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Best route from Bangalore to Tirupati (Tirumala) by

Car
Reviewed 5 November 2013

Last time, we went to Titupati by car through very well-known route:


Bangalore-Kolar-Palamaneru-Chittooru-Tirupati. We noticed heavy traffic in
that route.
This time, we wanted to explore alternative route: Bangalore-HoskoteChintamani-Madanapalle-Pileru-Tirupati (SH-82 & NH 205 Route).We went
through this route up to Madanapalle when we visited Horsley Hills few
years back.
We started in Whitefiled at 8 AM and reached Tirumala (Alipiri) by 12:30
PM with an half an hour break for breakfast in the middle. Roughly it is 4
hours journey from Hoskote to Tirumala (Alipiri) and the distance is around
210 KM. Hoskote-Chintamani (an hour, ~ 50 KM), Chintamani-Madanapalle
(an hour, ~50 KM), Madanapalle-Pileru (an hour, ~ 55 KM), Pileru-Alipiri
(Tirumala Hill entrance) (an hour, ~55 KM).
The entire route up to Tirupati is a 2 lane one and there was hardly any
traffic and no potholes. The road conditions are very good. One can easily
maintain 80-100 KMPH on this route. 2 lane road was newly laid between
Hoskote and Chintamani and so the ride was very smooth on this stretch.
This entire route is a drivers pleasure. You cant find good food joints on
this route. There are one or two small dhabas after Chintamani. Of course,
you can have some food and snacks at Madanapalle, Sri Valmikipuram or
Pileru. There are small ghat sections between Madanapalle and Pileru,
Pileru and Tirupati stretches. You can have panoramic views of beautiful
hills in these stretches.
Just before reaching Tirupati, we stopped at Srinivasa Mangapuram and
had darshan of Sri Kalyana Venkateswara Swamy. Srinivasa Mangapuram
is on the Pileru-Tirupati stretch, just before reaching Tirupati.
After crossing Srinivasa Mangapuram, we noticed a direct by pass road to
Alipiri (entrance to Tirumala Hill).This Alipiri by pass road is around 6.5 KM
long and on this road, you can visit Tirupati Zoo, Regional Science Center,
Sri Venkateswara Vedic University, upcoming Sriharidham (Mythological
theme park) etc. We stopped at Tirupati Zoo on this road and had lunch in

Caf opposite Zoo. After lunch, we covered Kapila Theertham and then
Tiruchanur for Sri Padmavati ammavari darshan. We reached Tirumala hill
top in the evening.
For those visiting Tirupati from Bangalore, we recommend this traffic free
route.If you are interested to cover both Horsley hills (at Madanapalle) and
Tirupati, this is the best route. You can start from Bangalore in the morning
and then stay at Horsley hills for a night. You can then proceed to Tirupati
next day.
Due to very less traffic and some ghat sections,we don't recommend night
drives on this route.
http://www.tripadvisor.in/ShowUserReviews-g297587-d1220147-r183631226-Tirumala_TempleTirupati_Andhra_Pradesh.html#
Roadtrip : Bangalore -> Tirupathi Tirumala -> Bangalore
I have just completed the Roadtrip from Bangalore to Tirupathi Tirumala and back to
Bangalore.
I have written a travelogue and here is the web url
Travelogue: Bangalore -Tirumala (Tirupathi) - Bangalore -> 2 Days x 615 kms x loads of fun
The text version is as below but I would recommend you to view the blog for details and
pictures.
Preface
This has been pending from past 5 years at least and we have not been able to decide or
had the courage to go to Tirumala (Tirupathi) as were scared of the long queues as
described by fellow friends etc. But this time we decided, lets do it and we did it :)

Route taken
Took Bangalore-K.R.Puram Bridge-Hoskote-Kolar-Chittor-Palamner-TirupathiTirumala. (Thanks to Mukesh)
Did all the research on the route and downloaded the same on the iPod Touch so we can
follow the guidelines. Had Google Maps connection all the way but did not really use it much
as the route was pretty much simple and straight.
Packed some clothes for a changeover at Tirumala and carried some food stuff etc for Kids
as we were not very sure on what we will get on the way. But as fellow TAI'ns suggested we

were expecting to get some south indian snacks on the way at-least.

Started from Bangalore at 6:30 AM from south Bangalore via Bannerghatta Road ->
Koramangala -> Indranagar -> Old Madras Road -> K.R.Puram Bridge -> Hoskote
-> Kolar -> Chittor ->Palamner -> Tirupathi -> Tirumala.

First stop was somewhere before Hoskote and it was a forced halt. I had a small fight with
one of the local bus drivers as while I was trying to overtake him from his right lane, he
immediately blocked me and I had to push the brakes so Hard that all of us nearly fell down
from our seats. Since we were wearing seat belts, got saved. But really this was the first
test for the beast for a hard brake from 90 - 0 in 3~4 secs and believe me after this incident
I have much more faith on Scorpios braking capability than what I expected it to be. The
beast stopped in straight line with no dragging etc. So thanks to Mahindra and GOD to save
us for a unfortunate event. I really blasted this guy later on, but since he was too rude I did
not feel necessary to quarrel with him too much as I had family with me and he was
absolutely non apologetic. anyway so we moved on and stopped a little later for a photo
break. Here are some pictures on the way to Tirupathi.

Here are some more pictures en-route and then we stopped at Woody's for the breakfast.
The food was good if not very good. So we had good breakfast and then moved on further.

After about 2 hrs of driving, took another break and then moved on. Once we reached
Tirupathi, got the Diesel topped up at the fuel station, and then started towards Tirumala.

We were stopped at the scanning center and we were asked to get down, get all the luggage
scanned and then take the entry ticket of 50Rs and move towards Tirumala Temple. So after
taking the ticket, we started towards Tirumala. Believe me folks, the drive was amazing and
Scorpio's real power was tested here on the Ghat roads. I mean I have done nearly 50+
looong drives on my Santro on various terrains, and every time I was on a hill, it used to
stress up and with AC on hills or overtaking was always a challenge. But now on Scorpio, it
was a breeze. It handled all the elevations so lightly that I did not feel any difference or
stress on the engine. Loved the drive with AC on almost full time.

So then around 2:30 we reached at the booking office and got the room allotted to us at
Lalitha Nilayam. We paid around 6000Rs for a room with 3 beds and it was pretty good and
well maintained. I loved the overall surroundings of the place. It was very clean and well
maintained. Beds were comfortable and bathrooms were clean. Only problem was to get
some decent food out there. no option for tea/coffee either. So we went to the room,
freshened up and headed towards the restaurant for the lunch. After w had the lunch, we
headed towards the Vari temple and learned that the 300Rs ticket counter is closed and we
will have to wait until next morning.

So as the rush was not too much, we headed towards the free darshan queue. We parked
the beast at the car parking at the free darshan queue centre, kept all our belongings in the
car (as suggested by many) included the cell phones, ipods etc and joined the queue. The
rush wasn't looking too bad from there but as we entered the main hall, we were shocked to
see ocean of people marching toward the queue and the hall. But we still carried on and
decided to give it a shot as were not sure to wait until next morning for SeegraDarshan. So
we entered the queue complex, and waited patiently in the hall. The estimated time of
darshan that time was about 12midnight and we reached there at 5:15PM. So it looked like
a herculean task but we still kept sitting and waiting. After about an hours wait, we realised
that the queue is not even moving and took a decision to quit and go back to the room so
we can relax, re-charge ourselves and do the SeegraDarshan next morning. So we came out
of the hall and went to the room straight away.

We relaxed there for a while and then headed for Dinner. Since the family was very tired, I
decided to get something packed for them and headed for the food hunt and take a drive
around the place and click some pictures. After a short drive, I found one small fast food
place which had some Gobi Manchurian and Noodles and some tid bits. So I decided to take
some snack for family. The snacks were good. We had the snacks and crashed for the night.

Woke up next morning at 5AM to join the SeegraDarshan queue, got ready, checked out and
headed for breakfast. Had some sumptious breakfast and then drove towards the parking.
That is when we realised that the rush on this day was atleast 10 times more that last day.
The queues were longer than we ever expected but that was the only choice. So we joined
the queue after parking the car and kept all the shoes etc in it. This is when the long wait
started. The experience in the queue was mixed bag of anxiety, tiredness, frustration from
the crowd (pushing.. pushing) and loooong wait between the queue movement. Surprising
was the halt of queues for VIP Darshan and some special pooja etc. Some people kept
joining the queue from some gates in-between which I felt was very un-ethical. There was a
huge cry from the crowd in the queue every time someone joined the queues in between
but the authorities there did not budge. I guess this is pretty normal at Tirupathi, but since
we went there for the first time we were not expecting this. Anyway so it took us 6hours for
the darshan and we cam out around 11:30 or so. We were delighted with the darshan but
the overall experience was a mixed bag.

One thing I would like to mention for the people who go there is DO NOT wear shorts as I
was in the shorts and was stopped to enter just before the main temple hall. It was a
moment I regretted as after waiting for darshan for almost 5hrs, I didn't wanted to get
thrown out. So I had borrowed my mom's shawl and wore it like a dhoti :) and after
negotiating, I was let in. Another thing is that most of the priests there inside the temple
are after money, I was asked to shell out money to spend more time in front of the diety but
I refused. In-fact the priest.helpers inside almost were snatching the money from my hand.
But kep holding it and put it in the Hundi outside. This is something which kills the whole
mood and makes you feel bad. Anyway this is just my experience and I don't want to
generalise this for everyone.

So after the darshan, We came out and relaxed a bit outside the temple. We (specially kids)
were so dead tired that my son literally fell down on his knees and was very angry at me.
So I made them sit over there and went to collect the prasad laddoo. There was a huge
queue for that but took only about 10mins. So we collected the laddoos and moved back
towards the car park. We all then got ready, put on our shoes and headed straight for the
lunch as we were dead hungry. We could see hotel Woodside Restaurant and decided to
have the lunch there itself. So had lunch which was not so great but since we were hungry,
anything worked :)

After the lunch, we didn't waste any time and quickly moved towards Bangalore. On the
way, we took some pictures and then took about 2 halts and reached home at around 11pm
after a great dinner at Anands, Koramangala.

Summary
Tirupathi Tirumala is a heavenly place and the drive from Bangalore is very good except few
stretches of not more than 10kms which is little broken/patched. You should plan well in
advance for Darshan and should always have reservation for accommodation if you plan to
stay overnight. Be ready to spend good time in the queues and DO NOT wear shorts. Be
nice to all devotees and never jump the queues.

Regards,
Amit