Finally I got the opportunity to visit Tirupathi to get the darshan of Lord Venkateshwara. I am writing this blog so that it could help those guys who are visiting Tirupathi for the first time. I booked my ticked through SGL tours which has tie up with APTDC. The ticket cost around 1500/- per head and the whole trip is meticulously organized by them. The ticket is transferable. I had booked the ticket earlier and I couldn’t go because of some urgent works and so the ticket was transferred to my Cousin. I visited Tirupathi along with my family and was good experience.
The bus starts at 7.30 from Bangalore. The bus is APSTRC Volvo bus which is quite good. It takes the Old madras – KR Puram road to get into the highway. It stops for dinner at around 9.30 at road side hotel. As there lot of buses stopping at the same place there is huge rush in the hotel. Make sure that the you have noted bus number properly as this will be taken as reference every where .In the hotel try to sit wherever you get a place to seat as getting the family together at one table is difficult. They give you half an hour time and also order of something which is readily available. The bus reaches at Tirupathi at around 1.30 AM. One guide will be there who will give you the hotel room key. I think the hotel is maintained by Tirupathi Devasthanam only. 2 persons get one room and this is given as per the ticket. You will get 45 minutes to freshen yourself. Geaser is available in the bathroom if you need hot water for bathing. After you allotted time you need to assemble again downstairs and a local bus (Sapthagiri Express) will take you to Thirumala (3.00 AM). You can leave your bags in the bus (Volvo Bus) itself and can keep valuable electronic items with you. There is huge queue for the bus itself near the entrance to the hill where in police will do there checking. It will take another 45 minutes to reach the top(4.00 AM) You will get a good view of the city as you reach the top. Take a nap if you feel sleepy.
Once you reach the Thirumala the guide will take you to a shop where you can deposit your valuable (mobile, electronic items) and your chapels. They will give you receipt and each item cost 10/- each. Then you need walk for another 10 mins towards the temple to reach the Sheegra Darshan entrance. As we were little late we had to run. From there it will take an Hour or so to reach the near the shrine depending upon on the rush. You will literally have a fight and gush as you reach near the main shrine. But whatever it may be once you see the Lord it will surely bring a smile on your face. 3 or 5 Seconds is what you get but that much time itself is great. After the Darshan you come out of the main shrine and you can see the other deities near to the main shrine. Your nose will be filled with fragrance smell of pure ghee and Laddu. In the next turn of the main shrine you will get the Kuberan’s Hundi where you can deposit all Kanikas (money). You will get prasadam when you come out of the outgoing Queue. You will be coming down and having breakfast at same room lodge and then visit to Padmavathi temple. You will reach back to Bangalore by 5 with a stoppage at 1.00 PM for lunch
It has been a good experience. Only issue with this trip is that you cannot go through entire Thirumalai or Tirupathi. But for first time visitors this is certainly a good package