Visakhapatnam / Vizag/ Waltair, STD code: +91 891, Pin Code: 530020.
To some it is Visakhapatnam, some call it Vizag while many people still know the place as Waltair. Visakhapatnam & Waltair are twin cities like the state capital Hyderabad & Secunderabad. Initially it was under the governance of Kalinga King, then Bahamanis captured it. In 1768 the East India Company took control and British called it Vizagpatnam, hence the industrial and port area of Waltair was familiar as Visakhapatnam or Vizag. The areas surrounding the Railway Station throughout the north along with residential quarters is Waltair. Former Waltair Junction. Station is now Visakhapatnam.
Climate of Visakhapatnam
Altitude is 15ft Temperature varies between 24°-31° C, climate is moderate. Nature loving British built Vizag as a resort, but today it is somewhat polluted city.
Railway connection at Visakhapatnam
Visakhapatnam Junction is 924 km from Kolkata on Kolkata-Chennai Railway track, it is 810 km from Chennai. The distance of Rajahmundry from Visakhapatnam is 194 km, Vijyawada is 315 km, Hyderabad is 667km.
Howrah bound trains from Chennai travel via Vijayawada, Rajahmundry & Visakhapatnam. Passenger trains from Rajahmundry leave at 1-20, 11-15, 12-45 for Visakhapatnam & arrive there in 5 hrs. Ratnachal Express at 8-29, Janmabhumi Express at 16-06, Thirumal aExpress at 5-52 also run via Visakhapatnam from Rajahmundry. From Howrah, Visakhapatnam is connected by Coromondal Express, Chennai Mail, East Cost Express, Falaknuma Express.
From Visakhapatnam everyday 8518 Visakhapatnam Korba Express leaves at 19-00 and arrives at Korba at 11 -15 via Raipur (6-40 next day), Bilaspur(9-0Ph:. 2807Samata Express leaves on Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday at 5-50 and arrives at Nizamuddin (Delhi) via, Nagpur, Bhopal, Agra Cantonment.
At 7-45 am a Passenger train leaves Visakhapatnam for Kirandaul via Araku/Koraput/Jeypore/Jagdalpur. Visakhapatnam-Koraput passenger train also leaves Visakhapatnam. Aleppi-Bokaro steel city, Puri-Ukha, Patna-Ernakulam, Secunderabad-Palasa. Guwahati-Kochi/Thiruvananthapuram Express runs via Visakha¬patnam. Kakinara. Warangal. Gwalior, Raipur, Nagpur. Ahmedabad. Mumbai, Patna, Ranchi and many other places in India are connected by railway with Visakhapatnam.
Bus service of Visakhapatnam
NH5 passes through the city. From Visakhapatnam APSRTC (Ph: 2565038) buses leave for Vijayawada, Guntur, Araku, Rajahmundry and for various destinations in the state & neighboring states. Retiring rooms are also available in bus stand. Sea beach or Visakhapatnam Port city is 2 km from bus stand & 3 km from railway station. Buses, taxis and auto rickshaws offer regular services.
Hotels and other accommodation at Visakhapatnam
Anwesa Ph: 22213886/ 23541436
Hotel Jupiter Ph: 2564211, Hotel Dolphin, Ph: 2567000/ 22442051; Hotel Prince, Ranga Street, Daba Gardens Ph:2747675
Green Park, near Vidyut Sudha, Ph: 2564444
Hotel Apsara Ph: 2564861, Lodge Vishwabhavan, 14-l-lA,Ganjipeta-2; Dwarkalnn, Station Road, Dwarakanagar-16 Ph:2712627
Hotel Viraat, Indira Gandhi Stadium Road-1 Ph: 2564821
There are many other lodgings and hotels throughout the city to the north of Sea beach -
Ocean View Inn, 7-1 -43, Kirlampudi-23, Ph:2554828
Lodge Konark, 47/12-2 Dwarakanagar, Visakhapatnam-530016, Ph: 2548251,
Hotel JyotiSwaroopa, 47/11-2 Dwarakanagar-16 Ph: 2748872,
Welcome Group's Grand Bay Sheraton, Nowroji Road-2 Ph: 2560101,
Hotel Sarovaz, Dwarakanagar, Ph: 22376714/ Ph: 23541436;
Hotel Anant near RTC Complex Ph: 2550113, Ph: 22442051;
Hotel Goutami, Ph: 2508982,
Hotel Kaveri,Ph: 2561555,
Aditya Lodge, Ph: 2566277,
Hotel Meghalaya, 10-4-5 Ramnagar, Asilmetta-3 Ph: 2755141/ 22442051;
Lodge Sagar, 16-1-30 Collectors' office Junction, Visakhapatnam-2, Ph: 2526397;
On Ramakrishna Paramhansa Marg-530002, or, Beach Road—
Hotel Jaabily Beach Inn, Ph:2706026 / 22442051; Palm Beach Hotel, Ph: 2554026 / 23541436;
Park Hotel, Ph: 2754488, Mumbai Ph: (022)22854574, Delhi Ph: (011)23732477, Kolkata Ph: (033)22493121
Taj Residency, Ph: 2567756
Grand Bay Ravi Hotel, 15-1-44 Nowroji Road-2, Ph: 2550691
Hotel Dasapalla, near Raghaven Swami Temple-2, Ph: 2717300 For booking call Ph: 22485829/23541436/ 22442051.
Behind Bay View Hotel Sri Lakhsmi Booking Ph: 22442051
Sai Priya Beach Resort, Rushikonda Beach-45, Ph: 2790333
On Ramakrishna Beach, near Kali Temple, Nirala Saikate, G-2 Waves Apartment, R K Beach-3 Ph: 2705699, Bengali Style food is served here.
On the 2nd floor of Sea-View Apartment Aajkal Holiday Home, Ph: 2707857
Sunrise Guest House, Kolkata Booking Ph: 22442051.
Retiring rooms are available both at Railway station & bus stand.
15 km from Railway station APTDC owned Punnami Rishikonda Beach Resort, Bhimili Road .Ph: 2790734
6 km from Railway station Punnami Hotel-Yatrinivas, opp Appughar, Beach Road Ph: 2562333. Kolkata Booking for Punnami: Diamond Tours Ph: 22376714/ 22442051.
Although there are star category hotels, yet the middle class hotels e.g Hotel Dolphin, Hotel Sree Sathya, Lodge Sree Ganesh, Hotel Sree Kanya, Lodge Vrindavan, Hotel Jupiter, Hotel Monorama, Sai Priya Beach Resort, Lodge Sagar provide good management. One can find hotels at sea beach reaching there by bus No 42,42E from railway station.
UCO Bank Officers' Congress runs a holiday home near Visakhapatnam Railway Station, Kolkata Booking : 16-A, Brabourne Road, Kol-1, Ph: 22351778; UBI Bhowanipur, Kolkata Booking : 31 Ashutosh Mukherjee Road-20, Ph: 24753188.
Conducted Tours from Visakhapatnam:
Tourism dept, Regional Tourist Information Bureau, Vuda Building, Siripuram,Visakhapatnam-560003, Ph: (0891) 2559956/2554716, organize sight seeing city and Singhachalam every morning. The tour starts at 8-00 am & comes back at 6-00 pm.
Everyday Araku & Bora cave trip is organized by railway & bus.7-00 am to 9-00 pm. Same trip can be made by bus only.
Annabharam tour 7-00am to 5- 00 pm.
Two days tour to Bhadrachalam.
Everyday Borra Cave, Tyda and Araku Valley trip.
5 days tour to Araku and Jagdalpur is also conducted including food and lodging.
Every Sunday Arasavelli tour is organized.
5 days tour to Simachalam, Boraguhalo, Araku, Jagadalpur/ Dandakaranya.
7 days tour to Sirdhi-Aurangabad-Hyderabad,
Every Friday Konark tourfor3 days by APTDC
Booking: Andhra Pradesh Tour, 46A, RTC Complex, Visakhapatnam-550020, Ph: 2746446.
This article is originally published in Travel India and India Study Channel