(7.134)
224.8
(8.85)
254.3
(10.012)
95.3
(3.752)
37.9
(1.492)
1,265.7
(49.831)
Avg. rainy days1.72.32.33.24.98.811.912.612.69.95.01.776.9
 % humidity71706971697176777874686771.8
Source #1: IMD (average high and low, precipitation)[11]
Source #2: IMD (temperature extremes upto 2010)[12]

Demographics[edit]

Visakhapatnam is a cosmopolitan mix of people from various parts of India. From a population of a few thousand during the 18th and early 19th centuries, the population grew steadily. The city doubled its population from 1990–2000, due to a large migrant population from surrounding areas and other parts of the country coming to work in its factories.

Historical population
YearPop.±%
1871—    
1881—    
1891—    
190140,892—    
191143,413+6.2%
192144,711+3.0%
193157,303+28.2%
194170,243+22.6%
1951108,042+53.8%
1961211,190+95.5%
1971363,467+72.1%
1981603,630+66.1%
1991752,037+24.6%
20011,345,938+79.0%
20112,091,811+55.4%

According to the 2011 India census,[13] the population of Visakhapatnam in 2011 was 1,730,320, of which 875,199 were male and 855,121 were female. The sex ratio of Visakhapatnam city was 977 females per 1000 males. In the education section, the total literate population in Visakhapatnam city was 1,298,896, of which 698,959 were males while 599,937 were females. The average literacy rate of Visakhapatnam city was 82.66 percent, of which male and female literacy were 88.02 and 77.18 percent respectively. There were 158,924 children ages 0 to 6 in Visakhapatnam city as of 2011. There were 81,119 boys while 77,805 were girls. The child sex ratio was 959 girls per 1000 boys. 10 percent of the population was under age six. Visakhapatnam is ranked 122 in the list of fastest-growing cities in the world.[14] [15]

Hinduism is practised by the majority of its citizens, followed by Islam and Christianity. The area practised Buddhism for two millennia, as evidenced by the many Buddhist sangharamas in the outlying areas; currently, however, the population of Buddhists has waned. There is little religious tension.

Language[edit]

Telugu is the official language of Visakhapatnam.[16] It is also the most widely spoken language of the state of Andhra Pradesh. Two dialects of Telugu are spoken by the people, the common dialect and the Uttarandhra dialect. The latter is mainly spoken by the people who originally belong to the districts of Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram and Srikakulam.

Besides Telugu, Hindi is also popular language of Visakhapatnam. Visakhapatnam is a cosmopolitan city where people from different parts of India reside. Hence, English is also widely spoken among the people.

A substantial population of Visakhapatnam comprise Bengalis and Oriyas. Also, other people from other states are also present due to the Naval presence and high concentration of public-sector employers. There is also an Anglo-Indian community.

Economy[edit]

primary occupation for fishermen
Fishermen at work, Visakhapatnam
Aerial view of port with ships
Visakhapatnam Port

Visakhapatnam has developed into a major economic destination,. It has all the sectors like Industrial, Fishing, IT, Pharma, Export & Imports by Sea trade etc. The city was identified as one of the fastest-growing in the world, economically and demographically.[17][18] Several factors contributed to its economic growth, including the natural harbour, rail, road and air connectivity to national and International destinations. Tourism also plays an important role in generating revenue to the state of Andhra Pradesh, with many tourist spots in and around the city, attracts large number of tourists.[19]

Port activities[edit]

Fishing is a major sector in Visakhapatnam. It has one of the largest, dedicated harbour in the country for the fishing industry and seafood exports. A number of fishermen has their livelihoods depend on Fishing in the city. The ice factories in and outside the Visakhapatnam Fishing Harbour, caters to the needs of the fishermen and provides employment as well.

Ports include Visakhapatnam Port, Gangavaram Port in the city. They serve as a gateway for contributing to the development of the petroleum, steel and fertiliser industries. It is a hub for iron ore and other mineral exports which are exported by sea to other countries. Fishing Harbour at Visakhapatnam Port Trust is one of the biggest in the Coastal corridor of Andhra Pradesh generating huge revenue.

Industrial sector[edit]

There are many SEZ's & industrial corridors such as, VSEZ, APSEZ, APIIC, Aganumpudi Industrial Park, Visakha Dairy, JNPC, Brandix Apparel City etc., are located in and around the city.

APIIC is a special economic zone (covering 5,770 acres (23.4 km2). It is occupied by industries such as WS Industries, Pokarna Limited, Uniparts, Confidence Petroleum, Southern Online Bio, Nagarjuna AgriChem, Anjaney Alloys, Maithon Alloys and Abhijit Ferro Alloys.

Brandix Apparel City is a textile-based SEZ covering 1,000 acres (4.0 km2). The aim of this project is to provide 60,000 local jobs.[20] The SEZ has textile manufacturers namely Pioneer Elastic Fiber, Ocean India, Quantum Clothing, Fountain Set Group and Limited Brands. Pilkington, an automotive-glass manufacturer is also has its company.

Drugs and pharmaceuticals: The dawn of Pharma City changed the face of Vizag's industrial development. Jawaharlal Nehru Pharma City (JNPC) is the only pharmaceutical SEZ in India, with 58 pharmaceutical companies including PharmaZell of Germany and Eisai Pharma of Japan.[21]

Heavy industries

ship building yard for defence
A cargo ship at Vizag Shipyard

The defence controlled Hindustan Shipyard built India's first ship Jala Usha. Ports and Shipyard led to many private sectors to set up large-scale industries. Some of them include, Visakhapatnam Export, GAIL, HPCL, BHEL, Hindustan Zinc, Dredging Corporation of India, Coromandel Fertilizers, RINL and LG Polymers, Jindal Stainless Steels, Synergies Castings, Rain Calcining Limited, Reliance, Brandix, Essar Pellet Plant, Andhra (Cements, Petrochemicals and Ferroalloys) Ltd. etc.

Steel plant

Visakhapatnam has a steel plant, whose corporate entity RINL is the second largest state-run steel industry. The capacity of the plant is 6.3MT, is planned to become a 20MT plant in the future, the largest plant in a single location. The plant had revenues of INR144570 million (US$2 billion) for 2011–2012 and has about 17,800 employees.

Software industry[edit]

Front of large round building, with street and trees in front
Tech Mahindra Development Centre

Visakhapatnam is experiencing growth in the IT sector, contributing to the local economy.[22] The government has established an IT special economic zone and incubation center in the Rushikonda Hills. Its skilled workforce allowed the entry of many national and international IT and banking firms such as Tech Mahindra, Wipro, IBM Kenexa, Infotech, Concentrix, WNS, Sutherland, and HSBC. The city has 102 small and medium software companies as well as BPOs, of which about ten began operations in the period from 2005 to 2007. Software exports from Visakhapatnam have increased by nearly 90% each year. The IT exports from the city for 2012 were Rs 12 billion and 16,000 people were employed.[23] The IT industry registered an impressive growth in financial year 2012–13, according to data released by the state IT department. Visakhapatnam IT/ITeS revenues rose 20% to Rs 14.45 billion in 2012–13 as against Rs 12 billion in 2011–12. The employment generated by the IT/ITeS industry of the city increased to 16,988 jobs from 16,000 in 2011–12 period.[24]

Resources[edit]

Minerals

The prevalence of ferroalloy plants is due to the availability of manganese ore near Visakhapatnam. Aluminium refineries such as Anrak Aluminium and Jindal Aluminium are developing because of the bauxite reserves around the city. India's first rare earths (minerals) extraction plant at Atchutapuram is owned by Toyotsu Rare Earth India Ltd. (Partners of Toyota).

Hazy photo of chemical factory
HPCL Petrochemical Complex

Petroleum, chemicals and petrochemicals

Visakhapatnam was one of five sites in the country selected to hold strategic crude-oil reserves in case of a national emergency. IOC and BPCL have their bottling units in the city. Hindustan Petroleum expanded and the Visakhapatnam Export Processing Zone was established. Visakhapatnam is a part of the Petroleum, Chemical and Petrochemical Investment Region (PCPIR), proposed between Visakhapatnam and Kakinada. The PCPIR is expected to generate 1.2 million jobs and a projected investment of ₨34,30,000 million.

Power Plants

Simhadri Super Thermal Power Plant of NTPC Limited is expanding from 1,000 to 2,000 MW at a cost of INR50 billion (US$810 million). Hindujas has begun construction of a 1,070-MW thermal power plant in Visakhapatnam district at a cost of INR70 billion (US$1 billion).

Cityscape[edit]

Aerial view of two-lane highway, surrounded by forest and beach
View of Beach Road from Kailasagiri
Bay of Bengal beach and mountain range in the background
view of Dolphins Nose from Rama Krishna Beach
Submarine museum, Vishakapatnam
water source in the midst of forest
Lake in midst of Kambalakonda Eco Park

With the growing population, Visakhapatnam has turned from a fishing village into a commercial city with busy streets. Some of the busy areas of the city include Jagadamba Centre, Dwaraka Nagar, NAD X Road, Suryabagh, Gopalapatnam, Daba Gardens, Poorna market, Town kotha road, Akkayyapalem, Seethammadhara, Maddilapalem, Gajuwaka, MVP Colony, Maharanipeta Siripuram, Madhurawada, Asilmetta, Railway New Colony, Dondaparthi, Marripalem,

Some of the congestion is come down after the completion of 1.8 km long fly over road connecting RTC Complex and Waltair Station Approach Road.

Landmarks[edit]

Visakhapatnam is one of the tourism destination in the state of Andhra Pradesh. The city is famous for beaches, caves and the Eastern Ghats as well as wildlife sanctuaries.[25]

The city is surrounded by three hills, Sri Venkateswara Konda, Ross Hill and Dargah Konda. Each hill is home to a shrine, dedicated to three different religions. The landmarks of the city include include Dolphin's Nose(rocky headland resembling dolphin's nose), Lighthouse, Kailasagiri, Beach Road, VUDA Park, Visakha Museum and Matsyadarsini (an aquarium). INS Kursura Submarine Museum, the only of its kind in India[19] Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in the city has variety of wildlife species.

Beaches along coastline of Bay of Bengal includes Rushikonda Beach[26] RK Beach . Other include Lawson's Bay, Yarada, Bheemili, Tenneti, Sagar Nagar and Gangavaram beaches.

Araku Valley, 112 km (70 mi) from Visakhapatnam, is a hill station at an elevation of over 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) and known for its gardens, valleys, waterfalls and streams. Borra Caves are caves discovered by British geologist William King in 1807.[27] Tyda (an Eco tourism project), Kambalakonda Wildlife Sanctuary under Andhra Pradesh Forest Department are wildlife conservation sites[19] near the city.

Some of the religious sites are also of great importance like ISKCON temple;[28] Simhachalam temple of Lord Narasimha 16 km (9.9 mi) north of the city,[29][30] and Sri Kanaka Mahalakshmi Temple. Recent archaeological excavations of Buddhist shrines revealed Buddhist dominance in this area and these are recognised as heritage sites that include Boudharamam, Saligudam, Sankaram and Devipuram etc.

Transportation[edit]

Roadways[edit]

Aerial view of harbour and highway interchanges
Visakhapatnam seaport, with harbour interchange fly-by road
A luxury bus in the depot
APSRTC Vennela bus

Visakhapatnam is one of the major cities on the east coast of India connected by NH5, a major highway and a part of the Golden Quadrilateral system of Indian highways connecting Chennai and Kolkata. The city has a broad network of roads. State owned APSRTC runs buses to various places like Kakinada, Guntur, Kadapa, Kurnool, Rajahmundry, Vijayawada etc. Also, to distance places like Chennai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Bhubaneswar etc.

Residents of Visakhapatnam use city buses run by APSRTC, that runs buses along a number of routes across the city and its suburbs. The APSRTC complex at Asilametta is the hub for most of these buses. As of now the city has two Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) on Pendurti and Simhachalam corridors.Click here to view the bus route numbers of visakhapatnam

Railways[edit]

The station is called Waltair railway station. Later, around 1987, Mr. D. V. Subbarao, the then mayor of Visakhapatnam, changed the name to Visakhapatnam. The Visakhapatnam railway station is administered by the East Coast Railway of Indian Railways and is the headquarters for the Waltair Railway Division. It will be de-linked from East Coast Railway once a new railway zone for Andhra Pradesh is formed and will be part of new zone according to AP Reorganisation act 2014.

It is located on the Chennai Central-Howrah Station route, although the main line bypasses the Central Station. Duvvada railway station, a suburban station on the main line (near the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant) is being developed into a satellite hub to improve train service into the city.

There are direct rail links to many parts both in and outside the state to all major junctions. The K-K line from Visakhapatnam to Kirandul via Araku is laid through eastern ghats. Up to Araku station it is having 84 bridges and 58 tunnels.[31] Also, it pass through South India's highest elevation broad gauge station, Similiguda, just before Borra caves. Visakhapatnam also shelters the country's largest Diesel Loco Shed with a capacity of 206.[32]

Metro A metro rail project has also been planned by GVMC to arrest chaotic traffic condition on the streets. After the proposal was submitted by the GVMC in February 2014, the Urban Transport Department gave in-principle approval for going ahead with feasibility studies and DPR. On 25 June Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC) has called for global tenders for a Detail Project Report to be prepared for a 25 km stretch based on traffic density.[33] GVMC received bids from RITES, SYSTRA group, SREI infrastructure finance Limited, Hyderabad based Aarvee Associates; Delhi-based LEA Associates South Asia Private Limited and US-based AECOM Consultants for preparing the detailed project report. But later the project went under the scrutiny of a seven member committee set up by the state government and the tender process had to be scrapped.[34]

Airport[edit]

Long, low building with cars parked in front
Visakhapatnam Airport

Visakhapatnam Airport is the busiest airport in Andhra Pradesh. It is connected by daily flights with Dubai, Singapore, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Kochi, Bhubaneshwar, Raipur and to Singapore. Visakhapatnam Airport recently received permission to operate night flights, and the airport is open until 23:55. A new 10,000-foot (3 km) runway is operational to accommodate international flights and larger aircraft. The airport was recently modernised (including aerobridges and immigration booths), and the new terminal was opened on 21 March 2009. Visakhapatnam became an international airport when Air India began flights to Dubai (via Visakhapatnam) on 25 March 2012. Singapore Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Air Arabia, Thai Smile Airways and SriLankan Airlines have agreed to begin international flights from Visakhapatnam . Vizag airport became operational round the clock from 1 March 2013.

Seaports[edit]

seaport distance view
The City, overlooking seaport

On the east coast of India, Visakhapatnam serves as the gateway waterway for Andhra Pradesh. It has one of the country's largest ports, and the oldest shipyard on the east coast. It is a land-locked harbour,[35] as connected to the sea by a channel cut through rock and sand. Visakhapatnam is one of the busiest ports in India. Vizag Seaport owns two berths in the inner harbour; berth EQ-8 is fully mechanised and berth EQ-9 berth is not. Both berths are capable of handling Panamax vessels. The shipyard at Visakhapatnam is the largest in India. On the ChennaiKolkota corridor, the city is also a hub for ground traffic. The Gangavaram Port is India's deepest seaport. In December 2010, Coal India agreed to enable an additional berth to be built at the port.[36]

Education[edit]

Visakhapatnam is considered as a center for education in Andhra Pradesh and there are a number of primary, high schools and colleges in the city. In addition to state-run schools there are private institutions, missionary schools and colleges.

The Indian Maritime University was established as a central university by the government of India by an act of Parliament (the Indian Maritime University Act 2008). IMU is poised to play a role in the development of human resources for the maritime sector. Visakhapatnam also has the National Institute of Oceanography.

Established in 1878, A.V.N. College is one of the city's oldest educational institutions.[37] Visakhapatnam is also home to Andhra University (AU), established in 1926. President of India, Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan was vice-chancellor of the university between 1931 and 1936. AU and its affiliated colleges provide education to thousands of students up to Postgraduation in many fields. The AU College of Pharmacy is the second-oldest pharmacy college in India. The university is in the process of obtaining IIEST status.

Andhra Medical College, established in 1902, is the home of several teaching hospitals. The GITAM University (the first private university in Andhra Pradesh) and the Gayatri Vidya Parishad College of Engineering are other technical-education institutions in the city.

one of the private school famous in the city
Delhi Public School at Vizag

The Indian Science Congress (ISC) was hosted by Andhra University in 1976 and 2008. It is the largest congregation of scientists from different disciplines in the world. Over 8,000 people participated in the ISC in 2008, including Nobel Prize winners from around the world.

Famous universities include:

There are more than 50 engineering colleges in Visakhapatnam.

Damodaram Sanjivayya National Law University gained National Law University status in 2008.

St. Aloysius Anglo-Indian High School is the oldest high school in the district and one of the oldest schools in the country. It was established in 1847, and is in the old town. St. Joseph's Girls' High School was established in 1893 in Waltair and is an ICSE school. The city has about 10 Kendriya Vidyalayas.Other notable schools are Visvodaya High School, Naval Children's School, Kotak Salesian School, D.A.V. Centenary Public School, Delhi Public School, S.F.S. School, St. Anthony's High School, Bethany School, Sri Sathya Sai Vidya Vihar, Visakha Valley School and Timpany School. Apart from these there are many other schools.

Defence & research organisations[edit]

Naval base[edit]

Navy vessel sailing through canal
Naval warship

Visakhapatnam is the headquarters of the Eastern Naval Command, the Naval Science and Technological Laboratory (a DRDO Lab), a Chief Quality Assurance Establishment (CQAE), an EFS office, a Naval Dockyard (established in 1949) and Naval Bases including INS Virbahu, INS Kalinga, INS Samudrika, INS Satavahana, and INS Dega. A new base at INS Rambilli is being built on 5,000 acres (20 km2) with an investment of INR15 billion (US$243 million), as the first dedicated submarine base in India. India's first nuclear submarine INS Arihant was launched in the Naval Dockyard, and Bharat Dynamics has begun manufacturing torpedoes. Visakhapatnam also has presence of the Indian Coast Guard including ships and offices.

Research organisations[edit]

The Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) plans its second research facility in the country (after Trombay) in the area. A permanent facility, which will include a school dedicated to nuclear-power technology. There are also offices of the National Institute of Oceanography and the India Meteorological Department.

Sports[edit]

major international stadium for cricket
ACA-VDCA Cricket stadium at Madhurawada

Cricket is the most popular sport, followed by tennis and football. Visakhapatnam is home to a number of local cricket teams participating in district and zone matches. Gully cricket (a form of cricket played in streets or parks) is a popular pastime for local youth. Visakhapatnam co-hosted the 32nd National Games alongside, Hyderabad. The city has seven cricket stadiums, which are used for Ranji Trophy matches; two of these stadiums have been used for one day international matches. Some of these stadiums are:

This stadium is yet to host an international test match. However, the ACA-VDCA Stadium was recently awarded test status making it the 9th venue in the country with test status.

Media[edit]

Telugu News Papers
English News Papers
Hindi

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Karthik Pasupulate (28 November 2013). "Visakhapatnam: The city of destiny". Times of India. Retrieved 3 August 2014. 
  2. ^ "Area of GVMC". GVMC Official Website. Retrieved 9 August 2014. 
  3. ^ "Elevation for Visakhapatnam". Veloroutes. Retrieved 3 August 2014. 
  4. ^ "Census 2011". The Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India,. Retrieved 21 July 2014. 
  5. ^ "Urban Agglomeration". GVMC. Retrieved 9 August 2014. 
  6. ^ "Area of GVMC". GVMC Official Website. Retrieved 21 July 2014. 
  7. ^ "India's top 15 cities with the highest GDP". Yahoo Finance. 15 July 2014. Retrieved 15 July 2014. 
  8. ^ Nicole Bippen (17 February 2014). "The 10 Richest Indian Cities". The Richest. Retrieved 15 July 2014. 
  9. ^ "Vizag to be developed as smart city with U.S. aid". 
  10. ^ "Viśakha traces its name to Buddhist princess". The Hindu. 15 July 2002. Retrieved 24 September 2009. 
  11. ^ "Visakhapatnam". India Meteorological Department. May 2011. Retrieved 26 March 2010. 
  12. ^ "IMD – Temperature extremes recorded upto 2010". imdpune.gov.in/Temp_Extremes/histext2010.pdf. India Meteorological Department (Pune). Retrieved 2 July 2014. 
  13. ^ 2011 India Census. Retrieved on 29 May 2012.
  14. ^ Shekharjyoti Kalita. "Eleven Indian cities among 100 fastest growing cities in the world". Merinews.com. Retrieved 24 September 2009. 
  15. ^ "World's fastest growing urban areas (1)". City Mayors. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  16. ^ http://www.mapsofindia.com/visakhapatnam/language.html. Retrieved 6 May 2014.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  17. ^ David Satterthwaite (2007) The transition to a predominantly urban world and its underpinnings. Human Settlements Discussion Paper Series. Theme: Urban Change −4
  18. ^ 11 Indian cities among world's fastest growing. Times of India. (23 October 2007). Retrieved on 3 December 2011.
  19. ^ a b c "Vizag city tourism". AP Tourism Department. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  20. ^ [1]. Brandixapparelcity.com. Retrieved on 6 May 2014.
  21. ^ ":: Jawaharlal Nehru Pharmacity". Ramky.com. 21 February 2005. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  22. ^ "IT Industry in Vizag". The Hindu. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  23. ^ "Electronics Manufacturing Cluster". 4 January 2013. Retrieved 12 June 2013. 
  24. ^ "IT Revenues". The Hindu. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  25. ^ India. "Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh India Tourist Information". Touristlink.com. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  26. ^ "Beaches in vizag". vizaginformation. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  27. ^ Google Books. Retrieved on 6 May 2014.
  28. ^ "ISKCON temple". iskconvizag. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  29. ^ "Hisrtory of temple". simhachalam. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  30. ^ "About Simhachalam temple". simhachalam. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  31. ^ Nischal, G. http://www.visitvizag.in/araku.asp.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  32. ^ Nischal, G. http://www.indianrailways.gov.in/railwayboard/uploads/directorate/mec_engg/downloads/DLS/ECOR/Vishakhapatnam.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  33. ^ "Vizag metro Tenders issued". Deccan-Journal. Retrieved 25 June 2014. 
  34. ^ "DMRC to prepare report on Vizag metro rail project". Retrieved 19 September 2014. 
  35. ^ Santosh Patnaik Beach nourishment taken up on a bigger scale. Hindu.com (8 March 2010). Retrieved on 3 December 2011.
  36. ^ "Coal India strikes port deal". fairplay.co.uk. 18 December 2010. Retrieved 18 December 2010. 
  37. ^ "Home Page of Mrs. A.V.N. College". Avncollege.ac.in. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 

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External links[edit]

  1. ^ "DMRC to prepare report on Vizag metro rail". 2014-09-12. Retrieved 2014-09-19.