Situated in the Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh, Kurnool is an ancient city that’s home to a plethora of historical temples. You really just can’t get enough of this city because of its history that tells a million stories about the invaders of our land. With the city’s existence dating back to the 16th century, Kurnool was once a stopover for workers to grease the wheels of their bullock carts, according to legend. That’s when the town was popularly known as Kandenavolu, which literally translates to “Town of Grease”, before being popularly known as Kurnool.
That’s just one of the many stories associated with Kurnool; each place in this city has many more. Does that make you excited to visit this city filled with tiny nuggets of history? Then read our article on some of the best scenic places to visit in Kurnool.
If you want to start exploring Kurnool with a bit of devotion, then you should visit the Shirdi Sai Baba Temple first. This place of worship is an important landmark in this historic city, where many from far and wide come to take part in the aartis of this temple. Spread across an area of 1.5 acres, the Shirdi Sai Baba Temple is one of the biggest Sai Baba temples in Kurnool. And just by standing at the entrance, you can feel the grandeur and charm of the site.
Located on the banks of the river Tungabhadra, this star-shaped temple is known for its peaceful and calming presence. The only sound you’ll hear are the mantras being recited by the priests. Legend has it that this temple was constructed by one of Sai Baba’s avid devotees, Sri K. Veera Swami Naidu. It’s said that Sai Baba appeared in Veera Naidu’s dream just to instruct him to construct a star-shaped temple on the banks of the river Tungabhadra, which the devotee rightly followed.
Once you enter the temple, you’ll notice that the space has no walls, making the place cool and ventilated. On top of the temple, a beautiful Shikara is placed consisting of carved statues and folklore.
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Situated along the banks of the K.C. canal (Kurnool Cuddahpah Canal), you’ll find Birla Mandir, a place of worship known for its complex architecture. Before we get into the specifics of this temple, you should know that there are many other Birla Mandir temples constructed in various parts of the country by the enormous Birla family. Each temple is devoted to a particular deity and constructed with the finest marble from Rajasthan.
Built in 1957, the Birla Mandir a.k.a Sri Satyanarayana Swamy Mandir in Kurnool is the 6th oldest among other Birla Mandirs, and it sports a different kind of ambiance as compared to the other temples. With Delhi being the first location of construction, the Birla Mandirs across the country were built in a typical Nagara-style manner. What makes the Birla Mandir in Kurnool different is its construction is done more towards the Chalukya-styled architecture of the 10th and 12th centuries.
You’ll find quite a bustle in this temple since it's visited by many pilgrims and devotees of the land. The main Gods enshrined in this temple are Swamy Narayaranan along with Lord Shiva and Lord Surya Narayana who is revered by many. Also, if you’re in Kurnool during any auspicious occasion such as Ganesh Chaturthi, you should definitely visit this temple. Since it’s known for its pomp celebrations, many visit the Birla Mandir during this time to offer pujas and take part in fellowship with other like-minded devotees.
If you want to revel in a bit of the history of this city, then you need to visit the Kotla Vijaya Bhaskar Reddy Memorial. The memorial is a dedication to one of the most popular Chief Ministers of Andhra Pradesh who is also a native of the beautiful city of Kurnool. He was a much revered political leader and that’s why there’s a golden sculpture of him in a small enclosed area.
Located on the banks of the river Handri, this spot is currently a popular venue for picnickers to spend a summer evening. With numerous seating arrangements available along with well-trimmed lawns and a children’s park, this location is ideal to enjoy the city's air. Also, you could go on an evening walk on the special walking paths surrounding the memorial to stay fit and trim.
Once you have enjoyed viewing the pretty memorial and the green lawns of this location, you can head over to the on-site restaurant to fill your tummies. Although the food served at the restaurant is basic, you can be sure that the dishes prepared are scrumptious and worth your buck.
Located in the heart of Kurnool City, one can find the Konda Reddy Fort also colloquially known as Kurnool Fort. It’s one of the city’s most prominent sites to visit, and everyone who comes to visit Kurnool spends at least a few hours appreciating the grandness of this fort. Constructed way back between the 12th to 16th centuries, this fort is an embodiment of the courage and bravery portrayed by past rulers.
Housing a plethora of gateways and bastions, this fort’s complex architecture takes the cake away altogether. This massive structure is located along the banks of the Tungabhadra River and was used as the primary base by the Vijayanagara kings.
However, an interesting story surrounds the genesis of its name. Konda Reddy was the last ruler of Alampur who also won many battles against the Kurnool Nawabs. Unfortunately, his luck ran out and was imprisoned in this fort by the Nawabs. But, he outsmarted the Nawabs by making his escape through the fort's tunnels. And as a way to remember his bravery and smartness, this fort was christened the Konda Reddy Fort.
Although the tunnels of the fort are barred from visiting, the rest of the fort is open to the public for viewing. The Konda Reddy Fort is in the shape of a huge pillar and has three levels to it. On the second level, you can see various interesting inscriptions left by the past rulers and conquerors of this fort. The Erra Buruju, one of the other sections of the fort, has a whole covering of ancient drawings and carvings engraved on its walls. If you walk toward the eastern side of the wall, you’ll find Arabic and Persian inscriptions as well.
The highest point of the Konda Reddy Fort is one of its main highlights. This is a perfect spot to get a bird's eye view of Kurnool, making you want to take the leap of faith like any of the Assassin's Creed characters. Also, this point is used for Independence Day celebrations, so take a peek into this fort if you happen to be in Kurnool during that time.
At the Handri River and near the Kotla Vijaya Bhaskar Reddy Memorial, one can find the Archeological Museum of Kurnool. Maintained by the Archeological Survey of India, this museum is home to a variety of precious artifacts scouted from the wondrous region of Kurnool. And if you want to get a deeper understanding of the history and beginnings of this city, this museum is your one-stop destination for information.
In addition to portraits capturing historic moments of Kurnool, what you’ll see otherwise are broken sculptures from temples located in towns such as Alampur, Srisailam, and Sangameswaram. Also, the museum showcases a plethora of weapons used by the rulers of the day. So, if you’re a weapon enthusiast, visiting this museum will be a real treat for you.
Now you know all that you need to know about which scenic places to visit in Kurnool. This city has many offerings and we’re sure that you’re going to have a ball of a time exploring it. So what are you waiting for? Book your ticket, pack your bags, and travel to the historically rich city of Kurnool.
Also Read: Hyderabad Travel Guide
What Is Kurnool's Old Name?
Historic records suggest that Kurnool had gone by the name Kandanavōlu or Kandanōlu. This city was once a crossing on the Tungabhadra River and a location where bullock carts used to oil their wheels. “Kandana” is a direct reference to grease or oil.
Which Language Is Spoken In Kurnool?
The primary languages spoken in Kurnool are Telugu, Hindi, and English.
Why Is Kurnool Famous?
Kurnool is known for its historic temples and its major monument called Konda Reddy Fort. History and architecture buffs will have a blast exploring the mysteries of this city and around it.
How To Reach Kurnool?
If you’re coming by air, the nearest airport to Kurnool is in Hyderabad. From the Hyderabad Airport, you can travel to Kurnool by taxi or bus. By train, the Kurnool Railway Station is the nearest railhead you can find. You can take a taxi or a rickshaw to make your way to the city from the railway station.
Which Temple Is Famous In Kurnool?
The beautiful Sri Bugga Rameswara Swamy is the most famous temple in Kurnool. The natural springs, rolling hills, and five Lingas situated inside the temple are the main attractions.
Where Is The Kurnool Caves?
The Kurnool Caves, well-known as the Belum Caves are located near the Belum village in the Kurnool district.
Why Are The Kurnool Caves Famous?
The Kurnool Caves are among the largest and most extensive cave complexes in the world. It is well-known for its stalactite and stalagmite formations, intricate passageways and chambers, fresh watering holes, siphons, and waterfalls.
How Many Days Are Enough For Kurnool?
2 days are sufficient to explore Kurnool. You can cover the major temples and the famous Kurnool Caves on day one. And then visit the wildlife sanctuary and the tiger reserve on day two.