Amidst the thickly-wooded hills in the Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh sprawls the temple town of Tirupati, the abode of Lord Venkateswara at the foothills of Tirumala. This range of hills is said to resemble a snake with Tirumala forming the hood. Lord Venkateswara, the residing god, is known as ‘Lord of the Seven Hills’ the ‘Balaji’.
Tirupati and Tirumala today are modern destinations of pilgrim tourists. Not only the bliss of a divine 'darshan' but added attractions provided by the surrounding nature make them the ideal pilgrimage-cum-holiday destination. While Balaji remains the main draw, the beauty of nature and the serene atmosphere have made a much visited town today. A beautiful road winds up across the Seven Hills to Tirumala.
Tirupati is also famous for a variety of handicrafts like Woodcarving and Kalamkari items, along with special whitewood toys which are also available here. Traditional Tanjore style Gold Leaf Paintings done at Madanapalli town are also popular and available in many shopping outlets in Tirupati. These paintings have mythological themes as motifs. Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam, which runs a publication department, publishes books & periodicals on Hindu religious treatises. Certain catalogue books are published in various categories such as Ithihas, Sthothras, and other categories. The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam also produces, distributes and markets video and audio cassettes in the formats of Vedic Mantras, Sankirtanas and Pravachanams.
By Air - Nearest Airport is Renigunta, at a distance of 10 kilometers from Tirupati.
By Bus - Tirupathi is linked by regular Bus Services with important places like Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Vijaywada. Tirupati to Tirumala buses leave every half hour. People traveling from Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Chennai, Visakahpatnam and Bangalore can actually buy link tickets to Tirumala and on arrival at Tirupati, board a bus straight away to Tirumala from a special bus station adjoining the railway station. Taxis can also be hired easily to travel to Tirumala from Tirupati.
By Rail - Tirupati is connected with all major cities of India.