June 23, 2022
CM Content Team
Always wanted to visit the Grand Canyon in Arizona? Well, this Indian counterpart of it is just as beautiful. Located in the Kadapa district of Andhra Pradesh, Gandikota is a village that houses the Grand Canyon of India. The river Pennar cuts through the Erramala hills, forming a gorge that tourists call the Grand Canyon of India. The architecture by nature at this beautiful gorge has an uncanny resemblance to the original Grand Canyon in Arizona.
Any time is a good time to visit the Grand Canyon of India except for the summers. The summers get extremely hot and humid, and the temperature soars up to 45 degrees celsius. The weather is pleasant between September to February, even ideal for camping. One can camp out under the stars on the gorge and enjoy the sunrise over the Pennar river.
One can easily take a road trip from Bangalore or Hyderabad to the Grand Canyon of India. You can also take a train from Bangalore to Jammalamadugu. Gandikota is approximately 18 km from this station, and you can easily find a car to take you there.
The stunning gorge, also known as the Grand Canyon of India is only of the many locations you can explore in Gandikota. There are many things to do and places to explore here that will make your trip worthwhile.
Built in the 13th century, the Gandikota fort spreads for miles and is known for its remarkable architecture and beauty. The fort was built with sandstone and intricate carvings, with beautiful palaces and springs to irrigate the vegetation. The Gandikota temple is situated adjacent to the fort and there is a mosque nearby too. Visiting this fort during the sunset is even more marvelous as the colours of the sun setting over the horizon make for great pictures.
The Pennar river flows through the stone gorge, making the most picturesque view you will ever see. This gorge is called the Grand Canyon of India, because like the Grand Canyon in Arizona, the gorge is formed through the assembly of rocks, layered and cut most peculiarly. It almost seems like they were assembled by hand! Climbing up can be difficult, but the view from the top is worth the effort. Watch the pelicans fly over the Pennar river and the sun setting in the distance.
Apart from trekking, one can also indulge in many other adventure sports at the Grand Canyon of India. Tourists can enjoy kayaking, rock climbing, and rappelling at the gorge and camp out at night to enjoy the gorgeous sunrise over the Pennar river.
Located an hour’s drive from the Grand Canyon of India, the Belum Caves are the second largest caves in India. The caves were formed from black limestone millions of years ago and have fascinated archaeologists, geologists, architecture, and history buffs over the years. The caves have an uncanny resemblance to the Antelope Canyons in Arizona. The caves are 150 feet deep, and you can see the underwater stream flowing at the deepest point of the caves. There is also a tall 40-feet Buddha statue in the vicinity that one can visit.
Not too far from the Gandikota village, one can find the remains of the Madhavaraya temple and Raghunathaswamy temple. The architecture at these temples is something that one could lose themselves in. Made with red granite, the Raghunathaswamy temple does not have a single idol of any God or Goddess, giving it a mysterious air. The temple is a system of hallways, pillars, and corridors. The Madhavaraya temple, on the other hand, has many sculptures of Gods and Goddesses. The rituals of the people are carved on the pillars and granite walls of the temple.
The Grand Canyon of India is an offbeat and unique places in South India. The natural beauty combined with the adventure activities one can indulge in is brilliant. When are you planning your trip to the Grand Canyon of India?
Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Ltd. (MHRIL), a part of Leisure and Hospitality sector of the Mahindra Group, offers quality family holidays primarily through vacation ownership memberships and brings to the industry values such as reliability, trust and customer satisfaction. Started in 1996, the company's flagship brand ‘Club Mahindra’, today has over 250,000 members , who can holiday at 100+ resorts in India and abroad.