Vizag, the ‘Jewel of the East Coast‘ of India, is more than just coastline and beaches. Go for a day trip and venture further away from the city, about 115-km or 3-hr drive, into the scenic Araku Valley located on the Ananthagiri hills where there are coffee plantations and waterfalls.

The journey to Araku Valley is picturesque and lovely for photo stops. Along the way, we pulled over at fields of flowers and paddy for photography.

Indian lady striking a pose at the field.

And we were greeted by playful kids who were not shy to come close to us for photos.

Of course, the boys were more than happy to pose with Anand Karapaya, our famous DJ celebrity of Oli 96.8FM!

Nice weather to be out under the sun in the cool mountainous area. The funny boys even saluted before we left!

The bee farm opposite the yellow flowers field.

Who’s the curious onlooker? The bicycle rider or the photographer?

A panoramic spectacle of rolling hills and verdant landscape from the lookout point at Ananthagiri.

Food vendors at the lookout point selling corns and peanuts.

Bottom right image: our trusty tour bus in Vizag.

If your stomach can take it, be a little adventurous to try the coffee near the coffee plantations. One small cup only costs 10 cents. Say I’m overly cautious with street food in India, I only sipped to taste the coffee. Surprisingly, the coffee was aromatic and smooth, just too sweet for my liking. How about ‘Kopi Siew Dai’??

At the Araku Valley, we visited the Tribal Museum where tribal artefacts, life-sized depictions of traditional practices and models of tribal people are on exhibit to showcase the culture, history and lifestyle of the tribes in the region.

Vid of a busy market street lined with vendors selling food, pots and other stuff at the outskirts of Araku Valley.

Sunset at the scenic Araku Valley… Like a painting.

Borra Caves are million year-old limestone caves of intriguing stalagmite and stalactite formations located at about 90 km from Vizag city. The  attraction is merely 29 km to Araku Valley so it’s popular for tourists to visit Borra Caves while enroute to Araku.

It takes about 1 hour to walk around the caves and the entrance is also the way out.

The caves are brightly illuminated and there are steps and railings for an easy walk.

Go deeper into the cave and you will reach a small cave where it is the worship place for Hindus.

The room that I stayed at Hotel Novotel Vishakhapatnam Varun Beach overlooks the Bay of Bengal. In fact, all 161 rooms of the hotel get a sweeping view of the sea.

The room is contemporary furnished with modern fittings and comes with a spacious bathroom that features a rain shower. The beach road in front of Novotel seemed very happening with rounds of fireworks in celebration of wedding ceremony during our stay.

The hotel has an infinity pool that faces the sea. The restaurant where we had breakfast and dinner offers a lovely sea view to the diners. They say it is like having meal on a cruise ship on the level where we only see the blue sky and the sea horizon.

Sunset on the horizon, a view I enjoyed from my room at Novotel.

SilkAir‘s new office is located at Novotel Hotel in Vizag.

Special Thanks to SilkAir for the invite to take the inaugural flight from Singapore to Vizag and tour around Vizag with a bunch of fun-loving people.

Read posts on Vizag Part 1 and all posts on India.