Started from Majestic, Bangalore in APSRTC Volvo Bus @ 5:30pm.
Reached Thirupathi "Srinivasam Pilgrim Amenities Complex" @ 12:30am
Waited at the Pilgrim Complex for 2hours, as the Toll Gate to Thirumala will open only at 3am
Reached Thirumala Toll Gate @ 2:30am
Waited for another 30mins searching for the bus where we can get place and ticket (there were more than 15 buses and 20-30 cars/jeeps lined-up waiting)
Reached Thirumala @ 3:40am and RAN towards the Queue1 downstairs, near the CRO office, for getting the SUPRABHATHAM SEVA ticket. (It was like sitting behind bars.)
Progressed from queue1 to queue2 upstairs @ 6am, and the waiting continues.
Little Prayers while waiting... caz they will be giving only 80+ tickets and since we were late joining the queue, we counted, analysed and finalised that we were really on the very border.
At 8:30am, we finally got the token for getting the Seva Ticket. (mannn.. after all these running/waiting/etc, holding these tokens, you need to,do it ,to feel it...)
Travelled to the next stop, in this Free Bus, and got the Accomodation which we have alreay booked in-advance.
After a breakfast @ Indian Coffee House and little rest , back to the ever-crowded streets to visit Thirumala Srivari Temple
And this is the First time i'm ever seeing this temple.. It was as awesome as the amount of people visiting this temple.
Very little relaxing time, before we kick-start the busy day time @ the huge stage where exact replica model of the Deity is kept.
First Stop - Visiting Shri Varaha Swamy near the Pond (the water was very clear). Waited for almost an hour there.
Totally exhausted on mostly waiting, we then waited for around 30mins to have "Free Meals". It was a damn huge Hall, where thousands can have food at the same time. And food was tasty too. Hats Off to the TTD for maintaining in such a good condition.
After lunch, direct bus to Papavinasam, around 30mins travel from the main temple. It has a small temple and a never-draining water flowing from top. It also had a small reservoir nearby, but no water at this time.
On our way returning from Papavinasam, immediate stop is "Akasaganga Thirtham". I believe there will be a sacred water stream running at that place, but this time, no water. :)
30mins walk from "Akasaganga Thirtham", is this temple for Lord Hanuman called as "Zapali". It also had a very beautiful natural pond, and this temple is in deep inside the forest, and you have to walk only. But the walk way is damn good with stone way reaching from the main road till the temple premise.
Back to our accomodation at 5pm, had little rest and attended my friend's wedding there at 7:30pm. Million Wishes for the Newly Married Couple.
After dinner, me and one more friend, went for roaming in the temple at night. Except the sunlight, nothing was different from the day time. People were running all around.
People were still waiting in the queue to have glimpse at the God, even at 10:30pm. And still it'll take atleast an hour for them to come out. Have never seen like this before.
After roaming for some more time, went to bed at around 11pm.
After 1 hour loong sleep, got ready and back to the queue, this time for having a nice closer look at the deity @12:30am.
After waiting for 2 hours in the queue (and we're the first people standing in front of the queue), showing tickets in the counter as it opened at 2:30am, running through the empty path way (otherwise completely occupied and people crawling thru that way), had a VERY CLOSE look at the Deity. About the SUPRABHATHAM SEVA, you get to stand just at the entrance of the 7th door, hear the Guru's chanting/singing "Suprabhatham" for almost 20mins, waking up the Lord (which equals waking up the World), and going through the 7 doors, stand inside the 1st door, have a look/pray to the Deity, come out of all the 7 doors. Truely Amazing Experience it was. (For me, i was tooooo eager to have a glimpse of the figure, who controls the faith of millions of people around the world. and not even a single nano second was disappointing for me in this Seva). And the Golden Temple Premise was making me more wondering to look at it. You really have to be there atleast once in your lifetime, to witness the Majestic Deity at His extreme Power to have such a huge following.
After an awesome dharshan, back to our room at around 5:30am. Had a little rest and went for the breakfast @ Indian Coffee House. This has become our fav place to have food there. (I really like the vada there)
Back to the streets again, starting another busy running day. This time we hired a vehicle, as we were running short of time, to visit few place there.
First stop from there was "SriVari Padaalu". This is the place where Lord Vishnu first landed on this hill and the foot is pointing exactly towards the direction of the deity in the Main Temple. This is considered to be the top-most point in that hill and the view from this place is awesome.
Next one was "Sila Thoranam" or "Natural Stone Arch" - A rare unique geological rock arch, aged 1500 million years, formed by a geological feature called "eparchean uncun firmity". Devotees believe that Lord Vishnu appeared through this as Swayambhu and took up His abode at the temple which is just a kilometer away.
A few minutes walk from there, is this place called "Chakra Theertham", full of rocks and little water body at the small temple.
After visiting those places, it was around 1:30pm, and it was getting late to come down to tirupathi. The Ghat Way is really nice one, trees, rocks and lots & lots of hair-pin bends. And these drivers know every inch of that, we reached thirupathi very soon.
We then visited the Temple of Padmavathi - Godess of Lord Vishnu, at Thirupathi, had lunch, started from Thirupathi @ 3:45pm and reached Bangalore @ 10pm.
And it wont be fair, if i dont mention my friends, whom i spent all these time with... here are they
From Left: Rajan, Bhanu, Bala
And this post is entirely dedicated to Bhanu. (Million thanks to you Bhanu)