A trip to Tirumala Tirupati takes planning. Its not only a place I love visiting but also happens to be my parent's native place. So you can imagine my joy going back there every time. As I child, I remember traveling with parents to grandparents home. For us a visit to the temple is a must atleast once a year, if not more than that. And Dad used to take care of all the arrangements. From what I remember it wasn't so crowded as it is now. And it used to more of a resort than anything else. The cool weather with the lovely cottages and less crowd. it used to be a trip worth looking forward too.
The times when we didn't visit the temple, I used to satisfy myself going to the terrace of my grandparents home and gaze at the Gaali Gopuram that is visible all over tirupati. Though we visit the temple frequently, I never get to click all the pictures to my heart's content nor end up posting it. This time, since I wanted to make sure I did! Since we booked the tickets much earlier, we didn't realise that Ganesh Chaturti was on Sunday. So when we knew, we decided to start back early from the Tirupati to be on time for the Ganesh pooja.. Both on the trip up and down, we saw huge Idols of Lord Ganesh being taken for the pooja.
Alipiri ~ Welcome by Garuda
We started here by 10 am. On the way I stopped hubby dear for couple of pictures. We reached Tirupati by 1.30 pm, had out lunch at Hotel Bliss. Then moved on to Alipiri, the starting place for the car route. It was drizzle a bit and we could see the beautiful waterfalls. The beautiful Garuda standing erect looks too awesome! I could also see the Gaali Gopuram, which is en route by the walking path. Years ago, on my only trip by walk, I remember stopping there for solid 30 minutes to rest. It was still so fresh in mind, the entire 5+ hrs that we took to climb the stairs. The steps from Gaali Gopuram are really too steep. This time round, we stopped to click some pictures too!
Posing en route!
The weather so magically changed from being to chill to foggy. along the way I even clicked pictures which reflected on the side mirror. We reached Tirumala by 3.15 or so. Since the Darshan was booked for 3 pm, we went straight to the counter place. The place was comparatively low, the next day being the Vinayaka Chaturti. After a long time, we went using the Sudarsanam Token, which on regular days might taken more than couple hours for one to get Darshan. This time it took about nearly 2+ hrs. It wasn't the usual pushing and pulling experience. It normally gets very crowded near the Maha Dwaram.
Lord Venkateshwara Temple
After the darshan, we stayed over the night and returned by early next morning! Stopped on the way to click pictures of the beautiful waterfalls.
And you can't miss the naturally formed Garuda in the mountains!
Lord Anjaneya ~ on the way down
The beautiful huge status of Lord Anjaneya is on the way down. Its also situated in the place used by pilgrims who walk to the temple.
More pictures to follow in my journey called life!