Vizag in a 'Net'shell

Actual name : Visakhapatnam
Better know as : Vizag
Location : Latitude - 17 42' N, 
Longitude - 83 15' E
Altitude : 18 feet above sea level
Languages : Telugu, English and Hindi
Population : 12 lakhs (2001 census)

A brief History of Vizag

Ancient Vizag
260 B.C. : Asokha conquered Kalinga empire (of which Vizag was a part).
208 A.D. : Chandra Sri Satakarni was king of this region.
13~~ A.D. : Simhachalam Temple built.
1515 A.D. : Krishnadevaraya was ruler of the area comprising Vizag.

Medieval Vizag
Mid 17th Century : A factory was founded in 'Vizagapatam' by the East India Company.
1689 : This factory was occupied by the forces of Aurangazeb.
1735 (app.) : Dutch Colony was established.
1765 :

The territory of the Northern Circars, of which Vizag was a part, ceded to the East India Company on dissolution of the Moghul Empire. Following this, a British colony was established.

Modern Vizag
1803 : District made a Collectorate.
1858 : Municipal Association started in Vizag.
1866 : It became Vizag Municipality.
1876 : Original Light house on Dolphin's Nose knocked down in a cyclone.
1877 : Chapel built on Ross Hill. Now known as 'Hill Chapel'.
1904 : Railway from Madras to Calcutta, passing through 'Vizagapatam' was opened.
1926 : Andhra University established.
7th Oct, 1933 : Visakhapatnam Port established.
1935 : First private four wheeler registered, number MDV 5, later on changed to APB 5.
193~ : First commercial air taxi for Vizag, owned by a German national.
193~ : Imperial Bank, the first bank in Vizag established.
6th April, 1942 : Japanese war planes attack Vizag.
1947 : Eastern Naval Command established its base here. Prior to our independence the Royal Navy had set up its base here in HMIS Circars.
1949 : Scindia Shipyard started.  Later nationalised and called Hindustan Shipyard.
1957 : Refinery started by Caltex.
1957 : Light house re-built on Dolphin's Nose.
1976 : Outer Harbour inaugurated.
1979 : Visakhapatnam upgraded to Municipal Corporation.
1981 : Visakhapatnam Steel Plant commenced operations.
1999 : launched.
Vizag by Day :

Strolling : Except during the winter months of December, January and February, no sensible Vizagite will be found strolling during the day. Whether for window-shopping or taking a walk on the beach, strolling in Vizag is best done after six in the evening especially in summer.

Markets : If you are on the lookout for clothes, then the ideal places for you to visit would be the city-centre around Jagadamba junction which has a large variety of clothes that include readymades, materials and sarees; Dabagardens and Dwarakanagar for readymades. If shopping for jewellery, the main jewellery showrooms are mostly located close to TSR Complex and Asilmetta junction. For fruits, apart from Poorna Market, there are quite a few fruit vendors near LIC Building which is close Dabagardens, as well as close to Waltair Club, Siripuram. Vegetables can be found in Poorna Market and also in the Raithu bazzars, located in various parts of the city.

Book Browsing : Jyoti Book Depot in Dabagardens, with a good selection and wide variety of books is a browser-friendly place. Gupta Brothers (Dwarakanagar) and Alpha Book Centre are some of the other popular book shops here in the city.

Sitting in cafes
 Sitting in cafes :
FoodEx (formerly Hot Breads), at Siripuram, Four Seasons, in Asilmetta, Fillers / Kebabri in Dutt Island and the recently opened Pastries, Coffee & Conversation which is adjacent to it, are interesting places to 'hang-out' in.

Art Gallery on Kailasagiri Art Galleries : Chitraangan in the charming 'Hawa Mahal' is an interesting place for one. Another new gallery has been opened by the Urban Development Authority atop Kailas Hill (Kailasagiri).

Surfing the net : A rage with youngsters. Vizag has over 120 browsing centres. Some of the better known ones are Dishnet in Dwarakanagar, Visip in Dasapalla Hills.

Sports :

Golf: East Point Golf Club (members only; guests are allowed though).
Tennis: YMCA, Waltair Club (Members Only), NRI Tennis Academy, Tennis Association in Zilla Parishad

Swimming: Most hotels with pools allow walk-in guests and the Municipal Swimming Pool 'Aqua' (Olympic size),  on the Beach road also has coaching facilities .

Vizag by night :

The bad news first : Unless you have your own crowd, Vizag doesn't have much of a night life. However, that is changing. Today's generation of Vizagites will not settle for a 'second show' movie - they want action. 'The Park' has a disco on Saturdays where the crowd is young and out to have fun. 'The Taj Residency' also has a similar show on the same day. There are no regular 'pubs' but quite a number of restaurants that have live music where one can relax with a drink. The Horizon restaurant in Hotel Dolphin is quite popular for this even if the music is quite plebian (in our opinion). The atmosphere though is one of boisterous camaraderie, with a lot of people throwing their inhibitions away when on the dance floor or attempting to sing a song.

Things to do :

Aquariums : Just one - the recently renovated Priyadarshini on the Beach Road.

Arcades :

Bowling alley - Yankee Club (near CDR)
Video Games - Fun World in the Jagadamba Theatre Complex
Pool Tables - Planet Q at Siripuram; Rodeo, in VUDA Complex and Havana in Siripuram Fort to name a few.

: Ramakrishna Beach (Scandal Point) - The beach that is closest to town, the haunt of Mokka janna (Corn on the cob) and bhel vendors. Lawsons Bay, Rushikonda are also some nice beaches to visit.

Cinema Halls :
Jagadamba, Jagdamba Jn. : 2550167 / 2564796
Chitralaya, Jagadamba Jn. : 2563168
Melody, Suryabagh : 2574302 / 2565994
Geet & Sangeeth, Allipuram : 2566534
... More

Libraries :
Andhra University
District Central Library (close to Prahalada Kalyana Mandapam, Maharanipeta)
Visakhapatnam Public Library (Dwarakanagar)
Hindu Reading Room. (near Kotha Road Junction)

Membership Clubs :
Waltair Club (Waltair Main Road [Dr. Lazarus Marg])
IBP Century Club (Pandurangapuram) 
Officers' Club (Pandurangapuram)
Palm Beach Club.

Museums :

Just one  - Vizag Museum on the Beach Road; small but nice.

Places to Visit :
Weekend Getaways :

The cottages at Rushikonda are probably the nearest. There is a resort called Sai Priya Resorts a little further ahead, which is also a nice place for getaways. 

Araku valley is a popular destination especially during the summer months.
Parks :
Vuda Park
Shivaji Park
Kailasagiri Hills
Useful Info :

ATM locations of various banks (Click Here)

Pincodes for Vizag (Click Here)

Auto conversion chart (academic interest only): 

Very rarely will you pay by the meter here in Vizag. Most of the autos have old meters on them and the so called new ones start at Rs.8/-. It is always better to be clear about your destination and price before starting your trip.

Airline Offices :

Indian Airlines 

City Office, Reservation :  2546501/2546503 (9.45 a.m. to 5 p.m.) 
Station Manager : 2546502
Airport : 2558221 / 2559020 (8.15 a.m. to 3.30 p.m.)
Cargo : 2546500

24 Hour Chemists :
Apollo Pharmacy
(in Apollo Hospital premises),
Day & Night Medical Stores.
Lalitha Medical shop,
C.D.R Diagnostic Centre,
Waltair Main road, Visakhapatnam - 530 002.
Tel : 2571726
Apollo Pharmacy,
Dr. No. 10-50-80,
Waltair Main road, Maharanipeta,
Vizag - 530 002.
Tel : 2529618, 19, 20, 21
Nizam's Chemists and Druggists,
K. G. H Premises.
Tel : 2569465
Apollo Pharmacy,
Dutt Island, Siripuram Junction,
Visakhapatnam - 530 003.
Tel :

Hospitals / Emergency Care Centres :
King George Hospital : 2564891
Government Victoria Hospital  : 2562631
Mental Hospital : 2554918
Eye Hospital : 2552544
T. B. Hospital : 2552525
E.S.I.  Hospital : 2577195
Prema Hospital : 2537875
C. D. R Hospital : 2554754, 2555415 / 147
Citi  Hospital : 2555461
Lata Hospital : 2555303, 2572286/87
Kanaka Durga Nursing Home : 2560666
Seven Hills Hospital : 2563081 / 82 / 83 / 84 / 85

24 Hour Petrol Pumps :
Srinivasa Automobile Service Station,
Asilmetta Jn., Vizag-530 003
Ph : 2554757

Emergency Services :
Police :
Police Control Room : 100 & 2565454
Fire :
Suryabagh : 2563582 / 101
Pedagantyada : 2517780
Kancharapalem : 2558470

Blood Banks :
Rotary Blood Bank : -
A.S Raja : 2543436
C. D. R : 2554754
K.G.H : 2564891
Life Medical Centre : 2569532/2576955

Eye Banks :
Mohsin Eye Bank, Old RTO Office, Vuda, Siripuram

Ambulance Services :
Sri Venkateshwara Charitable Trust : 2550641
C. D. R Hosipital : 2554754, 2555415 / 147
Citi Hospital : 2555461
Lata Hospital : 2555303, 2572286/87
Kanaka Durga Nursing Home : 2560666
Victoria Government Hospital : 2562630

Helplines :
Raksha De-addiction centre
Vizag SPCA :2564759

Money Changers  :
Prabhath Stores,
Near Alankar Theatre, Main Road
: 2502765
TT Travels,
B/14/15, Pavan Palace,
Opp. TSR Complex
: 2563290

Car Rentals :
Balaji Travels : 30-1-4, 1st Floor of Suresh Auto Consultants, South Jail Road, Krishna Gardens.
Tel : 2596777
Chaitanya Travels : 43-20-6, Opp. SBI, TSN Colony, Dondaparthy, Vsp-16.
Tel : 2720465
Ace Travels : Vijay Apts., Seethamadhara
Tel : 2537597

Places of Worship / Meditation / Philosophy :

Meditation :

Rama Krishna Mission (Close to Taj Hotel)
Hindu Reading Room (Main Road)
Vishwasanti Kshetram, Multi-faith meditation centre & library (Kailasagiri)
Vishwasanti Kshetram

Hindu Temples :   

Simhachalam (Simhachalam)
Jagganath Temple (Dasapalla Hills) 
Vinayaka Temple (Asilmetta)
Venkateswara Temple (Port Area - near channel)
Kanakamahalakshmi Temple (Reading Room)
Sai Baba Temple (East Point Colony)
Kali Temple (R. K. Beach)

Mosques : 

Juma Masjid, close to A.V.N. College, another very popular one in Kotaveedhi and another Masjid in Railway New Colony, to name a few.

Gurudwara :

Seethamadara and Scindia (Naval Park).

Churches :

St. John's Church (Protestant, Old Post Office).
St. Paul's Church (Protestant, near Circuit House).
Union Chapel (Baptist, Close to Baker's Inn, Siripuram).