Gandikota is situated on the banks of the Pennar River. It derives its name from two Telegu words- 'Gandi' meaning gorge and 'Kota' meaning fort. Also known as George fort, it is a stone fort built upon a hill. Guarded by a huge entrance, almost 20 feet high and bastions each over 40 feet high, it still remains a rather imposing structure. The fort is believed to have been built during the later half of the 13th century AD. There are a number of places of interest within the fort which are worth seeing. The Ranganatha and Madhavaswamy temples, built during the 15th and 16th centuries, are adorned with sculptures and built in an architectural style reminiscent of the Vijayanagara period. The Juma Masjid covers a huge area stands next to a large granary, used to stockpile food during the time of a siege. An impressive Pigeon Tower and a palace with plastered decorations are also interesting structures. From the top of the tower a panoramic view of the surrounding forests and valleys can be obtained. Located nearby is the Mylavaram Dam which is a popular picnic spot because of the sparkling waters, lush trees and pleasant environment. Gandikota is located 77 Kms from Cuddapah district.
Another major spot of tourist interest of the Cuddapah district is the Sidhout fort. It stands on the banks of the Pennar River and covers an area of 30 acres. It was built in 1303 AD. The majestic gateways at the two ends have embellished pillars and intricate carvings of Gajalakshmi at the top. 17 square bastions which protected the area are still an impressive sight. A special feature of the fort is an ancillary passage allowing people to enter when the main gates are closed. Often referred to as the gateway to Srisailam or Dakshina Kasi, Sidhout Fort also encompasses beautifully sculpted temples inside its premises. These included Siddheswara, Bala Brahma, Ranganayaka Swamy and a Durga Temple that attracts numerous pilgrims. The Sidhout Fort is located near Siddhavatam, around 25 Kms from Cuddapah.
Tallapaka village is the birthplace of one of the most famous personalities of Andhra Pradesh, Vaggeyakara Annamacharya. He was a great religious poet. Born in 1424 at Tallapaka Village in Rajampet Mandal, he favoured the lyrical style of poetry and composed songs and psalms. On Lord Venkateswara of Tirumala, his family deity he composed more than Thirty two thousand devotional hymns - Sankeerthanas. These keerthanas were set to Carnatic music and are very popular throughout India. Annamacharya's wife Timmakka is the first poetess in Telugu literature. She composed Subhadrakalyanam. The sons and grand children of Annamacharya were all born poets who continued their writings in the footsteps of Annamacharya. Cuddapah district's name is glorified by the efforts of the 'Tallapaka Poets.' Chennakesava, Siddeswara temples, Srichakra, Eka, Tatayya idol and TTD dhyanamandir are the main attractions to the tourists. Annamacharya had established a Hundi at Tirumala and enriched the temple.
Tallapakka is located 55 Kms from Cuddapah & 6 Kms from Rajampet on Cuddapah-Chennai highway.
These are the various places of historical interest in the Cuddapah district. They are well worth a visit by any tourist visiting the place.
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