The Natural Caves of VizagOctober is a month of festivals! And if you are planning a trip to Vizag during your holidays, then it is one of the best things to do! Visakhapatnam gears up for 'Vizag Sky Lantern festival' which is held on 18th October at Indira Priyadarshini Municipal Stadium in the evening. It is all about 'Make a wish, Light a lantern' where these sky lanterns signify prayers that are released for good luck and blessings. The reason for this festival is unity among people, youth empowerment and a better Vizag.
One of the most important places to visit in Vizag are the Borra Guhalu or Borra Caves located about 92 kms. from Vizag? Well, make a trip to this place during these holidays!
Borra Guhalu near VisakhapatnamThe river Gosthani originates from here - yes, from these caves which are a million years old cave discovered by British geologist William King in 1807. The caves are 12 m in height and 200 m in length.
Stalagmites and stalactites have been formed in the caves of different shapes resembling crocodile, mother-child, tiger, Shiv-Parvati etc. and have been named accordingly by tourists. Borra Caves picture gallery displays inside photos of the cave.
In Telugu, Borra caves are also known as Borra Guhalu (Guhalu means caves). It is located in the Ananthagiri hills of Araku valley of Visakhapatnam district of Andhra Pradesh. These are one of the largest and deepest caves in India. Water percolates from the roof of the caves and dissolves limestone. It trickles drop by drop to form stalactite (Calcium carbonate deposits) at the roof and drips to the ground forming stalagmite.
Legend Associated with Borra GuhaluThe popular legend is that while grazing, acow fell down 60 m and was found near the cave safe and sound by the cowherd. He interpreted the stone inside the cave as Shiv linga which saved the cow and later the village folk built a temple of Lord Shiva outside the cave. Devotees come here to worship the lingam and also get a glimpse of the caves.
The stone formations in the Borra Caves resemble the udder (sthani) of a cow and hence it is known as Gosthani.
- Entry fee: Adults Rs 40, Rs. 30 per child.
- Camera allowed at a fee of Rs 25.
- Video and Digital Cameras allowed at a fee of Rs 100. (No locker facility to deposit cameras in case you decide not to carry them with you. Local shop keepers can keep your camera for Rs 5 along with hand written token as proof)
- Timings: 10 A.M. to 5.00 P.M.
Accommodation around Borra CavesYou can find accommodation either in Vizag (92 kms.) or in Araku (36 kms.). Tyda Jungle bells is just 15 kms. and Anantagiri hill resort (A.P. tourism) is 10 kms. Small restaurants are available near Borra caves. Borra Caves Railway station (BGHU) has two retiring rooms (at a charge of Rs 110 for 12 hrs.) with four beds capacity.
How to Reach Borra CavesBorra caves are well connected by road, rail and air services. Visakhapatnam airport is 90 kms. from Borra caves. The road route is a hill road and it takes around 3 hours to reach the caves. Train services are on Kothavalasa-Kirandul railway line which passes through hill section and about 30 tunnels during the journey! The train journey to Borra Guhalu railway station takes around 5 hours.
A one day trip to Borra caves can also include short visits to nearby Ananthagiri Coffee Plantation, Tyada Railway tunnel, Damuku View Point, Padmapuram Gardens and the Araku valley (famous hill station 29 kms.).
The mercury, sodium vapour and halogen lamps give a beautiful view of various formations in the cave. Light up your life by visiting the Borra caves and seeing something really unique!