5 Beautiful Weekend Destinations From Vellore (2020)
The ancient city of Vellore is located in the northeastern part of Tamil Nadu, on the banks of the river Palar Vellore. Popularly called the Fort City, Vellore is home to the fantastic Vellore fort, which is located in the heart of the city. For those who want to make the most of their weekends, there are many exciting places to explore around Vellore. From mountain ranges to temples, here are some of the most interesting places to visit during a weekend getaway from Vellore.
1. Swami Malai Hills
One of the most popular weekend getaways from Vellore is a trip to the majestic Swami Malai Hills. Located in Yelagiri, the Swami Malai Hills is located 94 kilometers away from Vellore and is a popular trekking destination. These hills are the highest point of the Yelagiri hill station, and while trekking here, you can also stop over to check out the Punganoor Lake, which is just a three-kilometer trek away from the hills.
All the trekking routes here lead to a small area at the hilltop that provides you with some of the most dazzling views of the entire valley. This trek has become hugely popular in recent years, and you will find many trekkers. Avoid visiting the Swami Malai Hills in the monsoon season as the slopes are too slippery for trekking.
The holy temple town of Tirupati is located around 110 kilometers from Vellore, and if you are driving down for the weekend, it will take you around three hours to reach Tirupati via the Vellore-Chittoor Road.
Located in the Chittoor district in Andhra Pradesh, Tirupati is famous for the Lord Venkateshwara Temple. This temple is one of the most visited pilgrimage centers in India and a prominent Hindu worship hub in the world. The temple is located on Tirumala, which is one of the seven hills in Tirupati. This temple is believed to be the very place where Lord Venkateshwara transformed into the form of an idol and is, therefore, considered to be the home of Govinda, another name of the Lord.
Tirupati is also one of the oldest cities of India and has been mentioned prominently in the ancient Vedas and Puranas.
What is Tirupati famous for? Apart from the Lord Venkateshwara Temple, there are many other temples in Tirupati that you can visit. The Sri Kalahasti Temple, the Kondandarama Temple, the Parashurameshwara Temple, the ISKCON Temple, and the Sri Govindrajaswami Temple are all famous and ancient temples in this town that warrant a visit.
Tirupati is also famous for a unique geological wonder in India that you should definitely not miss out on. Known as the Silathoranam, this geological wonder is a natural arch formed from rocks and located in the Tirumala Hills.
When is the best time to visit Tirupati? You can visit Tirupati around the year as the pilgrimage to the Lord Venkateshwara Temple keeps going on throughout the year. Though the monsoon rains can cause a bit of discomfort when it comes to traveling outside, it never dampens the non-stop chanting of ‘Om Namo Venkateshya’ that echo through this holy town.
3. Amirthi Zoological Park
Another great weekend getaway from Vellore is the Amirthi Zoological Park. This zoo is located under the Javadu Hills near Vellore, and it is one of the top-rated tourist attractions in Tamil Nadu.
How far away is Amirthi Zoological Park from Vellore? The zoological park is located around 124 kilometers from Vellore and is spread over a sprawling 25 hectares. The highlight of the zoo is a mesmerizing waterfall located in the heart of the park. While half of the park has been developed into a zoo for tourists, the other half of the park has been turned into a wildlife sanctuary.
The sanctuary is home to many exotic and rare wildlife species, including spotted dear, hedgehog, red-headed parrots, reason monkeys, wild cats, eagles, love birds, wild parrots, rabbits, pythons, ducks, and pigeons.
There are also numerous trekking routes through the park, and you can enjoy seeing many of the wildlife as the routes take you through the sanctuary.
Located 56 kilometers from Vellore, Chittoor is a popular weekend getaway in Tamil Nadu. This historical city is all about ancient temples, beautiful Dravidian architecture, and stunning sculptures. Chittoor is a must-visit destination for everyone at least once in their lifetime.
Blessed with ample scenic beauty, this beautiful hill station is known for its mesmerizing cascading waterfalls and sprawling mango orchards. In fact, Chittoor is also known as the Mango City.
What is Chittoor known for? Here are some of the top tourist places to check out while in Chittoor:
- Sri Venkateshwara National park
- Srikalahasti Temple
- Horsley Hills
- Kangal Falls
- Kailasakona Waterfalls
When is the best time to visit Chittoor? The hill station is known to have a hot and dry climate around the year. However, the summers are scorching hot, with temperatures frequently crossing over 40 degrees Celsius. This is why it is usually not recommended that you visit Chittoor in the summer months. The perfect time to visit Chittoor is between September and February when the weather is pleasant, and the temperature remains moderate.
Located just 71 kilometers from Vellore, Kanchipuram is known as the golden city of a thousand temples. You can reach the town of Kanchipuram in only 1 hour and 20 minutes from Vellore if you are driving down. The drive down to Kanchipuram from Vellore is a beautiful, winding route.
What is Kanchipuram known for? While most of us know Kanchipuram for its beautiful Kanchipuram silk sarees, the city is also a popular tourist destination in Tamil Nadu. It makes for a perfect weekend getaway from Vellore. Sometimes also referred to just as Kanchi, this city attracts a lot of tourists from all over the world who want to learn more about spirituality and Hinduism while seeing the marvel of Dravidian architecture.
Kanchipuram has always been a well-known cultural and philosophical hub of South India. The city is home to the renowned Kanchi Kamakshi Temple, which is the revered home of Goddess Kamakshi, a form of Goddess Parvati. There is also the Kailasanathar Temple, which is known far and wide for its magnificent sculpting and architecture.
One of the must-visit sites in Kanchipuram is the Ekambeshwarar Temple, which is the biggest, highest, and most impressive temple in Tamil Nadu. The temple is sprawled over 40 acres and dates back all the way to the Pallava Dynasty. The Kanchi Mutt holds South Indian classical music concerts here on many evenings.
When is the best time to visit Kanchipuram? The months of October to March are said to be the best time to visit Kanchipuram. The temperatures during this time remain pleasant, and there is less humidity in the air. Monsoons bring heavy rainfall, and you won’t be able to venture out much in such a heavy downpour. You can also plan your trip in January during the Brahmotshsavam festival, in April to see the Garudothsavam festival, or in May to catch the magnificent Chariot festival.
The Vellore City was ruled by a host of rulers ranging from the Pallavas to the Cholas, the Vijayanagara, the Rashtrakuta, the Carnatic, and the British. These dynasties have left their distinct mark on the places near Vellore as well and visiting these places nearby Vellore can be a great experience to take in the rich architecture and stunning beauty.