America's Grand Canyon is known to strike the world with its spectacular landscape and is a major attraction that any traveler would want to explore. Little did visitors know that India's Grand Canyon – Gandikota is one of its own kind. The Grand Canyon was created by the Penna River by following the same path for many years. With the stunning waterfalls, a rich culture, and history, booking a ticket is a must for nature lovers. Gandikota’s gorge almost resembles the one in Arizona, USA, and has a history dating back to the 12th century. Exploring the Gorge will leave every traveler in awe. Visiting the Grand Canyon of India? Here is everything to know.
How to Get There
Travelers can reach Gandikota via flight from either Bangalore’s Bengaluru International Airport or Renigunta’s Tirupati Airport - the closest to India's Grand Canyon.
- Flight Duration from Bengaluru: 6 hours
- Flight Duration from Tirupati Airport: 4 ½ hours
Travelers can reach Gandikota via train - which is 219 km away from Tirupati, 18 km away from Jammalamadugu, and 77 km away from Kadapa to Gandikota. Visitors can also reach Gandikota via road through the major cities connected to the Grand Canyon – Hyderabad, Bangalore, and Vizag.
Best Times to Visit Gandikota
Just like any other region in India, Gandikota experiences major climate changes – winter, summer, and monsoon. Summer periods are associated with extremely high temperatures and are the worst time to visit this destination because the weather is too hot and unpleasant to walk around. The area doesn't experience many weather changes during the monsoon. Winter is associated with pleasant and comfortable weather. The best time to explore India's Grand Canyon is September-February since the weather is favorable.
Places to Explore in India's Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is located in a small remote area in India yet still attracts millions of travelers from around the world. Visitors can enjoy many activities here – from camping to exploring the beautiful caves and other outdoor activities. Gandikota has plenty of things travelers can see and do. Visitors exploring Gandikota should not leave without making trips to the Grand Canyon’s hotspots.
Overlooking India's Grand Canyon, walking through the Gandikota Fort is a great way to experience history at its best. Some of the ancient rulers who reigned here include Chalukyas, Cholas, Kalyani, Delhi Sultane, and Golkonda Sultane. The unique architecture, beautiful Hindu temples, a jail, a mosque, and a stunning village inside the fort make it worth a visit on a trip to Gandikota.
Mylavaram Reservoir is one of the most spectacular dams built on River Penna – and is an iconic Gandikota tour destination. Travelers have a lot to witness here -from boat rides and watching the locals engage in fishing. It was built to provide an irrigation potential of about 75,000 acres and has a beautiful nearby museum rich in history and culture. The sunset view is spectacular during evenings from this dam. Mylavaram Reservoir is a must-visit Gandikota spot for an amazing India travel experience.
- Distance: 10 kilometers from Gandikota
- Travel duration: 1 hour
- Opening times: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
The Penna River
When travelers experience how peaceful the Penna River flows through the Gandikota gorge, they'll understand where it got the name 'the Grand Canyon. The rocks found here are arranged stunningly as if they were made out of human hands. Climbing these rocks can be challenging, especially for a first-time goer. But the beautiful views from the top are worth the hustle! From the top of these treacherous rocks, one can watch pelicans fly in groups over the river. A trip to Gandikota is truly rewarding.
Only a few shops are selling soft drinks and snacks around here. With the few food options, travelers should pack some food to take them through the journey.
Belgium Caves are India's second-largest caves and the longest. Their unique appearances are spectacular and create a magnificent sight. The unique rock formations occurred as a result of underground water flow, and travelers can experience the repercussions of these rocks from inside the caves. The delicious local Indian dishes served outside the caves are worth trying.
This temple is situated about 45 km from Belum Caves and is full of history and myths – one of which is that the Nandi at the temple’s front keeps increasing in size. The rock that once carved the Nandi was discovered by scientists to exhibit the nature of increasing in size, which may confirm that the myth is true. Yaganti Temple is located in India's Andhra Pradesh State, Kurnool District, and is a great spot in Gandikota to learn the stories behind the existence of this temple and the surrounding.
According to the locals, the lake was built by King Sri Krishnadevaraya from the Penna River's water. From the lake, travelers can experience the beautiful Grand Canyon and Erramala hills. This is the perfect spot to watch sunrises and sunsets. With many birds flying over the lake – both migratory and native making It a great spot to engage in birdwatching.
India's Grand Canyon has a lot of adventure activities in store for travelers, including rock climbing, paragliding, trekking, rappelling, and kayaking. Travelers can enjoy the spectacular views of the surroundings, including the sunflower fields and waterfalls. Located in a rural setting, Gandikota’s adventure activities offer an amazing experience than travelers realize. India's Grand Canyon gives the best experience – and is worthy of exploring.
Where to Eat in Gandikota
Gandikota has some of the best places to eat a wide range of local Indian foods – be it breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Some of the best spots are Abhiruchi Family Restaurant and Gandikota Penna River View. Near the Fort of Gandikota are Andhra Spice, Priyanka Restaurant, and Nirmala Bakery – and they have many options to choose from. From these eateries, travelers can have the most breathtaking views of the surrounding.
From the most spectacular rocks with unique formations to village experiences and amazing food, India's Grand Canyon is a wonderful destination - worthy of exploring.