3. Rushikonda Beach: This is another all time favourite spot for tourists. Golden sands, tidy waves, hills and vast stretch of water makes it a perfect combo with cool breeze as the most needed add-on. Swimming here is a common sight and even you can go for speed boat ride.
I took all the fun of waves and i felt its time i need to say bye. I shake handed with the kids and i tied my luggage on my bike. I changed my costume(i put on my jeans and gear) and started my journey to Rajamundry.I put the maps to Rajamundry and it routed up with vizag port. I really didn't had a chance to take a look when i was on the flyover as there are big walls constructed. I took the bypass and reached the highway. Turned off my gps and it was 1 pm i officially left from vizag. I headed on the AH45 and i was recollecting my memories while travelling. I enjoyed the Godavari district views while riding(the crop, the river, the villages and people). I stopped for my lunch at Payakaraopet and it was around 4 pm. I ordered again for usual meal(don't want to take risk at this time as journey is getting ended). I loved it as it was the best meal i had. They served me on Banana leaf with enough varieties(rice,curry, fry, dal, pickle, sambar, rasam, curd) and the taste is so good that i consumed as much as i can :p. I really ate over there lot and it was a normal good looking hotel. They charged me 70 rs and i really felt its more worth of the amount. Its a 45 mins break and i started to Rajumundry.I planned my halts/ break times after i started from Payakraopet as i need to reach Rajamundry before sun light drops off. So i took only two breaks while riding. I reached Rajamundry by 5.30 pm and all of a sudden i started hearing crazy sound in my rear tyre of my bike. I felt like something went bad and when i checked the mudguard of the tyre is touching the tyre as it had a bent. I recollected and i remember that this happened due to the incident happened in the morning when iam heading vizag from Araku. There was a speed breaker on the road and i saw that all of a sudden when i approached nearer. I was on a good speed but due to the disk in my front tyre i can slow down immediately. But there was a biker coming next to me with good speed he cannot do the same as his bike has drum breaks. He bumped me from the back and there was a situation where my number plate mudguard bent into my tyre. I took that and made it straight but i forgot to check keenly as iam on middle of road. It was the tyre mudguard that bent at the time and it got burnt and tore due to the speed i rode my bike. Luckily i was in Rajumundry and i found a mechanic and asked him to repair it. He said its better to remove that as its not so useful and completely damaged. He removed it and kept it as a memory of mine(he didnt charged anything actually). I reached the railway station as i really felt the hotel was good that i stayed while iam coming. I went and asked for the room but he said the single bed is not available. He said he had a room and it costs 750 rs. I asked him for 600 but he didn't agreed as the actual price is 1000 rs. I convinced him finally for 700 rs and i checked in.
Rushikonda is the other beach in Vizag, the more touristy one, what with a few resorts built around it. Slightly away from the city, this will remind you of Calangute in Goa. Having a rather uncharacteristic calm & unruffled morning on our spice trail, it was time to try some street food at the Rushikonda beach & I took the liberty of ordering a bhelpuri. What I didn’t remember was that I was getting a bhelpuri done in Vizag & not anywhere else. And before I realized, a generous spoonful of green chutney was thrown into the newspaper bowl & was being mixed like there was no tomorrow. Along with it went in some chopped green chillies & a sprinkle of red chilly powder, to make sure I remember Vizag for ever & ever…Amen! Post a few large gulps of water, we proceeded towards the airport with an increased endurance to heat, a strong immunity towards anything that spelt spice & a definite willingness to be back in Vizag soon to savour on its ever tasty coastal delicacies that would be so bland & pointless without its characteristic spice & curry leaves that keep you longing for more. Bring it on guys! The ‘Clicking’ Nomads 10 travelling tips 1. Vizag is a great stop for a weekend, you don’t need much time to enjoy the city, but you need many meals to enjoy its lip smacking cuisine.2. Its the perfect place for coastal food fanatics – so travel with an empty stomach & a streak of adventure to experiment with seafood of all types.3. All those who run away from the word spice, beware! This location is not really meant for you.4. Ramakrishna beach has more options for hotels, than Rushikonda beach & is at the heart of the city – a better place to stay.5. For those who like Calangute in Goa & a crowd, Rushikonda is for you. 6. While you may choose to do everything touristy, do visit the fish market along the port – just to get a feel of the lifeline of the city.7. Auto is a great mode of travel – as we say in Hindi…’sasta, sundar, tikao‘ & very comfortable. And if you’re the sort who travels by car, then just ‘Ola’ it – very reliable & well connected!8. Do reserve a meal for the Bamboo Bay at The Park, just off the beach. Its a great pub to enjoy some good music, delicious food & high spirits.9. The chilly chicken is a must try – you may forget everything else in Vizag, but you cannot come back not trying this. 10. Lastly, when you visit Vizag, make sure you carry with yourself shades, sunscreen, a great appetite, a desire to experiment & lots of courage to make the most of the sun, the sand, the coasts, the smiles & but of course, a whole lot of SPICE!
As we walked down the beach, we suddenly noticed a glimmering heap far away on the road, shining & reflecting the hot summer sun, looking quite like a three dimensional mirage. As we moved closer, to our surprise, the mirage turned into a pile of possibly the world’s shiniest fish. The number of heaps kept increasing, as the air got thicker with the stench of Nethallu, possibly the tiniest fish in the world. Nethallu is a salt water fish that is dried all along the beach, washed off its mud & then crispy fried post marination with imli, masala & a disproportionately high dose of chilli paste. I smelt spice again & the mouth watered just at the mention of it – tamarind made me gulp & masala, salivate! Continuing on our trail & yearning for some authentic Andhraite coastal cuisine this time, we reached Dakshin – the restaurant of the Dasapalla Hotel. Despite being more famous for its thalis, we decided to concentrate only on non-vegetarian delicacies. All that we could read on the menu card were the protein headers & the list of preparations under each, looked completely Hebrew to us. We relied on the steward’s judgement & asked for the most authentic crab & mutton curries along with roti. May be an appam would have worked wonderfully well, but was promptly told off by the waiter as appam was a Keralite delicacy & we wouldn’t dare ask for it at an Andhraite restaurant! Please pardon – for Bengalis the world is divided only into two sections, Bengalis & Non-Bengalis & there can be no other classification beyond that!! From the look of it, it was difficult to spot the Peethala Iguru (crab masala) from the Mamsam Sukka Varuval (mutton pepper fry), both dishes looking frightfully red – however, the taste explained it all – the only common factor across the two dishes being the fiery spice from freshly crushed pepper & the generous amount of curry leaves. Sniffing our way through, we licked off the last pieces, totally content & proud with our ability to successfully endure another round of spice. Looking like Jim Carrey from The Mask, with our tongues rolling out from the immense heat, we drove to Kailash Giri, praying that the fresh air at the mountain top would help extinguish the steam that was blazing out of ours ears. A doddering cable car takes you all the way up to a park that has huge statues of Shiv-Parvati erected at one end & a tiny toy train doing the rounds of the mountain at the other. We were just in time to catch a gorgeous sunset & watch the bright orange sky turn into a dark violet against the panoramic view of the Vizag city. When in Rome do as the Romans, but when in Vizag, do try the Andhraite version of the Chinese chilly chicken. No points for guessing where it stands on the spice scale – firstly the name itself has a ‘chilly’ in it & then it’s the Andhraite take on it. A few diced chicken pieces deep fried & then sautéed in a paste of red chilly with chopped green chillies on top (not to forget the curry leaves of course!), something that goes just perfectly with red wine or sangria. Sipping sangria on the beaches of Vizag, at the beach restaurant of Park Hotel (Bamboo Bay), we watched a Parkikrama show as we celebrated our 5 years of being the perfect partners – in life & travel. When you walk down RK beach, you don’t expect to see cafes lined along the beach, like a Goa – however there was one such ‘Chocolate Room’ that did make an attempt to serve a wide range of chocolate inspired shakes, desserts & other snacks while over-looking the beach as the waves smashed across the sand onto the Dolphin Nose. Slightly derailed from the spice trail, this place was a welcome relief with their delicious & sinful milkshakes, which are easier to have with a spoon than a straw! Meanwhile, in the old town of Vizag, it was a relaxed Sunday with the port taking a break from the weak long activities as the kids sang hymns far away at Ross Hill Church, a Greek inspired church overlooking the city. Serenity, peace & tranquil engulfed this area with the quaint little blue & white church atop the hill, standing as a protector of the Vizag port. The only part of the city that was buzzing with activity was the fish market along the port. Fish of all sizes, shapes, colours to choose from. Hold your breath if you want to walk through & negotiate hard to get a deal for the fresh catch of the day!
Stand on the sand and simply stare.