Amaravati – Historical Town and The New Capital of Andhra Pradesh State
Amaravati or Amaravathi is an ancient temple town in Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh state in Eastern coastal India. Amaravati alias Amareswaram is famous for the Shiva temple, Amareswara temple. Amaravathi is the capital of the newly bifurcated Andhra Pradesh state.
Amaravati in Andhra Pradesh lies on the banks of the famous Krishna river. Amaravati art is considered as one of the three major styles of ancient Indian Buddhist art (Gandhara style and the Mathura style, being the other two styles). Amaravati Gallery (made up of Amaravati Sculptures or Amaravati Marbles alias Elliot Marbles from the Great Amaravati stupa at Amaravati), which shows the remains of these art form, can now be found at various museums across the world. The major portion of what remains, can be seen at the Government Museum in Egmore, Chennai, Tamilnadu and at Room 33a, British Museum, London. (British Museum is the world’s largest and most comprehensive museum dedicated to antiquities, human history and culture, etc, with works numbering around 8 million pieces!)
Amaravathi is considered to have very close links to Buddhism. The Buddhist stupa in Amaravati was built during the reign of Buddhist Emperor Ashoka around 200 BCE. There is an Archaeological Museum at Amaravathi, which has a replica of the Buddhist Stupa.The great Chinese traveler Hiuen Tsang alias Xuanzang, visited Amaravathi in 640 CE and stayed there for few days. He wrought gloriously about the place, its Buddhist monasteries (Viharas) that existed there, etc.
The Ancient Amareswara temple is considered as one among the five ‘Pancharama Kshetras’ or the ‘Pancharamas’ in Andhra Pradesh. (The idols of Lord Shiva at these five temples are made from a single Sivalinga).
There is another ancient city with same name Amravati in Maharastra state.
How Do I Go to Amaravathi in Andhra Pradesh?
Amaravathi is at a distance of around 30 kilometers northwest of Guntur, connected by Amaravati road from Guntur city.
Vijaywada is at around 46 kilometers distance from Amaravathi and has the nearest airport. Vijayawada Junction is the nearest major railway station to Amaravathi city. Guntur Junction is also a nearby railway station to the ancient historic city of Amaravathi.
Where can I Stay in Amaravathi?
It’s better to stay at Vijayawada, as there are not much options available at Amaravathi.