The beauty of Araku valley
Natural beauty of the valley
800 feet above the sea level
Araku valley is about 115 kilometers from Visakhapatnam. Many tribal people live in this valley. There is an exploratory cum demonstration farm of 18 hectares, a silk farm with mulberry gardens, maintained by the government. The Araku valley with bracing climate and orchards and the Anantagiri hills, presents an enchanting view, attracting many tourists. The tribal’s, with their folklore and traditional costumes enhance the natural beauty of the valley. Dhimsa dance is a unique feature of the hill tribes in the valley.
Simhachalam is known for the temple of Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy on a hill among Simhachalam hills at a height of about 800 feet above the sea level. A broad flight of steps are, numbering over thousand from the foot of the hill up to the Hanuman Gate. Hanuman gate is at a bastion (big-protective wall), now it ruins, which protected the temple in the past. This temple consists of a squire shrine surmounted by a high tower, a square nineteen pillared Mandapa facing the portico and an enclosing Varanda.
One these pillars are known as the Kappam Stambham (tribute pillar) is believed to possess miraculous curative powers. There is a stone car with stone wheels and prancing stone horses within the temple.
The body of the deity Narasimha in the shrine is always covered with sandal paste. The coating is renewed annually on the Vaisakhi in May. It is celebrated as Chanadana Yatra. There is a Natya Mandapa on the Northern side of the temple, where the kalyanotsavam of the deity is performed. There is a perennial spring called `Gangadhara’ on this hill.